The focal point of a dining room is the dining table. There are many considerations and options when choosing the right dining table—size, shape, space available, and other uses.
Will you be using it also as a work or study space? Will it be used for daily dining or only occasionally? Here are the four kinds of dining tables you may consider:
The oval shape also works well in a rectangular room. Although it has rounded edges, it creates a “head of the table,” and allows squeezing in extra seating.
The rectangular table is the least space-efficient of all shapes. It allows for a “head of the table,” and limits interaction. It works best in a rectangular room, especially a large one. It balances the space.
A square dining table is not entirely formal or informal. Unlike the round table, it sacrifices the use of extra space because of its corners. But like the round table, it doesn’t assign a privileged seat. This shape works best for a square dining room. In a rectangular room, you can place two squares side by side.
A round dining table is the most democratic of all shapes, as it has no “head of the table,” which is a plus for casual dining. It may be the least formal, but it is the most space-efficient shape. The lack of corners makes it easier to squeeze in more seating. It works best in a square dining room. An option for a rectangular room is using two round tables side by side.
Choosing the right dining table does not stop in selecting the appropriate shape. One should make sure that the dining table they choose fits their space and needs. Aside from the right shape, the right size will help maximize your space and create the atmosphere that will suit you best.
Here are numbers and tips to consider when choosing the perfect table shape for your needs:
1. The table must be at least 36 inches in width to accommodate your place settings nicely.
2. To be able to sit and get up comfortably, measure an allowance of around 42.5 to 48 inches from the table to the nearest wall or furniture. The least distance is 36 inches, which is a tight fit.
3. Measure 2 feet as eating space per person. This makes for a comfortable distance without persons elbowing each other.
4. For all dining table shapes, the more practical option is a pedestal base, as opposed to the four-legged. It frees up the corners or sides of the table, which makes it more flexible and avoids your knees bumping a table leg.
Repurposed from “The Dining Table”, originally appearing on Vol. 11 No. 3 of Metro Home and Entertaining. Original article by Marissa Alejandro Lopa, illustrations by Anna M. Rosete.