By Chandelle Scott on December 25 2018 09:00:52
A lip edge or tray top on a coffee table is always a smart choice if you have a tendency to spill your coffee or have kids that will be using the coffee table for snacks and drinks. They’re also good if you entertain often and don’t want to worry about red wine getting spilled on your carpet. Coffee tables should be the same height as the surrounding seating, with 18 inches being a good average (although it will depend on your furniture). If you select a coffee table with a lip, make sure the lip isn’t higher than the adjacent seating, or you’ll end up hitting your drink against the lip when you try to set it down. The idea is to put your drink down, not up.
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.
Sealers and, of course, coasters can help protect the surface from water damage. Sometimes a coffee table that isn’t the standard height or width is exactly what a room needs. In this instance a very low coffee table creates a crisp horizontal plane in the foreground, offsetting the long horizontal line of the credenza in the background. A higher table would have blocked the view of the credenza and competed with it; the varying heights add interest.
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.
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