The dining room is a rather interesting space. To have enough space to dedicate an entire room to dining can feel luxurious in a wholesome way. Dining rooms are gathering spaces where we share meals with those we love. It is a place where connections are made and nourishment happens.
Essentially all activity centres around the dining table, making it the focal point of the room. The simplicity of this arrangement might make it seem like an easy space to furnish, but choosing the right dining table can actually be a bit tricky. Dining tables must fit the space effectively, and that’s including multiple chairs that need the space to slide in and out from beneath them. Therefore, there are some important considerations that must be made before investing in a new table. Follow this guide to choosing the best dining table for you and your family.
Dining tables can be deceiving in the amount of space they can take up. Keep in mind that you’ll want to leave almost a metre of space between the dining table and the surrounding walls for people to move in and out of their chairs. You may want to leave even more room if people will be passing behind the chairs to access the kitchen or other spots in the home.
To successfully measure the space before purchasing a table, take the dimensions of the room using measuring tape. There is also something to be said for the shape of the table itself and its compatibility with the shape of the dining room at large. Be sure to assess the spatial needs of your dining room so you can factor them into the choice.
We at homify recommend opting for a dining room table with a wooden surface. This kind of table is sturdy, durable, and classic. Wood is earthy and homey, which makes it the perfect surface for a table setting. Glass top tables can make unsettling clanking and scraping sounds as things move around the table. For a more modern look, you can always choose a table with a wooden top but different style legs.
Don’t shy away from the idea of pairing the table with chairs made of a different material like this one by Kreatives Wohnen Zimmermanns. Avoid upholstered chairs if you’re planning to host little ones at the table because spills do happen! You’ll save yourself a lot of stress if you choose materials that are stain resistant. Although classic wood tones are always acceptable, feel free to explore with neutrals and beyond when it comes to choosing the colour of your dining table and chairs.
Now that we’ve covered some of the basics, it’s time to decipher which type of table will best suit the shape of your dining room. Square rooms can be a bit tricky to furnish so it’s best to play to their strengths. A square table will work best here because it’ll allow your quests to sit equidistantly across from one another.
Just keep in mind that you don’t want to go too big with the square table because it can make reaching for dishes or decorations in the centre more difficult. If the room is large enough to accommodate them, a dining room table with side panels can be useful for when a larger dinner takes place.
Ideally, your room can accommodate a rectangular table. This table shape is especially useful for more narrow spaces. Imagine if the rectangular table in this dining alcove were swapped with a square table. It just wouldn’t fit! Rectangular tables make it easier to access things placed in the middle. This makes it great from a serving perspective. You can typically fit more people at a rectangular table than at other table styles.
The one downside of the rectangular table is that you can’t be close to everyone at one of these. Almost all of us have had the experience of sitting at a long rectangular table and therefore not being able to communicate with everyone there.
If you’re struggling with the space constraints of your dining room, we have a great solution for you. A round table can is the perfect addition to a small dining room or dining alcove. When you ditch the angular rigidity of other styles of dining tables you’ll find that you can actually fit more people at a round table.
There is something more communal about this rounded shape as well, which may even help to promote closer interaction between guests. Be sure not to go too big with the round dining table, though. It can become more difficult to access plates and dishes placed at the centre.
We’ve talked a lot about the dining room table itself at this point. Yet, no dining table could be complete without the right kinds of chairs. There are a few things to consider when choosing the chairs to accompany your dining table with regard to size and style. Remember that you do not necessarily have to purchase your table and chairs as a set. A more modern look can be to mix and match chairs to create a unique look. Going with benches at a rectangular table can help limit some of the awkward movement and wear and tear of moving chairs in and out as a person gets up and down from the table. Benches are also better for maximising space.
For more advice on creating a spectacular dining room, check out these 6 ideas to improve your dining room. Happy decorating!