How to style a coffee table in 4 easy steps

in , by Julie Nichols, February 02, 2018
Hi friends, how do you use your coffee table?  Do you use it as a footrest, a place to set your drinks and snacks, or somewhere to stash the remote?  The coffee table is the workhorse of your living room and if you are not careful (like me) it can become a cluttered mess. It can also become boring to look at if you are scared to get creative or simply don't know where to begin. Today I will break down the art of arranging a coffee table in four easy steps.  These steps are all you need to style your coffee table to make it a beautiful focal point in your living room. 

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That big open space on top of your coffee table can look daunting even if you have all the right pieces to decorate with.  How do you arrange them so they don't look sparse or crowded?  How do you keep your coffee table functional and looking pretty?  Where do you begin?  I'm here to answer those questions with 4 easy steps to help you style a beautiful coffee table.  Are you ready to begin?  Let's do this together using my antique coffee table as the demo.

4 steps to make styling a coffee table a simple task:

1. Tray:  To organize items

2. Books: To ground the corners, use as a pedestal and of course for reading

3. Personality:  To spark conversation and add color

4. Organic Details:  To give life to the surface

STEP 1:  Start with a tray, one that mimics the shape of your table.  The tray will help organize your items neatly and is a pretty layering element.  Place the tray in the upper right-hand corner, then balance the tray out, by placing an oversized book on the opposite corner.  

2.  Envision your table in quadrants and zero in on the remaining corners.  Aim for rough symmetry by placing a stack of smaller books diagonal to lidded and open boxes. The boxes are great to hide the remotes and other things that can clutter the top of the table.   

3. Add personality and color.  Corral objects in a tray that will spark conversation, like a pretty seashell, found on vacation.  Keep a consistent color palette throughout.  The color palette I used for this coffee table and, the living room is blue, green, white, beige and hits of gold.  If you keep a consistent color palette everything will feel pulled together.  Notice I stacked a blue velvet box on top of a cigar box for added color. 

4.  For this last step, top it off with sculpture organic details, this is my favorite finishing touch. Plants or flowers are the most affordable sculpture around. Not only do they look pretty they also give life to the surface of the table.  Place a plant or flower off-center for a casual look.  Use the books as pedestals and top the stacks with an interesting object.  Don't overdo it!  A coffee table should have plenty of space for drinks and snacks and even room to kick your feet up.

Voila!  You just perfectly styled a coffee table like a pro.  Remember when styling a coffee table and other areas in your home take your time and don't rush the process. Find the pieces you love and the ones that will make you happy. 

Below is a quick video of how I decorated my coffee table.  Click on the arrow to watch.

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