How to select the perfect dining table for your home

Published by Rachit on

Whether you have found a formal rectangular dining room, or you are carving some transitional space between an open concept kitchen and a family room, it is important to find the perfect dining room to convey the space together. The dining table is very often the focal point of the room where you gather with your family and friends, so not only do you want to make sure that it is a comfortable fit for space, you want it to fit your aesthetic and enhance Design your home. There are so many shapes and sizes to choose from, so let’s explore the steps to choosing the right dining table to help you narrow down which is right for you.

dining room with dining table

Consider your Dining needs and requirements:

In many homes, a dining table is a gathering place – the place where we literally and figuratively come together during busy days, celebrations, hosting, and more. Carefully choosing the step at which it will all go is at the top of your list.

Assess Space:

Your first step in searching for the perfect dining table is to consider the room it will go into. For a formal dining room that you use to host dinner parties and during the holidays, or for homework, craft, and most food, it will be in your everyday setting. For everyday use choose a table which is low maintenance but the high style may be your best bet. Make sure that whatever you decide, you are leaving enough room around the table to move around comfortably and get out of the seats.

Material Selection:

When choosing which material for you, how and when it is used is important again. Wooden tables provide warmth and comfort for daily use and do not easily show regular wear and fingerprints. Similarly, concrete, bamboo, and marble are rigid on style without skimp.

If you are fine with something more high-maintenance that will be used less frequently, then modern-day materials like glass and MDF may be for you.

Choose Your Style:

After knowing the size and material you are looking for, this can be the most difficult part. Obviously, your personal style preferences – eclectic, modern, traditional – will help inform the style of the table as well. One of the most important considerations is how and where you will use your table?

If your table is an extension of your kitchen or family room, chances are you will use it more often, such as food preparation, homework, or crafts. You want something more casual in style with a durable surface that does not damage easily.

However, if you are looking for a table for your formal dining room and you really only use it for special occasions, then you have the freedom to choose a more ornate table with a delicate finish.

Do you often entertain only once or twice a year? If it is the latter, consider a table with an extension. You can create a comfortable place for your family to enjoy at the end of the week which spreads easily when the company arrives.

Paired with the right chairs, your dining table should be a reflection of your lifestyle.

Choosing the right dining table shape:

The shape of the table is equally important in creating a beautiful and comfortable space.

Rectangular dining table:

Arguably the most common shape (because most dining rooms are rectangular), rectangular dining tables are great because they can seat a large number of guests for mass entertaining. Their linear shape also allows for enough room to walk around the table. Ideally, rectangular tables should be from 36 “to 42” to ensure adequate space for location settings on either side of the table. Keep in mind that this shape table, especially once you factor in the chairs, maybe too large for tight spaces, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make it work. Just use long benches instead of chairs, which allows you to push them under the table when not in use to create more space.

rectangular dining table

Rectangular Dining Table

Square dining table:

Got a square-shaped dining room? Then you need a square-shaped table. Why? Because they just look right together. Also, this size dining table works great if you are sitting in a group of only four or fewer people. If you will be more guests at some point, select the table that you can expand with the extension. Also, note that you can always add two or more square tables to create more space. One of the great benefits of this figure table is the intimacy it provides, keeping everyone in the table at the close, conversational distances to each other.

Square dining table

Square Dining Table

Round dining table:

Looking for the most versatility available in the dining table? Look no further than round one. Like square tables, round dining room tables are great for small gatherings and look good in any size room. Also, round tables have two unique traits: they allow everyone to look at the table and interact with everyone easily, and they feel casual because the table has no head. This table is not perfect for big groups unless you have a big round table – and keep in mind that big round tables can make persons at the table feel far away from each other. The good news is that smaller round tables come in models that can be extended with detail.

Round Dining Table

Oval dining table:

Oval dining tables especially excel at one thing: they generate unique visual interest. While they have similarities to rectangular dining tables in many aspects, their rounded corners create the illusion that they occupy less space. The curves also help in combating angular lines over other design elements within the room. Like a round table, oval tables create intimacy and flexibility. When you want to seat multiple people at once in a small size room, the best bet is to use them.

oval dining table

Oval Dining Table

Choosing the Right Dining Table Size

How many people can fit comfortably on a table also depends on the size. Once there is a reference to help you determine what size dining table you need.

Measurement Guideline:

This is very important for a table and chairs that are comfortable and fit the scale of the room. You do not want a table that is too large or too small. If you follow this basic measurement guideline, you will find a table size just below your dining room.

  • Give the space of 24” between the table and the wall so that people can effortlessly sit and get up from the table
  • Give the space of 38” between the table and the wall if people are going to pass behind the table
  • Design for 24″ for each spot to be set up so that people can easily eat without hitting the elbow.
  • The maximum width of a table should be 48” – no more space and your guests cannot pass things in the table and the conversation becomes tense.
  • The least possible width of a table should be 36” – any lesser width and you will have trouble serving the sections in the middle of the table.
  • If space allows, keep your size table based on the number of people you usually have for dinner then add two. This should accommodate a normal number of guests.

For all types of dining tables of 4 feet (48 inches) can comfortably seat 4 people, similarly, the size of 5-6 feet (60-72 inches) will be comfortable for 6 people. Only oval and rectangular tables over 8 feet in size are practical.

Extension Tables:

You may not need a large table right now, but if your family is growing and you sometimes like to break bread with a large crowd, an expansion table with a self-storing leaf is the answer. The only word of caution here is that when there is a detailed leaf on the table, you measure – that way you know it still fits in your dining room.

Table-to-wall clearance:

When deciding the dimensions and size of your table, it is important to measure the wall space from the table. You want to leave enough room to easily eat in and out of your seat. The rule of thumb is to leave 42-48 inches between the table and the walls. The same rule applies if you have a buffet or hutch in the dining room, but instead of measuring from the wall, you want to measure from the front edge of the buffet to the dining room table.

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Like sitting at the dining table, shopping at the dining table is an intimate experience. Think about some of your best eating experiences and see if that thing wants to appear in your own dining space – for example, a round table to enable all-table conversation or an expandable table that lets you allow a subscription-to-merger ethos. Creating the same satisfaction with your home’s dining table will give you hope for every meal that happens on it.

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Civil Engineer


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