Home Decorating and Staging
Insider Secrets to a Beautiful Home

Decorating a Coffee Table
Fun, Easy, and Profitable

Decorating a coffee table is a finishing touch that will make your room sparkle. When selling a home, an interesting coffee table display is a buyer magnet. For just plain living, a coffee table is a creature comfort. A place to put a drink, a book, even your feet at the end of the day.

Just about anything can serve as a coffee table as long as the size works with your sofa. In general, your "coffee table" will look best if it's about the:

  • Same height as the seat of the sofa and
  • Slightly smaller than or equal to the width of the sofa

Visually divide the surface of the coffee table into thirds and try three items or three groups of items that have the following properties:

  • Height - Tall, medium, small
  • Color - Tie in the color scheme with the rest of the home
  • Texture - Vary the texture of items, smooth, rough, shiny, dull, etc.
  • Greenery - Fresh or quality artificial plant or floral
  • Whimsey - Something fun and unexpected to make you, your friends and the buyer smile

Step back periodically and assess the result:

  • Take something away
  • See how it feels
  • Resist the urge to crowd. It's so easy to over do it!

Coffee Table Ideas
Rustic Luxury

How to Do It

  • Large coffee table is in scale with the size and furnishings in the room
  • Three candlesticks of varying heights provide the tall (one candle is pear shaped adding a touch of fun)
  • Basket of balls coordinate with the fabrics and color in the room (medium height)
  • A decorative box is always pretty
  • A book of Colorado Photography invites you to sit down and take a look

Elegant Luxury

How to Do It

  • A round glass coffee table is good for a smaller room with a more intimate seating arrangement
  • A vase of hydrangeas that coordinate with the colors in the room is elevated onto a stack of pretty books. This is a great way to add height to one of your items
  • Another pretty box, medium height
  • Two stone doves provide texture and interest

Small Formal Living Room

How To Do It

  • A simple round coffee table is perfect
  • A large floral in the center complements the color scheme
  • Add a stack of pretty books. You could probably add one more item, but the beauty and simplicity of this arrangement suits the room

Small Condo

How To Do It

  • In this small condo, a chest doubles as a coffee table and provides much needed storage
  • Tall red vase with grass makes a dramatic centerpiece
  • A metal tray with red apples continues the color scheme
  • Finish with a photo album that provides texture and an invitation to peak inside


How To Do It

  • This room invites you to lay down on the sofa, put your feet up and enjoy one of the books stacked on the table
  • A pretty bouquet of flowers looks fresh
  • Small pottery dish adds a little interest

Small Bedroom as Study

How To Do It

  • Sometimes it's nice to turn an extra bedroom into an out-of-the-way place to watch TV. This small vintage coffee table is the perfect size for the loveseat
  • A tray with a tall box of gourmet cookies, two mugs, and a bowl of fake strawberries says "Come sit down, relax a minute, and enjoy your favorite TV show!"

Decorating a Coffee Table - Wrapping it Up

Decorating a coffee table isn't hard, and it doesn't require that you go out and buy new furniture or accessories. Turn your creativity loose. Shop your house for interesting objects. What can you combine in a new way to make your home more enjoyable and inviting? Sorting and packing can give you some ideas of what to look for.
decorating a coffee table

What's Your Favorite Coffee Table Idea?

Coffee tables are fun, easy, and a great addition to a beautiful room. And there are so many ways to decorate one. What's your favorite? If you're a decorator or home stager, feel free to include a link to your website!

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Alex Hinst is a home stager and decorator with hundreds of success stories, including designing multiple investor home renovations and contributing to Denver's exciting urban renewal.

Alex Hinst Designs is located in Denver's Historic Highlands. Contact