Coffee Table Book Dimensions: What’s The Best Size?

The image of a beautifully furnished living room with a stack of books carefully positioned on the coffee table provides a warm and inviting picture. 

Relaxing sofa area with coffee table and hot drink in modern home interior, Coffee Table Book Dimensions: What's The Best Size?

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Would you like to recreate this image for your own home?

Coffee table books create a focal point in your decor, inviting conversation and relaxation. Let’s discuss the best book sizes and options for your home.

Coffee Table Book Dimensions

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A wooden coffee table with a pile of books, black candle votive, mercury glass box and modern glass vase with white flowers bouquet

Coffee table books are available in the following standard sizes:

  • 8″ x 8″ – this square book size is fun to flip through and place at the top of a larger stack.
  • 8.5″ x 11″ – a standard portrait-sized book.
  • 11″ x 8.5″ – landscape orientation, which is great for images that are primarily landscape photos.
  • 11″ x 11″ – a large, sturdy size to anchor a stack of books. 

Book Sizes & Subjects

Larger books are the most popular choices as coffee table books. They are best for catching interest and sparking the conversation they are designed to elicit.

When choosing books, consider the size, colors of your existing decor, and any book themes you might like to collect. Let’s look at a few examples of popular coffee table books and explore how best to incorporate them into your decor.


This small coffee table book measures 7.38″ x 7.25″ and would make the perfect book for the top of a stack. Click here to find this book on Amazon.

Book of flowers

This book has a colorful cover and measures 8.5″ x 11″. It adds a touch of romance and a pop of color for a feminine style. Click here to find this book on Amazon.


Landscape orientation and a cool ocean vibe make this book fitting for a seaside cottage or beach home. It measures 13.38″ x 10.38″. Click here to find this book on Amazon.


This large book measures 10″ x 11.51″, creating the perfect base for your book stack. Click here to find this book on Amazon.


Here’s another oversized book to consider for your book stack. It measures 11.24″ x 14.25″. Click here to see this book on Amazon.

What is the point of a coffee table book?

Coffee table books are more than just pretty decorations.

They’re meant for spots in your home where you hang out and entertain, sparking conversations or giving your guests something fun to flip through.

These books are timeless, fit into any decor style, and cover just about any topic you’re into—art, fashion, wildlife, you name it.

You can also get creative with how you use them around the house.

Throw a stack on your guestroom bedside table with a candle on top for a cozy vibe, or for the really adventurous or those with a large book collection, coffee table books can be stacked and used as tables or shelves. 

Books on a coffee table and stacked on the floor

Where do coffee table books go?

What if you don’t have a coffee table or don’t want to place your books there? You can still create a warm, inviting look without the traditional placement of books on a coffee table.

Here are a few other places you can create a display with coffee table books:

  • An entryway table
  • Dining room buffet
  • Kitchen island
  • Guest room nightstand
  • Home office desk
  • Family room bookshelves
Books on coffee table

For help in finding the perfect coffee table to stack your books atop, check out our post, 15 70’s Style Coffee Tables That Will Give Your Living Room a Retro Touch.

How many books should be on a coffee table?

Odd-numbered stacks are the most aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Three is a great number to start with.

Place the largest book at the base and add another few books to your stack. Your stack should look planned and tidy instead of a cluttered array. 

Books on a coffee table in a living room

How to style coffee table books

Coffee table books can be stacked alone or used as a pedestal to showcase other items. Consider a book placed on a shelf to act as a riser for a vase or inside a rimmed tray to elevate a bowl or decorative box above the tray’s rim. 

Think about the colors of your book stack. You want the colors to compliment each other and your room’s decor. You can remove the book jacket and use just the bare book cover if it matches better. 

For a round coffee table, visualize your space as a triangle. Stack your books in one corner, a floral arrangement in the second, and a tray or candle in the third. This arrangement creates balance in your display. 

Bigger or square tables are best divided into quadrants. Keep your display simple. Four neat stacks of books create a clean, uncluttered display.

Lastly, add some layers and details to your book stacks. Create visual interest and height by adding accessories to your books. Place a tray, candle, vase, or bowl on top of the book stack. 

Create Your Inviting Space

With a few interesting book stacks, you can transform your living area into an inviting space that sparks conversation with guests or create a quiet haven for curling up with an interesting book.

Coffee table books are both functional and create backdrops for displaying other decor in your rooms.

Think outside the box or off the coffee table when placing your coffee table books. Consider other spaces in your home as options for displaying books. 

Choose heavy, large books as the anchor for your book stack, then add a few smaller books to complete the look. Use the colors of your books as accents to pull together your decor.

Collections or themes are wonderful conversation starters and can help you choose the books to display. Coffee table books can complement any decorating style or theme, from traditional to contemporary.

If you are looking for other inspiration to decorate your living area, check out our post, 15 Funky Living Room Ideas You Should See.

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