By Phelps Blair on December 26 2018 16:09:48
First think about what you need your coffee table to do for you, or what your room is missing, then pick a table that provides the solution. Before buying a table, mark the footprint with painter’s tape so you can see the scale of the piece in the room and how that affects the surrounding furniture. If you have a very large room and a large coffee table, you can break up the scale of the table by flanking it with pairs of ottomans or benches, as in this example. When there’s a party, they can be moved out of the way for better circulation, but for everyday use these extra seats help connect the sofa at one end and the pair of chairs at the other end. Be sure to use a pair of ottomans — not just a single one.
If you don’t want the coffee table to be the focus of the room, choose one with a glass top and a finish that blends with others in the room, as in this example. This will keep the eye interested in all the items in the room, not just one layer of the design. Metal bases with glass tops are another good choice to keep rooms feeling open. They’re also great when you have a special rug and don’t want to block views of it. Keep your glass cleaner handy, though, as there is no way around fingerprints. Keep in mind that with most glass tops — if they are not inset — you’ll see a green tint on the sides. You can order a speciality glass that doesn’t have this tint, but it’s more expensive.
Coffee tables serve a variety of uses. Whilst some are used only for the display of ornaments, in many homes they have replaced the family dining table. What functions your table must fulfill should be one of the key considerations when you are selecting it. You must decide whether you need storage and if so whether you want the items you are storing to be on public display or hidden from view. Lift top coffee tables sound like a good idea but are only really useful if you intend to keep the surface clear. Otherwise each time that you need to remove or replace an item you have to clear the top of the table first. Often a coffee table with a drawer or shelf can be a more convenient choice. A coffee table will be a key purchase for your living space. It is worth investing the time and energy into choosing a table that will meet both your aesthetic and functional needs and be something that you will use and love for many years.
Keep an upholstered ottoman 18 inches from a sofa or chair, so you can easily put up your feet, and make sure the height is consistent with the surrounding seats. If you get a tufted ottoman, consider the depth of the tufts — especially if you expect to eat on it. Crumbs will find their way into the tufting and are not always easy to get out. Round coffee tables aid circulation, especially where there are many available seats, as in this example. If not every seat can reach the table, make sure there’s another surface at hand. Using a vintage object for a coffee table adds a bit of history — a story — to a room, and is one of my favorite things to do.