Coffee Table Alternatives

Last updated Dec 11, 2018 | Published on Aug 18, 2017 | Decorating, Furniture

To coffee table or not

That is the question!

When the time came to settle on coffee tables for our living room, I was a little stumped.

Our living room is very long and narrow so we treat it as two rooms. One ‘room’ is for TV viewing and the other is a sitting area. So, we need 2 coffee tables. Or so I thought.

We already had couches and chairs, so I knew we needed to coordinate anything additional with those pieces.

Coordination is the name of the game. I am not into matchy-matchy.

I must have looked at hundreds of coffee tables and could not find anything that remotely worked for me.

They were too big, too small, wrong style, wrong size, wrong color.

I decided I didn’t really want coffee tables.

Does anyone else have a problem with them? They just seem to accumulate ‘stuff.’ We used to eat dinner on ours and that was a bad habit that added to our living room clutter. I did not want a repeat of that.


Enter Coffee Table Alternatives

First I thought I would just eliminate them altogether.

But the room needed something.

I had an aha moment when I thought about using a trunk for at least one of them. Pottery Barn happens to have a few that I LOVE. Off shopping I went, I managed to find a trunk I loved on sale (YAY!) and settled on that (no affiliate link).

The trunk by itself was a tad bare so I decided to add a decorative tray. See this post for how I pulled that together.

One half of the living room was now officially done.

coffee table trunk

On to the TV side of the room

I came across an ottoman with wheels that intrigued me.

So, I did a little shopping and found one that would coordinate with the living room drapes.

A word about price

Ottomans are available in every price point from under $100 to over $1000. Now, I wanted a decent ottoman but I certainly did not want to pay top dollar for this particular item.

There are lots available, at every price point. And there’s nothing so different about them that I would be driven to pay a lot of money.

The trick was finding one I liked for the best quality at the lowest price point.

I didn’t want cheap, I wanted reasonable.

I was able to find this particular ottoman at Wayfair (no affiliate) and I took a chance on the quality because it was a really good price, was the right color with the right features.

It was perfect, once I scotch-guarded it.

Tip: if it can stain and is not already treated, protect that piece before something happens. I’m SO glad I did. Less than a month later, a glass of red wine accidentally spilled (we won’t mention any names) and tested it. I can happily report that treating the ottoman the day I got it saved its life.

One slight problem remaining

I had nowhere to place my martini glass while watching TV.

I have my priorities.

Obviously this was not a job for the ottoman. I came across these plant tables at Wayfair (no affiliate link) and they could not have been more perfect.

They’re metal, durable, small enough for the feet to fit right under the couch, just tall enough and close enough so a martini (or a glass of water) sits on it pretty much perfectly. And, the right price so I ordered 3.

I still think of these little tables as one of my greatest finds. Final living room problem solved.

On to the next room!

metal living room trays

For more information

Interested in how the overall living room turned out? Check out the Tour My Living Room page.

How about you?

Have you had any decor challenges lately that you found a way to resolve? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!

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Thanks SO much for reading!

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