Furniture & Design

7 Inspiring Ideas to Decorate your Dining Table

Saturday, January 2nd, 2016



If you are like most people your dining table is, well, somewhat forgotten. It does its job, doesn’t ask for much, and like a well-behaved middle child it can be somewhat (and sadly) overlooked. Most of us look at our dining room table every day, but don’t take steps to bring it into our home decoration strategies. Yet, your dining table likely has a great deal of wonderful untapped potential and it deserves its own blog post.


The typical dining table takes up a lot of space in the average home. But with the right approach and strategy, it can be transitioned from forgotten to fabulous! Once you start using the seven tips we’ve outlined in this article, you’ll never want to go back. Let’s take a look at some fun, festive and creative ways to infuse some life into your dining table.


Tip One-Go Seasonal


easter-eggs-828955_960_720One of the easiest ways to breath new life into your dining room table is to simply “go seasonal.” Holiday themes ranging from Christmas or Hanukah to Halloween, New Years celebration, Valentine’s Day, Easter and the light and festive colors of summer are all great starting points. From this simple foundation, you can build interesting and fun ideas.


Tip Two-Glasswear, Vases and Plants


Glass wear, such as vases or other containers and plants such as flowers are an easy way to transform your dining room table. Bring natural beauty to your table doesn’t have to be difficult. Two or three short vases or other glass wear combined with seasonal flowers or plants can not only transform your dining table but your entire dining room. One word of caution: some plants are poisonous to pets, so stick with safe flowers and plants.


By opting for seasonal choices, your dining room table will have a fresh and vibrant look year round. If you really want to impress friends and family alike, integrate your dining table glass and plant choices with other décor in your living room. The end result is a subtle but well thought out look.


Tip Three-Go Beyond Considering What Goes On Top of Your Table


A great rug can do wonders to help integrate your dining table into the rest of your home. Decorating your dining table isn’t just about what goes on top of your table, but also how you frame the areas around your table.


A well designed rug that has been chosen to complement the colors you’ve chosen for the decorations on top of your table will work wonders. Many people skip rugs under the dining table, but a rug helps to add color, warmth and charm in an unexpected way. Adding a rug to your dining room, specifically under your dining table, serves to frame your dining area and, in the process, adds a level of elegance.



Tip Four-Candles, Candelabras and Mood Lighting

Much like rugs are overlooked in relation to the dining room table, the same can often be stated for dining room lighting. Any table top decorations you select will benefit from adding the right kind of lighting whether it is a chandelier, candlesticks or candelabras or track mood lighting from above. The combination of the right rug and the right lighting choice can quickly and inexpensively elevate any dining experience.


Tip Five-Small Artwork



Small artwork whether in the form of sculptures, glass, such as blown glass, carved wood or even small postcard sized and framed paints or artistic photos can add an unexpected but welcomed addition to your dining table. The trick to effectively using this tip is to think small and understated. Art pieces included on a dining table should by design be small for a range of practical reasons. While using this tip might take a little extra work, it is well worth the effort and artwork can deliver an impressive “wow” factor.


Tip Six-Selecting Placemats


Placemats can be a quick way to transform your dining table. Since placemats run the color spectrum and come in all kinds of styles, materials and textures, it is possible to create a highly customized look and feel. Think about the palette of your dining room and your chairs when selecting your placemats.


Tip Seven-The Table as Art


Some tables are works of art all on their own. Selecting a new table is often just what is needed to change the look of an entire dining room. If you have an old and worn out dining table, a table that doesn’t work with your décor or simply don’t like the table you have, it’s time to consider making a change. After all, the tips we’ve outlined here will work much better when matched with a beautiful table!


Used together, these seven tips will definitely help you decorate your dining table like never before. All too often the dining table is overlooked and it is quite a shame. The large and usually central location of the typical dining table means that it has tremendous decorating potential. If you are interested in making your dining experience something more, then you’ll find that these fun and easy tips can transform the look and feel of your dining table. From mood lighting to placement selection to the use of rugs and artwork, there are plenty of options for getting more out of your dining table every day of the year.

How to Determine Table Seating Capacity for Table Top Sizes

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015


Each table style and size has varying seating capacities.  As a rough/general rule, every 24″ of table edge length will accommodate one chair.  For example, a 42 x 72″ table will accommodate 8 chairs.  One on each end (42″/24″ = 1.75, one chair)  and three on each side (72″/24″ = 3, three chairs).  For exceptions to this rule, please read on below.


Trestle Tables


60” tables can only fit one chair between the trestle legs


66” tables – some can fit two chairs between the trestle legs, others only one


Product codes that start with CWA will fit one chair
Product codes that start with WPA will fit two chairs
Product codes that start with NWA will fit two chairs


72” and longer tables can fit two chairs between the trestle legs.


As a general rule trestle legs are usually set in about 18” from the end of the table. Anytime one or more leaves are added to the table the distance from the end of the table to the trestle legs increases as the table halves move apart to make room for the leaves.


As another general rule the overhang on the table’s short sides is about 7 to 10 inches from the trestle leg. The base size stays the same for either a 42” wide or 48” wide table top. On the 42” wide top the overhang will be about 7”, on the 48” wide top the overhang will be about 10”.


See our Trestle Table Seating Tips post to learn how chairs that overlap the trestle supports can not be fully pushed in under the table when expanded with leaves.





Round Tables


A 36” round table will take 3 to 4 chairs; with two leaves you have an oval table that can fit 6 chairs


A 42” round table will take 4 chairs; with two leaves you have an oval table that can fit 6 chairs


A 48” round table will take 4 to 5 chairs; with two leaves you have an oval table that can fit 8 chairs


A 54” round table will take 5 to 6 chairs; with two leaves you have an oval table that can fit 8 chairs





Leg & Pedestal Tables


The general rule is two feet per person. So a 72” table will seat 3 people on each side, 1 on each end which comes to 8 chairs.


When you add 2 leaves you add 2 more chairs, likewise when you add 4 leaves you add 4 more chairs.


For example: a 72” table with 4 leaves goes from 6 people to 10 people around the table.





Trestle Table Seating Tips

Tuesday, November 24th, 2015


A trestle-style dining table is the pride of a home, but it merits extra consideration to fit into a dining room design. The trestles affect how many chairs fit around your table.
Buchanan Trestle Dining Table from Amish Furniture Factory 
Trestles create bulk under the table, so you will be able to push some chairs all the way in, while others will only fit in as far as the trestle. You may like that, but it means you have to allot more space for your table and chairs.
Different numbers of table leaves change the distance between the trestles. In this way, certain table sizes allow chairs to fit around the trestles instead of facing them directly. Try experimenting with different table sizes to see how you like the way the seating fits.
A trestle table is such a robust piece of heirloom furniture, many people choose them and are willing to try different seating arrangements. We have an article on other kinds of dining tables right here.

Hardwood Bar Stool Varieties

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015


Scoop Bar Stool with round swivel seat and Windsor baseAmish bar stools come in many shapes. Their sizes? Taller than a chair, they’re usually available in both 24” and 30” heights. Although we have a section of the store for bar stools, don’t stop there: virtually every dining chair has a bar stool option.
This video showcases several bar stool types, starting with the stationary bar chair, which is simply a tall chair. The swivel bar stool is the fun kind, while the memory swivel turns back to its starting position once you get off.
Saddle bar stools have curvy, minimal seats while saddle scoop bar stools are more human-shaped. Almost every bar stool we have can be upholstered. There is so much variety that if you’re looking for some bar stools, you’ll find the right one here.

The Mission Display Bookcase with Seedy Glass

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015


The Mission Display Bookcase with Seedy Glass has two elegant mullioned glass doors. The seedy glass is quite transparent but has the texture of bubbles inside. This bookcase comes standard with four adjustable shelves but you can give us a call for numerous customization options. We’re showing the bookcase in quarter-sawn white oak with the Michael’s Cherry finish. The standard size is 60” tall, 13” deep and 42” wide with a 46” wide top. The video shows the standard bookcase; here’s a wider one with an open center and side doors:
Mission Display Bookcase with Seedy Glass from Amish Furniture Factory

Children’s Furniture and Wooden Toys

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015



Kid's Folding Desk with Chalk Board, Dry Erase Board, and Attached Chair

This child’s easel desk has a chalk board on one face that flips to a dry erase board on the other, and a fold-away chair.

Because kids know children’s furniture is just for them, they adore it. If you’re deciding on a gift for your kids, rest assured they will get a lot of use out of a child sized table and chairs, because of how versatile a table is. Think of all the activities they can do at their comfortable height.
But there are plenty of other types of child-sized furniture that are fun to use. Watch the video to see rocking horses, rocking chairs, high chairs and all kinds of toys.
The toys are handcrafted with the same impeccable care as our Amish furniture. We even have games that they can play on their children’s table.
If you’re an adult, even you might like to accessorize your space with handmade wooden toys and gorgeous playable games.

Hardwood Furniture Custom Finishes: Two-Tone and Burnishing

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015

  Here we are showing a table and chairs whose custom finishes match them uniquely to each other. The set has a two-tone finish. The black table base is modern and makes the stained top more lively. The matching chair has a black base and back, and stained seat. For more character, the stained parts are burnished. Burnishing is a simple process but the results are brilliant. Once the furniture is stained and dry, mix more stain with black paint and gently feather it on the right places with a rag. Your burnished details have more depth, as shown on the rounded table edge and contoured chair seat. Burnishing is also a useful antiquing technique for distressed furniture. Call us if you would like to customize your furniture finishes. To get started and look at our regular finishes, click here

Arts and Crafts Pub Table from Amish Furniture Factory

This Arts and Crafts Pub Table has a two-tone finish. Watch the video to see a table with a burnished edge.


The Modesto Barrister Bookcase

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015


Modesto 4-Door Barrister Bookcase with Leaded GlassThe Modesto Barrister Bookcase has glass doors that lift up and slide in. We’re showing the leaded glass but plain glass is available. You may ask about different leaded glass patterns available.
This video provides a rare glimpse of rustic quarter sawn white oak with the knots showing; call us about special wood choices when they are not on the website, and we just might surprise you. This bookcase comes standard with four doors, but two, three, four and five-door heights are available.

The Arts and Crafts L Shaped Desk

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015


The Arts and Crafts L Shaped Desk is an exemplary Amish desk with or without a hutch. This double pedestal desk has two pencil drawers in the knee space; we can make the front of one pencil drawer flip down for a keyboard tray. The ends of the desk each have a pull-out for extra workspace. While we are showing each end with two small drawers and a file drawer, you may replace those with two file drawers or a door for your PC tower. Our L shaped desks ship in two pieces and require some assembly.
The hutch adds even more storage and convenient lighting. There is a light in the center shelf to light your workspace. There is also a light over the top shelf for whatever you are storing there. The glass shelf is adjustable and you may ask about a wood option. Two high doors maximize hutch storage, while the mail and pencil slots and small drawers offer a traditional look. All of our desk drawers extend fully.
Arts and Crafts L Shaped Desk with Hutch
Many of the L shaped desks at Amish Furniture Factory are similar to this one, so feel free to apply the general information here to most of them. We also have corner desks with different characteristics than the L shape we show here, but that’s for another video.

The Most Popular Types of Wood Finishes Used Today

Thursday, November 19th, 2015

The finishing process can really make or break any piece of furniture. Expert craftsmen known that the finishing process is one that can’t be overlooked. The right finish will help bring out the best in any piece of furniture, but that is only the beginning. One of the key reasons that the finishing process is so important is that it also serve to protect wood as well. In this article, we will explore some of the most popular and useful finishes for wood.


When it comes to finishing wood, there are plenty of options. Deciding which one is right for you can, as a result, be more than a little tricky, but don’t worry as Amish Furniture Factory has you covered. The time you invest in selecting the right finish is time well spent as the right finish will help you protect your furniture while giving it a look that you love.


Green Furniture Finishing from Beeswax to Tung Oil


All finishes are most definitely not the same. For example, there are very effective green wood finishes that have low VOCs and look great. The finishes range from beeswax and carnauba wax to oils such as linseed oil.


Linseed oil has long been used as a finish and like beeswax is very trusted. Two other effective and trusted oil eco-friendly oil choices are soybean oil and tung oil. Both linseed oil and tung oil work by penetrating into the wood and harden to a degree once applied which help them provide some protection. Those looking for very eco-friendly wood finish options will want to keep an eye out for finishes such as soybean oil and beeswax as they are literally derived from trusted food sources.



Going Green Has Advantages



Green wood finishes can produce great results and do so without using any harmful chemicals. One issue with wood finishes is that some options such as oil finishes can produce smells and odors; this factor shouldn’t be overlooked when selecting a finish.

However, while eco-friendly options have distinct advantages, it should be noted that eco-friendly finishes such as linseed oil require some maintenance, as they have to be reapplied from time to time. If you absolutely must have an ultra-low maintenance finish, then some eco-friendly options might not be for you.



Oil Based Finishes Provide a Long Lasting Finish


Of course, eco-friendly options are not the only options available. Another option comes in the form of oil based finishes. Oil based finishes are very good at protecting wood, but they too have a potential drawback as oil based finishes can be dangerous to work with as they are flammable. That stated, oil based finishes can provide a beautiful and lasting finish.


Want Gloss? Then Wax It!


If you are looking for an impressive level of gloss, then you might want to consider a wax finish. A wax finish provides a lot of gloss. But like eco-friendly options, a wax finish may need to be reapplied from time to time in order to stay effective and looking great.


The Varnishing Option


Varnishing is another option for finishing wood. Varnishing provides wood with a tough coating and is versatile as it is possible to use both transparent and colored finishes. Adding to the versatility of varnishing is the fact that varnishes are available in both water based and oil based options. If you opt for this process, you can also select between matte and gloss helping to make varnishing both an attractive and versatile wood finishing choice.


Great Results Through Dyeing and Staining


Need to keep your furniture’s finish looking great for years and years? One option is dyeing. Dyeing is available in both oil and water based options. And dyeing has a great-added bonus feature. With a dye finish, you can get the exact look you want.


When it comes to getting the right look and having that look become permanent, staining is a stellar option. The reason is that staining literally soaks into the wood. Staining is also versatile as there are both water based and oil based staining options as well as different finish options such as gloss.


Your Finishing Options-Weighing All of the Best Choices



In the end, finding the right blend of great looks and durability is a must have when it comes to wood finishes. Furniture is very personal; after all, we use our furniture to live our lives and look at it every day. No doubt these are a lot of options, and the diversity within these different options, such as oil versus water based finishes, gloss, eco-friendly and other options, can make selecting a final wood finish a tricky proposition.


The Right Wood Finish


The best wood finish for you is a careful blending of several key factors- practicality, health and durability. While beauty is a must when it comes to furniture finishes, so is practicality, health concerns and other factors. We have only touches on some of the furniture finishing options available. Shellac, lacquer, acrylic and urethane finishes are all possible choices and they all have their merits. When you opt for high end furniture, take a good look at the finishing options available to you and factor in which options are the best fit for your long-term needs and lifestyle.