15 Types of Tables to Consider for Your Next Interior Design Refresh
Choose the right table for every room in your home with this guide.
When it comes to picking the perfect table, there are important elements homeowners should consider, such as the space available, decor style, and needed functionality. Choosing among table types might seem like a tedious process, but having the right table for the right space can have a huge effect on a room’s design and capabilities.
Mariya Snisar, head of interior design at Renowell, says tables can be a great addition to decorate and personalize a space, especially once you add personal touches to the right tabletop. “I’m a fan of greenery or flowers—adding a natural element in the form of fresh blooms or greenery brings life to the table and softens the overall look,” Snisar says.
Dive in and get to know the different types of tables, including how to choose the best one for your space, whether you’re looking for a living room table, office tables, or other table types.
1. Coffee Table
Coffee tables are low-sitting tables meant for seating areas such as a living room or family room. These tables are the right height for family and guests to easily place beverages and items on the surface from a nearby sofa or chair. Seating is often centered around the coffee table, which makes this piece of furniture the focal point of many spaces.
Best For: Living rooms, family rooms, or in another space that has a designated sitting area with two or more chairs.
Our Recommendation: Charlotte Coffee Table at Target for $106.39
We love the walnut finish of this coffee table and the bottom shelf storage for items like remotes or coasters.
2. Dining Table
Many people are familiar with dining tables, since these are considered a home essential. Unsurprisingly, dining tables are meant for dining and meals. In general, dining tables are more formal than some, and typically feature in a dining room. Dining tables are anywhere from 36 to 40 inches wide and can vary in length (some tables seat up to 14 people). Table shapes range from rectangular to round, square, or oval-shaped.
Best For: Formal dining rooms or a large space within a kitchen.
Our Recommendation: Bauer Extendable Dining Table at Wayfair for $1,099.99
This table evokes French Provincial style with its blonde finish and turned legs, and its removable leaf is a handy option when hosting guests.
3. Console Table
Console tables are long, thin tables that can easily be used in many areas of your home for storage and decoration. Snisar says console tables are her favorite to style due to their versatility. These tables are about 3 feet high, a perfect height for displaying photos or decorative items. Console tables often serve as a hallway or foyer table, or are positioned against the back of a sofa.
Best For: Adding interest and depth to narrow spaces, like a hallway or entryway.
Our Recommendation: Aaryanna Console Table at Wayfair for $226.99
Snisar says the best type of console table is one that prioritizes storage, like the extra shelf on this table. “I recommend ones with ample surface space and, if possible, storage options such as drawers or shelves,” Snisar says.
A nightstand also is known as a bedside table due to its purpose as a place to reach items from the comfort of the bed. Nightstands typically match the height of the top of the mattress and hold items such as a lamp, books, and a phone. Storage is also key with nightstands, and most styles include drawers or shelves to hold other items.
Best For: Matching nightstands on either side of a bed are functional and create a symmetrical, clean bedroom look.
Our Recommendation: Mid Century Modern Nightstand at Target for $104.99
This sleek, retro nightstand features two drawers, providing plenty of storage and minimizing open shelving that can easily accumulate dust.
5. Folding Table
A foldable table functions exactly as the name suggests. These tables fold in half and are usually light enough to set up, take down, and transport quickly. Folding tables are made of lightweight plastic and metal and are often used for parties as temporary display or dining tables.
Best For: Adding dining, serving, or gathering surfaces for parties.
Our Recommendation: Lifetime Rectangle Folding Table at Walmart for $60.38
While this option is a bit pricier than the average folding table, it has three adjustable height settings to make it more versatile for any situation.
6. Side Table
Side tables, sometimes called end tables, are some of the most versatile since they can add function in almost any room or setting. Side tables sit against the sides of chairs, sofas, or walls to give seated occupants an area to set a drink or a book. Small end tables include the C-table, which can slide under a chair or sofa to save space. Some side tables come with shelves and drawers to provide additional storage for items like remotes, blankets, toys, or magazines. Side tables with more decorative features or unique materials may be called accent tables.
Best For: Use in living rooms, family rooms, or anywhere that has seating that could benefit from having a table nearby.
Our Recommendation: Round Side Table at Amazon for $39.99
We love the clean lines and bottom shelf of this side table for a practical and chic addition to any space.
7. Kitchen Table
Similar to a dining table, a kitchen table is meant for eating meals, but it may also be used as a utility table for daily tasks such as doing homework or paying bills. What sets kitchen tables apart from dining tables is that kitchen types are generally much smaller and usually less formal since they sit in the kitchen instead of a formal dining room. Kitchen tables come in all shapes, including square, round, oval, and rectangle.
Best For: For a small area in the kitchen such as in the corner or near a window for casual dining or a mini-office space.
Our Recommendation: Altamae Dining Table at Wayfair for $178.99
The diameter of this small breakfast table is just under 40 inches, making it a stylish choice for a kitchen tight on space.
Workbenches, despite their name, aren’t benches for sitting but are tables meant for home improvement projects. Workbenches, or work tables, are known for holding toolboxes and power tools, and for providing a workspace on which homeowners can complete DIY projects. Since workbenches see more laborious projects, such as woodworking, they’re typically kept in workshops or garages.
Best For: Serious DIYers who need storage and workspace in a garage or shed.
Our Recommendation: Top Height Adjustable Workbench at Wayfair for $166.68
We love this workbench’s adjustable height and that it includes power outlets.
9. Bar Table
Bar tables are a bit higher than the average table since they’re meant to imitate sitting at a restaurant bar on a barstool. Homeowners who want to create a home bar can use one of these tables to create the effect. Bar tables also work in small kitchens as breakfast bars if there’s no room for a traditional kitchen table.
Best For: Small dining spaces, such as a kitchen or basement bar.
Our Recommendation: Breakfast High Bar Table at Amazon for $175
The pipe table legs add character to this bar table that would work perfectly for a modern, industrial-style home.
10. Picnic Table
Picnic tables are often seen in parks or public outdoor spaces and can be recognized by the bench seating that’s connected to the tabletop as one piece. Picnic tables are traditionally made from wood, but some modern styles are made from resin or plastic.
Best For: Outdoor dining tables on patios or in backyards.
Our Recommendation: Yellow Pine Picnic Table at Lowe’s for $149
This outdoor table has the classic wooden picnic table style, and we love the price even more.
11. Patio Table
Patio tables are used outdoors for dining and socializing al fresco. These tables are usually made of plastic, glass, iron, or another outdoor-friendly material. They can vary in size from small bistro tables to larger, outdoor dining tables and sometimes come with an umbrella opening for adding shade.
Best For: Outdoor entertaining spaces, such as a patio, deck, or gazebo.
Our Recommendation: Gabar Glass Outdoor Dining Table at Wayfair for $179.99
The tempered glass table top won’t get too hot in the summer sun and the umbrella hole in the middle of the table provides an option for shade.
12. Card Table
Card tables have been used for centuries to play card games. These tables are often smaller in size so the people gathered around the table can easily reach the center to reach cards, dice, or playing boards. Today, small, square folding tables often are used as card tables since most homes don’t have dedicated parlors or game rooms as they did in the 1700s and 1800s.
Best For: Playing card or board games with three to five people.
Our Recommendation: Indoor Outdoor Card Table and Four Chairs at Walmart for $75
This folding card table is easy to set up and take down and with four chairs included, it’s a great price.
13. Sewing Table
Sewing tables look similar to desks because they often have multiple drawers and a surface to place a sewing machine and tools to complete sewing projects. A unique feature of sewing tables is that they often come with a drop-leaf attachment to add additional space if needed.
Best For: Use in a craft room or playroom to store art or sewing supplies.
Our Recommendation: Craft Table on Wheels at Amazon for $291.71
We love the pull-out drawer that provides additional surface space and clever storage.
14. Drop-Leaf Table
Drop-leaf tables are the ultimate space savers thanks to the clever design that allows one or both sides of the table to fold down. The table can then be placed up against the wall to open up the area when the table is not in use. These tables come in a variety of styles, from modern to traditional.
Best For: For as-needed use in small spaces, such as an apartment kitchen.
Our Recommendation: Winsome Wood Hannah Dining Table at Amazon for $176.42
This classic light oak table suits a variety of home styles and the drop leaf on both sides makes it a practical space-saving item as well.
15. Pedestal Table
Pedestal tables are easily identified by the distinct pedestal base that supports the round tabletop. Pedestal tables are often used as dining tables, but a smaller one can double as an accent table as well. When styling such a table, Snisar says to take the table’s size into account. “Your centerpiece must complement the size of the table. If it’s too small, it can get lost. If it’s too large, it might overwhelm the space,” Snisar says.
Best For: To stand out in calm, neutral spaces so the eye is drawn to the pedestal design.
Our Recommendation: QQXX Round Wood Dining Table at Amazon for $399.99
We love the elegance of this table’s fluted pedestal base.
The prices listed here are accurate as of publication on 11/7/23.