6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table

6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table via thehousedownthelane.com.

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Welcome back to another installment in our “26 Weeks of Pinterest Projects” series!

Thanks to this pin from April of House by Hoff: “10 Spring Decor Ideas to Kick the Winter Blahs,” I was inspired to style my coffee table. Her use of birds in her vignettes immediately caught my eye, and I love the colors and natural elements she included.

When I style {or re-style} an element or a room in our home, I slow down and “putz” with the project. Sometimes for days. It’s a great way for me to reconnect, slow down, and push pause to focus on appreciating the beauty in our lives.

This is the before picture of my family room coffee table: #boring and #blah

Boring coffee table... thehousedownthelane.com

This table has seen better days, but those nicks and scratches and stains and dents bring to mind loads of fun and happy family memories. We eat dinner at this table {far too often}. We play board games at this table. We do crafts, color, work on homework, and gather around this table.

It’s time it got the attention it deserves!

Here’s a quick video of how I put the pieces together:


And after fiddling with this restyle for days (Perfectionist much?), I created this list of 6 quick and easy tips for your next coffee table styling session:

Number 1: Shop Your House

I didn’t want to spend any money on this project, so I started in the basement and made my way through the rest of the house, searching high and low for items to use on my coffee table. Yes, I left a hole in my decor in a couple of places, but that just gives me more re-styling projects. Yeah!

Number 2: Incorporate a tray or basket

Because this table is a work horse, I wanted something that was easy to remove. I settled on using a basket, so that we could just pick the whole thing up and move it when necessary.

I actually used a 4th of July basket, so I added a tea towel in earthy colors to hide the red, white, and blue.

6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table via thehousedownthelane.com.

Number 3: Vary Heights

Varying heights brings interest to a display and gives you more options as you’re styling.

Our TV is on the other side of the table, so I didn’t want anything too tall in this tray. An apothecary jar from Marshall’s and a few vintage books did the trick!

Number 4: Bring in Lots of Natural Elements

I love to bring the outside in! And the texture that natural elements add to a vignette is so…yummy! Weird word, I know, but it’s just the word I was looking for.

On my coffee table, I used an artificial bunch of long, green grass. Once our trees and bushes start blooming, I’ll cut a few branches from them and replace the grass.

Number 5: Work in Your Favorite Collection

We collect items because we love them. Why wouldn’t we want to incorporate them into our everyday decorating?! Can you guess what I collect? If you said “books” then you nailed it. But I don’t just collect any old books. I love to search and dig for ones with extra special inscriptions. Like this Webster’s Secondary School Dictionary from 1913:

6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table via thehousedownthelane.com.

6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table via thehousedownthelane.com.

The inscription is a little hard to read, but it says, “In case of fire! Please throw this in!” How hilarious is that?!

Number 6: Add a Little Candlelight

Candles add such a cozy and homey glow to any space, so of course, we want them in areas where we spend a lot of time!

6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table via thehousedownthelane.com.

These are the perfect size to fill this space, and they don’t make the tray feel overly full.

I’m so excited about how this turned out, and thank goodness, I have the approval of my darling doxie, Angus! ;0)

6 Tips for Styling a Coffee Table via thehousedownthelane.com.

Styling a coffee table doesn’t have to be difficult. Take the time to immerse yourself in the process and follow these tips to get started. You’ll be a pro in no time!

What re-styles have you done lately?



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  1. Oh my coffee table is such a thorn in my side. It is so negleted. I was searching around to get ideas to decorate it…. I think if I blog about it it will motivate me to get it done. Great ideas you have, now just to get going on mine. Thanks for the inspiration
    Mary recently posted…Home Decor: Weekend Treasure HuntingMy Profile

  2. It seems that styling a coffee table has turned into a very difficult task because they are so “multi-purpose”. I recently restyled ours and thought it was going to drive me insane! LOL. I also collect books…lots of them and sometimes will buy them for no other reason than an inscription inside! Makes it interesting and more personal! I love the inscription on this one! Your table turned out great! Have a wonderful day!
    Benita recently posted…Early In the Morning..My Profile

  3. Hi, Mary ~ Thanks so much for stopping by! Yes, my coffee table was driving me crazy! It looked so sad and neglected, but blogging about it definitely gave me a push to make it pretty again. Best of luck with yours! Come back and share the link when you finish. I’d love to see it! :0)
    Tiffany at The House Down the Lane recently posted…Why Our Mornings Stink {and How I’m Planning to Change That}My Profile

  4. Well, we’ve got a lot of mess on our coffee table. How’s that for styling ?;)
    Love your styling (all the green touches)! And it’s paw-approved by Angus 😉
    Mila recently posted…Idea Box -Thursday Link Party #9My Profile

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