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Does it really matter if and how I decorate my coffee table?

Collage of aesthetic items that can be added to a coffee table to decorate it
Some ideas of aesthetic decorative items that can be used to decorate your coffee table. All items are available in the House and Home page of the affiliate links section of the website

When I was younger, I used to be the sort of girl who saw a coffee table as more of an inconvenience than the focal point of the living room. My mother never had a coffee table, she liked space and an open area to be able to walk around. My aunty and my grandmother on the other hand, they loved their coffee tables and when I entered my early adulthood, I started to see why. Their coffee tables not only served a practical purpose being the small table in the middle of the seating area that everyone could put their drinks on, but their functionality extended further again when I realised just how practical they were for just about everything else!

I have used their coffee tables for wrapping presents on, writing Christmas cards out on, serving snacks on, even typing up blogs on!! I think the best one by far has got to be watching my young son using the sides of the table to toddle around while learning to walk, oh such fond memories.

But what happens when all that day-to-day clutter has been cleared away, dirty teacups are in the sink to be washed, Christmas and Birthdays are passed, and the toddler is all grown up and you’re left with a bare coffee table. Does it really matter how I choose to style it?

Well, the short answer is yes, it does. When guests walk into your living room, it’s actually the first thing they see, it's the first impression and that always counts. There's a difference between minimalist and bland and drab; bland and drab is never a good sign, conversely if it’s overly cluttered and chaotic then it’s overpowering. How do you find the right balance? It’s easier than you think, you just need to know how to blend items together so they compliment each other. Let me explain.

Tip #1 keep it simple. Have you ever heard the saying "less is more"? There’s a reason for that saying and it’s true, less really is more. A small amount of something subtle will gently stand out, and make more of a “catch the eye” statement then lots of something that just overpowers. Too many bright colours together are an example of overpowering as nobody will know where to put their eyes. Pick one colour that contrasts with the colour of the table and let it gently stand out. Another example is too many big things on the table at once! Have you ever been to somebody’s house and not been able to put your coffee cup down because of all their knick-knacks, books, ornaments, and old magazines? There needs to be function to this table as well as aesthetics so keep it simple.

Tip #2 remember to use different shapes and curves. Just because you have a square coffee table doesn’t mean you have to have a square vase. In fact, I’ve recently seen some stunning white rectangular coffee table that have been dressed up with 3 books of different sizes placed on top of each other to form a pyramid style pile, the books had black spines with thin silver edging and covers to match and looked so elegant, on top of that a clear glass round reed diffuser with black reeds with a black and white sticker on the front of the diffuser. Next to the books was a tall thick round clear glass vase with 3 white lilies in it, they were all in full bloom. The whole set up looked stunning. All of the shapes were different which added some contrast, nothing was overpowering, the whole set up was minimalist but elegant and sophisticated.

Set of 8 marble coasters encased in their own stand
Set of 8 marble coasters encased in their own stand. Available on the House and Home page of the affiliate links section of the website

Tip #3 Use different heights, levels and layers. Just like the coffee table design above, don’t be afraid to stack a few books, or use a nice tray like either the marble or black trays in the picture above and build on that. If you have a look at my House and Home affiliate links page you will see all sorts of items that are perfect for using on a coffee table, or even in the centre of a dinning table. The principle is the same. Don’t forget that a nice stack of matching coasters encased in their own holder can add a little height to a coffee table without being too intrusive or looking out of place.

Tip #4 stick to clusters of 3 only. When styling a piece of furniture, whether it be a coffee table, a dining table, a sideboard, a kitchen island, the side of a bathroom sink, the rule of thumb is no more than 3 items grouped together. This is a design foundation when styling any room in the house and any element of it. The principle being that our brains like odd numbers and things always look better in 3s. An example might be 3 pillar candles of different heights, a colour scheme such as white, black, and green to style a room, a tray next to the bed with pillow spray, your favourite candle and a carafe of water, or a tray on the coffee table with a nice candle, reed diffuser and either a simple aesthetic bowl, a vase of flowers or a plant.

Tip #5 don’t forget that styling your coffee table needs more effort and attention than you think. At the end of the day, it is the focal point of the living room, and everybody’s eyes will be drawn to it. What message do you want to send out? Remember, how you choose to style and decorate your home says more about you than you think, what do you want the final touches to say about you?

Remember that you don't necessarily need to have a coffee table if having a table in the centre of the room isn't your thing. A nice nest of tables in the corner of the room can also act as a feature when dressed appropriately, and can be just as functional as you have smaller additional tables that can easily be moved around the room when needed.

If you enjoy the content that I post, please follow along and keep posted for more blog posts. As always, if there is anything in particular you want me to create a posting on, please feel free to drop me an email ❤️✨ xx

*Post contains affiliate links


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Hi, thanks for stopping by!

I'm Laura, I'm a blogger, a vlogger, a working mum with a busy household, and I love to shop online. In my blog you'll find lifestyle tips and tricks to help you get organised and hopefully make your daily life a little easier.


You'll also find links to products and various items I firmly believe make day-to-day life that little happier (and sometimes even that bit prettier). I will frequently be adding more as the weeks go on, so if you like what you see then watch this space......


I've had so much fun creating this website for all of you, and I really hope you enjoy it too and find inspiration in my blog posts and the various items linked in them. 


If you have something in particular you want me to put up a blog or a vlog about or any questions, please send me an email and let me know xoxo

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