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.
If you’re tight on space, consider options like leaves that allow the table to extend. These let you customize the table for different entertainment needs and party sizes.
If you fall in love with a metal or marble table, don’t be discouraged from buying it, but do think about how you might safely transport it. As suggested above, choose a small, round marble table, or go for a wooden table with detachable legs.
Consider a designer pack-and-go dining table. Plywood is lightweight and durable, and a plywood table can be flat-packed and assembled as needed at home. Your dining table then can be packed up and moved as necessary. Plus it works well in a home with modern Nordic or contemporary Asian style.