5 easy-to-implement dining room furniture ideas to refresh your space

These dining room furniture ideas will give your scheme a new lease of life

Dining room furniture ideas
(Image credit: Kristen Scharer Interiors & Sky Blue Media Tours/White Cliff Studios)

When thinking about dining room furniture, your thoughts will probably go to a table and chairs, perhaps a rug and some lighting, but it's easy to forget about the other pieces that can make a dining room feel elevated and more useable.

Dining rooms are centered around socializing – whether you're sitting down with the family or hosting a dinner party, this room should offer a balance of function and style. The furniture you choose is key to this, from a large table and comfy chairs, to surfaces to display decor and store extra dinnerware. 

Whether you're working with a separate room or an open-plan space, these dining room furniture ideas will ensure you are ready for any scale of hosting and, of course, make sure your scheme looks as fabulous as the feasts served in it!

 Dining room furniture ideas to switch up your space

Dining room furniture is more than just the obvious table and chairs. Character, storage and interest can all be added through additional pieces, so consider what style of furniture would make the biggest difference in your space.

1. An antique sideboard

Dining room dressed with an antique sideboard agains the back wall, topped with an oversized mirror

(Image credit: Kristen Scharer Interiors/Sky Blue Media Tours)

It's not unusual to have a lot of empty wall space in a dining room, so introducing small furniture items that sit to one side can add a focal point, as well as space to display decor. 'One of the main furniture pieces I like to include in my dining rooms is a stunning antique sideboard,' says Kristen Scharer of Kristen Scharer Interiors

'The sideboard itself maximizes the functionality of your dining room by allowing space for a gorgeous dessert or beverage display during large gatherings. It also adds space for seasonal decor to enhance your tablespace, as well as dining room storage for special occasion dishware, flatware, and table linens. An antique sideboard is a statement piece that can set the tone for the room – offering a feeling of warmth and tradition for your guests,' she adds.

2. An extendable dining table

Dining room with an extra large wooden dining table

(Image credit: White Cliff Studios)

It simply wouldn't be a dining room without a dining table. Instead of opting for something average, make a statement with a large, well-made wooden table. Not only will it look great, but it will last a lot longer than less sturdy alternatives.

'I love REALLY big long dining tables. They feel so grand,' says Bailey Todd, of White Cliff Studio. A large, beautifully crafted dining table really takes the spotlight in a dining room and offers plenty of space to add dining table decor, so you can get away with a more minimal theme for the rest of the room. 

If you're worried a bigger table will look too crowded, or you feel you don't host often enough to get enough use out of it, consider an adjustable table that can cater to different requirements. 'If you don't have the space for a really large dining table, I love our Double Extendable Table. It's simple and the extension easily folds into itself so you can switch from your everyday table to dinner party mode in a matter of seconds,' Bailey adds.

3. A cabinet that doubles up as a bar cart

Dining room with an industrial-style steel cabinet used for storage and as a bar area

(Image credit: MR Architecture + Decor/Simon Upton)

Being able to add extra storage in your dining room is always a bonus, but you don't want to add so much furniture that the space begins to feel crowded. An easy way to strike a balance here is to introduce dining room furniture that offers more than one function.

David Mann, President of MR Architecture + Decor, added this industrial steel cabinet to his dining room, and has given it two functions to make the most of his space.

'It came with a factory finish and was stripped. This is a useful piece as it is great for storing dishes, linens, extra silverware, etc,' he explains, adding 'In addition, the top can be used for barware and as an area to prepare drinks.'

4. A hutch or sideboard for extra storage

A black and mid-toned wood sideboard in a dining room

(Image credit: White Cliff Studios)

If you're working with a larger dining room, or simply have a lot of extra space, introducing a larger piece of furniture against the wall is often a perfect addition. Here, you can display decorative items, and artworks, or add additional dining room lighting, as well as benefiting from extra storage space.

'If there is room I always suggest having a sideboard or hutch in your dining room. I absolutely love our flotté sideboard. It comes in a few different sizes and even a tall cabinet to match. This allows for everyday storage and this particular one has a mix of hidden storage and open storage to display some of your nicer pieces,' says Bailey Todd. 

'I find this versatile in not just everyday storage but also for dinner parties as you can use the top to set up a fancy cocktail station so that guests don't have to leave the room for refills,' she adds.

5. A serving table

Dining room with a folding wallpaper table being used as a serving station

(Image credit: MR Architecture + Decor/Simon Upton)

Anyone who loves to host dinner parties knows that there is never enough space for all the food, drinks, and serveware on the dining table alone. As such, introducing additional space for the extras can make all the difference, and help your dinner parties flow more seamlessly.

'Here, I used a folding wallpaper table which as a server,' says David Mann. 'This is a useful piece as it provides an additional surface on which to set out food, whether a buffet or hors d’oeuvres,' he adds. The dark, rustic wood of the table adds a lovely contrast to the more minimalist color palette used on the walls.

The great thing about using a table that can be moved and stored away is that you don't have to keep it out all the time if you don't want to. Simply bring it out when the need calls, and put it away when you're in need of extra space. 

Choosing the right dining room furniture is all about balancing visual appeal with practical functions. A dining table and chairs are essentials, but these other suggested additions offer much needed storage in a stylish way. Source pieces that will endure – whether they're antiques or well-crafted contemporary items. And, most importantly, make sure the furniture you choose works for your space and how you use it – there's no need to create a space perfect for hosting if you're not a dinner party thrower!

Molly Malsom
Content Editor

Molly joined the Homes & Gardens interiors team at the start of 2024 as a content editor. Her undergraduate degree was in Magazine Journalism and Production, which she studied at the University of Gloucestershire. Before joining Homes & Gardens, she worked for two interiors titles across both print and digital channels, writing about a range of topics from room design ideas and decorating trends to the best places to source pre-loved homeware.