The Different Types of Wooden Coffee Table Designs

The Different Types of Wooden Coffee Table Designs

The Different Types of Wooden Coffee Table Designs

A coffee table is an excellent focal piece for any living room, and sometimes any other room. Picking the right one, however, can be a challenge. Coffee tables come in so many different colors and tones, shapes and sizes, and materials, it’s hard to know which is best for you. To provide you with a little inspiration, here are a few of the different types of wooden coffee table designs.

Parsons Table

There’s no such thing as a perfect object, but a Parsons table comes close. A modernist piece of furniture, the Parsons table is either square or rectangular with four square legs that meet with the tabletop and are as thick at the tabletop itself. The table has nothing to do with the priesthood or ministry. Designed by Jean-Michel Frank in the 1930s at the arts and design school Parsons Paris, he created it to provide a perfectly sturdy and balanced table that could accommodate any type of design and decoration without losing integrity.


More of a period’s style than a specific design, mid-century coffee tables share several qualities and looks. Created in the ’50s and ’60s, one can see the influence of the Space Age with the tables’ sleek and modern designs, with smooth unbroken lines and wood parts that have been bent into elegant shapes. Avoiding traditionalism, mid-century coffee tables often retain their natural finishes, rarely going too dark with stains or veneers. The legs often stick outward as well, creating a livelier look to the piece.

Shaker Style

Shakers are more properly called by their church’s name, the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing but are called Shakers because of their active and energetic style of worship, which often involved dance. Shaker services were loud and joyful, but their furniture, which they were famous for, is simple, utilitarian, and honest (all Shaker principles). You won’t find authentic and original Shaker pieces outside of a museum, but their influence is found in handmade wooden coffee tables that are simply designed and minimalist. Shakers felt that decorations, inlays, and the like were distracting and proud, so you won’t find fancy designs on Shaker-style coffee tables. Still, they retain a straightforward beauty all their own.

Cottage Style

Those are three of the different types of wooden coffee table designs. Our fourth is another style that’s simple but doesn’t lack for decorative frills. Cottage-style coffee tables reflect a fashionable style of the mid-19th century created to give people greater access to beautiful furniture at a more affordable price. Cottage furniture features softwood construction and is often painted and decorated with nature motifs like flowers and leaves. It also has more traditional elements like shaped legs and split spindles, and overall, cottage-style pieces impart a cozy look and feeling.

Hopefully, this guide will help you decide what style of coffee table will look best in your home. There are many more varieties of coffee tables out there, but these are the basics. Good luck!

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