Small dining room ideas

Small dining room ideas with big appeal

In today’s busy world, there may be only a few opportunities throughout the day for your whole family to be together at home. Between work, school, hobbies, and more, everyone is coming and going and there aren’t too many times when your whole family will be in one place. 

Mealtime is one of those opportunities. In particular, dinnertime is a chance for your family to spend time together, and that’s why having a nice mealtime setup is important in your home. If you have a small dining area, whether it is a separate room or just a spot in your kitchen, it can feel difficult to create a space that is inviting and stylish where your family can gather. 

But we’ve compiled some of our favourite small dining room ideas and tips that will make it simple to bring a welcoming, cosy vibe to your mealtimes. 

Opt for an extendable table

When you’re deciding on the best small dining room ideas for your home, start with the most essential piece of furniture for the space: your dining table. If you’re working with a compact space, you don’t want to choose an oversized table that will make the room feel cramped. 

But what if you have a large family or frequent guests that you want to accommodate at dinner? An extendable dining table is an ideal solution as you can change the size depending on how many people you need to seat. 

An extending dining table is particularly good if your dining area is a part of your kitchen rather than a separate room — this way, it is not constantly taking up the maximum amount of space when not in use. 

Or choose a circular table

A rectangular dining table offers a stately, imposing look, but when you want small dining room ideas that will help you make the most of your space, you might instead consider a circular table. 

A round dining table lets you squeeze more seats around the table, and if you choose a pedestal base there is more room for everyone’s knees beneath. Plus, the lack of sharp edges means you won’t bump into it when you’re walking in a tight space. 

Because everyone is facing each other the same amount, a round dining table is also one of our favourite small dining room ideas for the way it enhances the social aspect of your mealtimes. 

Consider utilising a corner

In a traditional dining room, the dining table is situated at the centre of the room, to reflect its status as the focal point of the space. But when it comes to maximising the use of a compact area, you need to get creative. 

Instead of positioning your dining table in the middle of your dining room or the centre of your kitchen’s dining space, utilise a corner and shape your seating area around it. 

Consider a dining bench or banquette-style seating that will let you place your table closer to the wall, and take the opportunity to create a cosy nook ideal for an intimate meal. 

Keep your colour palette light

One of the best small dining room ideas is a design element that holds true for any compact space: use your colour choices to ensure the room feels light and airy. Of course, if your dining area has good natural light, you should make the most of that with window treatments that let the light in. 

Light walls and light coloured chair upholstery can help brighten up a small dining room, especially if you prefer to have a more traditional dark wood dining table. 

This also provides a great base for bringing a pop of colour to the space through vibrant table linens or artistic accents. 

Read our guide to some of our favourite dining table and colour palette pairings for more inspiration. 

dining tables and dining room colours

Define your dining space

If you have an open plan house or if your dining area is part of your kitchen, then creating zones is an important element of your interior design. Defining your dining area helps to ensure balance throughout the room, rather than everything being squashed together. 

Use a large area rug beneath your table to delineate your dining space — make sure that the rug is large enough for the table and all chairs to sit atop it, even when the chairs are pulled out.
You can also section off a dining area with an accent wall using a different colour or wallpaper than the rest of the room. Creating this special, function-driven space makes it a welcoming spot for your family to sit down to a meal. 

Sit at the bar

If you’re really short on space in your kitchen that also serves as your dining area, why not forego a dining table altogether? Contemporary, chic, and comfortable, substituting a counter for a kitchen table is one of the best small dining room ideas for a multifunctional space.

Not only does a counter-height table let you opt for minimalist bar stools that take up less space than traditional dining chairs, but it can also pull double duty as a kitchen island for food prep before mealtime. 

If you’re really pressed for space, you can also DIY a wall-mounted table with a sturdy shelf and a set of bar stools that can tuck away beneath it when not in use. 

Make your small dining room ideas a reality with help from Corcoran’s

Whether you’re outfitting a compact dining room, setting up a dining area in your kitchen, or turning an unused corner into a cosy breakfast nook, you can find the perfect dining room furniture and accessories at Corcoran’s.

Shop dining tables and chairs, bar stools and benches, and all the accessories you need to decorate a small space with big style. Shop in-store or online now and turn mealtime into the perfect family meeting place.