Finding the Right Table

Whether you plan to celebrate Thanksgiving with others, by yourself or not at all, this time of year offers a great time to think about tables – particularly dining room tables. As the holidays approach, it’s likely that you will be spending time around a table with friends, family or even strangers. And if you are hosting any gatherings it’s likely that seating arrangements and table decorations will cross your mind at some point. Perhaps you don’t celebrate the holidays in this way, but are in the market for a new dining room table. Regardless of the status of your current relationship with a dining room table, consider the following when purchasing a dining room table.


How big is the room? If you are currently living in a space where you intend to be for a while, consider the size of the room. You don’t want a table that is too big as it will dwarf the rest of the room, whereas a smaller table may be impractical or look odd in comparison to the rest of the space.

How versatile does the table need to be? Is this a table that you will solely leave in the dining room? or would you like to have the option to bring it into the kitchen or perhaps on the patio in summer? If you are currently living in a space that you know is temporary, really budget out your options. But if you want to invest in a piece that you will bring to your next space, invest in a piece that is classic, well made, versatile and possibly offers space saving solutions (ie adding or removing leaves). Consider the versatility required of this table, and look accordingly. Additionally, consider how often you will actually be using this table. What are the day to day needs of this table as compared to those when you are entertaining guests?

Are there small children around? While this may not seem like a major concern when looking to invest in a handsome dining room table, it’s worth considering. If little ones will likely be running around this table, you should at least be aware of the table’s height, and any finishings like table claw feet. Take a peek under the table to see if your kids will hit their heads on any aprons, the balusters or if they will trip on the stretcher when they make table forts or are playing hide and seek. Furthermore if you are considering a glass table, really examine how sturdy it is and where/how/if the glass is connected to the rest of the table. This shouldn’t discourage you from purchasing your dream table, but it is important to be aware.

What table shape makes the most sense? Traditionally speaking, dining room tables tend towards a rectangular or rounded shape. Round tables are great for facilitating conversation among guests, but rectangular tables tend to fit more people.  

What will work with the current design of the room? Perhaps the most important thing to consider is whether or not this table goes with the rest of the space that it occupies. If you are planning to redesign the space with the table as the focal point, then think of the table as the room’s origin. However, if you are not planning to redecorate or redesign the room, then you should spend some time ensuring that the table fits with the rest of the space.

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Nancy Price Interior Design is a Jackson, Mississippi-based interior design firm that's owned and operated by Nancy Price and her husband. Nancy Price enjoys bringing a balance of art and comfort to her clients. Learn more about Nancy Price by following her on Twitter and Instagram.