10 of the best bedside tables for small spaces

When we were decorating the bedroom recently I asked my Instagram friends for suggestions for bedside tables for small spaces. The result was resounding – “oh bedside tables are so tricky…” and “good bedside tables are so hard to find”. And it’s true, of all the furniture items I’ve tried to source, bedside tables are probably among the hardest.

A quick survey of what’s available indicates that as a category of furniture they are sometimes overlooked. Need a coffee table or a side table? Take your pick from literally hundreds of great options. When it comes to bedside tables though the range of options is surprisingly much more limited.


As well as design, practicality is also a key consideration so you’ll need to consider how you will use your bedside table and what items you might need it to store. At the very least they probably need to provide somewhere to rest your phone and a charging cable overnight, plus a book or two and maybe a glass of water or a pair of glasses. If you don’t have wall lighting they may also need to accommodate a lamp. An extra shelf is always useful and a drawer or cupboard space is a bonus, but of course they need to look good too.

Then there is the issue of size and height. Not everyone has the luxury of a generously proportioned bedroom, and even if the main master bedroom is a decent size there are often children’s bedrooms or guest rooms to consider – rooms where smaller pieces are sometimes needed.

Paired either side of the headboard bedside tables are often one of the key focal points in a bedroom, so you may want to opt for something that will be a statement piece. Alternatively you might prefer a more minimalist and understated look.

Minimalist bedroom with bedside table

How tall should bedside tables be?

You’ll need to consider the height in relation to both the height of the bed and the size of the room. If you have a high bed you may need a higher bedside table, but generally speaking a low bedside table will work best in a small space. Low furniture can help to create an increased feeling of space and height within a room, making it feel bigger.


bedside table ideas for small spaces

A chest of drawers can feel too ‘heavy’ and bulky in a small room, so you may decide to go for a simple side table instead. A stool can also work well. Ideally you want something fairly compact that won’t overpower other pieces or look out of proportion in a small space. Slim legs for example will make a design feel visually lighter.

For a flexible storage option, try a rolling cart table on wheels. It can act as a bedside table at night and then be moved elsewhere when not in use.

Scroll on for our edit of some of the best options, including narrow and slim bedside tables that offer style as well as function.

Oly stool by Nooma.png

best bedside tables for small spaces

1. Oly stool – noo.ma

Available in black, blue or beige, the playful shape of noo.ma’s Oly stool will instantly brighten up any room.

SHOP NOWOly stool from noo.ma.png

2. Marble topped side table

A simple, minimalist design with black metal legs.

SHOP NOWMarble topped side table H&M.jpg

3. Hide side table

Karoline Fesser’s design for Hem is all about the open/close and the space in between. From one side the object acts as a solid voluminous body, but turn it around and it opens up to reveal storage space.

SHOP NOWHem-Hide-side-table.jpg

4. By Lassen Frame side table

This narrow bedside table from By Lassen unites functionality and aesthetics with its clean lines and monochrome styling.

SHOP NOWBy Lassen Frame side table.jpg5. Anyday rush bedside table

Compact and functional, this design from the Anyday range at John Lewis has a handy drawer for all your bedside essentials.

SHOP NOWRush bedside table Anyday John Lewis.jpg

6. Insert side table

A sturdy yet sculptural design made from solid ash with a top that appears to almost ‘float’. Its compact proportions make it suitable for rooms of all sizes.

Insert side table Ferm Living.jpg7. Util Basso trolley

This bar cart style trolley is made from powder coated steel with a tactile cork top. The bottom bucket is perfect for storing anything from bedtime reads to charging cables.

SHOP NOW8. Tu bedside table

A practical and lightweight design with a simple form and a clean look.

SHOP NOWnooma bedside table 4.png9. Walton bedside table

Inspired by mid-century style pieces at White City House, the Walton oak bedside table has a curved profile, slim legs and dovetail drawers with soft close runners. Brass detailing elevates the design.

SHOP NOWWalton bedside table Soho Home.jpg

10. Kartell Componbili Storage Unit

Anna Castelli Ferrieri’s cylindrical storage units are a classic of 20th century design. The sliding doors open to reveal generous storage space, helping to keep smaller rooms clutter free.

SHOP NOWKartell componibili-mat-storage-unit-white-small-.jpg

Should a bedside table be higher or lower than the bed?

The ideal height for a bedside table is roughly the same level as the top of your mattress. It can be awkward to reach items on tables that are too low, while a nightstand that is too tall can make your space feel crowded.

Aim for the surface of the table to be within an inch or two of the top of your bed. This creates a seamless look that won’t obstruct your floor area. An exception is if you have a very tall or pillowtop mattress – then a slightly shorter bedside table placed several inches lower may work best.

What can I use if I don’t have space for a bedside table?

If space is really tight, you could make use of your vertical wall space by fitting a floating shelf instead. Look for one that mounts securely and is sized to hold a book and a glass of water at minimum. Ideally you want one with a lip or rail so that you don’t accidentally knock items off while you’re trying to access them in the dark.

With a little creative thinking, it’s possible to carve out usable surface space in even the tiniest of bedrooms.

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