A dining table can be the heart of the home; a place to gather to eat, drink and play games with family and friends whether lively and loud or reserved and polite. (No prizes for guessing which of these my get-togethers resemble!).
Varying in size and shape, purchasing a dining table for these spaces can be quite an arduous decision which requires a lot of research and discussion, not to mention the fact that very rarely are dining tables an impulse buy simply due to the cost of purchasing one that is not what we call “fast furniture” (blog here).
Dining Table Buying Guide
Bearing this in mind, we have put together some ideas to help you choose the right table for you, to make sure that you spend your money wisely on a piece of furniture that will serve you well for years to come….
- For longevity, try to stay away from thick veneer and aim for real wood. Veneer will lift up over time and move away from the table, and a good ways of telling if the table is made of veneer is if visible seams can be seen. Real wood is always a better option, both for aesthetics and longevity.
- Measure your room well – this may seem obvious but you need to take into account if the table will be living in the kitchen, dining or living room; if it is going to be in the way of general everyday traffic and therefore needs to be pushed against a wall, or if it will be permanent and therefore needs enough room to be able to negotiate around. As a general rule, if you leave around 50 inches of space between the back of the chairs and the wall, you should be ok!
- Don’t discount outdoor materials – these can look rustic, be hardwearing as well as being fire and UV resistant. Maybe draw the line at a plastic picnic table though, unless your guests are really messy eaters!
- It’s not likely that you’ll be in a position to be updating your dining table as often as other easily interchangeable interior pieces in your home, so see it as a key piece and try to spend as much as you are able on it with the view that it is a long term investment.
- Do you have children? Lots of parties or events? Look at getting a glass protective top to give you even more life and usage out of it, which also saves you having to cover it with a tablecloth for protection.
- Don’t be constrained by chairs – why stick to 8 of the same matching chairs when there are so many opportunities to change it up. Use a combination of different chairs with a variety of backs, colours, materials and arms, or even use a bench or two which can be super practical if you need to push these away to create more space, or fit more little bottoms onto!
- Colour is a great way of injecting life into your living space, but bear in mind that trends change quickly. Use a classic colour such as red or green if you are sure you want colour, or just stick to a classic wood. Black however is a colour that never really goes out of fashion and will complement everything.
- How many people do you need to allow for? As a rule, people will comfortably need 60cm each, or 70cm if the chairs have arms. Use this measurement to make sure you can fit everyone that you want around your table.
- Dining Tables are large products. When you have decided on one, make sure that a home delivery option is available, as well as checking if you have to assemble the table yourself or this is also a service that the retailer offers.
There are lots of options out there, and whether you are looking for a table that works in your dining room as well as your garden, a unique industrial table that fits into a modern interior or a rustic hardwearing table for a kitchen, you certainly are spoilt for choice!