Dining Delights: How To Choose The Right Dining Table
Round, rectangle, or square? How big? Here’s how to find a dining table that works for your space.
THERE are so many shapes and sizes of dining tables. Which one is right for you? The look of your table is important, of course, but making sure it fits your space and gives enough seating is even more critical.
Your table needs to allow for the number of diners you want to seat comfortably and still leave enough room for to walk around it. The width of your table should be at least 90 centimetres wide so there is ample space for place settings as well as food. Typically, as the table length increases, so does the width of the table top.
Read on for sizes and shapes to consider when shopping for a dining room table.
Measure table-to-wall clearance
Measure the space around the room. To allow diners to sit down and get up easily from their seats, try to leave 100-120 centimetres between your table and the walls.
Measure table-to-furniture clearance
If there is furniture in the dining space, begin your measurement from the edge of the furniture instead of the wall.
A crazy way of measuring
To test out a table size in a room grab a bed sheet or two, place it where the table will go, and fold it into the shape of the table. This allows you to visualise the space it will take up. Then you can measure the wall/furniture-to-table clearance. If your table has leaves, include them in your calculations.
Don’t overcrowd your table
The table manufacturer should recommend the number of people that can comfortably be seated without touching elbows while eating.
Each person needs about 60 centimetres of eating space. Of course, if your table allows for it, you might be able to squeeze in another seat or two for those occasional larger gatherings.
Round tables are great for small spaces
They fit in tight spaces and have no sharp corners to bump into. You can usually fit more people around it because it has no corners. Pedestal tables are even better, as they offer more legroom.
Add transparent acrylic chairs to show off a beautiful table and make a small room feel more spacious.
Seating size for a round table
You can usually stick to this calculation to begin looking for round tables. Manufacturers may offer different recommendations, and you might be able to add more seating for a tighter fit. Also keep in mind that using a pedestal base allows more seating because it eliminates the legs that can get in the way of a chair.
90 centimetres with a pedestal base seats 4
120 centimetres with legs seats 4
150 centimetres with a pedestal base seats 6
150 centimetres with legs seats 4
180 centimetres with pedestal base or legs seats 8
210 centimetres with pedestal base or legs seats 9
Note: Large round tables can make it difficult to reach for food. Rectangular shapes seem to work better for seating very large crowds.
A rectangular table works well in a long, narrow room
It leaves more room for traffic flow. For most tables, as the table length increases the width increases as well.
Seating size for a rectangular table
These are the sizes suggested when looking for rectangular tables. Again, manufacturers may offer different recommendations, and you might be able to add more seating for a tighter fit.
120 centimetres long seats 4
150-180 centimetres long seats 6
210 centimetres long seats 8
240-300 centimetres long seats 10
300-335 centimetres seats 12
Lazy susan feature
If you choose a round table 150-180 centimetres in diameter, add the convenience of a centre lazy susan. Although the round table can be a space saver, the larger it gets the harder it becomes to reach the mashed potatoes.
Go big on the table and small on the seating
When looking to take up less room in a space, try a bench instead of chairs on all or one side of your table. Make sure you can push the bench under the table so you can stash it away when not in use.
If your room is square, a square table, like a round one, makes for a more intimate dining experience because everyone is an equal distance apart. Also it will look great mimicking the room shape around it.
Like the round table, the bigger a square table is, the harder it will be to reach for food. If you are looking to seat more than eight people comfortably, try out your table in person. You might be better off with a square table that comes with leaves that you can turn into a rectangular shape for a dinner party.