At first glance, picking the right coffee table doesn’t seem to be a difficult task, that is until you actually start looking for one. With so many options out there, it can quickly become stressful. So, to avoid any buyer’s remorse in the future, it’s best to narrow down your choices before you commence the hunt for the right one.
Whether its job is to hold catering & drinks or perhaps a competitive family game of monopoly, the right coffee table is essential in almost any living space. With that being said, there is more than meets the eye when selecting the right coffee table, so today, we are sharing some of the key elements to consider…
Function & Placement
First and foremost, ask yourself how you will be using the coffee table?
Are you an avid clean freak and like to keep things clean and minimal or are you open looking to have a surface to style with your favourite coffee table books, plant/vase and candles?
How much storage will you be needing (if any?) Or will a little storage box layered up with your styling be sufficient to conceal your remote controls, etc.
Do you want a surface to serve popcorn and your fav lollies on movie night
Or are you looking for a play surface for your kids’ lego?!
These are just some of the very important questions that will help narrow down your choices when it comes to picking the height and shape of your table….
Second consideration is placement – placement plays an important role when it comes to egress around the living room. If you are opting for a large coffee table to suit your sofa, you need to ensure it’s not too big that you lose the functionality of the space. Always provide enough egress for yourself and guests to move in and around the sofa and table. Give examples on how close to sofa min 350cm for example from sofa to coffee table… you also don’t want it too far away from the sofa that it is not functional.
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Size & Shape
We’d argue one of the most important things to consider is – Size!
But before focusing on the physical size of the coffee table, start with the size of the existing furnishing pieces in the space – especially the sofa! Scale is everything when it comes to nailing design as it helps make a space feel intentional and complete. If you are TV lovers and have quite a large sofa to accommodate, then you’d need to be looking for a large coffee table to suit.
The shape also plays a huge role in the function and flow of your living. Again, start by looking at the form of the existing furnishing pieces in the room, and this will help determine the shape that will best suit the space, whether it be rectangle, round, square, or perhaps organic. Opting for a rectangle or square coffee table will give a more structured and traditional look whereas softer edges are more versatile and can create a fun element.
Another key element when looking at the size is the height. This may vary depending on what you’ll be using the coffee table for and, again, your existing furnishings. As a rule of thumb… you never want your coffee table to sit higher than the seat height of your sofas. But don’t stop there, why don’t you try playing with varying height.
If the space permits, we love the look of two nesting coffee. It’s a subtle way to add some visual interest, especially when you add styling on top.
Materiality & Style
Like all furniture, the material options for coffee tables are endless (overwhelmingly). Now that you’ve narrowed down the shape and functionality, this will help guide you with which material is best suited for your space.
For instance, some more natural products are more susceptible to stain and could potentially create a cleaning nightmare, whereas more man-made products such as veneer or
You must do your research on the properties of materials. For instance, a timber veneer table could really help bring some warmth to the space while being a hardy product, but be careful into to pick anything natural/raw as it will be more susceptible to staining/ damage which can be a maintenance nightmare for some!
Of course, if there are any children around, glass or similar fragile materials wouldn’t be the most practical. Also, specifying a product that has some weight doesn’t run the risk of wobbling or tipping over is super significant, especially if you have little ones running around.