Do you ever stop and wonder why coffee tables are called coffee tables? It seems like a bit of a strange name, doesn’t it?
In this blog post, we’re going to take a look at the history of the coffee table and find out why it got its name.
Evolution of Coffee Table
In the late 18th century, tea was fashionable and tea tables were popular in homes across Europe. These tables were small and delicate, and they were used to serve tea and pastries.
Over time, the chairs were replaced by couches, and the table became lower to match the height of the couches. In the beginning, the tables were placed behind the couches, but eventually, they started to be placed in front of them instead.
Influenced by the Japanese and Ottoman tables which are lower in height, the height of the tables gradually decreased. Shorter tables were used to place drinks and snacks on while people were sitting on the couch.
Around the same time, coffee supplanted tea as America’s favorite beverage. Coffee tables were created for use in the living room by furniture makers. The term “coffee table” has stayed since then, and the rest is history!
Coffee Table Size
Nowadays, coffee tables come in all shapes and sizes. Some are small enough to fit in tight spaces, while others are large enough to serve as a dining table.
The average coffee table is around 36-48 inches long, 18-24 inches wide, and 14-20 inches tall. This size works well for both small and large rooms.
Coffee Table Funcion
What is a coffee table used for, you ask? Well, aside from being a place to set your coffee cup (or wine glass), a coffee table can also be used as:
- A place to store magazines and newspapers
- A place to put your feet up
- A place to set down snacks and drinks while you’re watching TV
- A place to display your favorite knickknacks
- A place to set down a laptop or tablet
- A place to play games with friends
- A place to put a plant or flowers
As you can see, a coffee table has many uses!
Why Is It Called a Coffee Table FAQ
Why is it called a coffee table and not a tea table?
Coffee became more popular than tea in America in the early 20th century, so the term “coffee table” was coined to describe these new tables that were being made specifically for the living room.
What makes a coffee table a coffee table?
A coffee table is a table that is typically used in the living room to set drinks and snacks on while you’re sitting on the couch. It is lower in height than standard dining tables, and it usually has a flat surface for holding cups and plates.
Who invented the coffee table?
The coffee table was first made by Stuart Foote, the founder of the American Imperial Furniture company in Michigan. He made the dining table legs shorter to create a centerpiece for his wife’s party. The table was designed for serving coffee.
Closing on Why Is It Called a Coffee Table
Coffee tables come in all shapes and sizes, and they have many different functions. Some people use them to store magazines and newspapers, others use them to put their feet up, and others still use them as a place to set down snacks and drinks while they’re watching TV.
The history of the coffee table is interesting, and we hope that you now have a better understanding of why it’s called a coffee table! Thanks for reading!