Monday, September 24, 2007

The Quest To Find A Dining Room Table

All of our married life, this has been our table:



Aww. Teeny and round, and perfect for small dwellings. It has served its purpose well, and will continue to in the breakfast nook. But now that we have an actual dining room (yes, a whole room made to hold just a table - I can barely even fathom the concept), I am searching for something larger. Something in a dark wood. Something with fairly simple lines, not at all fru-fru, almost "mission" in style. Something that (here's the kicker) will seat ten people.

I've always wanted to be able to seat everybody together, comfortably at the same table (instead of how we've always had to do it: a sprinkling here and there - at the bar, in the kitchen, holding plates of food in their laps in the living room). And in preparation for the hoards of guests that my mother seems to think can (and will) descend upon us at any given time, like at Thanksgiving, I need a table that's pretty big. But it's important to me that its "bigness" come in the form of leaves that can be added, so it won't be so obtrusive in the room. And so it will still be cozy when it's just us (plus maybe the occasional friend or two) having dinner together.

Oh...

And it would be nice if whatever I find is something that won't break the bank to purchase. Some of my favorites I've seen so far require a trade: one dining table for one kidney. And that's not including the chairs. If you actually want to sit down while you dine, you have to be willing to give up a few additional organs. $150 per chair? Times ten? I know there are discounts for "sets", but then you still have to pay for each additional chair. Um...hello! Perhaps we should just implement the concept of the ever-fun "children's table" (a.k.a folding table in the other room) and search for a smaller dining set.

When mom was up here a week or so ago, we found a couple of contenders at Oak Express. They seem to have really sturdy, well-made, real-wood pieces. And they definitely have great prices. But I didn't find exactly what I was looking for. I'm not sure how I feel about "counter height" dining tables, and most of the ones I liked there, as far as style and color, seemed to be that height. (I do, however, know how mom feels about them. Whenever I would look at one, or heaven forbid, sit down at one, she would make The Face and inform me that "old people have trouble sitting up high". Then, in case I had missed her opinion regarding counter height dining tables, she would add: "And your dad hates to have his ankles dangling.") Hmm. We can't have that! Dangling ankles - how gross would that be while we're trying to eat?

I've considered shopping online. I love Pottery Barn, IKEA...those sort of ridiculously cool, ridiculously expensive places. I mean, who doesn't? But I really don't like the shipping prices. Yowser! So I thought I'd first try to find something locally, if I could. You know, support my fellow Razorback Retailers in the area.

Anybody have any suggestions - either from shops in the NW Arkansas area or from fairly reasonably priced online places? ...Oh, and here's a reminder of the color of the dining room, in all its blazing glory, to keep in mind when making any specific suggestions:

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

O.K., daughter, when you put my comments on "paper," they are pretty hilarious! I love the "dangling feet" comment. But, hey, I still stand behind those observations! Now, for a touche (I don't know how to do accent marks, so put one over the e): is Qwest like pwayew weqwest?! Your ever-loving, Mooms

Anonymous said...

Now, in regards to your query, I'm going to check Washburn's for you. Perhaps, they have just the right table at just the right price. I, too, saw the perfect table in the recent P.B. catalog, but, after adding up for ten chairs, it was going to cost around 4k! Wowie! Love, Mooms

Kristy said...

Mooms,

Have you lost it?

After MUCH staring and re-staring at what you wrote (pwayew wequest), I think I have it figured out -- prayer request?

But I get your point...

I've corrected the title to Quest. Thanks for making me feel so bright. =)

Your loving daughter.

Kristy said...

Qwest is actually a phone company in Albuquerque.

Ah, yes. That's where I got that. =)

Kristen said...

I actually (sorry Kristy's parents!) like the dark wood taller tables! However, I do understand the "dangling" comment and as a physical therapist also believe that they are bad ergonomically also. Maybe go for deep wood with a bench for extra seating...cheaper than 10 chairs, and they have some great ones at crate and barrel right now

Kristy said...

Ooo. Crate and Barrel. Good suggestion.

Thanks, Kristen!

Josh & Margo said...

You might look at the Unpainted Furniture place in Fayetteville (next to Office Depot/Hobby Lobby). Everything is solid wood and very sturdy. They can stain/paint things in any color you want. They also have some tables that are already finished. They have tons of styles to choose from and have lots of catalogs you can also order from. We got our table and chairs there several years back and love them. Their prices are very reasonable too!
Margo Hale

Kristy said...

Margo,

Thanks so much for the suggestion! That's a really good idea.

Loved the shooter clip, by the way. =)

sarah p said...

I stand by my World Market suggestion...I just don't know if there is one near you. They have great, simple furniture. However, it may cost a lot - I really don't know. That's on our long-term list of things to buy one day. I think the bench idea is a good one - it would probably be cheaper and you could use it in other parts of the house when you don't have company....

Kristy said...

Hey Sarah,

I went to the World Market website when you first suggested it. Man, they do have great stuff! Kind of pricey (they don't seem to do a lot of "sets", they do more individually priced items), but I love what they have!

If you look at the map of where they have stores, they are pretty much EVERYWHERE across the U.S, except Arkansas and Okalahoma.

Bummer.

Kathy said...

ok, Kristy, I just had to comment on the table thing... I have been searching for the perfect (mission style) table to go in our breakfast area for some time now. I love the tall ones but it seems Steve and Bob share the "dangling ankles" opinion. My criteria is rigid - it must be smallish to start with (yes, cozy is important in day to day life), have at least one expansion leaf, have VERY comfortable chairs, and be either black or very dark wook. After much looking, I have taken drastic measures. I ordered one from Washburns (it's Ashley - have you checked at an Ashley Furniture store yet?) - it is tall and I ordered regular height chairs and Steve has agreed to shorten the legs on the table. Crazy, I know, and there are risks but, I think it may just work. The legs are straight squares all the way down and it looks like it should be a relatively simple task to shorten them. I'll let you know how this turns out. Best o luck to you in your search, I feel your pain.

Kristy said...

Kathy,

Hmm. Chopping off legs. That might work!

We have looked at Ashley. Saw several I liked...but none I loved.

Mom said she would check out Washburns for me.

The search goes on...

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