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Dining table trends have changed more than any other furniture for the home in recent years. With changing lifestyles, demands, and needs, dining tables have seen a shift from perfunctory tables to ones that have a lot more personality. Today there's more choice in shapes, colors, materials, and more, than ever.
The overarching interior design trends we're seeing elsewhere in the home apply to the dining table, too. Softer, more fluid forms are a welcome addition to a dining room, where furniture has a tendency to fall back on boxy, rectangular designs, while bolder materials are also being embraced in design-forward projects.
With that in mind, we turned to our interior designer contact book for their thoughts on the dining table trends inspiring them right now.
Aditi is a homes writer and editor with several years of experience. Her articles, backed by expert insights, offer suggestions aimed at helping readers make the best home design choices. For this article, she spoke to top experts to gauge dining table trends that will be big next year.
10 dining table trends 2023 to watch out for
Of course, it's not all about aesthetics. A dining table can be an expensive investment, so you will also need to take your time in your search to tick off the key criteria you hope the table will satisfy at home. 'Post pandemic, there is an increase in the number of people entertaining at home as we all try to reclaim the lost social opportunities of the last few years,' say Pashmin and Satyajeet, founders of Amoeba Design. 'While aesthetics play an important part, one of the most important dining room ideas we are seeing is increased versatility.'
'The dining table also works as a study/work desk as needed. Eating together with family and friends is one of the most intimate experiences of our lives in any house. It bonds people together and becomes a place of extended conversations.'
The dining table is, undoubtedly, at the heart of this space, so how do you make this piece of furniture feel special?
1. Casual set-ups
Using benches alongside dining tables isn't your typical formal set-up for a dining room. However, designers are turning to benches for this casual feeling they evoke in the design of big and small dining rooms alike.
'What we observed recently was that benches are a great 'democratizing' piece of furniture; 75-year-olds would enjoy it as much as a 7-year-old would,' says Barbora Vokac Taylor, founder of Barbora Vokac Taylor Architect Inc. 'It makes for a wonderful experience during family gatherings and our clients really loved how it would instantly make for a more comfortable and casual atmosphere.'
'Benches tend to lend a casual feeling to more formal spaces and easily transition dining areas into work tables for kids and adults alike to do some work around a communal table,' says Barbora. 'We like making all of the spaces in a home work a bit harder. The dining room can provide more than one function during the day, especially in more urban homes where space is at a premium.'
2. Bold colors
Dining tables tend to live in neutral color palettes – whether it's wood, marble or glass, the most common tabletop materials are subtle additions to your space. However, a new approach designers are taking with dining tables is to go unapologetic with color, making this piece the statement of the space.
For a luxe modern look, make sure you keep the surrounding dining room colors minimal and muted if you choose a bold and bright table, as this is the largest furniture piece in the room and has maximum visual impact.
3. Surfboard tables
Ovals, oblongs, pill-shapes, whatever you call them, these soft-edged, demi-rectangular are the go-to shape for modern designers. Rounded dining tables provide plenty of space to fit guests around, but visually seem to occupy less space because of their rounded corners.
'Surfboard dining tables have been popular for some time now,' says Brooklyn Brownstone designer Jarret Yoshida. 'I think we're all used to seeing a rectangular piece but given how dining rooms aren't closed-off spaces anymore, the need is for pieces that make it easy to get around in the space. The rounded corners create less of a visual block. They also allow for comfortable end table positions which most oval dining tables do not allow.'
These types of tables are also well suited for homes that have small children or seniors. The rounded edges reduce accidents and offer softer surfaces for people to move around in. Round-edged tables, as opposed to rectangular tables with sharp edges, visually look less bulky
Tabletops aside, there's also a growing popularity for alternative table bases creating sculptural forms, as seen in this dining room by interior designer Kelly Wearstler. The bold spherical legs give the furniture an eye-catching look, however, it's the bold use of stripes that really sets this space apart.
We're seeing stripes come through as a design trend across the home, from striped walls to textiles and wallpaper. Dining tables are perhaps the most unexpected instance of the trend, however, they're a signature of Kelly's style, while designers like Patricia Urquiola have re-imaged marble tables using bold stripes, and Brooklyn furniture brand Fort Standard has an incredible striped oak table set that's sure to inspire.
5. Farmhouse style table
When designing a dining room, think about its usability and get furniture that will fulfill those needs perfectly. A modern farmhouse table is suitable for families or for people who regularly entertain. These tables are usually made from oak or pine, making them robust and pleasing to look at.
Before buying this style of table, think about whether to go for a French colonial table that looks more high end, or one with the rustic appeal of an English country farmhouse.
'I love the old soul that a farmhouse table brings to a dining space,' says Lance Thomas, founder of Thomas Guy Interiors. 'It sits humbly in the space as a round version of a farmhouse table. Antique dining tables are also great because you don't have to worry too much about scratching the table or leaving water rings. When a table has been around for over a hundred years, you can rest assured that you are not the first person to ever spill a glass of wine on it. And all of those years of imperfections is what makes an antique dining table perfect.'
6. Live edge wood
One of the current design trends that will spill over to 2023 is the use of live-edge wood. The concept is using one continuous slab of wood as a tabletop that still shows the outline of the tree. The look created is organic, natural, and earthy.
Interestingly, a table like this can fit into any style with the right mix and match. Consider using a live edge tabletop on a metal or glass table frame. This will not only offer a striking contrast in an apartment dining room but give a modern flair to a space that could have seemed too rustic.
'I think you have to be careful when using natural edge dining tables in a space,' says Lance. 'I almost only use them when trying to create a definitive sense of tension and contrast between more contemporary elements in the space. Natural-edge dining tables have an earthiness and rustic nature about them and if there isn't something else in the space contrasting that, I think it tends to push a bit dowdy.'
7. Dark wood styles
Dark wood hasn't always held up to scrutiny in the design world, but this more antique-inspired wood is making a comeback, challenging the blonde style woods that have dominated for the past few years. Wood is, after all, a timeless trend for dining tables.
'We are extremely fond of wood as a material for dining tables, as it is timeless,' say designers Pashmin and Satyajeet of Amoeba Design. 'It adds warmth to the overall space. The tactile experience of wood is always softer; not just to our hands but also to our crockery. Wood ages beautifully and no matter what the interior style is; it will always find its way.'
8. High and low
Create a stylish mix of modern and rustic for an eye-catching design. If you have a vintage table, maybe pair it with modern seaters, and suspend a sleek dining room lighting piece above for a stylish flair.
'For this project, I mixed a 100-year-old table that was made by a relative, with modern white dining chairs from Philippe Starck, and a light fixture from West Elm,' says interior designer Mary Patton. 'A true mix of high, low, and priceless.'
9. Modern banquette seating
With socializing at home continuing to go strong, the need for larger seating spaces is becoming a huge demand. Homeowners are now looking for seating systems other than the main dining table or customized designs for flexibility.
Banquettes are a popular choice and will continue to be so in 2023. Made-to-measure furniture for alcoves or long banquettes that can seat more people than you think are going to rule the roost. These work great as kitchen diner ideas, or as an extra socializing spot in the conventional dining room.
'This was a family room banquette that offered a casual dining space for our clients to share a meal with their family and friends,' says Marie Turner Carson, founder of M. Elle Design. 'The gracious yet cozy seating allows for an intimate setting for two or 10 people. The subtle stripe brings interest to the large banquette.'
10. High end materials
When it comes to a dining table, the material is a big investment, but without exception, marble dining tables are nothing less than a showstopper. If you've fallen in love with the allure of marble, then go for a dining table made with one, and create a statement at home.
Following other design trends, more interesting marbles and granites that our old favorite Carrara are trending. Think bold green and blue marbles, in particular, especially when combined with types that have statement veining.
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For style leaders and design lovers.
Aditi Sharma Maheshwari is an architecture and design journalist with over 10 years of experience. She's worked at some of the leading media houses in India such as Elle Decor, Houzz and Architectural Digest (Condé Nast). Till recently, she was a freelance writer for publications such as Architectural Digest US, House Beautiful, Stir World, Beautiful Homes India among others. In her spare time, she volunteers at animal shelters and other rescue organizations.
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