From storage to displaying pieces, a coffee table has innumerable functions depending on your taste, style, and needs. Most coffee tables are designed for practical reasons—a storage space, a stunning display, and a complete look that is much needed for a living space. They are potentially what gives a living space the most character and generally hold decorative and personal items for homeowners to reflect their personalities.
Choosing a coffee table for a particular space or room seems like an easy task when you think about it in the first place. While it is true that there are a lot of available options to decide upon, which particular style will work for your room? Should you go with a metallic one with glass on top, wooden with bulky legs; or should it be square, rectangular, or round? The options are endless and at times it can be overwhelming to decide.
Pragmatically, choosing the right coffee table is one of the often-overlooked decorative pieces of furniture. From size, and materials to family needs, there are a number of things that you need to consider in picking the right coffee table that meets the eye. You have to decide but it is hard to pick just one, right? So what will you consider when choosing a coffee table? For this reason, here are the practical tips that you need to take into account.
Determine the Budget.
Budget is an essential and critical aspect that needs careful consideration as it determines the course of buying the ideal coffee table. It would be an advantage if you set realistic spending limits, itemize the costs clearly, examine your priorities, and reserve at least 20% of your budget for unexpected costs. The price points for a coffee table differ and it can range from ultra-expensive to budget-friendly cost. In this regard, budgeting allows you to determine where and how you should spend your money, especially when selecting bigger pieces. With a budget plan, you will be able to set limits and determine how much you want to spend on a coffee table. The more you determine your budget, the more you can manage your finances, prevent the pumping up of the costs, and explore ways to cut down unnecessary expenses.
Calculate the Space
The first and most important part to consider when choosing a coffee table is to determine the space in your room. In this respect, the importance of scale is of utmost as it helps you to make everything in your room appropriate and precise. For example, the coffee table should be placed at a distance from a couch, sofa, and any seating arrangements so that it can be easily reached and far enough to stretch your legs. For an ideal space, place your coffee table 12 or 18 inches away from the sofa; any more or less will result unbearably close or far. For a TV stand or fireplace, calculate at least 24 to 30 inches from the coffee table to have enough space for circulation around the area. When it comes to width, evaluate the length between the sofa and TV stand and subtract 42 inches.
Decide on the Shape
Coffee tables come in a variety of shapes be it square, rectangular, round, or oval. Although it is quite hard to pick the shape that best suits you, it is still essentially important to consider this. For all intents and purposes, it is advisable to base the shape of the coffee table on the seating arrangement. For instance, if you have a large family-sized sofa, a rectangular-shaped coffee table is a perfect choice. When it comes to a room, think of the practical shape for the space. If you have infants or pets, a round coffee table is a safe option as its sharp-edged corners will not harm them in case of accidental falls or bumps. Allow at a minimum of 36 inches between the TV and the coffee table to allow enough space to pass between the two pieces.
Assess the Size
As with the shape, you need also to determine the size of the coffee table you need. The size of the coffee table depends on two major factors—the room layout and the size of the room—and the measurement—length and width—must depend mostly on the size of the sofas and the optimal distance to the focal point which might be a TV, fireplace or opposing chair or sofa. The height of the table is equally essential as it should not be lower than 1 or 2 inches from the seat of the sofa. The ideal height of a coffee table for a typical-sized sofa is 16-18 inches, while a higher sofa pair with a 20-21 inch tall table. It is always advisable to choose a coffee table that will be of the right height and size so that your family and guests can easily keep their stuff on the top. A taller table will also be more convenient for entertaining a number of guests as it will be easier to accommodate them in a well-measured space.
Designate a Style
There is a wide array of styles for coffee tables, each of them striking a balance between the sofa and the table itself, and to the overall appearance of the room’s interior and décor as well. Whether it is a classical, vintage, transitional, industrial, contemporary, or modern style, there are a lot of choices to suit your taste and aesthetic needs. But bear in mind to make sure that the coffee table you choose matches your furniture and décor. If you have a contemporary interior scheme, something like a sleek metal table with a glass top might suit you best. For a country casual look, a rustic oak table might be ideal. Or you can also try a round coffee table with wooden turned legs for a romantic atmosphere. There are many styles to choose from and utilize with. All you have to do is to be creative by using the decorating scheme of the room as your guide.
Consider the Material
When it comes to materials, coffee tables also come in a wide variety of options to choose from. As with the style, picking the right material is more of an individual choice or depends on your room’s décor. Some of the common materials are wood, metal, marble, glass, upholstery, and stone. Wood materials bring a feeling of texture and natural warmth. Oak and maple are ideal for casual settings while cherry and walnut have a more formal look. Glass, on the other hand, helps create an open, airy feel, mostly in small spaces. Thus a glass combined with either steel or brass imbues a sophisticated feeling. Metal, as a versatile material, can match industrial motifs and could even last longer. Moreover, metal can be cut, bent, or shaped to your preferred form.
Sum Up the Functionality
While it is important that a coffee table is pleasing to the eye, it is also essential that it sticks to its function the way it should be. The objective is to style a coffee table that is aesthetically pleasing that does not deprive it of its flow or function to the rest of the space. Functionality is an important factor to know what the primary use of a coffee table will be. Think of the main motive: will it be more decorative or to provide storage? How much storage will be enough? For storage, choose the coffee table with drawers or shelves to store magazines or kid’s toys. If you prefer this kind of feature, you can still be able to place a drink down without the risk of spilling over. If décor is your purpose, then you can take one with adorned lines and material texture you favor.
Think of Alternatives
Thinking of alternatives allows you to be creative by finding the perfect coffee table that is not a table at all. Look for old steamer trunks, cedar chests, or ottomans as they are great alternatives to the regular coffee table. Each of the possible options provides an engaging look. Ottomans for example can be made of inviting fabrics or leather that will surely add visual features and attitude to the room. Old trunks and chests are unique alternatives for relieving nostalgic moments and creating a compelling conversation piece. But if you don’t have any of these, considering old trunks and chests are rare, you can opt from a wide range of possibilities like nesting tables, storage bench, storage baskets, a refurbished suitcase, poufs, small stool, tree stumps, old drum, or even garden stools. Again, all you need to do is to be creative to produce astonishing end results. Once you have finally decided on the budget, style, size, material, and functional features of a coffee table, now is the right time for the best part—shopping. While online shopping is typical these days, it would still be best to visit high-end department stores, flea markets, or even antique shops to look for items that would suit your style and needs. But just remember to bring with you the necessary measurements to help you pick that are matching and perfect for your space. Finding the perfect coffee table may take some time and effort, but with these tips, it should not have to be a daunting task.