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27 Ideas for Decorating a Coffee Table in Your Living Room

coffee table in living room
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Giving your living room a stylish makeover is easier than you think. And don’t worry, it doesn’t involve a full-on decor overhaul or a costly remodel. Creating a chic and modern lounge space is all about how you style your coffee table.

As the focal point of your living room, your coffee table has the power to make or break the decor. An elegant coffee table will elevate the entire room and give it a magazine-worthy look. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a pro to come up with easy-to-achieve and stylish coffee table decor ideas. We’ve rounded up the best living room table ideas for every home, from seasonal tips to what items to place on your coffee table and how to style them for maximum impact.

Coffee Table Ideas

Revamp your living room with these simple coffee table decor tips and tricks. From seasonal setups to minimalism, and from kid-friendly to living room tables with storage, you’ll find the perfect coffee table decor ideas below to make your favorite space more functional and pleasant.

1. Create a Cozy Wintry Setup

Making your living room extra comfortable and inviting in the winter will not only ensure it’s in sync with the season but will also raise the coziness factor. An easy way to bring about those dreamy wintry vibes is to layer a faux-fur throw or a shag over an ottoman or another piece of upholstered furniture (such as a bench, stool, or a backless chair). Complement the look by draping a warm throw or a blanket over the sofa.

2. Go for a Bespoke Coffee Table Design

The line between art and design is blurred these days, and that’s a good thing. One easy way to add an artsy vibe is to order a custom living room coffee table. Not only will it add plenty of character to the space and make for a great conversation starter, but it will also create a chic, gallery-like feel.

3. Less Is More

A modern coffee table sometimes doesn’t need a lot of items to look chic. This one is styled with two books with the same dimensions and a vase with fruit branches. It’s a simple, straightforward and incredibly impactful tabletop design because it works well with the rest of the room. The non-traditional choice of florals adds a pop of color and an organic element to the space.

4. A Rectangular Table Is Perfect for a Room with Multiple Sofas

If your living room has multiple sofas in it, a long and narrow coffee table will look the best. Ideally, you’ll want the table to reach the end of the farthest couch, not only for aesthetic reasons but for practical ones, too. Your guests will appreciate being able to use the table by simply reaching out a little instead of standing up and walking to it. This is one of those coffee table decor ideas that’s easy to put in place.

5. Consider a Kid-Friendly Oval Coffee Table

Opt for an oval coffee table if there are kids in your household, or if your living room is a high-traffic area with lots of bumping into the furniture. The oval shape of the table is also the perfect way to soften the straight lines and edges that come with having a traditionally designed sofa, windows and a rectangular rug placed into a square-shaped room that may feel too angular.

6. Nesting Tables are a Multifunctional Wonder

A good set of two or three nesting tables is the gift that keeps on giving. If you’re searching for a small table for your living room, nesting tables might be just what you’re looking for. Nesting tables look unique and allow you to arrange them in multiple combinations according to your needs and style preferences. They’re the perfect option for a small living room where a single table may make the space feel cluttered.

7. Add Softness with a Round Living Room Table

A round coffee table adds a bit of softness and some curves into a boxy room. The great thing about styling round living room tables is that they don’t need to have complex tabletop designs. Place a beautiful vase with flowers on a large coffee table book, or a trio of candles to complete the picture. This living room table decor idea can breathe new life into a tired space.

8. Use an Ottoman as Coffee Table

Ottomans are living room multitaskers. They conveniently double as additional seating, and most also have storage. A stylish ottoman is an excellent solution for people who’d like a living room without a traditional coffee table. Style yours with a tray, a couple of candles and a small potted plant.

9. Think Outside of the Box

Some coffee table designs are a bit more unconventional than others. Take, for example, this vintage luggage trunk. It adds personality and Old World glamour to the space. Other non-traditional living room table ideas include stools, a console table, an oversized lidded storage basket, wooden crates and even a tree stump.

10. Keep It Low

One way to create visual interest and break up a monotonous furniture arrangement is to incorporate pieces of different heights. Opt for a low coffee table to create contrast with your sofa and make your living room feel more spacious and less cluttered. Coffee table decor ideas like this take your space outside the ordinary.

11. Storage Matters

Looks are important, but so is function when it comes to choosing and decorating your coffee table. If your apartment lacks ample storage space, you can create some by investing in a two-tier coffee table. You can use the lower shelf to store books and magazines.

12. Bring the Outdoors In

Adding plants to your living room decor makes your home a healthier and more stylish place. They introduce an organic element that adds a cozy vibe. From large potted plants to a small bouquet in a pretty vase, your coffee table is the perfect place to display them.  

Learn more about the best home plants in our article: The 14 Best Plants for Bedrooms.

13. Keep It Classy in Black and White

You can never go wrong with a classic color scheme like black and white. A white or light grey marble-top coffee table with black legs will fit perfectly into this sophisticated aesthetic. Alternatively, a couple of artsy side tables can do the trick. This living room table idea looks extra chic with hardwood floors.

14. Odd Numbers Rule

When it comes to styling items on your coffee table, the rule of thumb is to always group them in odd numbers — three and five work and look best. If you’re going for three items, you can place them all on one end of the table. But if you choose to arrange five objects, try to distribute them evenly on the tabletop so one end doesn’t look too cluttered.

15. Don’t Go Overboard

It’s important to remember that quantity doesn’t lead to quality when decorating your coffee table’s tabletop. Keep it simple and keep it classy. It’s better to have fewer items than to go completely over the top with different trinkets, books, photos and candles. You will be risking making your living room look messy and unattractive.

16. Form a Grid

One of the rules interior designers swear by is grouping items in a grid pattern. What does that mean? If you have a square tabletop, divide it into four quadrants and place items into all four of them. If your table is rectangular, go for three separate sections in a row. This rule works best with angular coffee table designs. You can implement this coffee table decor idea with your existing furniture.

17. Minimal is King

If you favor a more bare and minimalist home aesthetic, consider a simple wooden table in a natural finish. Select one that has a unique element to it. The two-leg design of this one adds a modern, architectural vibe to the piece. Then place something simple like a ceramic water pitcher, a vase or a candle on it.

18. Play with Shapes

Your coffee table can have a whole lot of impact on your living room decor, and we don’t just mean the items you place on its tabletop. Take this modern room, for example, where each furniture piece introduces a different shape — the oval sofa, the rectangular daybed, the square chairs and the round coffee table. It’s a harmonious play on shapes with each piece playing a leading role.

19. Go for All White

White is a winner when it comes to home decor. The key to creating visual interest and depth in an all-white living room is to add plenty of textures. Here, a fabric sofa and a textured rug are complemented by the smooth surface of this coffee table, which adds another dimension to the decor. This living room table idea works best in pet-free homes, or homes with frequent cleaning schedules.

Read more tips on decorating a white bedroom in our guide: How to Design and Style a White Bedroom.

20. Create a Boho Chic Heaven

There is a reason why bohemian living room table decor is so popular. It creates an effortlessly chic vibe that makes the entire space inviting and cozy. Decorate your coffee table with a few of your favorite books and add objects in organic materials and textures such as stoneware, ceramic, natural fibers and wood. Place floor pillows or poufs next to it for a picture-perfect look.

21. Side Tables As Coffee Tables

Some people prefer to opt out of a large, centrally placed coffee table, and that’s okay. This furniture arrangement works well in smaller living rooms because it frees up some space in front of your sofa. In this case, you can place a couple of beautiful side tables by your couch and armchairs so you still have a place to put your remote controls or glasses.

22. Make a Statement

We’ve already mentioned that your coffee table can be the focal point of your living room. If you really want to make a statement with it, select one with a non-traditional design. Wooden tables with uneven edges look fantastic, as do root coffee tables. To finish the organic look, place an odd number of objects on top of it such as stoneware vases, candles or a water pitcher. This is the perfect coffee table decor idea for a ski cabin or a summer retreat.

23. Display Your Art

Your coffee table is the perfect spot to display an original work of art such as this twisted sculpture. Style it with a book, in a tray or on its own for maximum impact. Keep the general object number to a minimum (three at most) when displaying an item with such a striking design.

24. Let it Shine

Sometimes, it’s best not to place anything on your coffee table top. If you’ve invested in a high-end piece of furniture that looks beautiful on its own (check out the gorgeous table picture here), resist the temptation to style it with any items. It’s an ultra-chic, modern look that doesn’t need any accessories to enhance it.

25. Create Contrast

If your living room is decorated in light-hued pieces, a coffee table in a dark hue will break out of that monochrome palette and add a modern vibe. Select a marble table in a charcoal grey or green tint, or go for all black. Then, to tie both color schemes together, style it with objects in light and dark shades. Use this living room table idea in small spaces for an airy touch.

26. Free Up Some Room

No one says that you absolutely must place your coffee table in front of your sofa. You can also display it between two couches if your living room is spacious enough. Whether you use this setup as your permanent living room decor or you only switch it up for parties, you’ll end up with plenty of space to entertain or for your kids to play.

27. Add a Rustic Element

Unfinished wood is a beautiful material for a coffee table, especially if you’re into a modern rustic style. It adds a mountain lodge vibe to your living room in the winter, creating a cozy ambiance. Style it with other organic materials such as jute baskets or bowls.   

Need More Living Room Table Decor Ideas?

The best way to get custom advice for your project is to take advantage of the Complimentary Styling Consultations offered by Parachute. Whether you’ve already narrowed down your coffee table choices and would like to get an expert’s opinion, or you haven’t even started your research yet, the company’s decorators will help you to create a chic and inviting living room. Schedule your appointment online. After your one-on-one video call, you’ll also receive a lookbook with more personalized tips that work for your space.

For more design and home decor information, read on:

Fall Home Decor Ideas: Room-by-Room Inspiration

Summer Home Decor Ideas: Room-by-Room Inspiration

Winter Home Decor Ideas: Room-by-Room Inspiration

Monochrome Bedroom Decor Ideas & Inspiration

Grey Bedroom Decor Ideas & Inspiration

Modern Farmhouse Bedroom Decor Ideas & Inspiration

Feng Shui Interior Design Guide: Room-by-Room Inspiration

How to Design an Interior Design Mood Board

How to Decorate Your Living Room Sofa with Throws