Comments : 31

Good morning, well if you missed my post 2? days ago on makeup products, you will want to read it, the comments were amazing and I now have a long list of all kinds of products I am anxious to try so thank you! Click here if you? missed it.

You will see my blog appears wider, therefore the pictures are larger, so happy I did this as it gives the blog a more “open” feeling.

I was delighted to have been asked to join a very talented group for Project Designs newest “assignment” – different ways to style a coffee table. Project Design is the brainchild of Mary Ann from Classic Casual Home and Cindy from Rough Luxe Lifestyle.

As with so much of today’s styling and interior design..there really are no longer rules. Look at any magazine cover and you will clearly see that. Almost anything goes….which is what makes this whole process fun!

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However there are a few hard and fast “guidelines” I like to follow and today I am going to demonstrate my own little recipe for what I think makes an attractive coffee table vignette. A few of the? main characters for me are-

blue and white porcelain

lots of coffee table books

small objects like a candle or small silver/crystal vase

A piece of crystal like a small bowl or covered dish

something natural like flowers or greenery (could be a boxwood ball or plant)

So here are different configurations of those items , thought it would be fun to make it a which would you choose so vote on your favorites on the bottom (You can vote for your two favorite set ups. )


#1 Simple, one stacks of books flanked by two taller objects (hurricanes) and something floral and blue and white


#2 A taller object in the center, two smaller items on either side and two stacks of books


#3 A low profile arrangement the center arrangement is only about 12″ tall surrounded by five stacks of books



#4 Same setup with books but added two taller symmetrical vases with flowers


#5? Yet another way to style it with a taller orchid in center and a few scattered objects on top of books ? unnagfs4med

#6? Less books, a tall arrangement and a few smaller objects? ada77nnamed

#7 A symmetrical arrangement of two flat ginger jars with flowers on top of books and one piece in the center


#8 Added a tall orchid in the center? unnamefdavcd

#9? Three stacks of books and smaller objects on top with one central tall pieceunnada32med

#10 Added a silver container with flowers and two flat tops on top of booksunn33zamed

#11 This is more dramatic during a gathering would have to be removed but it does look prettyunnamfd22ed

#12 A simple and symmetrical? formula, hurricanes, small vases of flowers and one stack of three or four books (great for someone who likes to keep things simple and uncluttered)



So there you have 12 easy peasy ways to style a coffee table. The best part is there are no real rules, but it is amazing how just a few objects can make your coffee table look like a pro’s. Have fun, don’t be afraid to experiment and you will know when you have it just right.

I am constantly changing things on my own coffee tables…..that is part of the fun, always evolving and I do love to change things up with the season, like adding fresh flowers in the spring, Christmas plants for the holidays or fall leaves in the fall.

How about you, have any hard and fast tips that you want to share? Can’t wait to hear. If you want to see more clever ideas, then definitely visit the other participants in Project Design, they are chock full of fantastic and inspiring ideas! (click on bloggers names to visit).

Be sure to visit the other participants in Project Design and thank you ladies for including me. Thank you for stopping in….wishing you a wonderful day!

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Lovely! You added so many great ideas and I really love the blue and white! Beautiful! Hope you have a warm day! It’s 40 here in Miami! Burr!

Karolyn on

Wee you know I love the blue and white through out, and I am a big book hound so more books the better!! xo Karolyn

Karena on

Great styling Tina!! I love the orchid centered in with the design and beautiful books of course!!

The Arts by Karena
The Centre Cannot Hold

Lisa on

All so beautiful- you are very talented. I love lots of books and the orchids but also love the white jars filled with white flowers- and of course the blossoms are very dramatic. All very beautiful- have a nice Friday.

Katie Clooney on

Tina – every one is pretty and so interesting to the eye!! Have a great weekend. Are you all set for the Oscars?

Pam @ Simple Details on

So timeless, Tina! The dramatic blossoms are always a favotite for me! Loved voting and seeing the results, too!

pretty pink tulips on

What an amazing tutorial for designing the perfect coffee tabletop! I think your tips are so helpful with the accompanying photos. Every single one is fantastic and it shows that there really is more than one way to approach design and decor!

Can you believe this cold?! Stay warm!!! I wish I didn’t have to leave the house but tonight is our Polo Bar/Cabaret night.

Happy Weekend!
xoxo Elizabeth

classic ? casual ? home on

Beautiful!!! I love the way you can change the look so easily! I voted?but it was tough?all so pretty. And I love the plush velvet cushions on the sofa. Thanks for playing along and showing us your timeless and fresh style!

Taylor Greenwalt on

Great styling Tina…so much fun to see all the different combos…sorry I haven’t been able to drop by as much…my mom has been sick.

Bobbie Hathaway on

Very difficult to make a decision as all are beautiful. I selected 10. Actually a tie between 10 and 11.

Thank you for so many beautiful ideas.

Michelle Kaplan on

I love the strategic randomness of the tall orchid and books in 6 & 9. I personally like to stay away from too many “pairs” of objects. It begins to look like Noah’s Ark! Love the tall cherry blossoms but I’d go crazy chatting with someone across the couch from me.

Carla Aston on

Love all your blue and white and those luxurious pillows on the sofa are fabulous! They all look amazing. Great job!

Teresa @ Splendid Sass on

All so pretty, Tina! I totally loved 3 of them, but had to go with 7.
Happy weekend.

Leslie @prettypetals on

This is great Tina! I am constantly changing things up to get everything just right …. This is so helpful AND of COURSE you must have some blue and white;) Hope you have a wonderful Friday!

cindy hattersley on

This is a treasure trove for anyone that loves blue and white! I have a client that I have been wanting to purchase some of your pieces. I am sending her here so she can see the different heights and possibilities. Love that you used the neutral backdrop to showcase all those beauties…so refreshing and crisp! Thank you so much for joining us!

Jeanne McKay Hartmann on

Hi Tina, Well done! Thanks for the tips and they all look just lovely. I’m don’t have a lot of rules, just things that I like. We have two coffee tables in our house – one in the family space in front of our largest television, the other in the living room in front of the fireplace. I like to keep the one in the family space more casual and more in tune with the way we live – there is a stack of current magazines there. And I like to keep things low so that they don’t interfere with the TV screen. And lots of books! In fact, this coffee table arrangement is a lot like your #3. In the living room, I like things a bit more formal and try to add a bit of height. Blue and white always, of course!

Love your examples and hope you have a beautiful weekend! XOXO

splendid market on

Love the simplicity of 12. It’s great to see a study like that, many of my horizontal surfaces are in need of a little spruce up. One thing I know is that I like to see an uneven numbers of things and something unusual. Can’t wait for your Oscar wrap-up (no pressure :)!

Eileen on

You did a fantastic job, you make it look so easy but I am going to copy a few of your “formulas” because you are definitely a master! The sofa is absolutely gorgeous too (as are the pillows). I love the orchids and lots of books, it is interesting yet still looks structured. Thank you for sharing this post.


I can always count on a beautiful dose of blue and white when I visit here. LOVE!! The blossoming branches made my heart leap!! LOVE Spring and all it’s offerings. Fun post!!!

Carrie on

So beautiful! It was hard to choose just one favorite! Your blue and white collection is amazing. 🙂

Leslie on

Hi Tina this came at such a perfect time I just got a new coffee table 2 weeks ago and I have yet to put anything on it so I am really enjoying all of these wonderful ideas. And I happen to agree with your formula of books blue-and-white and flowers being a winner every time as you have so ably proved here,

dEbby on

Hi Tina,

Oh I love the photos with all the different stacks of books. I’m saving up for a ginger jar. Please tell me what type of camera you got for Christmas! The imagery is amazing.

You know me…off to read make up post!

Deb xo

Lori on

I laughed when I read your list of items that make a great coffee table display. Right now, my coffee table has a tray filled with coffee table books, a crystal vase of fresh flowers, a candle and a small pot with a boxwood ball. I think I hit most of the items except the blue and white, which doesn’t lend itself to my decor. As they say, great minds….:)

Elizabeth on

I love them all! Thanks for the tips! My family room coffee table is usually a stack of books I am currently reading, a stack of current magazines and many candles. The space is comfy and casual and I love it!

Therese Long on

Hi Tina,

Wow you really are good at making so many different yet fabulous looks on your coffee table.
Absolutely classic and elegant just like YOU!
Thanks for the tutorial. You make it look so doable!!!


sherry hart on

Beautiful Tina! I knew I would come here and find style and inspiration:) 12! You little overachiever you!

Mary on

This post is a sight for sore eyes I am really stumped as to how to accessorize my new coffee table so thank you thank you!

Tone on Tone Loi Thai on

Blue and white, books and flowers! Thanks for sharing your favorites for a fabulous coffee table tableau. Beautiful!! Cheers

[email protected] 5th and state on

i usually do not have such decision disorders they were all so beautiful but settled on #8. quite smart of you tina and oh so inspiring!

Victoria on

I loved them all, but especially the simplicity of the first one. Wish I could find a lovely coffee table like yours. There is a lack of furniture stores in Adelaide Australia with classic styles and an abundance of contemporary furnishings shops which don’t suit my home or my taste. Thankyou for letting us into your beautiful home, and sharing your style, such an inspiration to me.

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