Are you thinking of buying a dining table for your home? Not so fast!
When designing or refurbishing a dining room, the shape of the dining table becomes a central point of consideration.
Both round and rectangular tables offer unique attributes, creating distinct vibes in a space.
Why Should You Choose a Round Dining Table?
A round dining table is not just a piece of furniture — it’s a statement about your style and the ambience you want to create in your home.
1. You want to foster equality and intimacy
Round tables inherently have no head, promoting a democratic and inclusive atmosphere.
Everyone seated has equal access to the conversation, making it perfect for family discussions and intimate gatherings.
2. You put safety first
Homes with young children or pets can benefit from the lack of sharp corners.
There are fewer bumps and bruises when navigating around a round table.
Another option is to pop a small round dining table near your main dining table for your children.
This clever setup can serve as the kids’ table during family parties and other gatherings, making cleaning easier.
3. You want an aesthetically pleasing table
Round dining tables are simply awesome when it comes to flow.
The circular design can break the monotony of straight lines in other furniture pieces, offering a pleasing contrast in the room.
Because you don’t have sharp corners or edges to work with, the dining area has a softer, less structured feel to it.
It’s one of the reasons why homeowners prefer a circle dining table.
4. You value a versatile seating arrangement
With no fixed sides or positions, seating can be easily adjusted, whether you’re adding an extra chair for a surprise guest or removing one for more space.
Having a conversation in a rectangular 8-seater may feel cold and distant if there are only 2-6 people seated around the table.
With a round dining table for 6, this won’t be much of a problem for you.
5. You have a smaller dining space
Round tables often fit snugly in compact areas, maximising seating without overwhelming the room.
Plus, you’ll have more legroom with a round dining table.
A round table for 4 can give more legroom for 4 people than a square dining table or a 4-seater rectangular table can. This is because a round table usually needs just one leg to support it.
6. You have a square or rounded dining room
A round table works best in square-shaped dining rooms, as well as curved or circular spaces.
Any round object tends to draw your eyesight in, and a table with this shape does precisely that to your dining area.
With a round dining table, you’re creating balance in your dining room and anchoring your eyesight onto the centre of the space.
7. You adore lazy susans
You may want to consider getting a lazy susan if you’re really into condiments and sides.
Trust me, this is the way to go big with your meals when your dining space is small.
A lazy susan is a round tray that you place in the centre of your dining table.
It’s designed to rotate both clockwise and anticlockwise to allow everyone easy access to the food on the table.
Why a Round Dining Room Table Might Not Work for You
1. Less formal feel
The inherent casual feel of round dining tables might not work for you if you want to host more formal gatherings.
There is no “head” of the table, so it can lack the structure some people long for in more formal settings.
Moreover, the visual cues of a round table are softer and cosier and are often associated with casual dining settings.
2. Limited seating (for more than 6 people)
If you have a round table, you’ll have more than enough wiggle room for everyone as long as you seat a maximum of 6 people.
However, a round table is not the best idea if you plan on seating more than 6 people at a time.
This is because the table diameter of an 8- or 10-seater will be too big for intimate conversations to take place.
If you love entertaining at home and still want a round table for more than 6 people, here’s a pro tip: use a round, extendable dining table.
3. It’s hard to reach the centre
Items placed at the centre can be harder for people to reach if you have a large round table.
This makes passing dishes necessary and can disrupt the flow during mealtime.
Although, having a lazy susan can easily solve this problem for you.
Why should you choose a rectangular dining table?
1. You have a rectangular dining room
Let’s not overthink. The first — and most obvious — reason for getting a rectangular dining table is a rectangular dining room.
Rectangular dining rooms call for a similarly shaped table unless you prefer a disproportionate look.
A rectangular dining table will follow your elongated dining room’s layout with ease.
No awkward spaces here — only a beautifully fitted furniture arrangement.
2. You live for practicality
Rectangular tables are versatile and easy to position in a room.
You can push your dining table against the wall to free up space or transform it into a workspace in an instant.
Rectangular dining tables are also a breeze to configure. They’re functional and come in a lot of styles to choose from.
A rectangular glass dining table is your best bet if modern design is your kind of aesthetic. It’s easy to clean, functional, and sleek at the same time.
If you’re looking for height and structural appeal, a rectangular pedestal dining table is the perfect choice. It looks elegant in any room, has plenty of legroom, and is just as practical as any other rectangular table.
3. Symmetry is the name of your game
If you don’t want to worry about symmetry and which corner of the room should be balanced with what furniture, rectangular dining tables may be right for you.
You can put your dining table near a wall to anchor it or place it in the centre of the room to create a focal point for your dining area.
4. Your social dynamics may require this table shape
Your social dynamics are also something to consider when you’re deciding what dining table shape to buy.
Some cultures are particular about designating the end of the dining table to the eldest member of the family or the head of the household.
Some families who have a toddler to feed may also prefer a rectangular table.
With this table shape, they can efficiently position the baby chair at the narrower side of the table without worrying about occupying additional space in the dining room.
5. You love hosting dinner parties
When throwing dinner parties left and right is a common thing for you, you’ll do well to pick a rectangular table instead of a round one.
With this table shape, you’ll be able to accommodate more than 10 people without consuming a huge area of your dining room.
Another advantage of a rectangular table dining arrangement is how conveniently you can position guests along the table.
You can strategically place guests together who have a lot to talk about and place those who have little in common far from each other.
Why a Rectangular Dining Table Might Not Work For You
Rectangular dining tables are ubiquitous, and for good reasons.
Their structure and design align with various settings, from the most casual to the exceedingly formal.
1. Less interactive
Rectangular dining tables can sometimes hinder group conversations because of their elongated form.
Imagine a long, rectangular table where guests seated at one end might not be able to speak with those at the opposite end.
This configuration can cause conversations to break into smaller clusters, making it harder to have a unified discussion.
While a rectangular dining table can work for large gatherings, it may not be ideal for collective engagement.
2. Safety concerns
Rectangular tables usually have sharper edges and corners compared to their round counterparts.
This design can pose a safety risk, especially in households with young children who might accidentally bump into the corners while playing or moving around.
Additionally, pets can also hurt themselves or accidentally knock over items from the table due to these protruding corners.
3. Fixed seating
While rectangular dining room tables can usually accommodate more guests, the seating is more structured.
Adding an extra chair to an already set table might disrupt its symmetry and make the setting look cramped.
Unlike round tables, where you can often squeeze in an additional guest without much hassle, rectangular tables offer less flexibility.
What to Consider When Picking a Dining Table Shape
Choosing the ideal shape for your dining table goes beyond mere aesthetics.
It blends functionality and space optimisation and projects the atmosphere you want in your dining area.
How does the dining table shape impact the mood of your space?
A round table often emanates a more casual and cosy feel, promoting equality among diners.
It’s typically associated with intimate gatherings.
On the other hand, rectangular tables can offer a more formal and structured atmosphere.
This can be ideal for dinners with a clear hierarchy or events like birthdays, with a designated “head” of the table.
Which takes up more space, a round or rectangular table?
Round tables often require more space to provide the same seating capacity as a rectangle.
This is because a larger diameter is needed to accommodate more chairs, resulting in more unused space in the centre of the table.
Rectangular tables make better use of room corners and are more scalable in terms of length.
Which dining room table is better for socialising?
Round tables take the lead when it comes to fostering conversation.
The absence of corners means everyone faces the centre, making it easier to maintain eye contact and engage in group discussions.
A rectangular dining table may be more suitable for larger gatherings where conversations naturally break into smaller groups along the table’s length.
Find the Dining Table Shape that is Right for You
In the debate between a round vs rectangle dining table, the truth is, the better shape is the one that suits your lifestyle better.
Whether you lean towards the communal feel of a round table or the expansive capacity of a rectangular one, remember to think about its practicality.
Cleaning experts also suggest considering how the material and shape of your table can affect its maintenance.
Beyond that, your table is where countless meals, conversations, and memories will unfold.
So take your time, weigh the benefits, and choose a table that will enhance your space and make those moments even more special.