An Interior Designers Guide To Styling Coffee Tables

An Interior Designers Guide To Styling Coffee Tables

Styling Objects

The world of styling accessories is almost limitless. From handmade accessories to elements found in nature, books, boxes and trays — the ol saying “…the world is your oyster” is a-b-s-o-l-u-t-e-l-y true! 

But there are several categories of styling objects that we use over + over again to style coffee tables for our clients.


We often refer to rugs as the “5th wall” because they anchor the furniture in your room so things don’t feel like they’re floating but because they also help to identify activity zones. 

Well friend, trays are the rugs for your coffee table. Not only are they great at corralling that Apple TV remote so it doesn’t get lost but trays help create a foundation for decorative objects to either live in or outside of the tray when styling coffee tables.

There are certainly times where a tray doesn’t work but in general, we’re almost always considering one.


Whether real or faux, greenery is a huge element in both incorporating biophillic principles into your home as well as helping to balance all that’s going on — on your coffee table.

Greenery also helps to introduce various colors and textures. Whether that’s in oversized branches, sprigs such as eucalyptus or in something smaller — the greenery on your coffee table adds depth and breathes life into the space.


With greenery often comes a vase. Depending on the overall layout of the furniture + whether or not the function of the room involves a TV or conversation areas, vases are the perfect way to incorporate some visual height to styling coffee tables. 

What we don’t often want is everything on your coffee table that we’re styling to all be on the same level. Ironically, this type of symmetry + consistency feels awkward + abnormal. 

Vases are the perfect way to introduce height by adding greenery in them. 


There’s no getting around it — coffee table styling isn’t complete without books *wink* There’s several ways that we incorporate books on a coffee table.

Sometimes it’s by stacking books on top of each other + telling a subtle story about you through the name of each book or the subject matter 🙂 

And other times, the perfect solution to utilizing books when styling coffee tables is to flip one open to a specific page so that when guests sit down, something is already on display for them.


Boxes that corral items or display items from travel, accomplishments or family history are another decorative accessory we use when styling coffee tables because they embellish your story. 

These are great because they come in various sizes + textures which helps to create a natural look + feel to the coffee table. Boxes can be stacked on top of one another or on top of a larger set of coffee table books to elevate + again create an organic undulation.

Candles + Candle Holders 

In each space throughout your home, there are tons of lighting choices to consider but candlelight adds to the elegance in a way that’s impossible for artificial light *wink*. 

In addition to the sweet aroma that high-quality candles provide — candle holders are another potential styling object that we consider — especially if we’re in need of something a bit taller for the coffee table.

Decorative Objects

Decorative objects are anything that feels collected or is unique to you. 

Sometimes that’s a collection of things from your travel. Other times that might be something passed down from your family, your wedding day or something else that’s meaningful. 

In some instances, decorative objects are sculptural, works of art, functional necessities like coaster or they might even be seasonal items. 

Regardless the decorative objects further conversation with guests + family. They show off a side of who you are + they further tell the story about what you value 🙂

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