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Coffee and Side Table Styling

Traditional living room table styling usually involves a flower vase in the middle of the coffee table, books underneath, and end tables with lamps on either side of the sofa. Nothing wrong with that—it’s a classic arrangement for a reason. But if you’re wanting to mix things up a bit, here are some coffee and side table styling ideas to get the creative juices flowing.

Coffee and Side Table Decor


“Tray” Chic

Decorative trays provide a sturdy and attractive base for table centerpieces. Candles and small vases are natural pairings, but how about displaying a tea service, mini bar, or even a grouping of attractive bottles? Your tray centerpiece can be something that reflects your hobbies and personality, such as art brushes, a calligraphy set, a vintage camera, model cars or planes, or your favorite collectibles. Pick out a few pieces and get creative!


Go Natural

Potted succulent plants and terrariums bring a touch of nature to your tabletops with minimal maintenance. It’s the perfect way to add freshness and vitality to any space. Don’t want to deal with live plants? Try a mini Zen rock garden, woven rattan or seagrass ornaments, or a richly textured wooden bowl for a soothing, natural tablescape.


Head for Cover

Tablecloths aren’t just for the dining table anymore. Covering a coffee table or even a side table with a cloth or throw blanket can add a splash or color, an eye-catching pattern, or sumptuous texture. It has the added bonus of protecting your tabletops from cup rings when people forget to use coasters.


Make a Statement (Piece)

A single statement piece, such as a sculpture or vibrantly colored blown glass vase, adds instant visual interest to a coffee or side table. Less is more here, so don’t crowd the piece with too many other items—give it centerstage and let it do the talking.


Asymmetrical Is Amazing

Varying the heights of your tabletop objects creates balance and visual appeal. Pair a low stack of books with a tall candle stand or vase. Place a grouping of short, square candles on a tray next to a tall finial. Use stacks of books as platforms to elevate small decorative items.

You can also vary shapes to great effect. A square or rectangular book or tray against a circular tabletop looks particularly striking.

Keep It Simple

A minimalist arrangement always looks thoughtful. Try one beautiful coffee table book, placed at an angle from the table edge, paired with a simple monochromatic flower arrangement in a glass vase. Perfect.

Get Creative with Storage

Nothing disrupts your decor like a tangle of charging cords, unread mail, remotes, and general clutter. Thankfully, there are any number of attractive storage options available. Try stacking decorative boxes or baskets on on top or below the table, varying the heights. The boxes can act as platforms for photo frames and knickknacks, too.

You can also choose a coffee table with integrated storage, such as a lift top or drawers. Need more? Try substituting a cocktail storage truck or pyramid truck for a standard coffee table. Large multi-tasking ottomans are taking the place of coffee tables in many homes, providing seating, serving space and storage all in one.

You’re All Set with “Sets”

If you love the look of a coordinated tabletop but don’t want to choose the individual accessories yourself, there are sets available to suit any decor style. Check out the selection at Wichita Furniture today.