No con­so­la­tion piece

Con­sole ta­bles are func­tional and take up lit­tle space, for a dec­o­rat­ing win-win

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - STORY AND PHO­TOS BY MARY CAROL GARRITY

In the world of in­te­rior de­sign, con­sole ta­bles are on fire right now, find­ing their way into our homes in new and sur­pris­ing ways. It seems as if ev­ery day some­one comes into my store look­ing for one of th­ese pieces, and as soon as we get a ship­ment in, they are out the door.

I to­tally get this pas­sion for con­soles. Wood pieces add much-needed weight and struc­ture to a room. And con­soles are per­fect if you want a ta­ble that de­liv­ers max­i­mum vis­ual im­pact us­ing a min­i­mal amount of space. Here are a few of my fa­vorite ways to use con­sole ta­bles.

UN­DER A TV

Flatscreen TVs are so won­der­ful to work with when de­sign­ing a room. Un­like days of old, when we had big, bulky units to work around, to­day’s stream­lined TVs can fit in small spa­ces with no fuss. Most of the con­sole ta­bles we sell are used un­der a TV, with the TV ei­ther mounted on the wall above it like art­work or perched on its top. That’s how I use my con­sole in my lake cot­tage. While the top of the ta­ble needs to be pretty clear to not ob­struct the view of the TV, take ad­van­tage of the space below for a dis­play or stor­age.

UN­DER ART­WORK

I’m over the moon about the big, bold, mod­ern art­work that’s so pop­u­lar right now. Strik­ing art wakes up a wall and makes a huge state­ment in the room. A per­fect spot for a large paint­ing, or any art­work — a mir­ror, a grid of pho­tos, a pair of botan­i­cals — is over a lovely con­sole. The ta­ble won’t com­pete with the art, but will vis­ually ground it.

BE­HIND A SOFA

A great way to vis­ually di­vide a larger liv­ing room into more in­ti­mate con­ver­sa­tion ar­eas is to slide a con­sole ta­ble be­hind a sofa.

One of my fa­vorite tricks is to scoot a bench or two small ot­tomans un­der the ta­ble, to use in a snap when you need ex­tra seat­ing. When not in use, the fur­ni­ture fills in the empty space below the ta­ble, mak­ing the space seem co­zier.

FILL­ING AN EMPTY SPACE

If your home boasts big, open rooms with tall walls and lofty ceilings, you’re prob­a­bly look­ing for ways to make the space feel a bit more in­ti­mate. Con­sole ta­bles are your ace in the hole. Slide one in front of a large bank of win­dows. They are small enough they won’t ob­struct the view, yet of­fer space for stor­age or dec­o­rat­ing.

En­try ways can be hard to dec­o­rate. What do you put in the space that makes it seem wel­com­ing, yet won’t gob­ble up too much room? A con­sole ta­ble. Slide a con­sole against the wall near the door, top it with fab­u­lous art or a mir­ror, a lamp and maybe even a tray to hold your keys and purse when you walk in the door.

Con­sole ta­bles are also great in hall­ways, where you want a bit of vis­ual ap­peal to break up those long, bor­ing walls, but don’t have room for a big piece of fur­ni­ture.

IN THE KITCHEN

My cousin Anne just ren­o­vated the kitchen in her fixer-up­per. In­stead of putting in banks of built-in cab­i­nets, she opted to use a con­sole ta­ble to store her china. She filled the shelf below with dishes and stor­age bas­kets. The space above can be used to serve meals, like a buf­fet, or as a spot to dec­o­rate.

IN THE DIN­ING ROOM

If a hutch or buf­fet just doesn’t work in your din­ing space, try a con­sole ta­ble. It uses a lot less space, but still adds lots of style to the room.

IN A HOME OF­FICE

All of us need ex­tra stor­age in our of­fices. Con­soles to the res­cue! The lower shelves are a great home for your printer, bas­kets filled with files, books — you name it. The top? Dec­o­rate at will.

A great way to vis­ually di­vide a larger liv­ing room into more in­ti­mate con­ver­sa­tion ar­eas is to slide a con­sole ta­ble be­hind a sofa.

Con­sole ta­bles won’t ob­struct the view, yet of­fer space for stor­age or dec­o­rat­ing.

While the top of the ta­ble needs to be clear of ob­struc­tions to a TV, the space below can be used for a dis­play or stor­age.

A per­fect spot for a large paint­ing — or any art­work — is over a lovely con­sole.

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