Trestle tables were very popular in the Middle Ages and they’re still popular even today, being mainly appreciated for the fact that they’re easy to assemble and to take apart, easy to transport and to store.
They allowed multifunctional spaces to thrive as a room could serve as a dining area one moment and as a game room or dance floor the next. This type of flexibility made the trestle dining table the ideal occasional piece. The style is still popular today although in some cases the flexibility and ease of storage has nothing to do with it.
History of the Trestle Dining Table
There is no denying the elegance and timeless sense of style that a trestle dining room table can bring to the room with its hand-carved designs. It is one of the oldest table designs in the world, and the oldest design in America. That is because these tables are built to last families for generations.
Amish wood-crafters are one of the top sources for authentic and solidly-constructed trestle dining room tables, with each table slightly different in terms of design than the one before it. The designs can range from plain with simple lines to regal with ornate carvings on the legs and supports.
As design and décor tastes changed with the changing of the decade, the trestle dining room table has undergone changes as well. Various cultures have had an influence on the shape and construction of the table but there is one element that remains the same year after year – the sturdiness and overall look of this table makes it one of the most popular styles of a dining room table.
How to choose a Trestle Dining Table
You might be wondering how you would ever choose between the different styles of trestle dining room tables but in reality, the choice is completely based on your own wants and desires. You need to consider how many people will be sitting at the table on an average day, the amount of floor space and area space you have to use in terms of your dining room, and how much are you willing to spend on your table.
Consider the shape of the table you have in mind – do you want a square table? Circular? Rectangular? How about the type of wood? Oak? Cherry? Birch? Hardwood? Will you want a pub-style table that is higher on its legs than other styles? Bar stool seats or wooden dining chairs? Cushions or covers?
These decisions are just as important as the space you have to work with because you wouldn’t want to spend your hard-earned money on a table that you aren’t proud to show off.
Questions to Ask Yourself
Some of the most common questions that tend to arise when it comes to the purchase of a trestle dining room table include:
- What type of wood do you want to use?
- What shape of table are you interested in?
- Do you want carved table legs or plain?
- What is your budget?
- How much space are you working with in terms of height, length, width, and floor space?
- Are you planning to use your table frequently or sporadically?
Dining rooms featuring the beauty of the Trestle Table
Trestle dining tables usually look good in traditional interior designs. You can see one here, in an open plan social space which integrates three different functions. The dining table appears to be the central piece, highlighted by two hanging pendant lamps. This is an interior planned by Mitch Wise Design.
Awad+koontz chose a trestle table for this cozy and stylish dining nook. The table is complemented by an L-shaped bench that has built-in storage and by a set of individual chairs.
It seems that trestle dining tables go well with benches, as demonstrated here by Deep River Partners. In this large dining room the focal point is the live-edge table which is framed by chairs on two sides and which has unique live-edge at either end.
Because trestle tables are usually more closely linked to rustic or traditional decors than to minimalist modern design, they look nice when complemented by classical chairs and candle chandeliers like this one featured in the dining room designed by BCV Architects.
A trestle table is usually large because otherwise the design wouldn’t really make sense. The table is solid but that doesn’t stop it from also being practical and easy to put together or to store. In fact, that’s what made this style so popular in the first place. Klondike Contracting designed this dining area with both looks and function in mind.
Other style can bring out the best in trestle tables too. For example, studio Oliver Burns designed this dining room using a combination of modern, rustic and industrial elements and the table brings it all together harmoniously.
Given how robust and solid a trestle table usually looks, it can be a nice idea to complement it with chairs that look lightweight, with see-through backrests or with slick and thin frames. Pay attention to the style as well. This dining room designed by Siamasko + Verbridge can serve as a source of inspiration.
This dining area designed by ZeroEnergy is wonderfully balanced. The trestle table is the piece of resistance. With slick and lightweight chairs on one side and a built-in white bench on the other, the decor is perfectly-balanced.
AMW Design Studio chose a different strategy. In this dining area they preferred a decor and an ambiance that are a bit formal and where solid and heavy furniture makes perfect sense.
We love the architectural look of the trestle table used here by Charlie & Co Design. It establishes a sense of symmetry with the island and the cabinetry and it blend sin nicely with the wooden floor. It has a strong presence and that makes it stand out in an elegant way.
The team at Polhemus Savery Dasilva (psd) is known for the timeless designs it creates and for the attention to detail. You can see that here, in a dining area that’s small but bright and cheerful, with just the right amount of color and a solid trestle dining table to ground it all.
Not all trestle tables are heavy and robust and not all are large either. The one photographed here by Elad Gonen is actually quite delicate-looking. It adds warmth and charm to the room.
Somehow a trestle table is simply perfect for this dining room created by Gregory Carmichael Interior Design. It’s the element that brings the room together and the chairs and bench contrast with each other but look beautiful when combined around the table.
Don’t you just love how cozy this little dining nook is? It’s small and it looks very comfortable. The sofa is perfect for the space and the table matches the room perfectly. This is a space designed by Hann Builders.
Wondering where you could find such a table? Well, there are plenty of options. This particular one, for example, comes from Zin Home. It’s made of oak wood and it’s simple enough to be versatile. The design is inspired by the classic furnishings of 18th century France.
This is a space designed by the Refined Group, a studio appreciated for the ability to mix contrasting styles and to put together historical and modern elements to create timeless and sophisticated spaces. This is one of those projects.
The Refined Group also created this gorgeous interior design which puts the spotlight on the trestle table used in the dining area. The whole design is wonderful, especially after taking into consideration the different types of chairs used around the table.
The most notable element of a trestle dining table is obviously the structure of the base which usually features large wooden pieces. These can be coordinated with exposed beams for a cohesive decor of the room. You can see such a design photographed here by Lanny Nagler.
A robust dining table like the one photographed by Thomas Grimes needs to be surrounded by elements that suggest lightness or by light colors and breezy fabrics. Everything has its own role in the design, including the chairs, the rug, the wall color and the light fixtures.
DIY trestle dining tables
We’ve talked and talked about how versatile and practical a trestle table is and it’s clear that assembly is simple so it shouldn’t be that difficult to build such a table from scratch. The design is pretty straight-forward and once you figure out the exact dimensions it’s more or less a puzzle. You can add your own touch to the design, like this metal pipe support beam for example. It given the table featured on cherishedbliss an industrial twist.
Putting together a rustic table is easy, especially if you use ready-made trestle legs. It’s all just a big puzzle. You have to put the pieces together and there’s some room for customization. On lipstickandwhitetee you can find some suggestions, tips and instructions on how to construct a table that looks just like this one.
It’s a bit unusual to see a trestle table with a round top. The combination is not common and the design is quite interesting. In case you want to build such a table yourself from scratch, be sure to check out rogueengineer for the list of materials required but also for detailed instructions to help you every step of the way.
Trestle Dining Table You Can Buy Right Now
Trestle tables, as mentioned before, are timeless and suit a variety of different interiors. They come in many different styles and there are plenty of nice designs to choose from, like for the example the Georgii dining table featured here. It has a simple and modern look and it’s made of solid pine wood with an elegant mahogany finish. It measures 56” L x 29.5” W x 29” H overall which makes it perfect for a casual setup with room for extra guests.
The first thing you notice here is probably the drop-leaf top. This makes the Nerida dining table really great for small spaces and suitable not just for dining rooms but for kitchens and breakfast nooks too. The table has a slender trestle base with a white finish and a thin and expandable top. It has a height of 31’’ and it can be paired with a variety of different types of chairs or stools. You can also place it against a wall to save space when the fully expanded top is not needed.
The Oshea dining table would make a lovely centerpiece. It has a solid and sturdy look but it’s also graceful and elegant. The trestle base gives it a lightweight and slender look and the rectangular top made of solid pine, MDF and plywood definitely stands out. It measures 72” L x 42” W x 30” H and has lots of character.
The Callisburg table has a detailed design with a really cool base. It’s a blend of traditional and farmhouse influences all following a classic and elegant aesthetic. It measures 78.74” L x 39.37” W x 30” H overall and features a rectangular wooden top with an oak finish and a trestle base with column moldings and carved feet. The base comes in a variety of different contrasting finishes.
On top of having a beautiful and stylish design, the Sawyer dining table is also expandable which is super practical when you have a small space or if you want to always be ready to accommodate extra guests in case it’s needed. The table is made of solid wood and has a beautiful X-shape trestle base and a rectangular top with a slender border underneath it.
The design of the Winthrop dining table has a beautiful farmhouse vibe and is also a bit classic. It’s made of reclaimed pine wood which gives it an authentic look and a lot of character. It measures 96.5” L x 39.5” W x 30.5” H and has a really nice trestle base with a strong and sturdy look but also an elegant feel.
The Beachem table has a rectangular top which can be extended to accommodate more guests or to create a larger space for those using it. It has two leaves and is made of a combination of solid and manufactured wood. Several different finishes are available including a white oak one which looks modern and stylish.
The Mount Sasha dining table is not like the others. The first thing that stands out is of course the height: 36’’. This is a pub-style table designed to be paired with bar stools and it has a dark and rough-textured look which gives it a rustic appearance. It’s a crossbar at the bottom to rest your feet on and a robust base with black metal legs placed at an angle.
This is another beautiful example of a trestle table that manages to blend looks and functionality in a natural way. The top can be extended from 88’’ to 112’’ and can accommodate up to 12 people. It’s made of solid wood and has a classic and sturdy base with carved double columns. It also has a slightly distressed finish which gives it a weathered, farmhouse-inspired look.
The Wydmire dining table preserves a lot of the characteristics of the previously mentioned designs but it’s also more slender-looking. It’s a fixed table and it measures 72” L x 42” W x 30” H overall which allows it to accommodate up to 6 people. It has a modern farmhouse design and it combines a base made of solid wood with a concrete top. This duality makes it very versatile and allows it to look great when paired with a variety of chair types.
When it comes to purchasing a trestle dining room table – the ultimate final decision rests on your shoulders. You need to be aware of all the different styles and types that are available while making sure you are using the right type of wood to suit your current (or future) décor.
Ensure that your budget is able to handle all the expenses of purchasing your table: the construction, the labour, the shipping, and the delivery. Check out reviews on a retailer before committing to a purchase as knock-offs and the like are on the rise in all market sectors.