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What Is The Right Dining Table Size For You?

At Loewen Design Studios we do lots of custom size tables. This leads us to a common question, what size is the right size for me?

The answer to the question is usually based on a few things.

  • How many people do you frequently want to sit around the table? And how many do you have on special occasions?
  • How big is your space?
  • How do you plan to use the table?
  • Are you getting extensions? 

HOW MANY PEOPLE?

Of course the more people you would like to sit around your table, the more space you’ll want.The number of people that can sit around the table is somewhat variable, however generally having about 24” or 2 feet along the side of the table per setting is fairly good. It can be more or less depending on the sizing of your chairs and how much elbow room you want.

Here’s a short video about our most standard size table, a 36” x 72” table, in a few different shapes. 

And here are some examples of how many spots can be set at tables on some different sizes!

HOW BIG IS YOUR SPACE?

You want a table that will fit into the room well. That’s based not only on the size of the actual room, but also on the way you plan on using it. As a general rule, if you plan to walk around all 4 sides of the table you’ll want to have between 30” and 36” or 3 feet of space around the table. This is important to be able to walk around it, but also so you can pull a chair out to sit in it. That amount of space is more of a minimum, and if you want an open or minimalist feel to the space, more than that could be ideal. Also the more traffic through a space the more space you generally want to have there.

HOW DO YOU PLAN TO USE THE TABLE?

I’ll break this down into 2 categories. 

 First, what are you doing with the table? Is this primarily a table for meals? Or will it often be used for other things such as working, playing games or crafting. Whatever it may be you, you will want to be sure you have an appropriate amount of space for those activities. 

The second part relates to how you’ll use it as a dining table. If you plan on plating meals in the kitchen or on a sideboard and bringing them to the table, you’ll be able to live with a narrower table. 30” would likely be fine. However, if you’re planning on having serving dishes on the table, 39” to 42” will be much more comfortable.

 From time to time, people ask us for a 48” wide table. While this size will provide much more space for serving dishes and maybe even a center piece, keep in mind that dishes can’t really be passed across this wide a table. Both the passer and the receiver would likely need to stand up, which in most cases would be awkward.

ARE YOU GETTING EXTENSIONS?

This one is fairly self explanatory, if you are hoping to get an extendable table for larger gatherings, then you will need a certain size base table which would be for regular use, and an extended size for larger gatherings. We typically offer extensions in 12 or 18 inches, so you can easily add up to 4 settings comfortably to a table. 

An 18” extension does a good job of adding a place setting on either side of the table.

If you are planning on an extension table then you may want to consider the above for both sizes, though the space around the table can be tighter if it’s only on rare occasions, and the specific size of an extension table is flexible, which can make the answers more flexible as well.

If you need any help determining what the perfect size is for you, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us! We’re happy to help anyway we can! Try the chat in the bottom right or reach out to us at the link at the top of the page!