A Frugal Home Design Basic Buying Guide

American homes traditionally are not complete without living room coffee tables. That said, many choose the common living room tables without the advantage of simple buying guidelines with the end result being coffee tables that are miss-matched or ill-suited for the rooms where they are placed.

The 3 interior design principles to consider when buying any piece of furniture is form, function and space.

Form

Form simply means determining the design direction you wish to create in the room. Consistency in design will minimize clutter and focus your buying decisions.

Take the time determining your desired design style by browsing through home decorating magazines, viewing staged model homes, consulting with an interior designer or taking advantage of simple design style assessments that can be found online.

Function

Function is extremely important when choosing coffee tables. This requires identifying your families living habits in the specific rooms that need coffee tables. For example, are you a “sit back and relax” type family who loves to kick off shoes, grab cold drinks, a bowl of popcorn, feet up on the coffee table to watch a movie or ball game? If so, a glass table is out. A better choice is an easy clean, solid hard wood table top or trunk type coffee table.

If you are the type that enjoys spreading out on the couch with a good book, newspaper or Kindle then you will need a table that does not measure higher than the top of your couch seat cushions. There is nothing worse than staring at a table line while relaxing horizontally.

If there are small children in the house, then tables designed in marble or wood would be a better choice over glass. Round and cushioned are safer than the sharper edged counterparts. Smooth surfaces over tiled and paneled coffee table tops are best for growing families because constantly trying to keep those designer nooks and crannies clean is really an exercise in futility.

Space

Finally, space might be the most important consideration. If storage is an issue, take advantage of the brilliantly designed coffee tables provide not only design and function but areas of storage from overnight guest bedding, to family night game storage. Nesting tables are a wonderful way to add additional seating with the ingeniously designed benches tucked under the main table unnoticed until needed.

Two smaller, tables placed side by side could work better that 1 large bulky coffee table. Glass, or coffee tables designed with metal frames and feet take up less space both physically and visually; when space is at a premium.

Frugal Home Design Tips

In today’s economy, no article would be complete without a few frugal home design tips. There are ways to find deeply discounted furniture that you may not know about. Though these sources may need a bit of handyman touch ups you can find some great deals without compromising quality. These money-saving sources are:

    • Craig’s List – If you are living close to a military base, this is the perfect resource to find furniture for sale from families on the move who need to down-size.

    • Model Homes – Sometimes you can buy the furniture right out of the house, especially in new construction model homes that have sold most of their new home inventory. Rather than pick up and move that staging furniture, they will be happy to sell it at drastic discounts.

    • Furniture Store Scratch and Dent rooms – If the store doesn’t have a room with these slightly damaged rejects ask about their delivery warehouse. Awesome deals are found there, the only catch is you have to ask.

    • Storage Unit “Yard Sales” – Though storage unit shows have increased the publics interest in the practice of buying the contents of abandoned storage units, there are still storage managers that will hold yard sale type events selling furniture sets. Some of these sales are advertised in the local paper, others are not. You may have to visit or call individual storage providers in your area to find out when their next sale event will be.

  • Repurposing – With some imagination you can repurpose an old discarded piece of furniture to serve as a coffee table.

For some great photo examples visit the link at the bottom of this article.

So there you have it, before shopping for coffee tables, determine your design style, establish the living habits of those in the home and identify space availability. Using these basic buying guidelines you will find the perfect living room table for your home interior needs.