Creative Coffee Table Ideas for Your Living Room

Coffee tables are a useful, but rather bland piece of living room furniture. Most are made from some type of stained or painted wood and, while the shape and color varies somewhat, the tables remain unremarkable. Some people are happy with a coffee table that blends in with the rest of the decor, but others crave something a little more eye-popping.

For those who want a coffee table that stands out from the crowd, there are unlimited choices. No, you can’t usually walk into a typical furniture store and find a ‘wow’ piece, but there are tons of ways to create the coffee table of your dreams. You just have to use your imagination. Coffee tables can be made from all sorts of materials. In fact, many of them don’t even have to be built; they can simply be a different object, re-purposed into a coffee table. From vintage trunks to pallets, here are some ideas to get you started.

Old Trunk

Vintage trunks have so much personality. They really tell a story, so why not use one as a living room conversation piece? A large trunk makes an intriguing coffee table. You can opt to add legs to the bottom of the trunk so that it stands off the floor, or choose to use it as is. Using an old trunk as a coffee table adds an eclectic feel to a room. Another perk is that the trunk offers added living room storage so that you can quickly stash things away when you have unexpected visitors.

Spare Tire

Spare tires? Yes, you can even find your next coffee table in the automotive scrapyard! You can repurpose old tires in many ways, including into a truly unique coffee table that’ll grab everyone’s attention as they walk in the door. Use some twine and an old tire to create a really funky table; simply wrap a spare tire in beachy sisal rope to hide its true automotive identity. Or, if you’re okay with a more industrial look, leave as is!

Vintage Door

If you have a cool looking old door lying around, or know where you can get your hands on one, you can transform it into a coffee table. You may opt to use the door as is and just build some legs for it, or you may choose to cut the door into three pieces and use the middle section for the top and turn the ends into legs.

Old Window

Speaking of using old house parts, why not create a cool looking display case coffee table from an old paned window? A paned window can be used as the top of a display case coffee table or, with a box built underneath, the window can be attached on hinges. No matter which way you go, you’ll have an intriguing (and functional) coffee table where you can place and display your treasures.

Pinball Wonder

If you can get your hands on an old pinball table, then this idea is sure to grab some attention, particularly in a game room, basement, or man cave. Use the top (game playing portion) of the pinball table and build a box with legs around it. If you love the idea but can’t quite grasp the process, here are some Instructables steps to help you turn that pinball table into a functional coffee table.  

Pallet Revamp

Pallets are used for all kinds of DIY projects these days, so it only makes sense to consider them for a coffee table, too. After all, pallets are cheap (often free) and they can be arranged in all kinds of interesting ways. Even better, if you stack them they create added storage shelves. PS- this is a great idea for outdoor patios, too!

There are innumerable items that can be used to create a captivating coffee table. You just have to keep your eyes and mind open to the possibilities. Browse local second hand shops, garage sales, and even your own basement and you’re sure to turn up a treasure or two.

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