Outdoor Dining tables and chairs come in a wide variety of shapes styles, sizes, and materials to suit the needs of just about anyone.
Bistro sets are small tables that generally come with seating for 2. They are small enough to fit just about any size of patio or garden room.
Dining sets come in round, oval, square, and rectangular shapes, and often come with extension leaves for variable sizes. These sets generally seat from 4 to 12 people.
Bar-height sets, which come in 39-inch and 42-inch heights (as opposed to the 28-inch to 30-inch heights of standard dining tables), are made to seat 2 to 4 people.
In choosing a table to buy, the main things to know are how many people will you normally seat, and what style of chair do you prefer. Wide swiveling chairs or armchairs can take up to 25% more space than a standard chair.
Here is a short “table size-to-people” guide that can help you in your table choice:
* 30-inch to 36-inch-long tables seat 2 people.
* 38-inch to 48-inch-long tables seat 4.
* 54-inch to 60-inch-long tables seat 4 to 6.
* 72-inch to 80-inch-long tables seat 6 to 10 (even more with extension leaves).
Table and chair materials run from exotic tropical hardwoods, to powder-coated metals, to all-weather wicker. Always choose outdoor furniture made of a material based on weight, style, and most importantly, durability. Avoid patio furniture that will rust, splinter, or rot easily.
If your style of entertaining involves hours around the dining table, or you do not have another place to sit after dinner, buy dining chairs with soft outdoor cushions for extended comfort. Choose from contemporary, classic, tropical, or rustic cushion designs that fit your overall patio design.
If you need to move your patio furniture often to meet your space needs, lighter weight pieces are the easiest to move. The main drawback to lighter outdoor furniture is the chance of furniture pieces blowing around on very windy days.
If needing a table for a particular outdoor event, you can always use an indoor table, folding or card table, or a picnic table to help. Just cover the table with a thick tablecloth for a very nice look. A tablecloth covering a long table makes a great a buffet-style table setting. Or try using a quilted blanket to cover a picnic table.
As for picnic tables, they are no longer as drab and plain as they once were. Today they are made in a variety of sizes and designs, and actually complement patios and decks of all types.
Billy Bristol is the editor and chief BBQ pitmaster for TexasBarbeques, an outdoor cooking and entertaining website devoted to backyard living. TexasBarbeques has been providing barbecue recipes, cooking tips, grilling techniques, and backyard entertainment ideas since 2005.
Texas Barbeque [http://www.TexasBarbeques.com]
Billy is also the writer and editor for YourHomeBar, a website devoted to Home Bar Designs, Ideas, and Plans that make your home entertainment experience richer.
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