8 Fun + Practical Ways to Use Your Coffee Table

From designer-worthy to party ready, we've got eight completely different ways to freshen up your coffee table — no matter the season.

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Host an Adult Game Night

Keep the conversation casual and intimate by hosting game night at the coffee table. Lay out an assortment of cards and games, and serve snacks in simple bowls. For an artisanal touch, serve beer in craft glassware and keep growlers within arm's reach to make self-serving simple.

Provide Comfy Seating

Since games can last for several hours, make sure guests are seated comfortably by adding indoor-outdoor floor cushions around the table. Pick up more than you'll actually need so guests can stack them for an extra boost of height.

Host a Sushi Dinner Party

Entertain your guests in true Japanese fashion by hosting a sushi party at your coffee table while seated on the floor. If you go the take-out route, remove food from containers and boxes, then plate all the sushi on ceramic dinnerware. Skip floral arrangements in favor of potted grasses.

Go for Minimalist Settings

To add true Japanese flair to your sushi party, skip round plates and instead lay your culinary creations on square ones. For chargers and placemats, choose organic materials like seagrass.

Skip Florals in Favor of Elephants

In many Asian cultures, elephants are associated with strength and wisdom. Add a touch of positivity and prosperity to your sushi party by incorporating elephant accessories.

Display a Collection

If you've got a collection of objects that don't fit on your bookshelves, consider displaying them front and center on your coffee table. Here, an assortment of vintage brass objects adds luster and graphic shape to the seating area while also showcasing one-of-a-kind finds.

Properly Edit Your Collection

The trick to successfully showcasing a collection is mixing. Stick with objects that vary in shape, height and width but have similar colors or finishes.

Host a Casual Indoor Picnic

Put any concerns of fickle weather to rest by hosting a summer picnic at your coffee table. Stick with a summery palette and add a touch of grass green to the center of the table with potted grasses or ferns. Light fare, such as salads, sodas and sandwiches, are the perfect fit and will keep your guests feeling casual and relaxed.

Serve Classic Sandwich Baskets

For a classic picnic look, serve sandwiches in woven baskets lined with cloth napkins in classic patterns, such as gingham or stripes.

Design With Summery Fabrics

Add large floor pillows made from summery fabrics, such as nautical stripes, sea life motifs or classic Americana prints, for extra comfort.

Give Your Table Some High Design

If you're looking to add a designer touch to your coffee table, add stacks of glossy art and design books. The trick to doing this effectively is to stack books at different heights, and alternate between vertical and horizontal orientation.

Top With Sculptural Objects

Once you've added books to the table, use them as risers for showcasing decorative objects. This will help break up the linearity of the books and add personality.

Host a Kids' Birthday Party

Skip the grown-up table and host your child's birthday party at the coffee table. Delineate the space with colorful balloons tied to the table legs, then add high-energy hues to the table with vibrant bowls, plates and cups.

Get Down and Artsy

If you're looking for a spot to express your creative side as a family, your coffee table may be the perfect place. Protect the surface of the table with a tablecloth or a large flat-weave rug by placing a drop cloth or roll of kraft paper beneath it. Lay out painting or crafting supplies with a cohesive color scheme among bowls.

Host a Wine and Cheese Party

Wine and cheese parties are all about enjoying the finer things in life over good conversation. Turn your coffee table into a wine pairing station by laying out cheeses, breads and wineglasses for guests to serve and sample as a group.

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