A Dining room is used by the family primarily for having meals. This activity involves setting the table, serving the food, eating, cleaning up after meals, storing cutlery and crockery. In addition, very often, the dining room is also used for other activities like a children’s play area or place for study and homework, reading, writing, entertainment, board games, sewing, watching TV and ironing clothes.
The design of a Dining room requires careful planning considerations in order to have a comfortable space. As an Architect, I have explained some of the design considerations that you must take into account before you plan or renovate your Dining room. They have been explained here under the following headings:
What are the planning considerations for a Dining room?
What are the furniture pieces in a Dining room?
What is the size of each place setting at a dining table?
What is the size of a dining table?
What are the minimum clearances in a dining room?
Where should the windows and doors be placed in a Dining room?
What are the minimum sizes of a Dining room?
What is the best location for a Dining room?
WHAT ARE THE PLANNING CONSIDERATIONS FOR A DINING ROOM?
- Number of persons to be seated.
- Seating arrangement.
- Space used at table.
- Size and type of Furniture
- Space allowance for furniture.
- Space around the furniture for passage and accessing.
- Storage space for china, glassware, silver etc.
WHAT ARE THE FURNITURE PIECES IN A DINING ROOM?
The normal pieces of furniture used in a Dining room include the following:
- Dining Table – The size depends on the number of persons to be seated at the table. The shape depends on whether the seating is on 2 sides only or on all 4 sides.
- Dining Chairs – 1’6″x1’6″, 1’10″x1’10”
- Sideboard – 4’0″x1’8″, 5’0″x1’9″
- Crockery Cabinet (Showcase) – 3’0″x1’3″, 4’0″x1’3″, 5’0″x1’3″ depending on your requirement.
- Sofas and TV- If space permits.
WHAT IS THE SIZE OF EACH PLACE SETTING AT A DINING TABLE?
The minimum width along the perimeter of the table, needed for each place setting is 1’9″. A width of 2’0 is more comfortable. This allows chairs of size 1’6″ to be placed at least 6″apart. However a width of upto 2’5″ is desirable for greater freedom to allow elbow extension etc.
WHAT IS THE SIZE OF A DINING TABLE?
The minimum width of a Dining table is 3’0″,3’8″ is preferred. The size of a dining table depends on the number of place settings which is based on the number of family members and the number of guests who are entertained. As a thumb of rule, you can have a dining table to seat 2 persons more than the number of people in your family. For example, in a 4 person house, you can have a 6 seater table, in a 6 person house, a table for 8 persons can be used and so on. The minimum dining table sizes are listed below:
- Table for two – 2’6″x2’6″
- Table for four (seating on 4 sides) – 2’6″x3’2″,
- Table for four (seating on 2 sides) – 2’8″x4’0″
- Table for six (seating on 4 sides) – 4’0″x3’0″,
- Table for six (seating on 2 sides) – 6’0″x3’4″
- Table for eight (seating on 4 sides) – 4’0″x3’4″,
- Table for eight (seating mainly on 2 sides) – 6’0″x3’4″
- Table for ten (seating on 4 sides) – 6’0″x4’0″
In most houses, around 21′ to 30′ linear length of shelf space is required for displaying and storing crockery, cutlery, glasses, cups and saucers, etc for everyday use and guest use. The shelves can be fixed within the sideboard and the crockery cabinet.
WHAT ARE THE MINIMUM CLEARANCES IN A DINING ROOM?
Adequate clearances should be provided around the dining table to allow for the efficient and comfortable use of the Dining room. In some cases, greater clearances are required to accommodate the needs of elderly people with wheelchairs etc. The following minimum clearances from the edge of the table should be observed:
- A minimum of 2’8″ to only access chairs but not enough for passage behind the chairs.
- A minimum of 3’2″ to access chairs plus allow for passage behind the chairs.
- A minimum of 3’6″ to allow for serving from behind the chair.
- A minimum of 2’0″ for only passage.
- A minimum of 4’0″ from table to cabinet or sideboard.
WHERE SHOULD THE DOORS AND WINDOWS BE PLACED IN A DINING ROOM?
- It is preferable to have the doors of constant use placed so that the traffic between them will not interfere with the furniture groups.
- Windows should be large enough to allow light to the dining room.
- There should be convenient access to the windows and doors, and furniture should not block the windows.
- The TV position should be fixed such that it is not opposite a window, as the TV screen will reflect the light from the window.
WHAT ARE THE MINIMUM DINING ROOM SIZES?
There are two ways of arranging the main furniture namely the dining table and the sideboard/crockery cabinet/buffet table in the Dining room:
When the width of the Dining room has to be less, one cannot keep the sideboard alongside the dining table, along the width of the room, but it has to be kept at the end of the room. In this case the length of the room will be more.
When the width can be more, then one can have the sideboard alongside the dining table along the width of the room. In this case, the length of the room can be reduced.
Keeping in mind, the number of people seated at a dining table, the recommended sizes for a comfortable Dining room are:
- Four persons (seats on 2 sides)- 8’0″ x 11’6″
- Four persons (seats on 4 sides)- 9’0″ x 11’6″
- Six persons (seats on 2 sides) – 10’0″ x 13’6″ or 12’0″ x 10’0″
- Six persons (seats on 4 sides) – 10’0″ x 13’0″ or 12’0″ x 11’0″
- Eight persons (seats on mainly 2 sides)-10’6″ x 15’0″ or 12’6″ x 13′
- Eight persons (seating on all 4 sides) – 11’0″ x 13’0″ or 13’0″ x 11’0″
- Ten persons (seats on all 4 sides) – 11’0″ x 15’0″ or 13’0″ x 13’0″
WHAT IS THE BEST LOCATION FOR A DINING ROOM?
The Dining room is the space where the family sits together to have a meal and where guests are entertained. The Location of a Dining room depends on factors like proximity to the Living room, the Kitchen, wash basin, other rooms, etc. For Vastu tips on the best location for a Dining Room in a house, go to:
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