How to Buy a Dining Room Set

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How to Buy a Dining Room Set

The dining room table is an area where family and friends can come together to enjoy meals and converse about their day. Most people would agree that there are countless options for home furnishing items and narrowing it down to a final decision is always a challenging task. The task is not easy because buying a dining room set is a large purchase and likely one the buyer has to live with for quite some time. The dining room set can vary by shape, style, and colour essentially setting the tone for the entire room. The focus of any dining room is the table, while the chair choice creates personality.

The type of dining room set purchased depends upon the vision for the room whether it is formal or informal. Another important consideration is the size of the table and how many people it is able to accommodate. Dining room sets can be purchased from home furnishing shops, some department stores, and on the online auction website, eBay. Before purchasing a dining room set, consumers should learn about formal and informal sets, the shapes and styles of dining room sets, dining room set chairs, and the best way to select a dining room set.

Formal vs. Informal Dining Room Sets

One of the first questions a buyer must ask himself is what the purpose is of the dining room set. If the main purpose is to host guests for lunch and dinner parties, then a formal dining room is recommended. Formal dining rooms generally consist of a rectangular table with at least six chairs, buffet, china cabinet, cupboard, and sideboard depending upon space. Informal dining rooms are created as a comfortable space for families to gather around the table and enjoy meals. Typically, informal dining rooms are made up of a table and chairs. It is personal preference whether the buyer decides on a formal or informal set, and there are plenty of options for both.

Dining Room Set Shape

There are multiple shapes for dining room tables, including: round, rectangular, square, oval, and octagonal. Round and rectangular tables are classic shapes that fit comfortably in most dining rooms. Both round and rectangular shapes allow for a leaf to be added in order to create more space for more people. A disadvantage of adding a leaf in a round table is that people are further apart, creating empty space in the middle of the table. Therefore, rectangular dining room tables are the most popular. The square dining table can be beneficial for a buyer who only has two or three people to entertain the majority of the time. Oval and octagonal tables are recommended for a boxy room and can help create a modern feel. The room size and shape are the two main factors that aid in selecting a dining room table. In addition to room size and shape, the number of people who occupy the table and personal preference must also be taken into consideration.

Style of Dining Room Sets

The style of the dining room set is based on personal preference. Traditional, country, cottage, and modern are all different styles that can be created in the dining room.

Traditional Dining Sets

Traditional dining rooms are typically a separate formal room, only used a few times a year for special occasions and holidays, and are generally made up of the most expensive pieces of furniture in the house. Traditional dining sets normally are made up of a rectangular hardwood table and at least six hardwood chairs. The traditional dining room usually includes a china cabinet or a buffet to store china and linens.

Country and Cottage Dining Sets

Country-style dining rooms consist of chunky construction and worn, distressed woods. The country dining set also favours replacing one side of chairs with a bench for seating. A trestle table is great style for a country-themed dining room. A wooden trestle table consists of two or three trestle supports attached by a vertical cross member with a board placed on top. Another common country-style table that is the rustic dining table. Country-style is not to be confused with cottage-style, cottage-style is made up of distressed white finishes. The cottage-style is more laid back, and the tables usually have a painted finish.

Modern Dining Sets

For a modern feel in the dining room, select a table made from metals, such as stainless steel, chrome, or even glass. Incorporating different shapes and fabrics with the table, chairs, and decorations can help add to a modern feel. Also, selecting the appropriate colours can give the room a clean, sleek, and modern style.

Dining Room Set Chairs

When selecting chairs for the dining room set, the shape and style of the table needs to be taken into consideration. Once the table has been selected, the buyer knows how many chairs are necessary. Make sure to know the height of the table and chairs so that people can pull the chair in and out, and fit comfortably. While, the dining room table is a good starting point to selecting the chairs, there are three basic tips that can help. First, pay attention to detail. The chairs can help to create the style for the dining room. Secondly, consider adding upholstery by attaching fabric to the chairs, which adds comfortability and personality. Functional fabrics for the chair include leather, microsuede, and cotton.

Selecting a Dining Room Set

The most important factor in selecting a dining room set is the room size. It is advised to measure the size of the room before the buyer even thinks about beginning the shopping process. Once the size of the room has been declared, the size, shape, and style elements fall into place. Dining room sets can be purchased altogether or all of the pieces can be individually purchased.

The next important question to consider is how many people are attending a normal dinner at the table. For example, if normally there are only four people who sit down for dinner nightly, but the household is also where holidays are spent, then it is wise to purchase a table that can be extended by a leaf and more chairs may be added. The dining room set is based on personal preference. The room should match the buyer’s style, if the buyer favours comfortability over sophistication, hardwood tall-back chairs are not recommended.

How to Buy a Dining Room Set on eBay

Once the buyer is fully informed on all of the different types of dining room sets, it is time to purchase one. There are various ways to shop for a dining room set on eBay. To begin the search, go to eBay, and locate the search box. Then, type in preferred keywords, such as "dining room sets" to find the item of your choice. A variety of different styles of dining room sets are populated, allowing the buyer to browse through the options. The buyer can narrow the search results by selecting a brand, choosing an individual seller, or indicating a price range.

If the buyer knows exactly which type of dining room set they would like to purchase, then a more specific search can be performed. For example, if the style of the room has been decided as modern, then simply type in "modern dining room set" and the search only yields those results.

Evaluating Sellers

Evaluating sellers can help reduce the confusion about which item to purchase and provide information about the seller’s history. The seller’s eBay history includes feedback ratings from buyers for the previous 12 months. The seller’s profile page enables the buyer to view comments from previous buyers. Feedback is beneficial for the buyer and the seller. The buyer can use the feedback provided by other buyers in order to make an informed decision about the seller. If the feedback is positive it attracts more buyers to the seller’s profile page, leading to more sales.


Whether looking to purchase a casual or formal dining set, there are definitely a large number of viable options from which to choose. There have been many useful tips outlined here for purchasing a dining room set, as well as an overview of different shapes, styles, and tips for purchasing a dining room set on eBay using keyword searches. Buying home furnishings can be expensive, and are purchases the buyer is stuck with for quite some time, so it is important that the buyer research the shape and style to ensure that it matches their dining room and the rest of the house.

Selecting a size and shape of a dining room set is going to be based on the size of the room; therefore, each buyer may be different. Dining room sets can be purchased together, or the chairs and table may be purchased separately. The traditional dining room is no longer the style of choice that every buyer selects. More buyers are branching out and selecting functional dining rooms that are being used for more than just special occasions and holidays.

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