Tiny Tables are BIG on Function and Style

One of my favorite design tricks is the use of a small side table. I love a tiny table! Now, admittedly some tables aren’t really that “tiny”, but they are notable because they can be easily moved around.

Design Vicente Wolf Peter Photo Estersohn pale blue bedrooms tiny tables side tables
Design Vicente Wolf | Peter Photo Estersohn

I credit this beautiful room above, designed by Vicente Wolf, for kicking off my love of a well-placed tiny table. A more traditional approach to this seating area might have been a coffee table of some kind, but the movable round table at center provides a flexible level of functionality whether one is lounging on the daybed or sitting in the armchairs.

Design Linda Merrill Photography Michael J Lee antique loft settee tiny tables side tables
Design Linda Merrill | Photography Michael J Lee

I was a little bit channeling Vicente when I created this space above for my old digital magazine cover.

Design Linda Merrill photo Michael J Lee coastal living room tiny tables side tables
Design Linda Merrill | Photo Michael J Lee

Keeping a collection of tiny tables always comes in handy. My Duxbury interior design client‘s above have a lovely collection of antique pieces and I was able to pull from their collection to place this tiny antique table between the two arm chairs. It not only adds a pretty decorative touch, but anyone sitting in the chairs doesn’t have to reach to place a glass on the coffee table.

This brings me to something that designer Miles Redd said once. He said he feels that in seating areas, anyone sitting in a chair or sofa should be able to comfortably reach their arm out and place a glass (or something to that effect). In other words, if you’re entertaining, you shouldn’t force your guest to hold onto their glass while seated, or place it on the floor where it could get knocked over.

Design Linda Merrill Photo Michael J Lee deck waterview tiny tables side tables
Design Linda Merrill | Photo Michael J Lee

Even outdoor spaces can benefit from a cute little side table.

Design Linda Merrill Photography Michael J Lee living room pink green tiny tables side tables
Design Linda Merrill | Photography Michael J Lee

In my own living room, which is teeny tiny, I use a small side table next to my sofa because there’s no way I can reach the coffee table/trunk without sitting on the edge of the sofa.

Design Linda Merrill design rendering dream bathroom tiny tables side tables
Design & rendering by Linda Merrill

And in my “dream house” master bath design, I make use of a tiny table placed next to the soaking tub – because where else would you put a book, magazine or glass of champagne?

DESIGN Shayelyn Woodbery Photo Marc Mauldin antique bench tiny tables side tables
Design Shayelyn Woodbery | Photo Marc Mauldin

I came across this lovely project by interior designer Shayelyn Woodbery, in Atlanta Homes, and it’s clear Shayelyn is a fan of handy tiny side tables as well. I love the juxtaposition of the antique bench and the modern graphic side table above. The simple form of the modern table, rendered in white, doesn’t overhwhelm or distract from the beautiful old bench seat. Plus, look at that gorgeous dog!

Design Shayelyn Woodbery Photo Marc Mauldin family room tiny tables side tables
Design Shayelyn Woodbery | Photo Marc Mauldin

And another tiny table peaking out from behind the lunge chair. A perfect spot for flowers or a nice hot cuppa.

Design Shayelyn Woodbery Photo Marc Mauldin tiny tables side tables
Design Shayelyn Woodbery | Photo Marc Mauldin

From the same room, we can see the matching lounge chair between the windows also has it’s own side table. It makes for such a comfortable space in so many ways.

What makes tiny tables so great?

  • They are functional, practical and flexible.
  • They make guests feel comfortable.
  • They are stylish and can add interesting colors, forms, shapes or materials to a design plan, without being overwhelming.

I’ve put together a shopping boutique of some great tiny tables at different price points. No reason not to add one to your space today! (Please note that this boutique includes affiliates links. A small commission is paid to me on sales, at no additional expense to the buyer, which helps support this blog. Thank you!)

Tiny Tables Boutique

xoxo Linda Would you like my Favorite Tips for a Well-Decorated Home? Click here!

12 thoughts on “Tiny Tables are BIG on Function and Style”

  1. Hello Linda, Count me in for small occasional tables. I often think that oversized coffee tables are clunky and unnecessary. Regarding the above comment on nesting tables, we had those too and they came in handy in 100 different ways.
    –Jim

  2. I couldn’t agree with you more. The simple tip of every seat having a spot to rest their drinks is so on point (and a perfect reminder for the upcoming game holidays). I love all of the choices at the end of your blog as well.

  3. I totally agree with you. The chair of our interior design program use to drill into the students: “Every seat needs a table, and every table needs a light.” The light isn’t always possible, but it’s a definite must that a guest can put down their glass without reaching.

I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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