It started with coffee tables. I had been working on a design project for a friend of mine, who was adamant that there would be no coffee table in her living room. Instead, she wanted a low ottoman.
'But where would you put your coffee?' I asked.
'Like I drink coffee at a coffee table anyway,' she said.
She had a point. Whenever I came over her house, we ended up gravitating towards the kitchen, which had a little breakfast nook perfect for sitting and, well, catching up. The living room was more of a glorified pass-through, a place that never saw guests for more than ten minutes. Why clutter it up with a coffee table, when you could have a versatile ottoman, which would be used as seating? (And if she did need it as a surface for that infrequent cup of coffee, she could just top it with a tray.)
A few weeks later, I happened to notice that coffee tables are a rarity in my friends' apartments. Instead, there are small side tables, cocktail tables or trunks that multitasked as storage. This could be more indicative of the compromises one makes when faced with limited square footage. But I've also noticed that many furniture stores have limited options for coffee tables in general -- so maybe we're onto something.
In light of the possible extinction of the coffee table, I've rounded up a few other home items that seem to be on their way out. Whether it's for space reasons (again, coffee table) or for changing habits, they're becoming rarer and rarer these days. So flip through the slideshow and let us know if you agree...or disagree.
They used to complete the living room, now the ottoman (or, side tables) are the more favored option. Flickr photo by Lily_Nymph
It's either a three-seat sofa, or a side chair. No in-betweens. Flickr photo by belle patine
We love them because they give us options (buffet, storage or a bar), but it's harder to find these pieces in stores. Flickr photo by Dee Adams
But if you don't have nightstands, where are you putting your books? Flickr photo by roleATL
Even in guest rooms, the queen-sized bed reigns supreme. Flickr photo by gronberg
In the age of smartphones, why bother with another bill? Flickr photo by Images Money
During the holidays, you'll find a few choices. But the rest of the year? Good luck. When it comes to dining room tables, the average home prefers them bare. Flickr photo by Dinner Series