A dining room isn’t just a place to sit and eat; it’s where people gather to have conversations, laugh, bond over a good meal and a glass of wine. As with any space in your home, particularly one where you likely entertain guests, ambiance is everything, and sometimes you might just need a bit of a refresh or a complete makeover of your dining space. Whether you’re looking for a space that’s elegant and sophisticated or a more casual style, finding the best dining room furniture for your space is key.
As a professional interior designer in Orlando, here are a few dining room ideas to help you get started planning your space.
Dining Room Furniture Buying Guide
Without a doubt, the dining room table is the centerpiece and key element of the space, but there are so many other details that really contribute to the overall ambiance of the dining room. From dining chairs to multi-functional storage, there are numerous ways to elevate your dining area with the right pieces.
Before diving into the search for the best dining room furniture and decor, though, create a mood board that includes a color palette, materials such as types of wood or metal finishes, as well as other specific design elements in order to establish a cohesive aesthetic. Inspiration can come from all over the world, and with countless options available, it can be overwhelming to finalize an interior design concept for your dining room. This crucial first step will make furniture and decor decisions easier.
Dining Room Table
The dining table is, perhaps, the most important feature in a dining room; it serves the main function of the space, which is to dine, of course. The size of the space and the number of people that would occupy the space at any given time are two essential factors to consider before choosing the size and shape of a dining room table. A couple who likes to entertain or a large family may opt for a more traditional rectangular shape with additional leaves to extend the table when hosting guests for dinner while homebodies who prefer intimate meals at home with perhaps just a few close friends might prefer a smaller square or round table.
How the space will be used should also be taken into account before color and material selection as well. People often have a breakfast nook or a counter where they have their meals daily, in which case the dining room is only used on special occasions. On the other hand, the dining room could be multi-functional, not only serving as a place to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but also as an area to do school work, craft projects, and more.
A professional interior designer knows how to find the right dining table for your home and can help you narrow down your options with a few pro tips until you find the perfect one for your space.
Dining Table Buying Guide
While you’re on the hunt for the perfect dining room table, make sure to:
- Measure the size of the dining room or area
- Think about how the table will be used – daily meals or dinner only, dinner parties, other non-dining-related activities, etc.
- Count the typical number of diners – do you need extension leaves?
- Determine the ideal size and shape for your dining room table
- Consider the style, including the materials, finish, and color – does it fit with the overall aesthetic of the dining room?
- Establish a budget
Dining Room Chairs
Where people sit to eat is also pretty crucial; picking dining room chairs can also be a tedious process. Not only is there style to consider but comfort as well. Most dining room tables are sold as a set that includes a matching set of chairs. It’s the perfect solution for those who prefer a no-fuss dining room redesign or people who like the table and chairs to match exactly, adding variety in other ways.
On the other hand, don’t limit the design options to the chairs in a dining room set. This is a great opportunity to incorporate other colors and materials from the mood board; for instance, combine a natural wood table with chairs in a contrasting color or upholstered chairs in a different material. All the chairs don’t even need to be exactly the same; mix it up with different styles around the table. Alternatively, opt for a bench on one side and chairs on the other. This combination has recently started growing in popularity for its versatility and laid-back style.
Dining Chair Buying Guide
Regardless of which type of table and chair combination appeals to you, make sure the style and scale of the chairs are compatible with the table. Keep in mind these tips on how to choose dining room chairs as well as other factors to consider before making your final decision.
- Decide between all matching chairs OR matching side chairs & different head chairs OR an overall eclectic mix
- Measure the height of the table and chairs to make sure they’re compatible
- Consider the materials and construction of the chairs – will it stain or break easily, particularly if kids are around?
- Calculate how many chairs in preferred style(s) will fit around the table comfortably
- Measure the space around the table – is there enough space for people to walk around the dining area with the chairs in place?
- After narrowing down options, sit in each chair to find out if it’s comfortable
- Pick up the chair and move it around – is it easy to slide in and out from the table and move it?
Additional Dining Room Furniture
While most people just think of the dining room table and chairs, there are actually other pieces of furniture that are perfectly at home in a dining room. Depending on the dimensions and layout of the space as well as whether or not it’s enclosed or an open concept, the dining room can provide additional storage or serve other functions. Some of the best dining room furniture that can transform the space include:
A buffet, in terms of dining room furniture, can be used to arrange the food so guests can serve themselves. It also offers storage for things such as table linens, seasonal centerpieces or table decor, and sometimes even party supplies.
A hutch is a taller piece of dining room furniture with visible shelves on top and a cabinet on the bottom. It’s often used to display fine dishware or a glassware collection, among other things, but it can also be used as a coffee and tea station. The bottom cabinets are used for storage.
A small bar cart or cabinet stores liquor and wine as well as bar tools and some cocktail glasses as well. It can work well in a dining room, where guests can enjoy a nice cocktail or a couple can easily pour a glass of wine to drink with dinner on any given weekday.
While shelves might seem like a bit of an odd idea for a dining room, they can serve numerous functions. Large or built-in shelves stocked with books can make your dining room a library as well or they can also display a beautiful collection of glasses and other drinkware. In an open concept layout, a large shelf can also serve as a room divider to define the individual spaces.
While the interior designs of the living room or bedrooms are at the forefront of most people’s minds, the dining room also deserves attention. The right dining room furniture can help you achieve that inviting environment. There’s nothing quite like food to bring people together, so the dining room is not only a place to enjoy delicious meals, but it’s where family and friends gather to socialize and celebrate.
If you need help getting started with an interior design concept for your dining room, contact us today to schedule a consultation so we can turn your dream space into a reality.