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Coffee Table Or End Table? What Is Right For Your Living Room?

When it comes to choosing new living room furniture for your home, it can be difficult to know what is right for your living room and your lifestyle.

From comfy loveseats and living room sofas to functional cabinets and tables, the possibilities seem endless.

After you’ve found the perfect living room chairs, sofa, and other key pieces at our living room furniture store in Cleveland, it’s time to start thinking about the tables in this space.

If you’re not sure whether coffee tables or end tables are the right choices, we have a few tips that may help you decide.

Read on to learn more about each of these table styles, so you can determine which one is right for your living room.

  1. Coffee Tables: What are They?
  2. End Tables Defined
  3. Dimensions
  4. What to Look For
  5. Styles and Options
  6. More Important Tips

Coffee Tables: What are They?

Although the word coffee is included in the name of this living room furniture, coffee tables were first used for tea back in the Victorian era.

As living room sofas became the centerpiece of the room, coffee tables (also called tea tables back then) were usually put directly in front of the couch.

This provides you with a place to set down a cold beverage, some good books, vases, and other living room essentials.

After the start of the Industrial Revolution, this furniture began to evolve into something more substantial.

The Arts and Crafts movement saw a shift toward new furniture construction, and the demand for handmade furniture began to increase.

While these tables vary in shape, size, and style today, the functionality remains the same.

Overall, a coffee table is low to the ground since you want a clear view between yourself and anyone sitting across from you.

Typically, coffee tables are approximately the same height as sofa cushions.

The styles can vary greatly and may feature a rectangular, square, or round shape.

Some feature glass tops while others are crafted exclusively of solid hardwood.

But what’s most important is the function of these tables and how they’re used.


End Tables Defined

Just as the name implies, end tables are designed to be placed on the ends (or sides) of living room furniture, like loveseats and sofas.

They’re also typically much smaller than a standard coffee table.

Instead of being as tall as the cushions on loveseats or sofas, these tables are approximately the same height as the furniture arms.

End tables won’t be in the way of your view since they’re placed next to the sides of the furniture.

This allows them to be a bit taller, but they’re also smaller overall in terms of total dimensions.

Since you’re placing these tables next to the furniture, you don’t want them to get in the way of a pathway where people need to walk around.

End tables work well for beverages just like coffee tables do, but they’re also a perfect place for a table lamp as well.



Now that you know a bit more about the main differences between these two pieces of furniture, let’s examine the average dimensions more closely.

Knowing the correct size of each piece will help you figure out what is right for your living room.

When it comes to end tables, they have an average length of between 22 to 28 inches, an average width of 14 to 26 inches, and an average height of 20 to 25 inches.

Coffee tables have a clearly larger surface space, with lengths ranging from 36 to 48 inches.

They also have an average width of between 18 and 24 inches, and an average height of 16 to 21 inches, making them significantly shorter than end tables. 


What to Look For

Although this furniture seems basic at first glance, there are some features you might want to consider before you purchase one at our living room furniture store in Cleveland.

First, some end tables and coffee tables have drawers that provide you with convenient storage.

Many end tables also have an “open” design with a small shelf on the bottom that’s perfect for displaying decorative items.

They may also feature cabinets below the tabletop for hidden storage.

A few coffee tables and end tables also have wheels on the bottom, so you can move them around as needed.

While end tables usually don’t have them, some coffee tables also have a lift-top design that makes them perfect for doing homework or eating a meal in front of the

TV. Newer models also often include built-in USB ports and electrical outlets for added convenience.

Explore all of these different features to help you decide what is right for your living room.

If storage is important, you can also consider other furniture like storage benches and ottomans.


Styles and Options

From modern to classic, both coffee and end tables come in a wide array of styles.

Look at various details like the shape, finish, and material to help you decide what is right for your living room based on your favorite look.

Coffee tables with metal legs and a glass top are great for modern spaces, while something crafted of reclaimed wood is a beautiful option for a rustic or cottage-inspired home.

In some cases, you can purchase table sets that include both a coffee table and a pair of matching end tables (one for each side of the furniture).

This is one of the easiest ways to ensure that everything is cohesive and seamless and that each table won’t clash with the rest of the living room furniture.

Nested tables, or nesting tables, are also great if you’re short on space.

These table sets include two or more tables at different heights and sizes.

You can simply tuck the smaller table under the larger one for easy storage until you need it again.


More Important Tips

It’s important to note that accent tables are different from end tables.

These tables are also small, but they’re typically basic and not as ornate or as sturdy as standard end tables.

You can use accent tables to display a potted plant, a sculpture, or a lamp if you choose.

When it comes to coffee tables, make sure that the table you like is large enough to provide enough functionality when you place it in front of loveseats or the sofa.

Choose a table with a neutral finish so that it’s easy to match it with the flooring, wall colors, décor, and the rest of the furniture in the room.

Light wood tones, black, or white are all excellent choices for east matching.

Whether you think coffee or end tables are right for your space, you’ll find plenty of awesome options available at our living room furniture store in Cleveland, so be sure to come by and visit our showroom today!

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