39 Easy Center Table Decor Ideas (and tips) for your Living Room


Let’s dive in to the world of how to decorate a center table in the living room. We’ll unravel 39+ secrets used by interior designers…like me :), to create a stunning focal point in your living room.

From the timeless allure of coffee table books to the organic beauty of natural elements, we’ll explore a few basic rules of thumb, and various themes and styles that cater to every taste and every table.

Many of my posts contain affiliate links including this one. If you click on an affiliate link and purchase something, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. The affiliate money I earn helps pay the fees to keep this site up and running. You can read our disclosure statement here. Thank you so much for your support.

Styling your center table is a great way to infuse your living room with your personal style.

Whether you’re drawn to a minimalist aesthetic, coastal grandmother charm, or a sleek modern look, I have pulled together a bunch of beautiful looks, and provided tips that promise to transform the overall feel of your living room, the easy way! Read on as we explore color schemes, different materials, and stunning arrangements, to take your center tablet to the next level.

Design by Carla Bast

But first, let’s go over a few basic rules of thumb for styling your center table, coffee table, or cocktail table.

Use Odd Numbers: When arranging decorative items on your coffee table, stick to odd numbers. This simple rule used in design creates interest and visual tension, keeping the eye moving around the “canvas.”


Vary Heights: Mix up the heights of your decorative pieces to create depth. Combining taller items with shorter items adds a dynamic quality to the arrangement, preventing it from looking flat.

RELATED: The Best Basement Design Ideas and Trends

Mix Shapes: Avoid monotony by incorporating a variety of shapes into your coffee table decor. Combine round, square, rectangular, and organic objects for a well-balanced and engaging display.

A lovely vignette of coffee table decor by Studio McGee includes this sculptural Baroque Shell Object; you can get it HERE.

Use Diverse Textures and Materials: Add richness to your decor by using different textures and materials. I like to avoid placing similar materials on top of each other, such as glass on glass, or metal on metal. If you decide to use the same materials, vary the color or finish so that the items don’t get lost visually.

Photo: Diaries of my Home

Vary Sizes and Scale: Achieve a pleasing visual balance by mixing large and small decorative items. Start with a focal point, and pair statement pieces with smaller accents to create a well-proportioned and harmonious arrangement.

Consider Every Angle: Make sure your coffee table decor looks good from every angle. I avoid using photo frames for this reason.

Center Table Shapes

Round Center Table: Use a round table for ease of flow in the room. It’s much easier to move around the space without table corners. Round tables are perfect for creating an inviting and sociable ambiance.


Square Center Table: A great way to organize your decor on a square table is by dividing the table into four sections on your coffee table. This helps maintain order and balance within the arrangement, ensuring each element has its place while contributing to an overall cohesive design.

Additionally, applying the triangle rule also works well on a square coffee table.

I like to opt for a square-shaped table when space permits. I used two rectangular coffee tables here to center on the two matching sofas and balance out the room. Design by Carla Bast
Design by Carla Bast

Rectangular Center Table or Oval Shaped Center Tables: Rectangular center tables or oval shaped tables work well in spaces that have a walking path in front of the sofa. Use the square table tips shown above adding two more sections totalling six, or dividing it in three sections down the middle. The triangle method also works well for rectangular center tables.

Organic Shaped Center Table:

For organic-shaped tables use the triangle rule or a single centerpiece.


Pin this for easy reference:


Center Table Decor Ideas & Design Styles

1. Coffee table books are almost always a good idea to decorate a center table.

Showcase a curated collection of your favorite books. Books should be visually appealing, show your personal interests, and spark conversation. Incorporating small and large books in groupings or in a single stack.

Colorful stacks of coffee table books organized in sections. Source

2. Use natural elements for your center table decor.

Infuse your space with the beauty of nature by incorporating elements like a vase with sprigs, wooden decor, and rattan accents for a grounded vibe to your living room.


3. Show your collection.

Grouping like items together creates visual harmony and organization. By clustering similar objects you establish a cohesive aesthetic, refelcting your personal style.

Blue and white ginger jars and dishes grouped together on a tray make a statement for this center display. Source

RELATED: 9 Best Greige Paint Colors for your Home

4. Small Center Table Decor

Optimize limited space with a compact yet stylish center table. Styling it with a simple vase or two is all it needs!

5. Layer your Decor.

A stack of books layered with a decorative bowl, plants and containers in various textures creates an interesting display on these small center tables.

6. Stylish storage solutions to hide the clutter.

Combine functionality with style by integrating storage solutions that enhance the overall look of your center table keeping it clutter-free. Keep remote controls and odds and ends organized and within easy reach.


7. Styling your Center Table with Plants

Bring nature indoors with the addition of plants, adding a refreshing element to your center table arrangement while promoting clean air.


8. Cohesive Color Scheme

Take a cue from the hues on your walls, furniture, or accent pieces, and infuse those colors into your center table accessories. Whether it’s vibrant coasters, a decorative tray, or even a simple vase with coordinating flowers, aligning your coffee table decor with your room’s color palette can instantly tie the space together.


9. Use a large tray.

Utilize a spacious tray as a focal point, organizing and displaying a collection of decorative items clutter-free.

Photo by: Spacejoy

10. Use a glass vase.

Add a touch of elegance with transparent glass vases, allowing for creative floral arrangements or sprigs to finish the look. If you have a glass coffee table, add more contrast to the arrangement by using a colored glass vase or add a decorative filler such as sea shells or moss.

11. Fresh Flowers

Bringing in the beauty and fragrance of fresh flowers is always a great idea for a center table. Fresh flowers can help to reduce depression and stress!

Photo by Studio McGee – shoppable link HERE.

12. Add a scented candle.

Introduce a sensory experience with a scented candle in a decorative jar, infusing your living room with the fragrance you love.


13. Great Conversation Piece

Feature unique and intriguing items that serve as a conversation starter, and adding personality to your decor. 

14. Sculptural Objects

Display interesting sculptural pieces that double as art, adding a sophisticated touch to your center table arrangement.


15. Display a table game.


A retro game or elegant checkers or tic-tac-toe set not only add a unique design element, but also invite play.

Design by Carla Bast
Marble Tic-Tac-Toe Board

16. Add a pop of color.

Introduce a bold and eye-catching pop of color to your center table, creating a focal point that draws attention and adds personality to your living room.

Shop this look HERE.

17. Modern Look

Opt for a sleek and contemporary aesthetic with clean lines, and modern materials, creating a chic and sophisticated center table display.


18. Nesting Table Decor or High/Low Table Decor

When working with matching high and low tables, (or nesting style tables), varying the height and texture of the items breaks up the monotony of the matching tables.


RELATED: Simply White vs Chantilly Lace by Benjamin Moore, Paint Colors

19. Gather similar items.

Arrange decorative elements in cohesive groupings to create a sense of unity and symmetry.

A collection of mercury glass candle holders arranged with a pitcher of flowers on a wooden coffee table create a cohesive and intentional grouping. Source

20. Go Big!

Large decorative objects like tall vases full of flowers, make a big impression. A living room with tall ceiling is a great place to implement this look.

Shop this look from Joss and Main HERE.

21. White Candles

Infuse a touch of warmth with shimmering white candles, creating an elegant and serene atmosphere in your living room.


22. When using an ottoman as your “center table.”

The same basic principles apply based on the shape of your ottoman. Using a large tray for your decorative items on a center ottoman make it easy to move when you want to put your feet up.

Design by Carla Bast

23. Two-Tier Table Decor

Maximize storage and display space with a two-tier table, providing an opportunity to showcase a variety of decorative pieces in an organized manner.

Shop this look HERE.

24. Minimalist Center Table Styling

Embrace simplicity with a minimalist approach, creating a clutter-free center table arrangement.

Design by Carla Bast

RELATED: 13 Stunning Fireplace Accent Wall Ideas for Your Home

25. Maximalist Center Table Styling

Make a bold statement with a maximalist approach, incorporating an abundance of decor elements for a rich and eclectic coffee table display.

26. Coastal Grandmother Style

Channel coastal vibes with a touch of vintage charm, incorporating nautical decor and timeless pieces for a cozy and inviting atmosphere.

Shop this look from At Home, HERE.

27. Modern Coastal Style Center Table

Blend contemporary style with sleek coastal elements, creating a fresh and relaxed ambiance inspired by the seaside.


28. Traditional Style Center Table Decor

Embrace timeless elegance with a traditional center table decor, featuring classic motifs and refined details for a sophisticated look.

Traditional elements arranged in a symmetrical grid evoke a formal look for this living room. Source

29. Transitional Style Center Table Decor

Combine elements of both traditional and modern styles for a center table that gives a more casual vibe.


30. Make it personal.

Create a display of cherished memories by incorporating personal mementos, or photos.

Old family photos nestled in a tray can be swapped out occasionally for a new look. Source

31. Formal Living Room Center Table Decor

A simple low vase on the center table allows the fireplace focal point to take center stage in this elegant formal living room.


32. Modern Farmhouse Center Table Decor

Capture the rustic charm of a farmhouse with distressed wood, vintage accents, and earthy tones for a warm and welcoming center table display.


33. The Dopamine Decor Trend

What is Dopamine Decor?

It’s the happient design trend out there, and I’m here for it! The only rule is, decorate with what brings you joy! Think of your teenage bedroom with the posters on the walls and the things around your room that made you happy surrounding you. Bright colors, fun patterns, and whimsy, that’s how it’s done.

Two square ottomans serve as a center table for a pair of chairs. Bright colored center table decor tie the this dopamine decor living room together. Source

34. The Glamorous Life

Infuse a glamorous look on your center coffee table with metallic accents, glass candlesticks, florals and sleek storage boxes, creating a chic and opulent center table arrangement.


35. Mid-Century Style Center Table Decor

Embrace the iconic style of the mid-century era with clean lines and retro-inspired design. Stick to choices with a low profile, soft curves, modern shapes and minimalist materials for this style.


36. Vintage Inspired Center Table Decor

Incorporate vintage elements and nostalgic pieces to bring a sense of history and character to your center table for a one-of-a-kind look.


37. Glass Top Center Table Decor

For glass top center tables, choose decor that doesn’t get lost. Contrast with materials or color.

Pay attention to the lower section, too, if you are working with a two-tier glass table.

38. Live Edge Coffee Table Decor

Because live edge tables are so beautiful with rustic character and graining all on their own, keep the decor minimal. One item, or three smaller items will work wonderfully.


39. Concrete Top Coffee Table Decor

Choose decor pieces with clean lines, neutral tones, and subtle textures. This approach will maintain a modern and sophisticated feel while highlighting the industrial charm of the concrete table.

Simple and contemporary decor on a concrete table by West Elm.

My favorite resources and shops for center table decor:

Home Goods: Known for its diverse range of affordable home decor items, Home Goods always has a fresh stock of stylish center table decorations like vases, coffee table books, sculptural items, candles, and trays, at an affordable price.

World Market: A mix of global-inspired decor at affordable prices.

Etsy: Etsy’s online marketplace is a favorite for handmade and customized decor. Artisans and crafters sell unique and personalized items.

West Elm: For contemporary, urban edge, mid-century style decor. West Elm sources materials that are eco-friendly and ethically obtained.

Pottery Barn: For a blend of classic style with an heirloom character.

Serena and Lily: A great resource for coastal inspired decor.

Target: Target’s home decor section features popular brands such as Hearth & Hand with Magnolia, and Studio McGee.

Local Boutiques. Antique Shops and Artisan Markets: I love to explore local boutiques, artisan markets, and antique shops for one-of-a-kind center table decorations.


Mix and match these themes based on your own preferences and create the center table decor that reflects your personal style.

And there you have it – 39 easy coffee table decor ideas to step up your living room game. Your coffee table is no longer just a place for remotes – it’s a style statement waiting to happen. So, throw on some cool books, or add a touch of green, and let your living room vibe speak for itself. Easy, simple, and effortlessly cool.


Hi, I’m Carla


I’m glad you’re here! You are in the right place if you are feeling overwhelmed at the thought of embarking on a remodeling or interior design project. Living with an outdated home and don’t know where to start? I’ve helped families like yours update their home and create spaces that reflect what’s important to them for over 25 years.

I’ve been honored to be featured in:

Real Homes

The Spruce

Apartment Therapy / Cubby

Twin Cities Luxury + Fashion

MSP Magazine

Minneapolis Star Tribune


Home Crux



Free Paint Guide

Remodel Freebie Image

5 Tips for Stress Free Remodel

Don’t miss a thing!

Enter your email below to be the first to know about design posts, new products and tips for a more beautiful home.

Don’t miss a thing!

Enter your email below to be the first to know about design posts, new products and tips for a more beautiful home.

Looking for something on the blog?

More Posts We Think You'd Love

One Response

  1. These Center Table Decor Ideas are a game-changer for sprucing up my living room! From elegant floral arrangements to chic DIY projects, there’s something for every style and budget. Can’t wait to try out some of these tips to create a cozy and inviting space. Thanks for the inspiration

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments links could be nofollow free.

how to choose paint colors with confidence

Free Design Guide

Ever wonder what your own personal interior design style is?

Unlock Your Unique Design Style

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.