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Small Dining Room Ideas

Having a dedicated space in your home where you can sit down and eat is important. Aside from the obvious health benefits, this is an area where we can catch up with family and friends, and can enjoy a celebration or a tasty weekday supper. Eating in the lounge in front of the TV can be bad for the digestion, not to mention your upholstery. However not all of us are blessed with a large dining room, which means making the most of a smaller space – either a dedicated room or an area attached to the lounge or kitchen. Here are some ideas for styling a small dining room.
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Choose space-saving dining room furniture

Small dining room ideas come in all shapes, but not sizes – you have to think about scale, and choose dining room furniture that doesn’t take up too much space. Luckily, manufacturers have already considered your concerns, with neatly sized dining room tables and chairs to suit.

Your quest for compact furniture will undoubtedly start with a space-saving dining table. These might be considered space-saving for a number of reasons – they could simply be smaller than usual, or have a slender design, or be something you can easily store away when not in use.

A folding dining table and chairs can be taken out at mealtimes. Similarly, if you invest in an extendable dining table, you have something only made larger when guests come to visit. Some extend with an extra central leaf, while others have an end leaf or are flip top, so they double in size. Extra stackable or folding dining chairs can be stored away until needed.

Round dining tables tend to take up less space than the square variety. Also consider furniture with clean edges and simple, uncomplicated lines – the modern industrial style, for example.

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Find a colour scheme to suit the space

Colour contributes to mood, and also the feeling of space. Generally, a lighter scheme makes a room feel larger, while going darker does the reverse, but this can work well if you prefer a cosier, more intimate setting.

If you want to create a feeling of more space, as many considering dining room ideas for small spaces will, then the classic route might be white or off-white for the walls. Also go with a white dining table and chairs. With a single-colour decorating scheme, the backdrop appears to recede, making the room seem larger. Mirrors, or a high gloss dining table that reflects light also work well.

To enhance the intimacy and cosiness of a small dining room, try dark blue on the walls, with a similarly dark dining table set. Add a low-hanging ceiling light above the table in the centre, or even a chandelier, as the final touch for a slick, opulent space.

Whether you are styling a separate room, albeit small, or an area attached to your lounge or kitchen, use its own distinct colour scheme – light or dark – to differentiate and highlight the space. Wallpaper or wall art can help to establish a theme for the area too.

A great trick is to make cabinets and sideboards the same colour as the walls, so they blend into the background and appear less imposing. Free up more floor space by using wall-hung lighting or ceiling lamps only.

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Use the space you have wisely

Wall-mounted shelves can be used to display plants, ornaments or condiments. Or why not try a floating shelf along one wall of the kitchen that can double as a breakfast bar? Slide some bar stools underneath, and you have an instant place to eat. Try a bar table too, and look for stools with slim, spindle legs, which feel minimal and compact.

A small, bistro-style space-saving dining table, with just a couple of dining chairs, can be a chic, practical choice for a couple living together. Less is definitely more in this instance.

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Create a dining area in an unexpected space

If you don’t have a separate dining room, and the lounge or kitchen isn’t suitable for a dining table set, then take a look around your home. Are there any underused spaces or nooks that might work?

You might have a large hallway, or a space by a window in another room. It could be a permanent or temporary space, or completely ad hoc, with a folding dining table and chairs set up only when guests are coming over. Also try a slimline space-saving dining table in a corridor, but use it to display photos and ornaments until it’s required for eating.

If you have a space by a window, this can be a pleasurable area to eat in due to the natural light. A round table and chairs would fit easily into a bay window area, or use a dining bench or two if it’s a square nook, with the largest square table you can find to fill out the space. Then hang a pendant ceiling light above the table to make it feel extra-special.

The usual dining room ideas for small spaces apply, so keep the area clutter-free. If it’s a temporary or ad hoc dining space, you will want to move or fold away furniture as easily as possible.

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