The kitchen table is the heart of your kitchen. It brings together family and friends, and it’s where you share meals, conversation, memories and traditions. Choosing the right table is important. You want one that is big enough to accommodate your crew so mealtime is relaxed and comfortable, but you also want to invest in an option that’s stylish and enhances your décor.
Here are four things to consider when shopping for the right kitchen table:
The size of your family: How many people regularly gather for breakfast, lunch and dinner will have the greatest impact your table choice. Furniture manufacturers will often offer a recommended number of people that comfortably use a table, and a good rule of thumb is to allow each person two feet of eating space. Here’s a great list of options from Houzz:
Family of four
- 3′ round table with a pedestal base
- 4′ or 5’ round table with legs
- 4′ long rectangular table
Family of five or six
- 5′ round table with a pedestal base
- 5’ or 6′ long rectangular table
Family of seven or more
- 6′ or 7’ round table with a pedestal base or legs
- 7′ round table with legs
- 7′ to 11’ long rectangular table
The size of your room: Your room size will also help you determine the size of the table. You’ll want to provide enough space around the table for people to move in and out. A good rule of thumb is to give diners 42” to 48″ between the table and walls. If your room is small, you might consider a round table, which will fit in tight spaces, and pedestal versions offer more legroom. Or choose a bench instead of chairs, so you can maximize the space by pushing it beneath the table when it’s not in use.
The shape of the table: Round, rectangle, square and more, there are many shapes of dining tables. Choose the right one by matching it to the shape of your room. If your eating area is long and narrow in shape, a rectangular or oval table might be the best choice. It will fill the space, and it’s a great choice for larger families. If your eating area is small or square in space, you might want to choose a round or square table, which will leave more floor space and will look proportionate.
The future: You might be a family of two or three right now, but consider future scenarios. Are you planning to add on to your family? Do you entertain frequently? A good rule of thumb is to count the number of people who eat at the house regularly and add room for two more. If you choose the right table, you can easily slide in two extra chairs whenever needed. But don’t overcrowd your room with future guests in mind. If your eating area won’t accommodate the extra seating, you’re better off setting up an additional table in another room on special occasions.
One of the most precious things in a kitchen is counter space. If you’re lacking, you can instantly add more work surface with a kitchen island. The great news is that you don’t need to contact a contractor; portable islands can be added to your room that match or complement your cabinetry and they can be moved around if you ever need more floor space.
When choosing an island, here are three things to consider:
Size. The most comfortable height for food prep is about 36 inches, which is also the standard height for lower cabinets. Islands also come in this size, but you’ll need to determine the proper width and length for your space. Take in consideration the amount of floor room you have. You will want two or three feet around it to allow people to pass by. Also look at the flow of your kitchen, especially between the sink, refrigerator and stove. Don’t interrupt this work triangle.
Function. What will you be using the surface of the island for? If it’s food prep, consider the material that is on the surface to make sure it’s up for the task. If you want space for storage, look for cabinets and open shelving. Or if you want more seating to provide a spot for your kids to do homework or guests to mingle, look for an island that has an area for stools. While islands are versatile, it’s best to know its primary function.
Material. The great thing about a kitchen island is that it’s often more interesting when it complements your cabinets instead of matches. This makes choosing the material an easier task. Consider how you wish your island to function. If you’re a baker, you might look for one with a marble top. Food prep is easy on an island with a stainless steel or butcher block top. The base of the island will set the tone for its style, and you will want to choose one that blends well with your décor. You can add something rustic for a farmhouse feel. A sleek island is perfect for a modern home. Or use an elegant island in a traditional style kitchen.
Rugs are a wonderful accent in any room, adding color and texture. You might not think of adding one to your kitchen, but you should. A rug can minimize slippery hard surface flooring, and using one near the sink or stove provides cushioning that reduces fatigue on your body.
Choosing the right rug for your kitchen will depend on a few factors. Here are four things to consider:
Floor Space: The layout of your kitchen will determine the size rug that will work. Runners are often useful if you have a galley kitchen or a kitchen with a large island and limited floor space. This style rug has the added benefit of making your room look larger. You can also choose small rugs for specific areas, such as in front of a sink. You can find rectangle, oval or half moon shapes that would be perfect.
Color: With cabinets taking up most of the wall space, rugs provide a great way to add color to a kitchen. Be bold to make a statement or choose a shade that blends in. You can pick up a color from other accessories or use the chance to add a new hue.
Material: Spills happen and you don’t want to have to worry about ruining your rug. Be sure to choose one that is easily cleaned, such as those made from natural fibers or synthetic blends. Low pile rugs are easily spot-cleaned, and are a better choice than shag. And some smaller mats are machine washable, making cleanup a breeze.
Style: Another reason to include a rug in the kitchen is to provide a sense of style to the room. Cabinets often dictate the décor here, but a rug can underscore your personality and design point of view. Choose a contemporary, traditional or casual rug that complements sense of style.
In the 1950s and early ‘60s, famed designers such as Charles and Ray Eames and Harry Bertoia started creating beautiful furniture from wire. Grid seats curved over simple frames were as comfortable as they were eye-catching, and tables were crafted atop a striking base that seemed to elegantly float. The look was a striking complement to the sleek wooden and upholstered furnishings that were also popular during this era. And the organic and airy silhouettes helped streamlined small rooms, making them feel open and airy.
Today, you can still find some of these original pieces, with price tags that start well into the hundreds or thousands, or you can pay homage to the era with furniture inspired by the look. Check out these beautiful wire chairs, bar stools and tables that feature Midcentury Modern designs, effortlessly—and affordably—upgrading the look of your modern space.
One of the most fashion-forward trends of the year is acrylic furniture. Perfect for small spaces, “ghost” furniture takes up no visual space and lets the eye float around the room uninterrupted. One of the easiest pieces of acrylic furniture to use is a ghost chair. From modern to traditional, they work well with any style décor, and they mix well with a variety of materials, like wood or metal.
Ready to get on trend? Here are four ways to use a ghost chair in your home.
Dining Room or Kitchen
Swap out traditional dining chairs with ghost chairs for a quick and easy update. Ghost chairs look great with a pedestal table in an eating area, or use them with a sleek wooden table in the dining room.
Instead of a traditional upholstered accent chair, consider a ghost wingback chair. This style brings a fresh, modern twist, especially if you have a small room where floor space is limited. Soften it with a faux fur toss pillow or throw.
Having a chair in the bedroom provides a great place to relax or read. Since this is a room where you want a feeling of calm, a ghost chair is a natural choice. It takes on the colors of the room, and doesn’t disturb the décor.
A modern home office looks chic when you swap out your desk chair for a ghost chair. If your space is tight the ghost chair will seem to float next to the desk, allowing the eye to move throughout the room.