Choosing the perfect table for your dining room can be quite challenging. There are dining tables of all sizes, shapes, materials, and price ranges to meet the needs of every buyer. The trick is to find a single table that meets all of your needs before you buy. The guide below will help you make the right choice for your home.
The shape of the dining table is a very important part of the choice you make. It will determine how well the table fits into the available space and how well it works for your purpose. Everyone uses their dining room table to eat meals, but every setting is different. You may want a round table that encourages conversation between all of your family members. This configuration puts every family member an equal distance apart. If you prefer something that accommodates larger groups of guests in any sized dining area, a rectangular shape may be the best choice.
Dining tables come in a variety of shapes including:
- Rectangular – Rectangular tables are the most popular of all the shapes. The style and materials used in the table will determine whether it is appropriate for a formal dining room or a casual family setting.
- Round – Round tables offer the greatest versatility. They fit in oddly shaped or small areas and provide maximum seating. There are no legs to get in the way so you can add more chairs than with other shaped tables.
- Oval – Some people look at an oval table as a hybrid between a round and a rectangular table. If you prefer the softness of a table without corners, but need more dining space, an oval table may be the right choice for you.
- Square – Square tables tend to have a more modern appearance, especially those made from contemporary materials like metal and glass. These are a good choice for small dining areas. Push it into a corner to keep it out of the way when the extra space is needed.
- Extendable – An extendable table changes size and sometimes shape with the addition of one or more leaves. If you go back and forth between dining for just a few and having dinner parties for multiple guests, an extendable table gives you the versatility you need.
The style of the table is what determines how well it fits in with the rest of your décor. The available styles include:
- Traditional/Classic – A good way to spot a traditional table is that it looks like it could just as easily have been made in the past as today. Classic styling often includes turned legs, carvings, and dark wood finishes.
- Country/Rustic/Shabby Chic – The characteristic that sets these tables apart is the distressed finish. Country is somewhat distressed, rustic more so, with shabby chic being the most worn of all.
- Contemporary/Modern – Sharp lines, smooth, sleek finishes, and metal with glass construction are some features that define contemporary dining room tables. You can also expect to see some of the same features in all-wood tables.
- Transitional – Transitional furniture refers to the combination of traditional with modern, resulting in a table that combines classic materials with sleek, modern lines. The result is a dining room table that has a casual appearance.
- Retro – If you enjoy living in the past, a retro table and chairs are the perfect addition to give your dining room a look straight from a 1950’s diner.
The materials that dining room tables are made from determine the appearance, durability, quality, and the cost. Wood, metal, glass, plastic, melamine, particle board, and composite materials are some of the materials used today. Of these, wood remains the most popular choice. One difference is that more buyers are looking for furniture made from locally sourced, sustainable sources. People like the idea that the dining room tables they purchase are environmentally friendly.
Dining tables come in a wide range of sizes. You should always measure your dining space before you buy. The tables you look at when you visit a showroom or shop may seem a lot larger once you get them home.
Measure the entire amount of space that you have to accommodate the table and the seats. Each chair should have a minimum of one yard from the table edge to the wall to allow room for diners to get in and out.
When you invest in a new dining room table, you want one that will be as much a joy to look at as it is to use. You may choose to have everything in the room made from the same materials and finishes, or create a mismatched dining room that complements your style. To get the look you’re after, start with the right dining table and go from there.