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Who invented the coffee table?

1 Answer
Who invented the coffee table?
No one knows for sure who invented the coffee table. The earliest examples of the occasional table can be traced back to Victorian-era Britain. At that time, makers like William Watt and Collinson and Lock were producing coffee tables in large quantities.

Notably, F. Stuart Foote, the designer behind the American Imperial Furniture Company, claimed to have invented the coffee table in the early 20th century. He stated that he did so by cutting down the legs of a dining table. However, it's unlikely that Foote is the actual inventor of the coffee table, as books describing coffee tables existed in the UK a decade before his birth in 1872.

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1stDibs ExpertApril 12, 2024
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21st Century Scapin Collezioni Side Board Mat Lacquer MDF Wooden Inlay Glass Top
Located in Tezze sul Brenta, IT
This side board is a unique piece by Scapin Collezioni. In wood veneered MDF, it has an elegant mat finish for the structure and the legs, and an extra clear polished glass top. The ...

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables



French Antique Round Salon Coffee or Tea Table
Located in LA CIOTAT, FR
An elegant and very practical French antique salon table in rosewood veneer, dating from around the 1930s, and featuring a simple but effective marquetry decoration. The polished, ci...

20th Century French Louis XV Coffee and Cocktail Tables



Chinese Low Burl Top Kang Table, c. 1850
Located in Chicago, IL
During winter in the colder provinces of China, life revolved around the kang, a heated brick platform that household members would sit or recline upon. Placed on top of the kang, lo...

Antique Mid-19th Century Qing Coffee and Cocktail Tables


Elm, Burl

Restored Art Deco Small Table, by J. Hoffmann, Wiener Werkstätte, Czech, 1910s
Located in Horomerice, CZ
Designed by Josef Maria Hoffman, renowed Austrian architect and industrial engineer. Made by Wiener Werkstätte Arts and crafts workshops, founded by Josef Hoffmann, Koloman Moser an...

Vintage 1910s Czech Art Deco Coffee and Cocktail Tables


Wood, Lacquer, Glass, Beech, Walnut

Modular Rattan Tables by Vivai Del Sud. Italy, 1970s
Located in SAINT-OUEN, FR
Mid-Century Modern Hollywood Regency Set of 6 coffee, cocktail, low, side end tables in bamboo, rattan raffia, wicker by the manufacture Vivai del Sud italian design. Original manufa...

Vintage 1970s Italian Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables


Bamboo, Wicker, Raffia, Rattan

Japanese Antique Low Table/Japanese paper pasting/1868s-1912s WabiSabi Primitive
Located in Iwate-gun Shizukuishi-cho, Iwate Prefecture
This is a low table using old wood and old Japanese paper. The top board is stacked with old Japanese paper on a pine tree and dyed with persimmon juice, ink, and black Urushi. Whi...

Antique Late 19th Century Japanese Meiji Coffee and Cocktail Tables


Wood, Pine

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