If the final piece of your decorating puzzle is a coffee table, pour yourself a cuppa and enjoy our expert guide to finding the right one
More than just a functional place to plonk down drinks or pile up magazines, a coffee table helps to anchor a space, define the seating area and, given its prime position, can be a scene-stealing centerpiece. When designing your living room, harking back to your chosen aesthetic is key, but so is balancing your desired look with practicality. Here, our experts help you define your coffee table style.
Simple, functional aesthetics and a muted color palette sum up Scandinavian design, says interior designer and stylist Gemma Corstorphan of BoConcept. “Scandi-style coffee tables are often low, visually light, streamlined and made from durable materials such as oak, paired with neutral detailing or a contrasting top in white or grey,” she explains. This creates a look that is easy on the eye and harmonious with a light interior.
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Many Scandi coffee tables are leggy, so keep in mind how such a choice would sit with other elements in the room. Rather than also choosing a sofa with skinny legs, team it with a grounded sofa of generous proportions (below). “This will make space seem more relaxed and imbue a sense of comfort,” says Gemma.
style it up
Scandinavian styles pair nicely with low, deep lounges that sit on thick, knotted rugs in warm grey and white tones suggest Gemma. For a little extra texture or height on the tabletop, style your coffee table with dainty ceramics, a vase of tall stems or a group of candles atop layered books.
Hamptons style covers a range of aesthetics, from the warmth of traditional timber to the lighter finishes of the white coastal look, says Xavier Furniture manager Simone Rose. “In Australia, we typically think of white, but it’s worthwhile considering other finishes, such as rattan and cane and even dark-walnut timber tones, which add character, or a glass top, which can create a lighter, open feel ideal for a coastal Hamptons setting,” she explains. Elegance and a touch of luxe are key, whether you’ve opted for a butler’s-tray style, casual wicker chest or classic Shaker-style detailing.
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