There are many different ways to outfit a kitchen table, and what you put on top of that table isn’t the only thing worth considering. Sure, centerpieces and table settings make classic additions to any table, but what you put above, below, and around that kitchen table is worth considering, too.
Your table doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It exists within the context of your walls, chairs, floors, and kitchen at large. All of those elements can affect the way your kitchen table looks. Once you look at it that way, you’ll realize how many kitchen table ideas you have to play with—and how much décor inspo is out there worth perusing.
To jumpstart your decorating process, we’ve rounded up 23 kitchen table ideas—and we’ve pulled them straight from interior designers.
Invest in a Set of Eye-Catching Chairs
No kitchen table is complete without a set of chairs, so why not have a little fun with yours? Eye-catching chairs can dress up even the sleekest wooden table. Stock up on a matching set, or mix and match a bunch of chairs you love. Either way, you’re bound to end up with a statement-making space.
Put a New Spin on the Classic Table Runner
Table runners make a classic addition to any kitchen table. But, there are plenty of ways to make a tried-and-true table runner feel a little less traditional. One of them? Turn your table runner sideways.
Instead of letting it span the length of your kitchen table, turn it so it spans the width. This simple step will make your table runner feel a little bolder—even if it looks very traditional otherwise.
Build a Banquette
If you’re tucking your kitchen table into a corner, consider building a full-blown banquette. A banquette is a bench that sits against a wall—a little like a restaurant booth. And since it offers more tush space than a couple of bistro chairs, it’s an easy way to expand your seating set-up.
Building a breakfast nook requires a fair amount of work, but since it’ll make your space look more special and feel more functional, it’s worth the extra effort.
Take a Risk With Your Palette
Kitchen tables tend to share space with the kitchen, so they’re rarely as statement-making as dining rooms, powder rooms, or other standalone spaces. But, if you’re looking for ways to make yours feel a little more special, consider painting your walls, hanging some art, or springing for a colorful centerpiece.
These little additions can take your kitchen table from simple to statement-making. And if you really want to dress up your space, you can try all three at once.
Fill Your Table With Flowers
A vase full of flowers is the cherry on top of any kitchen table. No one said you had to limit yourself to just one, so consider separating one big bouquet into a bunch of smaller bouquets and spreading them around your table.
If you want to keep things simple, you can commit to matching flowers in matching vases, but a less coordinated approach would surely look as good.
Decorate From Ceiling to Floor
When many of us go to decorate our kitchen tables, we focus on what we’re putting on top of the table. But, this is just one of the many design elements that affect the way a kitchen table looks.
The chairs surrounding that table are another key consideration, and so is the lighting hanging above it and the rug resting below it. To ensure your kitchen table looks as great as possible, you’ll want to consider all of these elements from top to bottom.
Set the Scene With Statement Lighting
If you’re working with a particularly simple kitchen table, consider using statement lighting to dress it up. Pendant lights can make a kitchen table feel cozier by creating an implied boundary between your kitchen table and the rest of your space. And a chandelier will make any piece of furniture look like a luxury.
Use Paint to Segment Your Space
Since kitchen tables tend to share space with the kitchen, it can be tough to make them feel separate and like their own space worth spending time in. But, with a clever coat of paint, you can section off your kitchen table without putting up any new walls.
By painting the walls behind your kitchen table a different color than the rest of your kitchen, you can create implied boundaries in your space. Even a quick coat of paint framing your banquette can go a long way.
Swap Out Half Your Chairs for a Couch
If you don’t feel like DIYing a banquette, all hope isn’t lost. You can achieve a similar effect with a couch—yes, a couch. Look for a couch that’s low-profile enough to tuck between your kitchen table and a wall, and use classic dining room chairs to complete your seating set-up.
Make the Most of Your Corners
Corners, walls, and other built-in boundaries lend structure to your space—giving you a more obvious place to store your kitchen table. But, don’t worry about pressing your table right up against one of your walls. By giving the end of your table some room to breathe, you can sneak in extra seating whenever you need it. Plus, you’ll make it easier for guests to get into and out of their seats.
Keep the Whole of Your Space in Mind
When decorating your kitchen table, take a moment to consider what’s around it. Does it share space with a wet bar, a breakfast nook, or a kitchen island? If so, you might want to coordinate the two. Consider picking chairs and barstools that fall within the same color scheme or that share similar silhouettes. These thoughtful combinations should keep your space feeling balanced and cohesive.
DIY Your Own Centerpiece With Fresh Fruit
One of the best things about decorating a kitchen table is that you have tons of centerpiece options to choose from—and many of them don’t require a trip to the store. By pairing a sleek bowl with a handful of fresh fruit, you can DIY a centerpiece within a matter of seconds. The best part? It will likely look as good as something that came preassembled.
Mix and Match Your Chairs
It isn’t hard to find a streamlined set of dining room chairs, but piecing together a set of your own can be just as fun. Consider using one type of dining room chair on one side of your table, and using another on the other. Or, use one type of dining room chair along the sides of your table and place accent chairs at the heads.
Pair a Rustic Table With Modern Lighting
Lighting, art, and other décor can be a great way to add contrast to your space. If you want to keep your rustic kitchen table from feeling too traditional, consider pairing it with more modern pieces like industrial lighting and abstract art. These décor choices can bring your space together, making it feel dynamic, balanced, and most importantly, totally you.
Stock Up on Bold Napkins
If you’re looking for an easy way to dress up your kitchen table, consider setting it. Once you’ve stocked up on bold napkins, striking servingware, and lovely drinking glasses, you’ll have plenty to show off. Setting your table is a neat, tidy, and easy way to put all those pretty wares on display.
Sneak in Seating Where You Can
Having a ton of space isn’t a prerequisite for owning a kitchen table—at least, it doesn’t have to be. If you’re willing to get a little creative, you can transform some spare counter space into a kitchen table, simply by sliding a couple low-profile chairs under it.
Decorate the Wall Behind Your Table
Your kitchen table is an obvious place to store décor, but it’s not your only option. Take a look around your space, and keep an eye out for nearby walls. These are great candidates for mirrors, works of art, and other kinds of décor—and can leave your kitchen table feeling decorated, even if it’s totally empty.
Warm Up Your Space With a Rug
If your kitchen table is feeling a little too sleek, consider cozying it up with a rug. After all, the stuff on top of your kitchen table isn’t the only thing affecting the way it looks, and a plush rug can offer comfort and style in equal measure. Plus, machine-washable options abound, so you shouldn’t have to worry too much about spills and stains.
Match Your Centerpiece to Your Chairs
Color coordination can bring your space together, making it feel more cohesive. But what, exactly, should you be coordinating? One great option is to match your centerpiece to your chairs. By using similar colors in both, you can make your kitchen table look more complete, more balanced, and more statement-making.
Invert Your Kitchen’s Palette
If you’re not sure what colors to make your kitchen table and chairs, look around the rest of your kitchen for inspiration. If your island is black and lined with wooden barstools, consider balancing out your space by inverting that palette. Pair a wooden kitchen table with a set of sleek black chairs.
This is, of course, just one option—but it’s a particularly easy way to balance out your space.
Spring for a Full-Blown Booth
If a banquette simply isn’t enough for you, consider investing in a full-blown booth. The restaurant-worthy addition may demand some time and effort. But, if you have the energy and the budget for it, it’s sure to make a statement in your space.
Mind Your Details
Take a look around your kitchen, and look for little ways to bring your space together. If your trim needs a tune-up, give it one and consider what color would complement your kitchen table and chairs. Other additions—like lush plants, plush throws, and rustic jugs of water—can also make your space feel more complete.
Bring Out the Best in Your Space
Remember to work with the space you already have. You may love round kitchen tables, but if a rectangular one better suits your space, consider making the swap. And pay attention to the assets your space offers. If it boasts a light-filled window or a brick-lined wall, set up your kitchen table in a way that makes the most of these strengths.