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How to Choose the Right Coffee Table?

This is a comprehensive buying guide for coffee tables. Take 5 minutes to learn everything you need to know about choosing the perfect coffee table for your home.

  1. Height: not higher than the height of the seats between 16-18 inches.

  2. Length: two-thirds of the length of the sofa is the golden ratio.

  3. Placement: 12-18 inches away from seats for comfortable access.Height of the Coffee Table Picture Measure Guideline

Prepare to determine the Right Coffee Table Size

A smart consumer knows that choosing the right coffee table size is crucial to ensuring furniture proportions look just right. With just measuring tape and 3 steps, you can make informed choices:

  1. Measure from the floor to the top of the sofa or chair cushion.

  2. Measure the length of the sofa, chair, or seating grouping.

  3. Choose a coffee table with a height that’s no more than two inches lower than the top of the chair or sofa cushion. Additionally, the coffee table’s length should be roughly two-thirds of the length of your seating group.

Don't underestimate the importance of taking accurate measurements before purchasing a coffee table. Spending 5 minutes carefully measuring can save you from the frustration of an ill-proportioned furniture arrangement. Read on to learn more!

Be Mindful of the Coffee Table Height

The coffee table should be the same as or 1-2 inches lower than the sofa’s seat height.

The height of coffee tables has undergone significant changes over time.

In the 21st century, low coffee tables have become increasingly popular in modern home decor styles. Low coffee tables offer better ease for appreciating the beauty of a garden or city scape.

Low Coffee Table Example 12.6 Inches high Modern Gold Black 2 Piece Round Nesting Coffee Table Set with Tempered Glass Top

However, higher coffee tables may be more convenient for social butterflies, allowing for easy access to drinks, snacks, and mobile phones while holding parties in the living room.

Modern Wood Coffee Table Rectangle-shaped in Natural Rustic

Pay Attention to Coffee Table Proportions

Ideally, you want a coffee table that is 2/3 the length of your sofa. That way, your living space is filled, but not overwhelmed with the table. For L-shaped sectional sofas, square or round coffee tables may be the best choice as they offer a balance of both aesthetic coordination and practicality.

Working with a smaller space, it can be difficult to squeeze in a coffee table. Opt for something with less visual weight, a coffee table with slim legs to create an illusion of more space and consider a nest of tables that can be stacked together.

Coffee Table length guideline Proportion of Sofa

Perfect Placement: Distance Between Sofa & Coffee Table

From Sofa

For maximum comfort, keep your coffee table about 18 inches away from the sofa, which leaves plenty of leg room while keeping your snacks and drinks within reach. This distance is also ideal if your table has drawers or cabinets facing the sofa, allowing you to access them comfortably.

For Kids

If you have kids at home, it's best to choose a coffee table that's safe for them. Look for ones without sharp edges and avoid glass tops, as they can easily break and cause harm to children. You don't want to end up having a horror story of your own.

Frequent Ask Question:

How to Style Or Decorate Your Coffee Table Once and for All?

Candles: Enhance the ambiance of your coffee table with scented candles, which not only add a charming appeal but also make it look gorgeous.

Books & Magazines: Don't forget to keep some hardcover coffee table books with lots of pictures on display. This will keep your guests entertained and engaged while you prepare tea or drinks for them.

Plants and flowers: adding freshness and life to your coffee table using planters and flowers is a nice option.

Should you put a rug under a coffee table?

Consider adding a rug under your coffee table to catch any spills, especially if you have top-quality carpet that costs $100/sq. yd. or more. Rugs are a relatively inexpensive way to protect your flooring and add a touch of style to your space.

However, if you have a polished floor like tiles or marble, make sure to choose a rug that won't slide on the surface. You don't want your coffee table to accidentally slide and spill its contents across the room!

What's the difference between a coffee table and an end table?

Coffee tables are typically low, rectangular tables that are placed in front of a sofa and are about knee-height. They're perfect for holding books, magazines, and for resting drinks or small plates during social events.

On the other hand, end tables are often placed at the end of couches or beside chairs. They're usually taller than coffee tables and are great for holding lamps. Of course, you can use them for anything you like, as long as you keep your feet off them (mom wouldn't approve!).

Together, they offer a practical and stylish addition to your living room furniture.

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