Why You Need a Little Table Like This

Small accent tables, often referred to as drink tables are one piece of living room furniture that most homeowners overlook when decorating their home. Find out the reasons why every home needs one of these little tables.

When it comes to decorating a living room or family room with furniture most of us first think about adding comfortable seating and then add end tables and a coffee table to fill out the room.

Perhaps you even consider adding a console table behind your sofa, but one table that many of us don’t think of adding and one that is not only cute, but has a very handy purpose is a charming little drink table.

I enjoy a hot cup of tea and have a cup with me pretty much all day long. When in my living room I used to sit in one of the recliners we have that is next to a big wicker basket that I made into a side table.

After getting my hip replaced, sitting in the recliner for an extended period of time can get uncomfortable, so I have been sitting on my sofa more often when watching TV, reading or typing away on my laptop. I am very comfy, but no longer have a place to set down my tea.

looking down at the top of a coastal inspired painted side table with a woven rattan style bottom shelf.

I don’t have the space to add another end table like this Serena & Lily knock off two-tier side table I made that is on one side of the sofa. When I watch TV, I sit on the other end of the sofa for better screen viewing.

I thought about bringing back the repurposed Urn Side Table or use the stool and a tray that I made into a side table last summer when I rearranged the living room furniture.

I like these two DIY tables, but they were both too large to place on the wall side next to the Slipcovered Sofa.

Pottery Barn Duke Round Accent table in a living room with a coffee mug on top of it.

I thought about making a small table, and found this small pedestal accent table in white, but I already have enough white in the room. I went on to search for a metal one to add some color and texture contrast to the room.

When I saw this Duke Round Accent C Table at Pottery Barn online and knew it was just perfect for my narrow space, needs and white and woodsy style. Drink tables come to the height of a sofa/chairs arm – this one is 24″ high x 10″ wide.

The table also comes in a version with a white marble top in oil-rubbed bronze and also in brass that I considered. It cost more, but the reason I didn’t get it was the white top made the metal look black. I didn’t like that. I preferred the more rustic appeal of the all oil-rubbed bronze metal table.

What is a Very Small Table Called?

A very small table is usually called an accent table. Many times these tables are also called drink stand tables or drink side tables, that fit into tight or small spaces.

What Do You Put on an Accent Table?

A drink or accent table’s main purpose is to keep a beverage, a small plate or bowl of food or even a book in arm’s reach when you are sitting down reading, watching TV or entertaining.

A drink table pushed under a sofa to keep a beverage close to you when sitting in a living room.

Some drink tables like the one I just added to my living room are designed in a “C”shape. This design allows the bottom to go under the seating which places the top of the table to go along the top edge of the seating, keeping your beverage or book right where you can easily reach it while saving on precious floor space.

duke round metal accent table

Since drink stand tables are small and some very narrow, they can fit in a tight space where a normal size end or side table wouldn’t fit. These little tables are light weight and easy to move wherever you need them. I also plan to use it when relaxing and reading out on my deck in the summer months.

A Duke Round Accent table next to. white sofa with a light blue pillow on it.

Use one of these very handy tables for your morning cup of coffee or happy-hour cocktail, or place it bedside for your nighttime essentials.

A corner in a living room with a sofa and small accent table to hold a drink.

Adding a small decorative accent table may be the last piece of living room furniture you think of adding to a room. It may be small in size, but it is big on function.

It a small table that fits into tight or small spaces.

Take a look around your living or family room to see if there is a spot you enjoy sitting that would be made even better by having a small drink table right next to it.

A corner in a living room with a sofa and small accent table to hold a drink.

Where to Buy Accent or Drink Tables

There are many styles of drink or small accent tables to consider using in your living space from brass to hammered metal, stained and painted wood. I rounded up a few that range in price starting at $50.

graphic showing 9 metal drink tables. Copy says Small drink and accent tables

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  1. The little table you bought is very versatile and looks good as well. Thanks for showing how it functions!

  2. I love this idea! My family uses an old fold up tv tray. I have been thinking about getting this cute side table. I love the look and I also love my tea and need a place to set my favorite cup!

  3. Stephanie R says:

    Cute tables. I made 3-sided wood trivets/coasters (for lack of a better name) for the arms of each of my chairs in my living room. Now my mom doesn’t spill her coffee almost every time she visits because she insists on balancing her cup on the arm. I just measured the width of the chair arm, cut 3 pieces of 1″ thick wood a quarter inch wider than the arm in order to glue felt on the inside and still fit (my chairs are leather), and screwed the pieces together and stained. Easy peasy.
    Question – did you address (and I missed it) the reason why you painted out your faux paneling in your living room? I’m personally liking the lighter and brighter look again.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Stephanie –

      What a creative solution to where to place a drink on the arms of seating. Very clever. I did post about why I painted over the paneling. I liked the darker color the paneling added to the room, but over time I found I just feel better in a room with white walls. :-). I grew up in a house that was light and bright with white walls and those early years made an impression for what feels best.

  4. Using my PB rewards, I got two stools for mine and my husband’s recliners. This was a few years ago when we build our home. We still use them today.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Nancy – Those stools were a great idea and a good investment since you are still using them today, especially since PB furniture is expensive.

  5. I totally agree with you on a ‘drinks’ table. I’ve had one for years, from Home Goods. It holds my water glass, tv remotes, wine glass, and a few other necessities ….. right by the couch…..love how you can move them around easily and they don’t take up a lot of space……your email is part of my morning routine……with coffee of course….

  6. Barely related to today’s post ….. you recently featured a tall plaid ceramic cup with a lid that I assume you use for your tea. Would you mind sharing where you found it? I have great difficulty keeping my tea warm and would love something with a lid!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Barb – The plaid ceramic travel mug that I showed in my recent post I bought at Walmart a few years ago. You may not be able to find one exactly like it, but ceramic travel mugs with lids and banding around the middle so your hands don’t get hot are sold at other stores like Target in the Houseware aisles. You can even get handmade ones on Etsy.

      I have a few of these travel mugs. If you would like to see a selection of them, check out this link: https://amzn.to/3xLHdic

  7. Nan, Odessa, DE says:

    Informative post.

    Please tell us about the rug under your table.
    I want to purchase this type of rug.
    Is it for summer only?
    Which type of these runs are the best?
    Softer, easier to clean?
    Is there one I could use without a pad?

    Appreciate your response!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Nan – The rug in my living room is a seagrass rug in a basketweave. It comes in many sizes and color bindings. Mine is a 9 x 12. Seagrass is the strongest fiber of all the natural rugs like sisal and jute. I have had it for 10 years. I use it all year long as I like the casual style of it all year. It is very easy to clean. When something gets spilled on it, I wipe it up with a wet rag with dish detergent. It comes right up. I vacuum it with a regular vacuum.

      It is not soft, jute is the softest of the natural rugs, but they smell like burlap for a long time. They are also thinner and tend to bunch up, they are easier to trip over. I like seagrass as it stays in place and is a thicker rug. It smells like grass when you first get it but the smell goes away quickly. It has a lining under it, but no pad. You could use one though. My sister has two rooms decorated with seagrass rugs. You can see them in this post: https://bit.ly/3IK3QtU You can see my rug here: https://bit.ly/3keg2JK

    2. Nan, Odessa, DE says:

      Thanks for sharing.
      You gave me so much info, examples.
      Going to measure and get this ordered.