For years, the coffee table was perceived as an also-ran in the glittering world of living room furniture. Overshadowed by super stars like sofas, love seats, and chairs, the utilitarian coffee tables role was hardly ever acknowledged.
Since then, homeowners have come a long way. All of us today recognize the true potential of the self-effacing coffee table. A star in its own right, a coffee table is now considered to be a crucial piece of furniture that sets the tone of living room decor.
Things to Remember
The style, shape, and size of your coffee table should be based on two important criteria the existing style of your decor and how the table is going to be used. If you have young children at home, your coffee table should be sturdy and functional, whereas if you entertain often, you should keep utility as well as appearance in mind.
Deciding on Style
The perfect coffee table should not only complement your living room setting, it should also be functional and durable. While choosing a coffee table, you must take into account its usability and convenience as well as the style of your living room.
Traditional Coffee Tables
Traditional coffee tables
can either be elaborately carved or have a simple, understated appearance. These coffee tables are usually crafted from wood
, hardwood solids, veneers, or a combination of wood components. They usually have ornate details, vertical lines, strict symmetry, and high-gloss finishes that accent formal settings.
Some traditional coffee tables feature a decorative metal
or wrought iron base with a glass top
. Striking a balance between classic styling and trendy appearance, these tables are steadily gaining in popularity.
Contemporary Coffee Tables
Contemporary coffee tables
usually feature clean lines, bold colors, and a spare, minimalist design. Modern coffee tables are often made from metal
, or stone and may sport geometric or other artistic shapes. Contemporary designs in wood are also extremely popular.
The Right-Sized Coffee Table
A regular coffee table height is usually between 16 to 18 inches. If you entertain on a regular basis, you may want your coffee table to be a little higher so your guests won't be inconvenienced while setting down their drinks.
One popular guideline is that your coffee table should be about the same height, or about 1 to 2 inches lower than the seat height of your sofa. The ideal length of the coffee table should be about two-thirds the length of the sofa.
However, the bottom-line is that the right size and height of a coffee table should be determined by the dimensions of your other living room pieces in conjunction with your personal comfort and convenience.