HOW TO // ULTIMATE GUIDE TO STYLING YOUR CONSOLE TABLE
Are you struggling with decorating your console table? Check out these 8 tips on how to style your console table like a pro
Are you struggling with styling your console table?
Before you even begin, think about the kind of mood you’d like to create with your table and the pieces from your home that you would like to use. Is your console table going to mainly serve a decorative or functional purpose? Is it going to feature art and trinkets or be paired down and minimal?
There are no wrong answers here, just be honest about your wants and needs and this will help guide you when making styling + shopping decisions. If you need your console table to add more light into the room, choose a pair of lamps or sconces over vases. If you need a place to stash your keys and put your shoes on in the morning, think about incorporating a tray on the table and a stool below. You can use this same formula for styling a buffet in the dining room or a credenza in your home office.
Evaluate your needs, gather any pieces around the house you would like to use and then get ready to start styling!
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Console Table Styling Tip #1: Embrace Asymmetry
I love starting with a large piece when styling a table because it creates an anchor for the vignette and makes it feel like your console isn’t just floating in the middle of the wall. Whether it be a mirror, a piece of art or a vase, start with your largest piece and play with its placement, shifting it slightly to one side. Who says the most drama has to be dead center? Balance it out with a tall plant or sculptural piece on one end and place a long bowl or tray on the other side. Don’t be afraid to experiment and move things around!
Console Table Styling Tip #2: Add Functionality
Even if your console table is mainly decorative, try to sneak in a piece or two that serves a dual purpose: beautiful and functional. Some examples include a basket for hiding extra blankets or toys, a boot tray for corralling shoes, or a box to gather mail, pens and notepads. Not only would a basket add much needed storage space, it would incorporate texture into your console vignette.
I love trays & boxes and probably have 10 or so throughout my home. Too many? Possibly. But I love that trays give meaning to a random display of items and that you can hide all sorts of goodies in a box. I like to stash chapstick and hand lotion in a pretty mother-of-pearl inlaid box in my entryway because no one likes walking out the door with dry lips or hands!
Console Table Styling Tip #3: Vary Heights To Create Balance
Varying heights is an easy way to achieve an attractive arrangement without a lot of effort. I try to have three tiers when styling a table: a high, medium and low point because it adds interest by keeping your eye moving around the space. One of the most important tips for styling almost any surface is to group items in odd numbers. It is just naturally more visually appealing and creates a memorable vignette. Luckily for you, many candle holder sets already come in groups of three with varying heights so the guesswork is done for you!
Another stylist secret (that really isn’t so secret anymore) is adding books to create height. They work great in a pinch to elevate a piece and instantly add depth to an arrangement. There are even shops on Etsy who curate vintage hardback books by color, so you can easily include books within your room’s color scheme.
Console Table Styling Tip #4: Let There Be Light
I always try to include a lamp when arranging a console table because come nightfall you still want to show off your styling skills! There are so many gorgeous light fixtures on the market right now that would not only serve to add another layer of light in your room, but could also add a sculptural element to your table. If you are tight on space, try using a plug-in sconce in lieu of a lamp. If the cord bothers you, use a cover painted the same color as your wall, otherwise let the cord play to the modern eclectic feel like in the vignette below.
Console Table Styling Tip #5: Add Personality
This is one of my favorite parts when styling a console table (or any table for that matter) - bringing in meaningful trinkets and treasures you’ve collected. Whether it’s a piece of driftwood from a recent beach trip, a quirky work of art, or a calligraphy brush you picked up in Japan, use these pieces to show off your individuality.
To keep things from looking too random, use tip #3 above and consider corralling a few items in a tray or giving them height by including books underneath.
Console Table Styling Tip #6: Avoid Being Too Matchy - Mix It Up!
One pair in an arrangement is fine, like matching lamps or benches below, but you don’t want to overdo it with having too many similar items. The same goes with finishes - try to mix it up and feature at least 3-4 different finishes within your vignette. If you are using two pair of items, balance the symmetry with pieces that have contrasting shapes and offer a bit of asymmetry. Sounds counterintuitive right?? I promise I’m not just making things up. Take a look at the two styling options below and let me know which one is more visually appealing to you. My guess is that it is Option A because Option B has pieces that are too similar to one another in shape and leads to no interesting place for your eyes to rest. You just end up staring at the empty spot in front of the mirror because your mind reads the lamp and accessories as one.
Console Table Styling Tip #7: Layer, Layer, Layer
Layering items is one tried and true stylist trick that adds depth and dimension to a surface. When styling your console table, try to shift items slightly in front of one another so everything is not on a flat plane. I also love layering pieces of art on each other or placing them partially behind a lamp or vase. This arrangement invites people to take a closer look and instantly creates a curated appearance.
Console Table Styling Tip #8: Add greenery For A Finishing Touch
I don’t consider a space truly finished unless it has a touch of greenery in it. This could be as simple as tucking a small air plant or succulent into a grouping or be as dramatic as using giant palm branches in a vase. Usually I recommend using live plants when possible, but if your green thumb is lacking there are several good faux options out there. I, for instance, have around 17 houseplants but cannot for the life of me keep succulents alive and chose to go the faux route for those pieces.
I hope these tips help to perfect your own console table styling! You don’t have to break the bank to create a beautiful vignette - take stock of pieces you can use from around your house and fill in the gaps where necessary. Don’t forget to download the Free Cheat Sheet and Shopping Checklist below to help you decide what accessories are missing from your console table!
If you need a little extra help, I created a package perfect for providing finishing touches to a troublesome spot in your home! Learn more about it HERE.