Tips for Creating a Cozy Coffee Table

A coffee table serves many purposes in a living room, including as a surface for food and drink, a spot to rest your feet, a hiding spot for the remote, and, of course, as an attractive decorative accent. It could be all of these things, at the very least. If you aren't careful, your coffee table can

A coffee table serves many purposes in a living room, including as a surface for food and drink, a spot to rest your feet, a hiding spot for the remote, and, of course, as an attractive decorative accent. It could be all of these things, at the very least. If you aren't careful, your coffee table can quickly become a cluttered mess, and if you're afraid to get creative, it can be a drab disappointment. So that you can master the art of decorating a coffee table with confidence and flair, I have compiled some useful guidelines with specific situations to follow.

The Golden Ratio

You can't go wrong with the rule of three when it comes to decorating your coffee table, as it applies to so many other design elements. A set of three pieces is practically failsafe for any size or shape of table.

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Remember that the "rule" of three is more of a suggestion than a mandate. The interplay between these three elements is not always as simple as it first appears.

Here we see the living room designed by Home Furniture and Interior Design by Alvhem Mäkleri & Interiör1 The vase, the small covered dish, and the candlesticks all count as separate objects. Although there are technically four components to this set (or more if you count each individual flower), the whole still feels like a set of three and creates a sophisticated whole.

Find some coffee tables to buy

The table in this scene is moderately sized, and it holds three smaller groups of objects. Although there are more than three components, they are separated sufficiently to be easily distinguished. Because of this, the table has a special enchantment; it is not perfectly symmetrical, but neither is it overly simple. In what ways do you determine which goods to purchase? What follows is a list of excellent emergency supplies and pointers that can be of use in any circumstance.

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Improving Your Writing with the Rule of 3

Make use of books as a foundation This coffee table has been artfully styled to feature a wide variety of objects while maintaining a sense of order and cleanliness. This is due to the fact that the items feel more organized on the bookcases, further emphasizing the distinctness between the three classes.

As a starting point for a layered look, beautiful books (or other flat items like serving trays or even stylish magazines) can work wonderfully. The simplest method involves using three books of roughly the same size as a base, upon which to stack progressively smaller objects. This is a living room by Another great case in point is Alvhem Mäkleri & Interiör. Even better, the rule of three can be used multiple times within each subgroup to further your design prowess.

Intersecting circles and squares Books are a great way to add structure, but if everything is a standard rectangle, the overall effect can be stuffy. The circle is relevant because... Classically juxtaposed, the smooth curves and sharp angles make for a striking visual. As seen in this living room by Haven Design & Construction, placing a vase, bowl, candle, or paperweight on top of, below, or in between squarer items is a great way to break up the monotony of the space and add some much-needed visual interest.

Purchase some knickknacks to spruce up the place

Use different levels. Changing the heights of the objects on your coffee table is another fun way to change up the decor. In this case, too, the "rule of three" holds true. Use objects of varying sizes or stack them in ascending order to reach a range of three heights.

Here, designer Kate Jackson uses the principle that putting the tallest item in the center creates a more aesthetically pleasing symmetry. However, a bit of calculated asymmetry can be striking in its own right. Heightening the ensemble will make it feel more active and interesting.

The use of floral arrangements and candlelight Decorating your coffee table with flowers and taper candles is a tried and true way to elevate its aesthetic appeal. Candlesticks can add a flash of glitzy metal, and flowers add a splash of color, so the two go together beautifully. Inventor from Sweden Madeleine Saltin used that concept brilliantly in her Stockholm apartment.

To add even more visual interest, cut an inch or two off the base of one candle in each candlestick.

Being environmentally conscious is simple. Living plants not only liven up a space, but also introduce organic lines that stand in stark contrast to manmade objects.

Decorate your coffee table with a plant (flowers, a leafy planter, or even an exotic cactus), a simple book (remove the jacket if it's too busy), and a sleek metal or glass bauble using the easy 1-2-3 formula:

An Easy Asymmetries It should be stressed at this juncture that the presented styling options represent merely one possible method. If following all of these rules and formulas seems too complicated, try what appears to be the simplest method of all: placing one item (or stack) asymmetrically almost all the way to one end, as in this house by Simon Mack Architecture. A long coffee table like this is easy to decorate. Put your feet up and enjoy the space
Commonly used in restaurants, square tables If you want your coffee table to be perfectly square, you might be tempted to use four identical pieces. However, by placing two separate pieces or groups, one in each corner, a more intriguing effect is achieved. Bolognino suggests putting a tall vase or lantern in one corner with a stack of books in another (and a light sculptural accent on top).

Find some square coffee tables to buy

Refectory Tables Made of Glass When accessorizing a glass coffee table, remember that it's not all about the things you place on top. In this Toronto apartment, I went with a graphic rug to complement the see-through table. For something different, try a black-and-white rug with geometric shapes or a bare table to draw attention to the rug.

Dual-shelf desks You are not obligated to make use of the lower shelf in your coffee table if it has one, as seen in this living room by Park and Oak Design. Avoid using sets of three by instead using two pairs of varying heights. A small basket or box with a lid can be used to conceal clutter on the ground level while providing a convenient spot to store items like remote controls.

Tables of Odd Form When the table is a weird curvy shape like the one in this Swedish house, it makes a great plant friend. Our Company, Alvhem Mkleri & Interiör Softly cascading flowers, such as tulips, are perfect because their organic forms complement the table shape and you don't need a lot of extra drama.

Faux-leather table tops Decorating an upholstered ottoman coffee table is the same as decorating any other coffee table, provided you use flat items (such as books) as a base. To simplify things, as shown here by Davies Design Build, you can use a single serving tray, place a glass vase or dish on top, and then drape a throw over the top to complete the look. You can't go wrong with the effortless chic of a tufted ottoman.
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