Learn the ins and outs of styling a console table, including 18 unique options for hallway tables.

If you want to make or break the impression of your entryway, living room, or even bedroom, pay close attention to how you decorate and style your console table. Indeed, a console table is a focal point in any room.  

If you let it collect dust and clutter, it will look terrible, but if you arrange it beautifully, it will make any space look better right away. It would be a shame to waste the space on its surface without adding anything to make a beautiful scene.

For your entryway table decor and to round out your living room ideas, here is a compilation of console table styling solutions that can help you create a space that is sophisticated, attractive, and uniquely yours.  

Designing a console table

Just like with coffee tables, the color, line, texture, and scale of objects like table lamps, objets, artwork, and books are all important considerations when thinking about how to style a console table, whether it is in a modern or more traditional setting.

In order to add to your arsenal of entryway ideas, we consulted with some of the world's best interior designers and compiled their top five rules for decorating a console table for impact.

Narrow hallway with red paint ceiling and red and white wallpaper

(Photo by Chris Snook)

Lucy Searle, Editor in Chief of Homes & Gardens, says, "There's no denying that even small entryways benefit from a beautifully styled console table," though she adds that you may need to be clever with the design to keep the space feeling streamlined.

The small lamps are battery-operated, keeping the finish neat, and I love how the console table has been ingeniously fashioned out of a wall-hung shelf. The fixings are concealed behind a smart profile above the radiator (which will also help keep the heat from rising). The mirror and wall sconce are a beautiful finishing touch that gives the room an air of refined opulence. '

Use a console table for something productive.

dining room with mid brown walls, blue doors, 1960s fluorescent statement artwork, gray and wood console, white washed wood table and white modern chairs

You can thank Rachael Smith for the picture.

A buffet or sideboard isn't necessary in every dining room, and if space is at a premium, it's best to switch out sturdy pieces for less bulky ones. Console tables can shine in this setting. As a small home bar, a console can hold a tray of drinks, hold candles when not in use, and have a lamp perched atop it to cast a warm glow. Adding a picture to the wall above the console always makes a room feel more finished.

Create a curated display and use it to adorn a console

mustard yellow painted hallway with console table with wall art and vases

Photo by Tom Leighton courtesy of Future PLC.

A picture or mirror placed behind the console screen, but not too high up, is a necessary component of any outstanding display.  

Homes & Gardens' Deputy Editor Jennifer Ebert says, "We love the idea of a console styled up with a curated collection." Exotic items purchased at Currey & Co. or items brought back from travels could qualify. (link opens in a new tab)

4. Achieve a unified style

Styling a console table

(Future used as image source)

To achieve a unified appearance, it is recommended to work with a theme for the items displayed on a console table. An antiqued glass mirror serves as the focal point, surrounded by a collection of objects in muted tones.

Discordant elements act as a frame for the presentation by preventing the whole from looking too busy.

5 Pick up a couple of table lamps

Hallway by Sims Hilditch in blue

This picture was taken by Sims Hilditch.

Incorporating classic elements into a console table's design. Adding symmetry to a room with two table lamps is a tried-and-true method that works well in many settings, including the entryway.  

According to Ashley DeLapp, owner and principal designer at Ashley DeLapp Interior Design, "when styling a console, I typically aim for symmetry." In this new window:  

If you take this tact when arranging decor for a console table, you may not need much more to make a stunning presentation. Ashley: "I like to keep things simple and clean, using books to add height while showcasing special trinkets or collections of flowers."

Keep it simple, number 6

Console table

(Photo by: The Future)

Keeping the console table's accessories to a minimum can be a great way to achieve a modern look. In that case, it's crucial to pick ornamental pieces that are substantial enough in size to be taken seriously. An unassuming bowl of flowers serves as a visual focal point on this table, but the console below and the artwork above steal the show.

7. Use similar materials or echoes of similar shapes

entrance hall with vibrant statement artwork and console

(Photo by Claudia Bryant and Jon Day)

When considering how to style a console table, you can take cues from the piece itself. The unusual lamp, vases, and artwork all feature similar leg designs. The tabletop color is carried over into the picture frame above for a coordinated look.

8. Use a console table as an art gallery

Console table by Adam Bray

(Photo by Adam Bray)

Art is an integral part of mastering console table styling, and there are many options for displaying artworks on a console table; here, designer Adam Bray displays sculptures and textiles in a minimal but stunning arrangement.

An easel is another method of bringing artwork to the forefront.  

In the words of Grace Brackman, associate designer at Maggie Griffin Design, "I love to incorporate a piece of art on an easel when styling a console table." In this new window: You can add a splash of color and pattern to your dining room table with a work of art, whether it's an antique or an abstract. ’

Stay authentic, number nine

A hallway shoe storage idea with baskets under a console table

The Cotswold Company (Image:

To achieve a relaxing atmosphere, think about how to decorate a console table. In a foyer, especially, choosing a color scheme in soft natural tones is a wonderful idea. The planter and console table itself are decorated with natural hues and textures, which are complemented by the gentlest tones on the lamp base.  

Mirrors hung at eye level can double the effect of an exhibit by reflecting the displayed items.

Ten. Update to the modern method

hallway console with fitted chintz table cloth and bobbin mirror

Credit for the photo goes to Polly Wreford and Claudia Bryant.

While a symmetrical arrangement of appropriately sized lamps or urns on a console table is a safe bet, going the asymmetrical route is a fresh and contemporary option.

‘Try grouping a piece of sculpture, a statement lamp and a vase of flowers for a look that is balanced but has a more contemporary feel,’ says designer Birdie Fortescue (Link opens in new window) "Finish the scheme with a large rug in complementary colors and an analogous painting or mirror." ’

Eleven. Alter the lines

A modern hallway idea with large modern console table with curved underside, topped with table lamp and vase of flowers

(Photo by: The Future)

We rarely give much thought to entryways, which are typically devoid of interesting architecture. Select a console table with rounded edges to increase the visual appeal, and then decorate it with vases and sculptures that have similar shapes and materials.

12 Pick out some old stuff

Wooden chest of draws with blue and red hand painting design, red patterned rug and matching lamps

Picture by VSP Interiors.

However, how to style a console table like this is a common decorating conundrum.

Henriette von Stockhausen, co-founder and creative director of VSP Interiors, says, "An antique console does more than provide a place to set things down." In this new window: You can achieve a cozy, layered look by incorporating a pair of lamps with antique silk shades, some artwork, tapestries, and decorative accessories. ’ 

Experiment with pastels 13

Home makeover ideas - console table

(Photo by: Maureen Stevens)

Create a pretty vignette by grouping several decorative items and a floral arrangement on a large console table painted in pastel colors. Because of the incorporation of white, the overall effect is modern and pristine. Grouping smaller decorative pieces is preferable, while a single taller design can add the necessary height to a larger piece of furniture.  

Display any artwork you're using as part of the setting by hanging it near the table and coordinating its color scheme with the rest of the room.

14 Use wallpaper as a border around a display on a foyer table.

decorating a console table in an entryway

(Photo courtesy of Gunter & Co)

The narrow dimensions, lack of natural light, and lack of architectural interest that frequently characterize entryways make them difficult to design. However, Irene Gunter, founder of interior design studio Gunter & Co., suggests using some hallway wallpaper ideas to help create interest. (link opens in a new window/tab) explains:

I wanted to add some wallpaper for color and texture but realized that it couldn't have been used extensively. Our joiner crafted a stunning frame out of liquid metal panelling beads, which not only accentuates the entry table but also creates a stunning backdrop for the wallpaper. ’

Oversized mirror hung in the center of the foyer is strategically placed so that it blends in with the accessory display on the console below, creating a dramatic focal point.

15. Showcase cherished artifacts in the foyer

decorating a console table in an entryway

Photos taken by Penny Morrison

If you're lucky enough to have a hallway as wide as the one shown here from interior designer Penny Morrison, a narrow antique console table can fit in it without crowding the space. (Link opens in a new window)  

Soften the space with a gallery wall of tastefully framed artwork, a striking vase of flowers, and a pair of pattern-covered table lamps. You can find many beautiful objects, from tiny trinket boxes to exquisite ceramics, at antique fairs.  

16 Make a narrow foyer seem more spacious by decorating a console table.

decorating a console table in an entryway

Featured image by Louise Bradley.

When inviting guests into your home, it's important to make a good first impression on them, as well as on yourself. Louise Bradley, a London-based bespoke interior designer, says, "I always incorporate a console or entry table into the space in order to achieve a statement hallway. In this new window:  

"When accessorizing the entry table, keep in mind that the goal is to draw the viewer's gaze into and around the room. You can keep your space tidy by adding a small decorative box to store your necessities in upon arrival, or you can go with a console that has drawers.  

The addition of plant life and a fragrant diffuser will also help to set a cheerful mood. For added drama, hang up some large mirrors on the wall; they'll reflect light around the room and make the whole place feel brighter and more spacious. ’

Take note of how the tall, narrow mirror and matching table leg proportions cleverly exaggerate the height of the entryway, creating the impression of more space.

Get creative with your console table's entryway decor by picking a theme for the space.

decorating a console table in an entryway

This picture was created by OKA.

It makes perfect sense to decorate a console table at the entryway in a manner consistent with the table's overall design theme, whether that theme is California Casual or country. Here, Oka It's a new tab that opens up the full article. Accessories that allude to the table's Oriental style complement the Katsura console beautifully.

The number 18: paint a console table

style a console table in an entryway

(Photo courtesy of Annie Sloan)

In search of cottage hall decor Here, British paint expert Annie Sloan took an ordinary console table and transformed it into something truly extraordinary. In this new window: She's continued the pattern on the wall paneling behind it and, of course, chosen accessories with a hand-painted look to complement the paneling.  

The Best Console Table Accessories

The aesthetic value of a console table's contents is highly context-dependent. What looks good in an entryway? A pair of lamps and a focal decorative piece, such as a beautiful, flower-filled vase or sculpture, displayed on the console's surface. In a living space, the answer may vary; however, a single lamp placed on a console is both aesthetically pleasing and functionally necessary. Treasured photographs, a carefully selected stack of books you intend to reference frequently, and a shrewd storage box in which clutter that might otherwise gather than can be neatly stowed away are all items that belong in a family room rather than an entryway.

To what extent can a console table be dressed up to give the impression of luxury?

Keeping the top of a console table clean and dust-free is essential if you want it to give off an expensive vibe. Finally, the styling is what matters most. The best way to accomplish this is to place lamps on either end of the console and a sculpture or flower vase in the middle. In order to complete the look, hang a mirror or picture just three to four inches above the table top.

I need some advice on how to adorn a console.

Consoles can be ornamented with table lamps, paintings, framed photographs, and decorative accessories such as vases, sculptures, and ceramics.

Designer and Sims Hilditch executive Louise Wicksteed advises, "When styling a console table, consider scale and proportion." In this new window: Interior decorators Table lamps, for instance, arranged around the console, create visual interest by lending both height and balance. Plants in a bowl draw the eye, and books and trinkets on a shelf lend an intimate feel. ’

To what ends is a console table put to use?

Console tables are useful in a variety of settings, including hallways, entryways, dining rooms, and living rooms, thanks to their slim profile and ample surface area for displaying lamps, decorative objects, and artwork. In the latter setting, you might not put it against the wall but instead at the back of a couch.

They are a flexible option that can function as a desk in a small room or a bar when hosting guests.

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