I think about these 7 coffee tables at least twice a week

I think a lot about coffee tables. They are an important part of the furnishing, both decorative and functional. Essential for a house you really want to live in. “Every home needs a place to put your mug,” designer Bethan Gray told me recently, neatly summarizing the essence of what a well-designed space should be.

It has to work for how you really live.

And so in the living room not only do the sofa and the lighting take up all my brain space, but I also always think about different coffee table trends. The best ones in my opinion have curved edges, look a bit vintage, and are easy to seal so glasses can be set on top.

These seven are the ones I love the most, dream about while I’m redecorating my house. And I’ve also included some suggestions for where to buy something similar for yourself.

1. This Organic/Modern Vancouver Coffee Table

modern living room with white curved sofa and coffee table with rounded wooden base

Credit: Ema Peter

The dining room of this Vancouver home designed by PlaidFox Studio made the cover of Livingetc’s June 2022 issue.

“Isn’t it delicious?” I remember saying it to our creative director when we first tried it with the logo and coverlines. It’s a mix of modern curves and 80s retro Memphis-style colors, mustard and teal and red.

It also happened to have all my current favorite living room trends in one — the curved white sofa, the chubby rounded ottoman, and that coffee table with giant spheres for the feet. I really wanted a similar one for our snug and my husband said no – I still don’t know why and it still bothers me almost every day.

2. The tapered base of this Portland, Oregon coffee table

Warhouse living room with gray furniture and round wooden coffee table

Credit: Aaron Leitz

The kitchen of this warehouse apartment made the subscriber cover of our March 2022 issue. Designed by Jessica Helgerson, it had a statement light and a beautiful way of decorating with gray.

You could say the same about the living room of this apartment, which also has a corner lamp (v on trend) and a round wooden coffee table with a tapered base that has a little piece of my heart. I like a tapered base you see – on a dining table, console or on a coffee table. So much more elegant and progressive than four legs, which, let’s face it, is what my parents would have.

3. This vintage coffee table in Sydney

white living room with brown chair and round white coffee table

Credit: Jacqui Turk

Years ago, I bought a shearling denim jacket at a vintage store in San Francisco and was recently stopped by a bartender in London who asked me where it came from. “Ergh, typical,” she said when I told her. “All the best things are vintage.”

That was my reaction to this coffee table, featured in the house that made the main cover of Livingetc’s March 2022 issue. It’s interior designer Caitlin Parker-Brown’s mostly white living room and while I was scanning the copy to see where I could buy her beautiful coffee table, I saw this quote. “The vintage coffee table is a piece we bought when we lived in Toronto. We liked it so much we took it home with us,” says Caitlin.

sigh. It would have been perfect in my living room, the texture of the white surface just interesting enough to feel detailed and layered.

4. This angular London coffee table

white travertine coffee table in an apartment living room

Credit: Future/Kristy Noble

Excuse the festive styling – this apartment was featured in our recent Christmas issues. And this coffee table was the main reason I wanted to show the house.

First off, I love marble coffee tables anyway, so it was an easy sell. They are smart and luxurious and beautiful and lofty and add a touch of grandeur to the decor. But I really loved the sharp edges of this one, the way it seems to cut through the open living room, dividing the space and inviting you to rest your champagne coupe on it. The essence of what a good coffee table should be.

5. This luxurious New York green marble coffee table

minimal gray living room with dark green marble table

(Image credit: NAINOA)

It’s no secret to the Livingetc team that I’m a huge fan of Noa Santos – the New York-based interior designer creates super-smart schemes that, in his words, always have the sensibility of a spa.

He’s right – his mix of polished stone with concrete is monastic, and this living room from our September 2021 edition is no exception. “Green marble is so dramatic,” he told me recently, which could also apply to the beautiful staircase just peeking into the bulkhead.

6. This Striped Modern Coffee Table in LA

living room with green curved sofa pink walls and striped coffee table

Credit: Roberto Garcia

I actually think about this striped coffee table by Patricia Urquiola for Artemest at least five times a week. Or, more specifically, I’m thinking of the clever use of color in this room, and how this rather tricky-to-style-real table feels cohesive thanks to how each hue in its stripes is picked up at least once elsewhere.

You can see LALA Reimagined’s entire house here, and it’s my dream home – the kind of space you feel comfortable enough to settle into casually, but that’s so pretty you want to put nice clothes on.

7. This glass coffee table in Milan

living room with white accent chairs and glass coffee table

Credit: Helenio Barbetta / Living Inside

I’ll let you in on a secret – this was actually my first choice for the cover image for our October 2022 issue. The styling of this Milan apartment has been meticulously crafted for me – decorated to perfection by Valentina Moretti, the architect and creative director behind design agency Studio More.

From the round chairs with white accents to the modern – with a touch of the mid-century – coffee table, I find it elegant and welcoming and everything that Livingetc stands for now. In the end I voted out – the cover was chosen by a committee that considered many factors, and I’m happy with the final choice – but I’m still thinking about the coffee table and how chic the smoky glass top is. A lot.

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