Designers Diary – Round VS Rectangular

Written by Tara – our Interior Design Assistant 

Tara our Interior Design Assistant has recently been looking into the world of dining tables and offers her advice on which might be best for you.  Find out more below…. 

Which type of dining table is best for you?


Dining tables are a significant focal point in the dining or the living room. They are also one of the main social hubs. Choosing the right shape when buying a new table will ensure practicality and a coherent aesthetic in your home.

The main criteria when deciding between rectangular and round are the shape of the room, its size, its primary use (daily or occasionally) and the number of people you want to seat.

Rectangular Table

This type of table works better in rectangular dining rooms and in open plan spaces, as it will act as a divider between the different functions of the room. They will fit particularly well in rooms where the architectural details, furniture and décor feature straight lines and sharp edges, creating an aesthetically pleasing and coherent look. They are best suited to large rooms as they tend to take more space than round tables and they can look out of scale and too big in smaller spaces. They are ideal for 4-5 people and more and are particularly suited for large families that like to sit at the dinner table regularly or people that often host big social gatherings and dinners. 

Many manufacturers offer the option to buy extending tables, allowing to go from a 6-seater to an 8-seater, or 8 to 10 when required. It’s also possible to use benches with a rectangular table to seat even more people than you would with dining chairs. This type of table is ideal for meals with several dishes and formal dinner settings.  However, it’s important to note that this option is less socially inclusive and doesn’t encourage group discussions, but it does facilitate private conversations because it naturally separates larger groups into smaller subgroups. In homes with young children, the edges will need to be childproofed.

More Traditional with old world look

Round Table

Comfortable with soft finishes

Round tables are better suited to square rooms as well as round or hexagonal-shaped rooms, as they will act as a central focal point and will stand equidistant to all walls. They pair well with curvy and round-shaped architectural details (such as columns), light fixtures, furniture, and décor. They work well for smaller spaces, as they tend to take less space than rectangular tables. When placed in big rooms such as grand dining rooms or big open plans, they tend to get lost in it and have an underwhelming effect. They are ideal for smaller households of 4 or less, however, some models are extendable and can offer seating for 6 people when needed, which is practical for occasional guests. This type of table is ideal for meals with one or two dishes and for sharing food items (such as pizza, fondue, hot pots…). This setting offers a more casual, cozy and intimate vibe that makes it easier to engage in collective discussions since guests are close to one another but also have enough personal space. That also makes it a good option for boarding games fans. Pedestals are a great option as it creates more leg room, four-legged round tables can feel a bit cramped in that aspect.

Whatever the design, style, finish and colour, we are sure we can tick all your boxes with our amazing suppliers that we currently purchase from.  Styles and designs are updated all the time, so please ask when you visit our Design Office in Bristol as we are sure we can fulfil your style ideas on the day