I Need a Dining Table and Fast

Ok friends…I’m coming here asking for some help because my current workload is making it next to impossible for me to make a decision on anything related to my own house…brain dead as it were.

I have a shoot coming up that requires me to finish off some spaces in my house that are almost there but not quite. In my kitchen area, I have an attached dining room that has now seen three tables come and go. The first was the white tulip table from my old house.

(photo Donna Griffith)

I like the shape but it was making the whole space way too white and black…as well, though the oval works great functionally, it just wasn’t large enough for the space. So…I decided to sell that one off and really wanted something that brought some warmth in…enter wood. I had a harvest long narrow table custom made and was super excited for that situation…but…the finish on it just wasn’t what I had expected and was actually quite grey and in a weird way, didn’t actually look like wood. With this one, the shape and size was perfect, but it just wasn’t aesthetically what I was looking for.

So…I sold that one off and to make due until a decision on something new was made, I brought up the walnut Tulip table from my newly renovated basement…all well and good but now the basement is without a table and as with the white earlier version, it just doesn’t maximize the space. I also find the finish difficult to manage with the kids and their endless spills.

(photo Stephani Buchman)

As you can see, the walls are white, the chairs and cabinet are black.

The attached kitchen has more of the same (subway tiles, black cabinets, marble like counter) with a little brass and raw oak thrown in.

So what do I do for a table?!?!?!

My first thought was something old and made of wood.

But then I browsed this huge collection of designer dining tables and saw this beauty…

…which reminded me of my current favourite coffee table from West Elm that I’m more than a little obsessed with…

And I think the glass could actually be super nice in there. The brass detailing would also pick up on my island. Also, glass is easy to wipe up and clean, though when it’s dirty, looks dirty lol.

It’s a definite contender.

Others on my top five consideration list…

1. A stunning reproduction Refractory table

2. The oval version (two legs) of this beautiful Juno table

3. The most ridiculously fantastical antique table I’ve ever seen that I spied at an outdoor market, and then tracked down to a store in Toronto…

…but is easily 3x my budget.

4. Something super simple and raw like this vintage oak number…

5. The Restoration Hardware raw oak loveliness that we used at Project Brownstone

(photo Nicole Cohen)

I’d love love your thoughts on this. Pick a favourite and let me know pretty please!


  1. Have you checked out the tables at Artemano?? Some of them are similar to the RH one you used πŸ˜‰

  2. Daiva

    I love the glass table. I mean I really love the glass table, but I also love the raw simple oak table. When my kids were young I can’t tell you how many wood surface tables were damaged by nail polish, markers, you name it, so I’d go with the glass.

  3. Kirstin H

    I like the super simple raw oak and then buff it with a French paste wax for a beautiful patina. Then, reupholster those black chairs with a fabric that is black, white, and a pop of a signature color. The fabric needs to better tie together the walls, trim, and your kitchen colors.

    I always love modern glass tables with the right chairs (and love a mix) but I don’t think those black chairs are going to work well with those glass tables. Now, a Louis XVI style chair with a very contemporary fabric would work with those glass tables.

  4. Kirstin H

    Or, find an elongated oval Louis Phillipe style table and have it lacquered in a satin finish in a warm white or a signature color. That would bring the area into a modern Swedish or modern French approach. The contrasting leg styles of your chairs need to be considered and the cleaner lines of a Louis Phillipe style table would keep it from looking too cluttered. (I liked the tulip table for that reason). We found a great Louis Phillipe style table on Craigslist and had it professionally lacquered and I couldn’t be happier. We had glass pieces cut for the top to protect it from chips while kids are still at home.

  5. Nell

    My vote is for the refractory table. I love the warmth of the wood and it compliments the chairs without being matchy. Maybe balance it with something round on top for display since you have a lot of squares happening.

  6. Hannah Dee

    I’m all about the refractory as its sculptural shape plays nicely with the other shapes in there but in a nice contrasty way, and the wood tones will just warm the whole deal up.

    Second on my list would be the glass for it’s clean lines and great shaped base. It would have been first, but glass scratches and it’s a bear to keep clean. It would feel so open with glass, but still have some weight because of the scale and geometry.

    There’s my 2 cents πŸ™‚

  7. Simone

    All amazing choices but my vote is on the glass custom! You’ll get the size exactly right and a touch of glamour… plus imagine all the fabulous linens you could use if you wanted to swap up the πŸ‘€ look

  8. I like the glass. The room is fairly traditional and the glass would add a contemporary edge that suits your style.

  9. Jeanne London

    I am loving the 63″ black and white Vintage French round table at Houz. Also in black.
    Also the Cameron in marble and gold!

  10. hjc

    Just my thoughts (since you asked :-). My kids are grown and I would still not want a glass table, since I realize I’m the source of many a mess and I would not want to be as vigilant with cleaning glass would require. Also, with the glass, you would still have the feeling of a mostly black and white room, as those elements would still be seen through the glass. I know it would add a certain reflection and gravitas to the space, but still. The wood tables would/could all work, my favorite being #4 for its simplicity and contrast with the turned legs of your chairs. To my eye though, the wood tables might blend in with the floor too much, still leaving you a mostly black and white room. What about a painted table? I see quite a few poppy colors on your chair upholstery…perhaps pick out a bright pinkish-red or green or whatever you like and make it a statement piece. I would still favor the clean-lined look of #4 for this treatment. A wood top with a painted base could be very attractive as well. Whatever you choose will look great, I’m sure!

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