Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Small Dining Room Tips and Tricks

Maybe your home is old-school, pre-dating the open-floorplan craze, so you have a maze of small dedicated rooms as a parlor, dining room, den, etc. Or perhaps you’re making the most of apartment or duplex living. Anyway, the challenge this poses is: “How do I make a dining-room setting that’s truly expansive and inviting when I have limited square footage? I want more than a counter or dinette, and I’m out of ideas!” Fear not. We at Roberts have been helping Hampton Roads households like yours pick the perfect dining room furniture since 1960! That practical experience plus some ideas from the interior-design pros inform our blog topic today: to make your small dining room the ideal you’re aiming for.

 round dining table

Corners Are Your Friends

A novel way to carve out a unique dining room space is to take full advantage of a room’s corner. Place a dining bench along each wall, then add a round or square table. If you plan to seat still more people, a smartly designed dining chair or two, depending on your space and table size, will do the job. If you go with the square table, a smaller dining bench or stool that you can push completely under it is a wise option. Finish off your awesome new dining decor with some cool accent pieces, such as reminders of culinary inspirations France and Italy. There’s always the designer’s standby of a wall mirror, not for vanity’s sake but because mirrors both create the illusion of extra space and enhance your room’s light.

 dining side chair

Tiny Space? Then Flip Out!

If your apartment is extremely small so you can’t have a dining table, but you want more than a counter ledge with bar stools, interior designers have this fresh take. Remember the Murphy bed or old-time built-in ironing boards? It’s kind of like that: install a table along one wall that flips up when not in use. That way you have all the table space you need plus elegant dining chairs on three sides. Ingenuity for the win!

upholstered dining bench

How About a Booth?

If you have a small rectangular space off one room, that can be your dining room by turning it into a booth. A narrow dining table and two benches or banquettes are all you need, plus you can always augment this with a dining chair to use the end of the table facing out.

For your dining-room furniture needs stop by our Williamsburg, VA store or any of our other locations.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Kids’ Furniture Shopping Tips

Shopping for furniture can be difficult as it is, let alone when you’re shopping for furniture that someone else will use. When that someone is your kid or kids, you face the challenge of not only finding functional and fun furniture, but also something that is safe for your kids to play on. At Roberts Furniture & Mattress one of the many things that separates us from our competition is our huge stock of options, which also allows us to offer a wide variety of choices for kids. But before you go shopping, we thought you might like to read some tips on what to look for. 

 girls' bedroom set


You probably already know, or are about to find out, that kids will turn your house into a daily amusement park. Furniture will be jumped on, hung from, eaten on, and so forth, which is why durability is the number one priority for most families who are shopping for kids’ furniture. In practice this means you should look for relatively heavy and solid furniture, preferably made from hardwood that’s been glued, screwed and corner-blocked. 

Fabrics should have a flat weave, because it withstands use better than lightweight or looped fabrics. There are also plenty of materials out there that are pretty much stain-proof and easy to take care of, like vinyl, ultrasuede, denim, twill, velvet, felt and wool.

loft bed


With kids comes clutter and an excess of stuff, so look for furniture like kids’ loft beds that comes with drawers. Also consider double-tier tables where the lower tier can function as storage, and stock up on items like storage cubes, shoe cubbies, and toy baskets. 

 boys' bunk beds


This depends on the size of the house and the rooms, but most families with kids long for more space. That’s why we recommend considering options like bunk beds or beds that integrate desks, drawers and more. Don’t forget to take advantage of extra space lurking under beds and other furniture. 


Look for features like rounded corners for tables and countertops to avoid accidents. You could also consider a couch with attached cushions if you’re not a fan of pillow fights with huge sofa cushions. 

For one-on-one advice on finding the ideal kids’ room furniture for YOUR family, stop by our Yorktown, VA store or any of our other locations.