Men–what is your measure of a “great” coffee table? Be honest! Answer: It is the one that you can comfortably put your feet on. True or not true?!

Women are commonly aghast by this male behavior. Women judge a coffee table by how it looks or visually relates to a room’s furniture.

This less than scientific study has a number of important implications for furniture designers and manufacturers. Men love materials like wood and leather. Glass is too delicate and, with the exception of distressed or mosaic stone tabletops, stone is often considered too hard and clean.

It almost goes without saying that men want their coffee tables to be somewhat lower than the chair or sofa they are sitting on. Women’s standard is typically the ease with which one can place and reach a wine glass as the their measure for the right height of a coffee table. This tends to place the height for their perfect coffee table above the men’s.

Women tend to choose coffee tables with more delicate materials such as glass tops and metal construction so that the table does not overpower the furniture, rugs and artwork.

Is there a compromise here? I am afraid not. It is hard to find an in-between height that works and it is even harder to negotiate materials. Years of observations lead me to this conclusion: Decisions come down to the use of the space. In more casual settings such as family rooms, libraries and home theaters, for example one tends to find male coffee tables. Female tables can generally be found in formal spaces like living rooms.

 

 

Take a look at your coffee tables and tell us about your and your friends’ coffee tables. Post your comments and finds  for the “perfect male or female coffee table” to SabinesHome.com