For a mid-century vibe, marry original or new pebble tables with a Fifties-style sofa, love seat or curved bench and plenty of soft furnishings in mustard, grey and green. If you have the space, leave all the tables out on display and style them with vintage ceramics, well-thumbed novels, a small houseplant and perhaps a Bakelite phone for added charm.
Ercol Originals retro love seat in black graded finish £900; Ercol Originals retro nest of three tables £695, all Barker and Stonehouse. On love seat: Mustard Caernarfon cushion £49; Buttercup Gold Caernarfon Tapestry cushion £59, both Jane Beck Welsh Blankets; quilted green velvet cushion £30, Oliver Bonas. Scandi Leaves rug £220, John Lewis. On tables (left to right): Kathie Winkle Mandalay striped plate £5; Denby Arabesque brown mug £6, both Focus on the Past; vintage GPO telephone £50, Rag & Bone Bristol; books, stylist’s own; 1970s studio pottery brown plate £15, Shepton Mallett Antiques, Vintage & Collectors Fair; Crassula ‘Tom Thumb’ succulent, stylist’s own. Vintage magazines, stylist’s own.
Rare Kafiri house panel from Central Asia £345, Artique. On panel: Mexican highball orange glasses £7 each; Mexican orange glass carafe £18, all John Lewis; slipware bowl from Afghanistan £25, Artique; scissors, stylist’s own. 19th-century orange Moroccan kilim rug £750, Lorfords. Old tribal Afghan kilim £295, Artique. 1920s brass dish flower by Georg Mendelssohn £595, Brownrigg. Diamond cushion £40, Smouk Interiors. Black and white cushion £12, Matalan. Tayo floor cushion in saffron £95, John Lewis. Negana large tapered vase £89.95, Nkuku. Ochre yellow cushion £19.50, Marks & Spencer. Cushion made from old Kutch textile £25, Artique. Fringe cushion £14, Dunelm. Brown Moroccan leather pouffe £130, Smouk Interiors.
Choose a delicately decorated oriental-style table as your focus piece in the room and accessorise it simply with a few nods to the theme. Chinese bowls, fresh fronded foliage in a sculptural vase and other well-chosen accessories in toning shades are all ideal companions.
If your style is more traditional, try teaming an exquisite occasional table with handcrafted marquetry alongside richly patterned rugs, tapestries and antique armchairs with carved details. Here, the grain of the wood on the table contrasts beautifully with the wooden floorboards and mahogany chair.
Create visual interest with different textures. A glass table is a fabulous option if you have a striking floor (parquet, for example) or a rug that’s crying out to be noticed. Place a standout ceramic or piece of glass on top to anchor the look.
Sparkling glass and shimmering brass are together the epitome of glamour. Think plenty of luxurious touches with gold-edged bowls, marble platters and deep-pile rugs.
A sleek glass coffee table requires minimal dressing and allows collections to take centre stage. Paperweights may be rarely used these days, yet can be wonderful objects in their own right and are hugely collectable. These glass orbs are filled with colour and will catch the light in a beguiling way.
Photos: Philip Sowels
Styling: Jaine Bevan