A Buyer’s Guide to Dining Room Furniture

Dinner TableThese days, a dining room is never going to just be a dining room – it’s more likely to be part kitchen, part office, part family room, too.

Maybe you’re shopping for dining room furniture, creating a flexible dining space or redecorating your family dining room. Whatever your aim, this buyer’s guide is here to help you plan the perfect space to suit your needs.

In today’s world, where anything goes, why not mix things up a bit? Go for chairs that don’t match and lots of practical storage. Insufficient storage is the bane of the 21st century home. It’s easy to underestimate the capacity you’ll need for glassware, cutlery and linen, so if in doubt go large. The traditional sideboard not only offers tons of space it is also a handy surface for your iPod speakers, flowers and candles.

Alternatively, you can keep things casual with a simple wooden table and chair set at one end of the kitchen. It helps if your cabinets have a flush-fit handless look, as this will make it easier to move around freely.

For the latest in modern dining, a huge solid oak table is a must. Perfect for large families and entertaining, simply add a few benches for maximum seating.

Why buy one dining table when two or more make things much more flexible? When the price is right, you can afford to have a few tables that can be used separately for different activities such as homework or sewing, then simply push together for dinner.

A simple white table and chair set will never go out of fashion, but make sure you add personality and a touch of glamour with colourful curtains and lighting. To create the perfect ambience in your dining room, it is vital you get the lighting right. For subtle bistro-chic hang pendants and chandeliers high above the table to cast soft pools of illumination. Dimmer switches are essential, particularly if the room is used for play and work as well as entertaining.

A sleek glass and chrome table, plus modern dining chairs will give a kitchen-diner a funky edge. Mix and match the colour of your chairs, perhaps picking out the wall colour for even more style points.

And if space is of a premium, look out for a dining table set where the seating can neatly slide under the table when they are not in use.

So, whatever you use your dining room for, be it for entertainment, play or just eating in, there is plenty of choice to suit all tastes and requirements.

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