Coffee Table Styling & Decor Tips

These days, coffee tables play host to far more than just your favorite cup of Joe. So we asked our favorite bloggers and stylists to weigh in on the secret formula to nailing a look that feels fresh, intentional and—above all—liveable.

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Everything In This Slideshow

  • 1 of 14

    Add Pops of Color

    Thanks to the versatility and impermanence of coffee table accessories, you can really feel free to go bold here. Try adding a dose of color in the books you stack up, the vases you put in place and in the florals you set out, either on special occasions or just because.

    Image: Handmade Mood

  • 2 of 14

    Quick Styling

    The beauty of coffee table styling is that it's a quick update. Watch and see how it can be done in as little as 30 seconds!

  • 3 of 14

    Stack Things Up

    Coffee table books have been a mainstay in home styling. What makes them such a classic choice? They add much-needed height to the rest of the objects on your coffee table, and also bring in a dose of color that can be switched out on a whim.

    Image: Bliss at Home

  • 4 of 14

    Levels Are Extra Interesting

    Don't forget to consider height. When all of the accessories on a coffee table are on the same level, the overall look tends to feel forced. Use a variety of objects -- some tall, some short -- to give the table a naturally collected vibe.

    Image: I Don't Know How She Does It


  • 5 of 14

    Put It in a Tray

    If your coffee table is starting to feel like a chaotic catch all, try adding a large tray that takes up about 1/3 of the surface area. This clearly denotes the display space and leaves the rest of the table looking clean and organized.

    Image: Lark & Linen, Photographer: Heidi Lau 

  • 6 of 14

    Don't Neglect The Bottom Shelf

    If your living room table sports a bonus lower shelf, don't let it collect dust. Make the most of the extra square footage by tucking away family photo albums, a box for the remotes and any other odds and ends that don't deserve the limelight up top.

    Image: The Hunted Interior

  • 7 of 14

    Stick To A Color Palette

    A sure fire way to give order and sophistication to your coffee table styling is through a unified color palette. Keep objects all within a similar color tone or color family, and the pieces instantly feel at-home and in harmony with one another.

    Image: My Paradissi


  • 8 of 14

    Add Natural Elements

    Natural elements are an easy way to add panache to your coffee table. Incorporate things like rocks, pieces of sculptural driftwood, or -- when all else fails -- a big vase of fresh flowers, to up the homey vibe of your space.

    Image: Sarah M. Doresy Designs

  • 9 of 14

    Create Zones Throughout

    Zones are a clear-cut way of giving order to your coffee table styling. Use things like books, bowls and trays to lie out distinct areas, almost like a grid, and put a little separation between objects. This leaves the rest of the table wide open for occasional things, like glasses of water and the television remote.

    Image: Hi Sugarplum!

  • 10 of 14

    Circular Tables Count

    Avoid the myth that your table needs to be boxy to make the cut. A round table is easy to maneuver around and offers a unique silhouette that nicely frames anything that you place, stack or arrange on top.

    Image: Style Within Reach

  • 11 of 14

    Super Size Your Table

    Coffee table styling can quickly feel forced if the surface area of the table itself is lacking. If your living room allows, go with a coffee table that is 2/3 the size of your couch, that way you have plenty of space to add magazines, plants, remotes and other decorative and everyday objects.

    Image: Inspired by Charm

  • 12 of 14

    Soothing Whites Add Visual Relief

    In small spaces, coffee table styling can quickly add unnecessary visual clutter to the room. Instead, think minimally with your accessories and keep most of the objects within a clean, bright white color palette.

    Image: Oleander + Palm

  • 13 of 14

    Architectural Finial Decor

    As you may have picked up, almost anything goes when it comes to coffee table decor. This is a great place for your more prized conversation pieces, so think outside the box. You could use anything from decorative architectural finals, to antique silver urns to ground the look.

    Image: Dimples & Tangles

  • Next Slideshow Choosing a Light Fixture

    Choosing a Light Fixture

    Lighting can set the mood of a room -- not just by the light it gives off and the mood it sets but by the actual light fixtures. Consider design, as well as function, when choosing the right light fixtures for your rooms.
    Begin Slideshow »
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