Style Your Coffee Table Like A Pro

Because a coffee table with a lovely vignette is an instant focal point in the room

Original Article: Dagny Madamba Photography: Kurt Alvarez & Ocs Alvarez (Main Photos) Styling: Dagny Madamba

Creating a beautiful living area depends on its two furniture pieces: the sofa and the coffee table. These two furnishings make up the entertaining area of a home, and the vignette you create with the sofa and coffee table can develop into the focal point of the space—especially in tiny homes.

That’s why it is worth noting that decorating and styling your coffee table are as important as designing the whole living area because it becomes the centerpiece in itself and not just a place to set your coffee mugs down on. Here are a few tips and themes on how to do it:

Kid-friendly glamour.

A glamorous coffee table style that’s also kid-friendly? Yes, it’s possible! With just a few tweaks, you can enjoy a chic setup without worrying about your child’s safety.

The table: Glass and metal are practically landmines for active kids, so opt for a fully upholstered table instead. Have it customized by your neighborhood upholsterer, use a long ottoman seat, or combine two ottomans. Not only will you have a sophisticated, baby-proof center table, you’ll also have additional seating.

The décor: Go for wood or solid resin, as these are not easily breakable, and avoid ceramics and glass, as well as sharp objects. Use a tray to corral tabletop items. Still too much space on your table’s surface? add a table runner or throw, which could come in handy these cooler months.

RL Tip: a tray can make a large table feel less massive, and can also be used as a catchall for items that often go missing (hello, remote controls!).

Sparrow three-seater sofa, P68,000; Madeline side table, P13,300; Ottoman Coffee Table, P27,600; Accent Mirror, P20,100; all from Home Matters

Minimalist chic.

If you’re a believer in “less is more,” then this style is for you. It’s also great for those who love to entertain, as there is enough room on the table to serve coffee, tea, and nibbles.

The table: Choose one with clean lines and slender legs, so you won’t add visual bulk. this is ideal for small places.

The décor: If you have a rectangular table, display round objects to add contrast and to soften the look. While you can never go wrong with neutral shades in minimalist vignettes, add flair with a bit of color or some metallic elements. Since there are only a few pieces on the table, be sure to use items of different heights, but keep an eye on proportions—too-tall elements may block your view of the TV or disrupt conversations with your guests.


RL Tip: Not sure where to start? a foolproof formula for tabletop vignettes: a stack of books + floral arrangement + a tray.

Eric sofa (part of a set), P16,000; Wetland Rug, P7,450; Coffee Table, P4,100; Round Tray, P620; faux plant, P170; diamond-pattern vase, P1,100; iron candle holder with votive, P365; Aztec-Print Throw Pillow, P550; Black and White Pillow, P320; Circle-Print Cushion, P305; Gray Pillow, P435; Zigzag-Print Pillow, P360; Long Plate, P660; all from Mandaue Foam

Fuss-free and casual.

Ideal for busy families, this style has a light and airy feel, and is easy to maintain.

The table: Choose a light-colored coffee table. On a tight budget? Have your current one repainted!

The décor: for small coffee tables, avoid anything bulky. Use potted plants and air plants to inject freshness. throw in items your kids will appreciate, like storybooks, coloring books, and a container of coloring pencils.

RL Tip: Items on the coffee table often reflect the homeowner’s personality. Before you buy, try to “shop” around the house first—you may already have what you’re looking for.

Lindsay sofa (part of a set), P32,000; Rug, P10,200; Coffee Table, P4,000; Teardrop Glass Hanging Plants, P310 each; Candleholder (set of three), P980; Yellow Mug, P55; Throw Pillow with Leaf Print, P350; Throw Pillow with Embroidery, P375; Tropical Leaves Canvas Art, P950, all from Mandaue Foam. Colored Pencils, P66, Japan Home Centre

Read the original article ("Center of Attention") in the September 2016 issue of Good Housekeeping Magazine. Log on to for more details.

More on

5 Things You Need for a Beautiful Coffee Table Display

5 Ways to Keep the Coffee Table Organized

5 Coffee Table Vignettes For Your Living Area


Latest Stories

Avoid A High Electricity Bill This Summer While Keeping Your Home Cool

You don’t need to leave the AC unit turned on 24/7

How I Moved Out of the Family Home and Survived Living Alone

A young photojournalist shares the triumphs and struggles of living independently

This House in Pasig Has Been Under Renovation For Years

Architect Pierre Briones transformed a dated property into a stunning home filled with wooden touches, designer pieces, and handpicked accessories

This TV Show Does Home Makeovers In 15 Hours

And some of the decorators (and one judge!) are Pinoy. Check out this amazing makeover show.

This Museum In a Bahay Na Bato Is a Lesson In Pinoy History

In photos: The Destileria Limtuaco Museum in Intramuros will delight your mind and eye, not only your tastebuds

This Elevated Walkway In Ortigas Makes Pasig A More Walkable City

The walkway is one of a series of new pedestrian areas rising in Ortigas Center

How Do You Divide Conjugal Property When You Get Annulled?

It's not as simple as 50/50.

4 Questions To Ask Your Interior Designer

Develop a healthy relationship with your design professional for a beautiful home

Designer Pieces We Love in Derek Ramsay’s House in Alabang

The actor doesn’t shy away from investing in pieces that make his home distinct and personal

6 Ways To Increase Storage At Home

From custom-designed pieces to minimalist shelves, explore clever ideas to amp up your storage potential

Here's How To Keep Your Clothes Wrinkle-Free When Traveling

Get perfect OOTD's with this handy (and travel-friendly) gadget!

Neutral Colors Make This 50sqm Condo Unit Extra Homey

Taking inspiration from an accent wall, interior designers Honey Mutia Cervantes and Rosa Manduriao were able to achieve a modern yet comfy look for a one-bedroom vacation home in the city
Load More Stories

Get inspiring design ideas and handy hints.
Subscribe to our newsletter now!