Behind The Scenes Of Coffee Table Styling - 3 Ways

Let's talk coffee table styling today and that's something that I love to do and have done for myself and styling jobs upteen times over the years. It's fun and possibly shouldn't ever be taken super seriously!

Behind The Scenes Of Coffee Table Styling - 3 Ways

I've been moving things around again and considering a swap out of the coffee table that is normally in our family room. This former store display table that I cut the legs off of and painted it (around 15 years ago) with milk paint may be a bit too rustic for this room. I'm still deciding and will live with it for a few days to see. While it's here I've been playing with arranging and have a few things to talk about today!


I firmly believe that you don't need to stick to labels in decorating your home, or your fashion sensibilities. Do what you like and don't be a strict trend follower and you'll be just your awesome you! It's more about creating a look that...
you like or a suggestion or feel and not going overboard with it. In my own home(s) I practice what I preach and it works for me and my family. Here are 3 ways that I styled the coffee table in the suggestion of three different style labels and some tips to styling YOUR best coffee table.

coffee table tray styling


  • There are some generic and quintessential aspects to any coffee table styling and trays are probably the number one. A catch all for stuff, a way to gather and make a table look chic.
  • Books or magazines in a nice stack are interesting in themselves and can give height to a vignette. When styling a coffee table setting with coffee table type of books I remove the paper covers which can look too shiny and sometimes ratty. 
  • Keep it simple and edit when you think you are finished. Step back and look around from all directions. A room is 3 dimensional and you want your table too look balanced from wherever you are in the room.
french living room coffee table styling

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1. French Country Modern Style Coffee Table Styling

French style coffee table compote apples

Give me a room with a gorgeous French country style that it is updated to today's times and I'm a happy camper who can move right in! Some of the key elements to this French modern style coffee table collection are coffee table books that imbue a French feel, a wicker try, enamelware and white roses. I've added a French ironstone compote with some fresh golden apples and that would be a simple way to add an autumn touch to a coffee table. Speaking of coffee...a vintage blue and white coffee cup is on the table and I'm actually sitting and sipping at the moment. Rooms are meant to be lived in and coffee is meant to be on a COFFEE TABLE!

grey wicker tray french compote

What else can you add for a French country look? How about some mercury glass (like my old French hearts), a piece of zinc or tin or some bottles or boxes with French labels. Take a look at the posts under FRENCH STYLE for lots and lots of ideas!

2. Coastal Chic Style Coffee Table Styling

coastal coffee table styling

I live on the coast, so it's only natural for me to mix in coastal styling to every room. A coffee table should pretty much always have a tray to keep things neat, and this one has a lined surface that is the color of the sea. You could easily reproduce a similar effect on a thrift store tray by adding art papers glued on and coated with Mod Podge. A stack of old books with aqua covers, an oversized seashell a glass jug with palm leaves clipped from the garden, vintage aqua bottles and candles make for a true beach coastal table vignette.

coastal beach living room elegant style

Other options? Coral or reproduction coral, a simple sand or shell filled container from your summer vacation or some quirky little travel mementos that you hold dear. I talked about painting jars in THIS POST if you don't have anything old on hand. Check out the posts from our BEACH HOME for more styling suggestions too.  

3. Modern Bohemian Look Coffee Table Styling

boho living room ideas

With a few easy pieces from my daughter's collection in her room at the house I was able to create a modern boho coffee table styling in just a few minutes. Having a neutral background with my white walls and neutral furniture it's easy to do ANY look du jour!

styling a boho living room succulents cactus

A streamlined white serving tray with a succulent in a modern pot, a grey buddha figurine, white candles, a cactus and an amethyst geode are all what are considered in this list that's trending now. They key to success with trends is to use inexpensive elements like plants and reproduction or thrifted finds and mix and mingle with what you already own.

So there you have it and I'd love to hear your thoughts or comments on how you style YOUR coffee table and if this helped you with some ideas!

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I have started working on a SHOP OUR HOME and SHOP OUR BEACH HOME page in the blog, since so many of you are looking for similar items! When it will be finished, I'm not sure....but I would love for you to take a look!