Re: Dining Room Tables
From: Janet E. Boys (
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 2021 13:32:36 -0700 (PDT)
Another consideration for dining tables besides the number of people to sit is 
where are the table legs? Our tables could easily sit 8 if the legs were at the 
corners - 3 on each side and one on each end. But they are not - so you can put 
two people between the legs on the side and then have extra room at each end 
along the side and therefore a bit far from the end person, or you can put two 
of three seats on the side with the end seats straddling the table leg. This is 
what we do, but I wish no one had to straddle a leg. These are folding tables.
You also should pay attention to the width. If they are too wide, then people 
talk louder to be heard or they are not heard or they give up talking.
Tablecloths are helpful to soak up some sound. I pay a lot of attention to the 
spacing between tables so that people can walk around without the sitting 
people having to pull their chairs in. Since we have people sign up for the 
meal, we set up the correct number of places which means we could have a 
different set up each meal. Be creative.
From: Cohousing-L < [at]> on 
behalf of Muriel Kranowski <murielk [at]>
Sent: Tuesday, March 23, 2021 4:07 PM
To: Cohousing-L <cohousing-l [at]>
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Dining Room Tables

Most of our dining tables seat 8, and we also have two 4-tops. At our
cooked meals, where the cooks set the tables with napkins, flatware and
glasses (all this in the Before Times, of course, and hopefully in the
Times To Come, even though I'm using the present tense), the long tables do
not get pushed together. Eight people feels like a good number for one
table when there are 30-50 diners.

We got the two 4-tops at some folks' request, but they are usually the last
to be used. It feels a bit antisocial to sit at an empty 4-top when you're
looking for a spot. Occasionally 3 or 4 people who are working on a project
will take a 4-top so they can discuss it over the meal, or kids will sit
together at a 4-top, but more often they are avoided. I guess it's good to
have two of them but we certainly do not need more small tables.

However, at our weekly potluck dinners which are more lightly attended, and
at our winter Saturday breakfasts, if there are around 10 people present,
often one long table is pushed to the end of another to seat up to 14 --
one person always does this if he's there, otherwise it might or might not
be done. I always pulled them apart at the end since they would probably
not be used that way at the next meal and I thought it made our Great Room
look messy.
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