The dining room is a central and meaningful part of your home. It’s where you and your family gather every day to connect with one another over a shared meal. It’s also the place where you entertain close friends and extended family members, whether for holidays and other special occasions or just to enjoy company and good food.
With the dining table holding such significance, it’s important to choose one that fits your personal style and matches your home’s décor, while also helping to foster connection and create the mood you want others to experience when dining with you.
Follow the suggestions in our dining table buying guide below and you’ll choose a dining table that’s the perfect combination of functional and stylish.
Choosing the Right Shape
You’ll first want to choose the right dining table shape, not only based on how it looks, but also for the layout of your space. A table that matches the shape of your room will enhance balance and create harmony.
The most common dining table shapes include:
- Rectangular – The most traditional dining table shape, rectangular tables fit well in long, narrow spaces. This is also a good shape to use when you have an open-plan space that you want to create separate functional areas in, such as a dining area and a family room.
- Square – This shape is ideal for smaller rooms, especially square rooms, as it enhances an intimate setting.
- Round – A cozy, intimate style, a round shape is an excellent choice for a smaller room where you need a good space-saving option. Since it doesn’t have any corners, a round dining table is also ideal for those with small children who can get hurt on the pointy corners on a square or rectangular table.
- Oval – This shape is a more space-efficient alternative to a rectangular table.
In addition to space, also consider the primary use for your table when choosing a shape. A round or square dining table helps to create the desired ambience for candlelit meals or intimate gatherings. A long, rectangular table, on the other hand, is perfect for hosting large dinner parties or seating families of more than four people.
Also think about the most common ways you use your table outside of eating. Do you use it as an office and need room for your laptop and paperwork when checking emails, paying bills or performing other tasks? Do your children use the table to do their homework? Do you and your kids use the table as a craft area for art and other creative projects? Your answers to these questions will be important factors in determining the amount of space your table needs to have.
Choosing the Right Material
After deciding on the best table shape for your home and lifestyle, you’ll need to then choose the right material. You’ll want to select a material that blends well with your existing dining room décor and furniture pieces to create a harmonious setting and relaxed atmosphere.
Keep in mind that there’s no “right” or “wrong” choice and allow yourself the fun and freedom to experiment with materials. Having an open mind will enable you to create a space that displays your personality and style and brings your vision to life.
Some of the most common dining table material choices include:
- Glass – A glass dining table is the epitome of modern and elegant. This material is best suited for small rooms or apartments where you want to give the space an open feel.
- Wood – A timeless option, a wood dining table creates a warm and welcoming look and feel. This is a versatile material, as it beautifully complements a variety of décor styles and is available in numerous colors and finishes.
- Stone – Stone tables, such as granite and marble, are luxurious, natural options that are perfect for modern style homes. Due to the heaviness of stone, it’s best suited for smaller tables.
- Metal – Metal is a highly durable option and works well with an industrial or contemporary style room.
Before shopping for your new dining table, measure your space and keep the above guidelines in mind. You’ll find that when you take the time choose a table that meets your various practical, social and style needs, gathering at the table will be a truly rewarding experience.