Your coffee table is the center of entertaining and typically the last piece you’ll choose after selecting your sofa and seating. How do you choose the right one for your space? Style, shape and size are all factors to consider when selecting the perfect piece. Picking the right one to fill the gap can be tough because the options seem endless. Here are a few tips to help you in your search for the perfect coffee table.
Choose the shape
Coffee tables can come in a variety of shapes, however, your basic shapes are round, oval, square and rectangle. Sectional sofas are perfect for a round or oval coffee table while L-shape seating goes great with a rectangle or square table. Small love seats could use those shapes as long as the size doesn’t overwhelm. Free-form or abstract shaped coffee tables fit best with a straight or L-shaped sofa.
Choose the size and height
A coffee table’s height is key. The surface should be about one or two inches lower than your sofa seat. Standard tables are 16 to 18 inches high. If you have a higher couch or entertain a lot, consider a taller table so it’s easier for your guests to set down their plates and drinks. If you want a really laid back feel and have a lower sofa or lounge seating, you might want to go lower to match. If you want to go taller, consider choosing a table that has a smaller diameter to help balance the composition.
Also consider the space in front of your sofa. Be sure to leave at least 30 inches from the outer edge of the coffee table to the TV console or media cabinet. The ideal distance from the edge of the sofa to the edge of the table is 18 inches—close enough to reach for your drink or put a magazine down, and far enough to stretch out your legs.
Choose Your Style
Select a style that is similar to the sofa and the other room decor. It should reflect your unique style and personality. There are many finishes to choose from including wood, stone, glass, and painted finishes.
Another important thing to consider before selecting is the function of the room and who will be using it most. Don’t choose a wood surface that needs coasters if you know they wont be used. Don’t get a glass table if you have children or pets that like to jump around and bounce onto and off of the seating. Choose a material that will complement your existing furniture and also work with how you’ll treat the space and the furniture in it.
Some spaces will work better with multiple smaller coffee tables. Smaller spaces can benefit from multiple coffee tables because it gives the room more flexibility to adjust the layout for different activities.
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