What Is A Console Table, Anyway?!

What Is A Console Table, Anyway?!

4th May 2022

Posted by Alice Ewens on 4th May 2022

Wondering "what is a console table?", what it's used for and whether one would be a good fit for your home? Check out this week's blog for an explanation and some ideas!

Console tables - much-touted by furniture shops and websites, but does it feel like something that belongs in your nan's home? Not really sure what it is? And if you do know, what are you meant to do with one? We've cracked open the history books to find the origins! Plus, we've got some gorg customer inspiration pics to show you how the perfect console table can be a great addition to your home.

First off, What Is A Console Table?

A console table is a slender, usually long table that sits against a wall. You can put them in hallways as a spot to dump your keys and wallets, maybe house the landline phone and internet router. They don't have to go in the hallway, though. You can put one anywhere in your home that could use a little extra surface space. You can use them as a decorative surface for photos and accessories, too.

The above example features our Starburst Silver Rectangular Modern Wall Mirror above Mike's stunning mirrored console.

Why Are They Called Console Tables?

It actually comes from the French word consolide - to strengthen - and is related to brackets used to support doorways. But we usually associate the word specifically with these thin little tables. Back in the 17th Century, console tables featured a flat slab surface (often of marble) supported on a scroll-shaped bracket (hence the link back to that French word and brackets). They originally only had 2 legs and were meant to lean against a wall. Nowadays, console tables come in all sorts of designs, shapes and sizes, usually with 4 legs, but generally still long, narrow and designed to sit against the wall.

What Is A Console Table Used For?

A Perfect Hallway Entrance Feature

A console can add some much-needed extra surface space for all your "bits" when you transition from outdoors to indoors. They can also make stunning little features to really show off your style and welcome others into your space. Something with glass and/or chrome will help bounce natural light around what can be a narrow space, but you can couple a wood console with a bright mirror and still circulate plenty of light!

Additional Surface Space In Any Part Of Your Home

glass and gold metal console table on a landing at top of stiars, beneath rectangular gold mirror
Donna S (customer review image)

Donna has placed one of our Leonardo glass and gold chrome console tables with the nested starburst legs at the top of her stairs on the landing. Coupled with that gorgeous gold framed mirror, this adds warmth and light to this area. it's also a great little display area for accessories.

Homewiththedarlings have added this gorgeous rustic-looking console table to their dining area, which provides some extra surface space that's been decorated in such a beautiful, inviting way. Love those storage baskets underneath!! That's our Imperia white high-gloss pillar table and 4 cappuccino beige Lorenzo chairs too.

Perfect For Extra Surface Space In Living Rooms

3 shelf console unit in white gloss with chrome supports. In corner of room, with lamp and accessories.
Elsa B - review image

A console table can also have in-built storage, like our Siena white high-gloss and chrome console shelf unit! All the space for all your beautiful pot plants, lamps, ornaments, photos... you name it.

large wall-mounted TV with alcoves either side that have grey and silver key design pattern wallpaper. matching glass and chrome console tables, each with glass and silver lamps, are in the alcoves.
Sallyann H - customer review photo

Here, Sallyann has added a pair of Leonardo glass and silver chrome console tables to the alcoves on either side of their TV. These might quite a grand impression with the matching lamps and geometric wall art that reflects the wallpaper patterns.

You can also create a sense of harmony and balance if you match your console to the other furniture in your room! Both Angela and Rachel, below, have chosen console tables from a wider set that really reflects their personal styles. Angela has gone for the Giovani Grey Glass and High Gloss Console Table to match the Giovani round dining table (with 4 Willow chairs) and square side table, all with the signature statement halo centre plinth. Rachel has paired her Leonardo glass and black metal console table with the Novara round dining table with black metal legs (and 4 grey faux-leather Corona chairs with tapered black legs).

modern living room featuring matching grey glass and high gloss furniture - console table, round dining table and square side table. All tables feature halo structural plinth leg. Pink rug on floor and pink accents to accessories.
Angela C - customer image
Modern flat / apartment with round glass dining table with black metal nested starburst legs and rectangular glass console table with legs that match dining table. Tall windows and blinds behind wth urban city view beyond.
Rachel C - customer review image

A Console Table Can Also Be A Space Saving Solution

At Furniturebox, we like to think outside the box on occasion (*groan* and we enjoy the occasional bad joke...). But, a console table can be more than a display shelf or extra surface space. You can use a console as a narrow desk, which could be a lifesaver if you need to work from home and don't have tons of space. Or, you could use it as a narrow dressing table! We've seen quite a few of our customers try it. Rebecca over at @rebeccas_loh_life has used her Regent Glass and Chrome Console Table as both desk and dressing table! We also offer some stunning velvet bench seats and stools if you were looking to recreate that dresser and seating idea.

Hark Back To The Console's Fancy History

Remember how we said the console table started off way back in the 17th century? Well back then most of them had marble tops. And, with marble-effect making a big comeback, you can grab yourself a very on-trend marble-effect console table right here from Furniturebox!

marble-effect console table with striking white tapered pillar legs beneath round gold framed wall mirror
Furniturebox Studio

And here's our Athens console table with striking pillar legs and a marble-effect top. Again, that's the Emma mirror above it.

How Are You Going To Style Yours?

image of mobile phone on white desk, displaying the Furniturebox UK instagram page

We love seeing how our customers style their Furniturebox products, so be sure to give us a follow on Insta and tag us in your product photos for a chance to get featured! We've also got lots of inspiration over on our Pinterest!