The right dining table for your home is not only a great investment, it’s probably one of the most important practical furniture pieces you have in your home. Its function is to provide a place for you to eat, entertain, for homework sessions, fun Sunday nights, and of course it’s where family and friends gather simply to enjoy each other’s company. But more than it’s practical purposes, a dining room table creates a visual balance in a room.
The right dining table for your space will be a well-crafted table manufactured from quality materials. That’s why it’s vitally important that you do your research and carefully consider what kind of table you’re really looking for. It should never be an impulse buy; this is going to be a great investment, so it’s worth taking your time. A good dining table will last up to 10-years, sometimes longer.
The right dining table for you will be one that sits comfortably in your space, is solidly constructed, and fits into your budget. We suggest not giving into trends; keep it sturdy yet simple. If you go with something new and trendy, with funky and weird details, you could end up regretting your purchase. Look for a timeless style, affordability, solid construction, and stability.
Whilst ensuring a comfortable dining experience, the right dining table will also allow for easy traffic flow around the table.
In this post we’re going to take a closer look at how to choose the right dining table for your space.
Dining Tables Sizes – The Basics
The first rule when purchasing a new dining table is to use your measuring tape and ensure the table will fit in your dining area. But that’s not all! A dining table can be a rather large piece of furniture, so you need to allow space around it as well. Besides the table’s footprint, you need to allow a minimum of 3-feet breathing space on all sides. That’s the minimum – of course more would be better. So measure the length and width of the actual area that can be dedicated to the dining table, then subtract at least 6-feet from both these measurements to obtain the length and width of your target dining table.
Other points to note –
- Depending on the style of your chairs, allow 600mm per person.
- If you want seats at the ends of the table, add an extra 600-800mm to the length of the table to allow for leg room.
- Allow at least 800mm between the table and any furniture or walls.
- A maximum of 1800mm should be allowed between the table and the nearest piece of furniture, or wall.
- A minimal width of 1050cm should be allowed.
Sizes of Square Dining Tables
- 6-seater square table = 1100-1400mm
- 8-seater square table = 1400-1600mm
Sizes of Rectangular Dining Tables
- 6-seater rectangular table (two people either side of the table and one at either end) = 1600-1800mm
- 8-seater rectangular table (three people either side of the table and one at either end) = 2100-2400mm
- 10-seater rectangular table (four people either side of the table and one at either end) = 2600-3000mm
- 12-seater rectangular table (four people either side of the table and two at either end) = 2600-3000mm
Round Dining Tables
The calculations are a bit more complex when determining the number of seats for a round table. Depending on how much space you require for each person, measure the diameter in mm, times that figure by 3.144, then divide by 600. Add extra space for each person, depending on how far in you want to push the chairs.
- 6-seater round table = 1200mm diameter
- 8-seater round table = 1600mm diameter.
Other Important Factors To Consider
- What style of chairs will you be using?
Don’t forget to measure your chairs too! You may need to allow extra table space depending on whether your chairs have a wide back, extra long seat, or even armrests. It’s important that you know the size of your chairs, especially if you wish to push all chairs in when not in use.
- What is the leg design of your new table?
When you’re determining the size of table you require for the number of seats you have, you must consider the size and location of the table’s legs. For example, if the legs are in the corners, unless they’re really chunky they’ll have very little effect on the size. On the other hand, if your table has box legs, the legs should be set back from the edge or you should add a bit of extra table length to allow for seats on either side.
- Access to the dining room
The access to your dining room should be another factor to consider when purchasing a dining table. Square and round tables will be limited by the size of the door frame, while a rectangular shape should be the easiest to move around. Tight corridors or winding stairs can also make installation a challenge.
The Perfect Table Width
Determine the perfect table width for your space by establishing the table setting space required by each person, then allow for the shared space in the middle for items like platters, serving dishes, condiments, as well as any décor items like candles or flowers.
Allow a minimal depth of 450mm to fit cutlery, plates, wine and water glasses. The shared middle space should be between 250 to 300mm, to fit in serving bowls and platters and so on; however this could be reduced to 150mm. Therefore, the minimal dining table width would be 1050mm, while the ideal width would be 1200mm.
How To Determine The Right Size Dining Table, Given the Dimensions of Your Dining Room
Start by getting out your measuring tape and working out the dimensions of your space. Here are the basic rules –
- A minimum of 800mm should be left between the dining table and obstructions like a door, wall, fireplace, or piece of furniture.
- To create an elegant yet spacious look, allow 1200mm.
- The maximum distance left between the dining table and the closest piece of furniture, or wall, should be 1800mm. Alternatively, choose a larger table – this will not only seat another person, it will create a better visual balance.
Of course this works in reverse too! Let’s say you’ve found the perfect dining table; now you can re-design an existing space or design a new space around your beautiful table.