Stories for When the Dust Clears


  • May 16, 2019
  • Tips
  • By: Ben Hitch

Whether or not your coffee table has ever seen a cup of coffee on it, it is a staple to the living room environment as it provides ample space for charcuterie plates, “I’m a grownup” decor and a few coasters that probably do a better job occupying the table than providing protection from moisture. The coffee table is four pegs of versatility and unlike any other piece of furniture in your home, a book was created, dedicated to and named after the low-lying structure.

A coffee table book at its essence is an oversized picture book with a few words to guide you through the pages. It’s a piece meant to evoke conversation and provide substance while others are talking or while Jim is finishing up your cocktail. All too often they tend to collect more dust than pages turned, but whether you bought the book or it was given to you as a gift, perfectly placed at an acute angle on your table it will be noticed by everyone. This, of course, begs the question to the story you want to paint for your friends, guests and newbies as their eyes parade around your living space and ultimately fall upon the book just beyond their kitchenette crafted cocktail or steaming hot bowl of queso dip.

Architecture is an easy answer to which subject should cover the corner of the table. There is something for everyone and generally, it leads to a sense of desire and dreamed ambition to walk through the door of the featured designs. And while readers are quickly running off to Never Never Land, fuel their lust with Hide and Seek. The pages are filled with pictured adventure, impeccable design and desolate locations might even lead viewers to read a word or two. If you’re not running numbers in your head to how you can craft your own getaway, you’ll be hoping to find of these bungalows on Airbnb. An alternative or companion – Wood.

Hide and Seek / $60

Wood / $ 20

Where style guides your direction, the coffee table book you choose will ultimately lead readers towards a depiction of your character. It doesn’t matter if rockin a trusty pair of Airwalks over a crispy pair of Off Whites or your custom Parlee is in the garage, while you’re pedaling around a rust bucket, bikes and shoes are real cool. Sneaker Freaker : Ultimate Sneaker Book with its gold cover highlights rare finds, custom colabs and truly is the ultimate sneaker book for anyone that starts judgment at the concrete and works their way up. And Velo-2nd Gear: Bicycle Culture and Style takes you on a two-wheeled journey through the culture of the bike world and how your frame and cap define your lifestyle. Either would be a sure-fire asset to your table adding style and culture to the desolate surface.

Ultimate Sneaker Book / $41

VELO / $46

Curiosity is what keeps life interesting and with the advancements of technology that we use in daily life without thought, comes a book that simply, cuts them in half. Cut In half is the surgical version of Office Spacing your household items. You know what a vacuum does, you know the purpose of the phone but do you have any idea what’s under the plastic covering and keeping all the circuit boards firing? It’s a perfect hardcover to leave lying around for anyone to grab and question what they could and want to slice down the middle. Looking for more of the daily know how, check out Now I Know.

Cut In Half / $ 20

Now I Know / $13

It’s nearly impossible to present something these days without someone being offended. But art is art and it should evoke personal interpretation. Walking around the city streets you’re bound to see some paint on the walls or cornered fire hydrant, and when you plop a book dedicated to the craft and passion of street art or the obscurities of Dr. Seus’s mind, you better be ready to jump into conversation. The World Atlas of Street Art and Graffitti takes you and your couch partners on a journey around the world exploring the rising fame of a formerly shadowed art. And whether or not you like green eggs and ham, every artist has a dark side that is rarely publicized including the Secrets of the Deep. It’s not a story of Thing One and Thing Two that little Bobby and Sally Sue with run off to their bedrooms with, it’s one that you’re parents will read and question their decisions of sending you to bed with the imagination of the Doctor.

Street Art and Graffiti / $25

Secrets of the Deep / $ 

Whether you just want to add a book to your table because it seems right, sometimes the oddities of life are what’s needed to bring the room together. Crap Taxidermy is the WTF page-turner for any aged individual that finds themselves sitting at your table looking for something to pass the time. You can’t help but feel bad for the animals (even though they have long passed) as their bodies are manipulated into toddler oriented perceptions. Maybe you’ve been to Cabellas’ zoo of taxidermy – if you haven’t, schedule a trip over the weekend – where the animals seem to be living and stuck in time. This book presents questions of why, how and sheer astonishment of the wrongdoings. And, if you have some moral issues with animals on display, Hair provokes the same questions from a more similar species.

Crap Taxidermy / $10

HAIR / $74

Just like a good cocktail, one is never enough and this applies to your soon to be coveted coffee book collection. You should start with at least two, that has some sort of correlation to each other. And you shouldn’t have a hard time finding books of relevance as the coffee table book by nature is curated to stand the test of time, never truly outdating itself. If it’s not a gift, pick something you’re interested in, something that sparks your curiosity or tells your story of ambitions and character. It could be a book that never leaves the table and is only moved as the Swiffer brushes by, but every now and then it will fall into someone’s lap, so make sure it’s filled with something enticing.


Leaning towards street art, check out Exit Through the Gift Shop

Stack them from largest to smallest… with a valet tray topping the pedestal

Remember your selection potential defines who you are

If you like to set the tone, yearbooks found at the thrift store are a solid table read