9 Beautiful Coffee Table Books
& How to Style Them
Coffee table books are the perfect filler piece to add in your space that is decorative and functional. They look great on your coffee table (duh!) and also on a console table, nightstand, dresser, shelves, or built-ins too.
When styling our projects, our approach is to work with our clients and select books based on their personalities, hobbies, and aesthetics and use them as finishing accents at the end of a project. This helps to put a perfect personal touch to the room.
Below we share some of our favourite books and tips on what to look for when buying coffee table books.
Cover Types and Subject Matter
The only time you should judge a book by its cover is when you’re looking for coffee table books as they will be on display. For the most part, these books are photo heavy and come in a variety of topics.
What’s great about books is that alternative editions will offer different covers so if there’s a book you want but aren’t too fond of its cover, look for a limited edition instead. Alternatively, you can remove the jacket cover if you prefer the minimal look of the book on its own.
These books are (usually) hardcover but you may find some with magazine-like covers that can work together to form your book stack. When shopping for books online, filter by cover type or size to make your search easier.
Pair greenery with coffee table books but make sure this area is accessible.
We know. Coffee table books can be pricey which is why we recommend buying books based on your personal interests. For further savings, purchase books whenever they go on sale or check out your local thrift shop and see what they have in store. You can also try Amazon or BookOutlet where books are sold at a discount.
Sizes and Colour
When shopping for books, pay attention to the dimensions and avoid purchasing them all in the same size. Coffee table books are typically larger in size but try to find some in small-medium sizes with varying widths and thicknesses as well.
Consider adding variety through colour by selecting books in different shades and tones. Books add texture and depth but if you need to soften a room up a little, you can always throw in some neutral books for a nice balance.
Create a reading nook anywhere in your home that speaks to you.
Styling Tips and Techniques
01) Create a book stack
Start with the largest book as this will be your base
All other books should be complementary in size
Depending on the placement of your books, each book stack should contain 2-4 books
02) Consider the shape of the furniture you’re placing your books on
For round coffee tables, set books and other decorative objects in a triangular shape
For square and rectangular coffee tables, set books and other decorative objects in quadrants
03) When styling, it’s a good idea to place books in spots that relate to their subject matter
Food and wine books go in the kitchen and dining room
Television and film books work well in living rooms
04) Finish your book stack with decorative objects like a paperweight, sculptures, bowls, or candles
Coffee table books can also be contained and styled within a tray
If placed on a shelf, pair with bookends to create a vertical grouping
Be inspired by
the colours of art and decor around you and add them in small doses through your books.
Level Studio’s Picks!
We rounded up some of our favourite (not so common) coffee table books, click the photos to shop them. Disclaimer: These are not affiliate links nor are we responsible for your credit card bill this month!
Decorating with coffee table books quickly brings colour, texture, and inspiration into your home. With so many topics and styles to choose from, these books are as functional as they are beautiful.