Every home benefits from a dedicated space for eating. Even a small space can be perfect for creating a special place to gather and share food, drinks, and company. No matter what your home’s layout and space constraints are, there are many options for serving up a comfortable dining area in perfect style, from cozy cottage to modern chic or elegant and timeless.
Space-Saving Dining Table Designs
Take a cue from the pros. Bistros and coffee shops are masters of making the most of small spaces. A bistro set can create a cozy and charming place to enjoy a meal, drink, or snack.
Speaking of drinks, a pub table is also a great solution in a small space. With its small footprint and counter height, it can elevate your seating area out of a tight squeeze, and make a small space feel more open.
Take advantage of a corner space with a breakfast nook. Lining two walls with bench seating can create a comfortable area in a space otherwise unused.
A table with leaves is a great idea if space is limited, but you want the option to spread out on occasion to welcome guests. Consider what type of leaf system will work best in your space: butterfly, drop-down, or extension leaf. If you don’t have space to store extra leaves, go with a butterfly leaf or drop-down leaf style.
Consider a modern style table for the clean lines to help streamline a small space. A table with a clear glass top can make a space look bigger with its transparent effect.
If you have a narrow space, try a rectangular dining table to fit the shape of the room. Simply push the table flush with the wall when it’s not being used. This will still provide plenty of room for you and another person to dine comfortably at it while saving valuable floor space.
Pedestal dining tables accommodate extra chairs without the interference of table legs.
Extra storage is a hot commodity in any small space so why not choose a dining table with storage for more multi-tasking mojo from your dining area.
Another option is to use what your already have in your house. Instead of adding a table, make a kitchen island or counter do double duty by adding counter stools. Don’t have a counter? Make your own with a clever kitchen cart that doubles as a seating area.
If you only entertain once and awhile, look for a convertible dining table. Convertible dining tables are tables made for small spaces that expand. Some tables may shrink down to be a console table.
Tips for Choosing a Small Dining Table
The first thing you’ll want to do is measure and see how much space you actually have. When determining how many chairs you can fit at your table, a good rule of thumb is to allow 23-30 inches across for each person, plus a 32-inch clearance from the table edge to the wall, allowing chairs enough space to push back.
Pick a Shape
Once you’ve measured and determined how much space you have to work with, then you can start to narrow down your table choices by size and shape.
Round Dining Tables
Showcased in the middle of a room or tucked in a corner, round dining tables encourage movement through a space with versatile ease and no sharp corners.
Rectangular Dining Tables
Rectangular dining tables are ideal in long, narrow spaces. To save space, keep the table pushed up against the wall and pull it out when you have dinner guests.
Square Dining Tables
Square dining tables can clearly define space for four diners, even at a small table.
Dining Chairs for Small Spaces
Upholstered dining chairs can transition as extra seating between living and eating areas, making them a great choice in a studio or apartment with shared living and dining space. Parson chairs offer a formal appearance without being bulky, so they are an ideal choice for a smaller dining area.
If you only need additional seating on occasion, consider folding dining chairs for their versatility. Simply fold chairs up and stow them in a closet when not in use.
Similar to folding chairs, dining chairs that stack are also small-space friendly and easy to store.
Modern dining chairs often have a smaller footprint and simpler design that complement small-space living.
Dining benches provide a sleek appearance and fit neatly under the table, which can help de-clutter a small space.