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September 02, 2020 6 min read

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

If you're reading this article, the chances are that you need a new dining set. Good for you doing research and not just buying the first set that you see!

Reading up on your potential future purchase is a great way to avoid the dreaded buyer's remorse and ensure that you make the best possible purchase for your living space!

But why should you consider the size of the dining set before purchase? The last thing you want is to get a dining set that doesn't fit or doesn't match your room's layout.

Dining sets come in multiple shapes, sizes, and seating arrangements, and as a responsible consumer, you need to know which combination is right for you.

At Furniture Fair, we have dozens of dining sets available and over 50 years of experience selling them. We know what dining sets are right for your living space, and we want to help you determine that for yourself!

This article will cover some history of dining tables and their size, shape, and seating layout right for your living space. Read on to find the best fit for your dining set!

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

The Dining Set: A Brief History

It may surprise you to learn that the dining room as a concept is only a recent development in human cultural history.

The concept of a dining space was developed initially by the Greeks, who had areas dedicated to eating and conversation. These spaces were for more well-to-do members of society and restricted to men only.

Curiously, the Greeks modeled their spaces around the weather and often had multiple dining spaces per household.

When the Roman Empire invaded Greece, they adopted many Greek styles and traditions, including dining rooms. While the Roman dining room was still for use by nobles and important guests, all genders could attend.

The dining room continued to evolve with the passing centuries, eventually developing into a space that only high-status members of society could afford. Once people's lives began to get better physically and financially, the middle class began to develop. With the middle-class development came a new interest in high society styles, including dining rooms.

Ordinary middle-class people could now afford a fancy room to eat and entertain guests, and dining rooms sprang up all over the Victorian-era Western countries. Dining rooms took influences from the French aristocracy and were often fancy but cluttered displays of status.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Today, the dining room tradition is an entertaining and socializing area, but the idea of one particular room isn't the only concept for a dining space. The open floor plans of the mid-century modern style and loft-style modern apartments have created a more relaxed interpretation of what a dining room should be.

The Dining Table has evolved significantly along with the trends and styles of the centuries and the space in which the table occupies. Now we will look at the options you have for dining tables and what you will need for your working space.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

What to Look For in a Dining Set

Here are the top things to consider when in the market for a new dining set. Use this guide as a reference to find the perfect dining set size for your living space.

You will need to find the right table height, wall clearance, table size, shape, and whether or not you want a table leaf. Once you've determined these metrics you will be able to find your new table.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Table Height

You might be surprised to find out that tables come in different heights. Two measurements are common for table heights. The two types of table heights are standard or 'dining' height and counter height!

The average height for standard dining height is 28 to 30 inches. The standard height dining set is perfect for a traditional table that can comfortably seat your friends and children. This dining set is an ideal height for eating and participating in activities at the table.

The average height for a counter height set is 34 to 36 inches. Counter height dining sets feature higher chairs and seating for a bar or cafe atmosphere and is a trendier option than standard height dining. If you want a dining set that evokes a fun time with friends, this is the dining set for you.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Table Clearance

The space around your new dining set is almost as important as the dining set itself. When you are putting a room together, you should consider the space needed to move comfortably and be seated around the dining table.

It would be best if you determined what the space between the table and wall will be to ensure your dinner guests comfort when sitting down to partake in your latest culinary masterpiece. The standard measuring space is between 42 - 48 inches. Keep this in mind when shopping for your dining set!

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Table Size

Dimensions are crucial to ensuring that your table purchase will work in your room setting. Be sure to measure the table you are considering and compare it with your room dimensions.

Here are the most common dining table sizes and how many people they will sit.

Table Size Oval & Rectangle Round & Square

4 Foot Table

Seats 4 People

Seats 4 People

5 - 6 Foot Table

Seats 6 People

Seats 6 People

8 Foot Table

Seats 8 People

Non-standard Size

10 Foot Table

Seats 10 People

Non-standard Size

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Table Leaf

Many tables come with extenders called leaves that allow you to make the table longer, which will enable you to seat more people when necessary.

Find out if the table you want has this feature and decide if this is a feature that you want.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Tabletop Shapes

While, in theory, your imagination is the only limitation to the shape of your dining tabletop, most companies make dining sets in 4 basic shapes.

Those four shapes are round, oval, square, and rectangle. Now let's figure out which form will best fit your space.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

The Round Tabletop

Arguably the most famous fictional table in history, King Arthur's round table, was made round to serve a specific purpose. Most rectangular tables have the head of the table, where the leader or ruler would traditionally sit.

The point of King Arthur's round table was to make every one of equal importance. No one was at the head of the table, and everyone could freely communicate with each other without regard for rank and status.

While King Arthur's round table ambitions may have been a bit loftier, the same principle applies to the modern round dining table. Round tables let everyone sit where they can face the other person, no matter the seating arrangement.

Round tables allow everyone to communicate in a less-formal setting and prevent people from needing to lean over another person to hear what someone is saying. If you want a more relaxed dining atmosphere, a round table is an excellent option for your space.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

The Oval Table

Oval is the most unusual of table shapes, and oval tables are a bit more of an irregular shape to find, but they are trendy for their modern style and eye-catching appeal.

Oval tables offer the space of rectangle tabletops while also creating the illusion of less space occupation.

An oval tabletop is an excellent option if you want a modern look that can still comfortably seat a family or some close friends. The oval shape creates a unique visual appeal and helps make your space look stylish and up-to-date.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

The Square Table

Square tables seat four people for a relaxed family meal or game night. Small living spaces work well with square tables and are an excellent place for activities after dinner.

Square tables work the best in square rooms for a uniform look.Square tables can also become modular if added to each other.

Combine two tables for a rectangle table that seats six people. Besides, many square tables offer drop-leaves, which can fold under, creating a smaller or larger table.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me
What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

The Rectangle Table

Rectangle tables are the most familiar table shape, and probably the one you think of when you imagine an image of a table.

Tables like the famous long table from Da Vinci's The Last Supper, or Norman Rockwell's iconic Thanksgiving spread, have helped to immortalize the rectangle table as a gathering place for family and close friends.

Rectangle tables will need a larger area for placement and seat more people than the other shapes listed.

If you have a large family or a penchant for entertaining many of your friends, the rectangle table is ideal for both.

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me

Find The Table Size For You

Now that you know what type of shapes, heights, and sizes your dining set can come in, you have the tools necessary to shop for a dining set!

Measure your space and figure out what group will work best in your room!

If you are looking for a new dining set in the Louisville, Dayton, or Cincinnati area, check out Furniture Fair!

With 11 locations and a great collection of dining sets, including custom dining, Furniture Fair has options for you! Visit our showroom today or visit us online!

What Size Dining Set is Right for Me


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