Color is cool but beware the trendy hue. Today’s on-trend shade is tomorrow’s fashion fail, so choose wisely. Classic colors, such as the primaries (red, yellow and blue), usually have staying power, mainly because they are so unapologetically basic.
Square and rectangular tables are the most common, so you’ll find the greater number of choices there with styles, sizes and extendable options. But a round or oval table can give you a little more space to move around since it cuts off the corners but still has a good surface area.
Wood veneer is often a more affordable alternative to solid wood. Here a very thin layer of solid wood or material printed to look like wood is glued to a plywood or other wood core. To identify good veneer, look for tables with clearly-labeled core interiors, like kiln-dried hardwood. One way to spot cheaper veneers is to look underneath the table at the store.
Settle on a shape that will work in most rooms. Round tables look good in compact rooms and living areas that have square dining zones. They also offer flexible seating.