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Large Family - Christmas seating conundrum

(17 Posts)
thethoughtfox Sun 06-Nov-16 12:44:16

How do people with large families fit them round a table at Christmas? Does anyone actually have a table that sits 12/ 14? We have a table that sits 8 and have 10 adults and 3 children. It was beyond cramped last year.

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Sun 06-Nov-16 15:53:27

Usually someone brings a small fold up table to put on the end

ThatGingerOne Sun 06-Nov-16 15:56:24

Can you put the kids on a separate table? Usually one person brings a fold up table and extra chairs at our place too. Do you have any chairs upstairs for desks or the like that you could bring down?

SavoyCabbage Sun 06-Nov-16 15:58:01

We've an extendable table. My sister has two tables the same and she keeps one in the garage (not built, in pieces) and put it up at Christmas.

JustCallMeKate Sun 06-Nov-16 16:03:07

We have an extendable table that seats 16. It was from John Lewis

VivienneWestwoodsKnickers Sun 06-Nov-16 16:03:45

Boxing Day in our family is chaos. Around 30 people, ages 2-70, in a normal bungalow. Everyone eats where they sit - kids on the floor, various chairs are found and plonked around the house, some people sat the table, some standing up with a plate or bowl, and it just works out. It's a lot of fun!

We couldn't seat all those people, ever, so this tradition has blossomed over 3 decades.

SpookyMooky Sun 06-Nov-16 17:00:15

We once fed over 20 in a student house, as Vivienne describes, and since then I've always reckoned we'd manage it somehow. Picnic table or similar to extend the main table - you can use a board on top to make it bigger. Could try an L shape if the room length is a limiter. Blanket as a table protector, flat sheet to cover the table then place christmassy cloth over diagonally.

Don't be afraid to ask guests to bring some chairs, plates or cutlery if you need to. Many people have fold up chairs or stools. Stools and benches are more efficient than chairs. A kids' table can be an option, though as we've always had lounge diners we've always been able to get everyone in together by extending the table into the living area.

Toooldtobearsed Sun 06-Nov-16 17:16:18

We have a table to sit 8 people and a collapsible camping style table that seats 8. We also add a pasting table (!) If needed, with a lovely tablecloth and can comfortably seat 22 people.

Tye camp,style table and pasting table can be pushed together long end to long end, iyswim, then lined up against the end of the square, main table, we all eat together.

Cheap pasting table is the way to go for little ones 😊

thethoughtfox Sun 06-Nov-16 20:17:02

Thank you so much for your helpful replies. This is my first ever post and I was a bit worried. Love the idea of pushing another table in and doing an L shaped table. We have a small kitchen table which might work.

Normandy144 Sun 06-Nov-16 20:24:05

Depends how formal you want it? For Christmas we shoehorn everyone around the table which usually means adding another table at the end for the kids - we typically have 15-18 eating. For Thanksgiving we are much more casual and I put all the food on the table for people to help themselves and then they find a seat to eat, so some nab a space at the table and others are on the floor or eating off laps. No one really minds for Thanksgiving but I expect they would for Christmas.

PoshPenny Sun 06-Nov-16 20:26:09

My husband made a top that sits on top of our normal table (up to 6 seater) that takes up to 14. I think he used a sheet of MDF and trimmed it down to suit us. With a table cloth on top it looks great.

thethoughtfox Mon 07-Nov-16 19:33:45

Lucky you, Posh. That is smart thinking.

Aliveinwanderland Mon 07-Nov-16 19:36:56

We have Xmas dinner for 22. We have several tables put together (garden table, wallpaper paste table) and everyone brings a chair!

AveEldon Mon 07-Nov-16 19:39:45

We do as a previous poster suggested and have a very big piece of wood that is placed on top of the normal dining table
Tablecloth on and job done

Forgetmenotblue Mon 07-Nov-16 19:44:09

Bring in garden table and DS desk, stuck on both ends of our kitchen table. Flat sheets on all three then nice Christmas tablecloths on top. Nothing matches but it doesn't matter.

Get visitors to bring a stool or fold up chair, plus a plate each and a glass or two. It's a squash and it's informal but we all sit down together and it's fun.

41coffeeslater Mon 07-Nov-16 19:47:32

We have a bit of (beautifully shaped!) mdf which fixes to a workbench. Covered with a great long cloth I can do 24. Long bench for children to sit on also helps.

llangennith Mon 07-Nov-16 20:03:24

Garden table, camping table, ask people to bring chairs or anything else we need. Not worth forking out to buy stuff you only need once a year.

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