Oak Storage Console Table

oak storage console table from cox and cox
oak storage console table from cox and cox

Wandering round a friend’s house the other day – she of the massive renovation and curved sofa revelations – I was shown the room that will be the spare room and home office for him. Now he doesn’t actually work from home so it’s more a sort of place to sit (probably more a sort of a meaningful way of hiding from the kids) and do the odd bit of catching up and admin and occasional burst of real work when there are deadlines at the Monday to Friday office.

It’s not a huge room and they are going to have a sofa bed – can we have a show of hands as to how many people think himself will be mostly lying on the sofabed doing admin on the laptop rather than at the actual desk? Yes thought so. Anyway, I showed him a room I thought would work, embracing the  – it’s a small, dark room embrace so that with darker paint philosophy. And he was down with that. But then he started looking at the rest of the details in the room.

“There’s no desk,” he said.

I pointed.

“But that’s a table,” he said.

Baffled face. Does it matter? When is a table not a desk? Is this a question of all desks are tables but not all tables are desks? Surely it’s about finding a surface that is large enough to do the work on and is propped up on legs tall enough to bring it to a height convenient for the chair?

But, it turns out, desks have storage. Places to hide all the crap at the end of the day so the desk top is clean and clear. I get that. I really do – although my old kitchen table, where I worked for eight years had drawers. And there is going to be a lot of storage and shelves behind the desk in this room. And also he won’t be doing more than a couple of hours at a time. And this table/desk needs a THIRD FUNCTION. Oh yes – it will also need to be a table that is a desk that is a dressing table for when the room has guests. So the laptop must disappear. Along with the pens and the paper and a mirror must appear, with a pretty tray for all the shizzle.

And then I found this. And it’s £550. It’s meant to be a console table -so many labels for an item that is a plank of wood on four legs. But it has a drawer and spaces to slide papers and a lap top in. And you could slide all the worky things in there and whip out the dressing tably things in the blink of an eye. Or you could leave it empty. And just, well, tably.

It’s 38cm deep, which is plenty for a laptop and since it’s 150cm wide there’s plenty of room for papers and phones and all that to the sides. And it’s 90 high, which is higher than a traditional table at 76cm but if you’re only doing occasional work  then you can use a stool which will tuck underneath and save on space. Or put a cushion on a chair.

If you’re trying to make a work space out of a small space, this might be the answer.

Kate Watson-Smyth

The author Kate Watson-Smyth

I’m a journalist who writes about interiors mainly for The Financial Times but I have also written regularly for The Independent and The Daily Mail. My house has been in Living Etc, HeartHome and featured in The Wall Street Journal & Corriere della Sera. I also run an interior styling consultancy Mad About Your House. Welcome to my Mad House.


  1. I like it but it would be too narrow for me. I like dining tables as desks because they can be used differently in the future and there’s always the possibility of using a cart with drawers to store office stuff. Some dining tables even have a drawer that can fit a laptop if that’s a concern. Ohh and wheels on the table also helps because sometimes we need to move them to a wall or corner to make space to open the sofa bed.

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