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What Is a Dinette?

Dinettes and dining sets seem to be interchangeable terms but are actually different. Here’s a quick guide on the differences between the two plus a few tips on incorporating a dinette into your home.

Dinettes Defined

A dinette is a small dining set usually made up of a table and two to four chairs. These sets are designed more for small spaces and most often used in kitchens and breakfast nooks. Dinettes make great options for small apartment kitchens, studio apartments and as seating for finished garages or basements. Another way to think about a dinette is ‘a permanent card table (or folding table set).’

The Different Types of Dinette Sets

There are a few varieties of dinette sets, including:

  • Three-piece. A three-piecer is a set that seats two people (two chairs + one table). Because of their extra-small size, these are considered the “original” dinette. (As designs evolved, the definitions around dinette sets, dining sets and counter sets blurred; generally, though, dinette sets are regarded as the smallest of the three). Three-piece designs are also great for game rooms, basements, man caves and she sheds – they add versatile seating for card games, game boards, crafts and more.)
  • Counter. Counter-height dinette seating is higher than the standard set. Choose a counter dinette if you want more of a casual dining area or home bar feel.
  • Metal. Most come in wood, but there are some metal varieties out there. These provide a sleeker, more modern look and feel.

How to Style a Dinette

Incorporating a dinette in your space is easy! Try a larger design like a four- or five-piecer for a dining room or kitchen – use it for family meals and entertaining. Three-piecers work best in smaller spaces like bedrooms and playrooms and work especially well as activity tables for children and teens. You can even opt for just a dinette table and one chair, and use it for a desk; place it along the wall of a hallway or in a home office.

Dinette sets are simple, so you’ll want to keep accessories simple, as well. Try decorating with a single vase in the center of the table or placemats in front of each seat. If the table is for activity/crafting (rather than eating), designate it as such through décor; place a small pencil holder in the center or a basket tray with papers and art supplies.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Articles featuring tips and advice are intended for educational purposes and only as general recommendations. Always practice personal discretion when using and caring for furniture, decor and related items.