Britons in castles or large manor houses would eat in the Great Hall during the middle ages. The nobility began to build parlors or drawing rooms off the Great Hall, which would have been noisy and quite uncomfortable for eating. In modern American homes, the dining room is increasingly used only for formal occasions, with daily meals being taken in the kitchen or family room.
However, attitudes have come a long way in recognizing the dining room as space that can be used for many other things, and selecting dining room furniture can be an exciting venture. There are some fashionable guidelines that can be considered to make the most of the space and feel of the room, before selecting furniture for it. While looking for ways to optimize space, keep in mind the extra tasks and gatherings can take place in the room.
Dining rooms tend to be stagnant spaces where the interior decoration never changes. Consider the following ways of adding some variety to the room:
- Center the table under a chandelier. If the builder has placed the chandelier dead center in the room, move it, so you can have more flexibility in the furniture arrangement.
- Leave at least 18 inches for the traffic lane around the table when people are seated.
- Arrange the chairs creatively around the table, and reshuffle small furniture, such as plant stands or lamp tables, and alternate pictures and other trimmings in and out to refresh the room.
- Place a drop leaf table in the room to be used for extra guests for big dinner parties.
When buying a dining table, choose carefully. Consider the following issues before you shop:
- Size – a small dining room looks best with a small table, and vice versa.
- Capacity - consider how many people you need to fit around the table on a regular basis.
- Shape – you need to make sure that the shape of the dining room table is in balance with the rest of the room.
Quality dining room furniture is a significant investment that can last for generations. Avoid placing your furniture in direct sunlight, as this can cause fading. Arrange furniture away from radiators, heat and air vents and air conditioning units, so it won’t be subject to extreme changes in temperature. With regular cleaning and care, your dining room furniture will provide years of enjoyment to you.
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