Tips and Guides

5 Unexpected Coffee Table Ideas For Small Spaces

Dual-purpose ottomans aren’t your only choice

Photography: Miguel Nacianceno (Main Photo)

When you’re furnishing small spaces, one piece of advice you usually hear is to use multipurpose furniture that fit in your tiny space. While this is a smart solution, this shouldn’t limit you from exploring other possibilities for your space. For instance, you don’t have to skip the coffee table altogether. In fact, you can use a full-size one. It simply depends on the other pieces in the room. Here are some ideas: 

1. Use a slim coffee table.

If you want plenty of space to move around in the living area, get a slim coffee table. You can surround it with several seating pieces as seen in the photo above. Place an area rug to pull everything together and to keep the space at the center from looking bare. 

2. Use a storage chest as coffee table.

Don’t discard your lola’s precious baul.  Turn it into a coffee table that also doubles as storage. This works well especially in a contemporary Pinoy home. 

3. Balance a curvy, full-size coffee table with streamlined pieces.

The dark, wooden coffee table may look heavy in this small living area, but it doesn’t, thanks to the soft, boxy seating pieces surrounding it. The neutral color scheme also helps tone down the size of the coffee table so it doesn’t look imposing. 

4. Follow the shape or layout of the room.

A slim, rectangular coffee table fits just right in the living area of fashion designer Phio Enaje. It is parallel to the long sofa, and both pieces follow the shape of the room. 

5. Fill your coffee table with things you love.

Don’t let the limited space stop you. Hairstylist Bambi Navarro dressed up his coffee table with accessories of all shapes and sizes—from a huge vase, a tall plant, down to pillar candles. They make an interesting vignette that is unexpected in a small space. 

Read more tips in Real Home Ideas 5: Small Space Solutions Book. Download a digital copy on the Real Living App. Log on to for more details. 

PHOTOS: Miguel Nacianceno (1, 2, 5) | Ocs Alvarez/ACME Visual Productions | Rene Mejia 

More on

RL Tips: Styling Your Coffee Table

4 Different Looks for 1 Coffee Table

4 Ways to Style a Small Living Area


Latest Stories

How To Vacuum Your Home Properly

Here’s how to avoid all the usual vacuuming mistakes. Plus, learn about a revolutionary new material that will help you bust all that dirt at home.

5 Things To Never Clean With Baking Soda

This finely milled powder has its downsides, too

There's An Affordable Way To Keep Your Home Smelling Good 24/7

Say no to artificial fragrances with this three-step hack

A KonMari Reality Show Is Coming To Netflix

Will de-cluttering diva Marie Kondo's new show spark joy?

You Only Need P5,000 To Work On These Home Improvement Projects

The best part? These can increase the value of your space, too.

What's Inside The Vatican Walls?

Aside from having one of the largest collections of art in the world, the Vatican holds many other treasures

Meet The Architect Behind This Industrial-Pinoy Home

Inspired by the Bahay Kubo, this architect worked with industrial details and affordable building materials to create an inviting space

Is It Possible to Paint Over Tiles?

No one likes the sight of lackluster tiles. Know what to do with these tips from an interior designer.

A Sneak Peek at the New Clark City

A Singaporean consulting firm has been tapped for the development project

You Can Use Wallpaper On The Ceiling, Too

Talk about having a one-of-a-kind accent in your space

Rockwell's Glasshouse Is The Chicest Restaurant Out There

Fashion retailer Harlan + Holden's response to the global trend of lifestyle dining is this airy and beautiful restaurant

6 Ways Wallpaper Can Enhance A Very Small Room

Wallpaper isn't just for huge, sprawling homes—the colors and patterns of this wall finish can visually enlarge a tiny space
Load More Stories

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