Whatever you use your dining table for – be it family dinners, grand feasts, homework, craft or regular entertaining – a good table should be adaptable, robust and fit your needs.

Before you buy, you need to consider how many spaces at the table you'll usually need and what type of room your dining table will be in. Extending tables are popular for being versatile, and some even extend in various stages meaning you will always have the perfect fit. Whereas round tables with folding sides adapt well to small or unusual spaces, they should be light enough to move around and usually suit between two to four people.

Long traditional tables are better for separate dining rooms or as part of an open-plan kitchen where they can lend themselves to daily meals as well as special occasions.


Finally, if you hate table legs getting in the way of your guests, opt for a pedestal design or angled legs that give more room and comfort.

Dutchbone class dining table: From £739, Cuckooland

This sophisticated table in acacia wood and brass is bound to impress your dinner guests. The top has wood pieces laid in a herringbone pattern for a grand antique feel. The tubular metal legs are slim but supportive, and make a modern contrast. The small size is 180cm long, comfortable for up to six. There’s a larger version available that is 220cm long. 

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Woud diagonal dining table: From £1,249, Utility Design

Inspired by scaffolding on construction sites, this table by the Danish company has a distinctly modern, architectural feel. The top is oak-veneered MDF and the metal legs are powder coated; both with a smooth continuous finish. It comes black or in a striking blue, with a matching bench available. At 180cm long, it seats four to six people. It’s a good casual option for kitchen and dining spaces. 

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Tom Dixon screw table: £1,200, Nest

Marble is notoriously expensive, but it makes a beautifully smooth and elegant surface to dine at. Most marble tables are priced far north of £1000, but this compact one by British designer Tom Dixon is a good price for the quality. The top is polished white marble, and the tube base is brass. With a 90-cm diameter, it’s made for two. Use it to create a focus in an open-plan space.

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Sweetpea & Willow grand refectory table: £817, Sweetpea & Willow

This solid, no-frills table looks made for a feast. Details like the grand turned legs, knotted wood and rough inlaid top give it a real sense of robustness. The whitewashed finish gives it a fresh look and keeps it from being overbearing. It’s grand in size too, at 220cm long it gives eight diners plenty of space to tuck in. Delivery takes eight to 10 weeks.

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Myakka Bathampton gate-leg round dining table: £599, Myakka

Gate-leg tables function in three ways: as a console, in a semi-circle that fits against a wall, and as a circular table. This one makes a good everyday table for the kitchen that can seat up to six when fully extended. It’s simple in style with some traditional detailing – like the turned legs painted in pale grey, and the waxed natural finish to the mango wood top.

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Perch and Parrow Sienna extendable table: £650, Perch and Parrow

This table is a reasonable price given its size. At 90 x 186cm (extending up to 236cm) it has good capacity for seating 8-10 guests, although the width is a little lacking for putting serving dishes down as well as table settings. It looks elegant, has a strong frame, and slim legs painted to contrast the natural oak top. Matching chairs are available (two for £320), as well as a light grey version.

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Heal’s fawn tink table blue: £1,499, Heal’s

The frame of the fawn tink table is a mini-marvel of engineering. The four wing-like legs are made in oak, and are supported by chromed steel bars. The unusual structure gives the whole table a feeling of lightness, sculptural interest and plenty of room for guests’ legs. The slim top is finished in easy-to-clean linoleum. It seats 4-6, and there’s a matching chair which echoes the angles of the table (£399).

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Habitat parker 8-12 person extending table: £995, Habitat

The popular Parker table now comes in a walnut stain, as well as natural oak finish. It has the solid feel you’d expect from a wooden table, but the slim legs and central bar means it’s not bulky to look at. The extra table leaf stows underneath the table – practical for always having to hand when the occasion calls. Benches, rather than chairs, work best with this long refectory-style of table.

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Next Stockholm 6-8 seater dining table: £350, Next

Minimal Scandi-style often comes at a price, so it’s good to see Next offer a more affordable take. The top of the Stockholm table is satisfyingly thin, and the curved profile of the tapering legs helps keep the piece looking modern too. It extends between 148 and 168cm making it comfortable for 6-8. The quality of the finish isn’t up to the standard of pricier tables, but this is still a good budget buy.

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Neptune carter 4-8 seater dining table: £1,625, Neptune

The attention to detail on the carter table is what makes this simple table worth the investment. It has a strong steel frame that’s been given a smooth powder coated finish that contrasts beautifully with the oak surface. The table is simple to extend – sliding steel rails allow easy extension, they fix in place with a spring-loaded latch. The oak leaves come separately to avoid adding extra bulk to the standard tabletop, but the grain of oak matches seamlessly. 

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The Verdict: Best dining tables

The Class table by Dutchbone is a good mix of vintage charm and modern looks. Dedicated dining spaces tend to get overlooked in favour of open-plan living in today’s homes, but the elegance of this table really commands a room of its own. It’s also surprisingly well-priced for a piece of statement furniture.

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