Is it your year to host Christmas and you have no idea where everyone is going sit for dinner? Fortunately, one of our staffers is a holiday party master and she is sharing her ridiculously easy hack for turning a 6 ft. or 8 ft. folding table into a 10 seat dining table, and you only need TWO more items to do it and at a very low cost.
The great thing about this hack is that most people already have a 6 or 8 ft. folding banquet table…or your neighbor does, or your sister, or someone you know. Even if you don’t own a folding table or know anyone who can lend you one, they are readily available to buy from popular stores and retailers, such as Walmart, The Home Depot, and Amazon. The two other items for this hack are also incredibly affordable. You also can convert your 10-seat dining table back into a standard folding table when you’re done.
For today’s TIA DIY we are taking you through the step-by-step process of turning a 6 or 8 ft. folding table into a 10-seat dining table that has plenty of room for place settings, food, and decor.
TIA DIY Guide
- How To
- Q & A
- Resizing Your Table
- 6 ft. VS 8 ft. Folding Table
- Poster Puddy VS Mounting Tape
Supplies for 10 Seat Dining Table Hack
This hack only requires three key items.
- 6 or 8 ft. Folding Banquet Table
- Poster Putty or Mounting Tape
- 5/8 in. thick or more 4 ft. x 8 ft. sheet of plywood
These are the only items required to complete the DIY. However, you may want to take the extra steps of sanding your table down and painting it. These steps smooth out your plywood so that your tablecloth doesn’t snag, no splintered edges poke through, or you can forego a tablecloth altogether. Sanding and painting or staining are also good steps to take if you want to use this hack again in the future.
We’ve included supplies and links for these optional, additional steps along with some of our decor items.
- 90 in. x 156 in. Tablecloth
- 2-pack Rechargeable Table Lamps (we ordered two)
- Champagne Table Runner
- Winter Pine Garland
- White LED Table Top Christmas Tree
- Flameless Christmas Candle Holders Set
How to Make a 10-Seat Dining Table
Now that you have all your supplies it’s time to turn your folding table into a 10-seat dining table. We’ve divided this into three parts: Sanding & Staining, Converting, and Decorating. Parts one and three are optional, feel free to jump to part two for the hack.
Part 1: Sanding & Staining
Step 1: Take your sandpaper and sand down all the sides of your plywood until smooth or at least any rough edges. Once done, wipe down to remove the loose sediment.
Step 2: Apply your wood stain as directed on the packaging. Allow it to dry, and then repeat until you’ve achieved the desired effect.
Note: I recommend staining your wood at least a week in advance so the stain has more than enough time to set.
Part 2: Converting
Step 1: Bring your supplies to where you plan to set up your tables. Since this isn’t a permanent conversion you don’t want to set up your table and then move it to where you plan to use it.
Step 2: Set up your folding table in the location you plan to use it. Make sure to account for the size of the plywood when positioning it, especially if you are using multiple tables.
Step 3: Take your Poster Putty or Mounting Tape and apply it to the top corners of your folding table and a few spots in the center. Not sure which one you should use? Check out our Poster Putty VS Mounting Tape section to help you decide.
Step 4: This part is easier with two people, but lift the plywood over the banquet table so that the length of each runs parallel. Center both the length and the width of plywood on the table. If you are doing this alone, gently lay the plywood down, but do not press on it. If you have someone helping you, have them keep the plywood slightly raised.
Step 5: Grab your measuring tape if you have it. Double-check the placement of the table.
If using a 6 ft. folding table and an uncut sheet of plywood, then the distance from the edge of your folding table to the edge of your plywood should measure 9 inches on the sides, and 12 inches on each end. Adjust as needed. Then you can press your plywood down onto the poster putty or mounting tape for secure placement.
Congrats! That is all you need to do to convert your folding table into a 10-seat dining table. From here you can decorate and use your table as you see fit.
Part 3: Decorating
This part is as much optional as it is personal. However, you are going to enjoy your table a lot more if you take this step. We included links to our Christmas table decorations above. However, maybe you are using your table to celebrate a different holiday or event.
Here are our notes on decorating your table for different holidays and events throughout the year.
- Tablecloth: You need a 90 in. x 156 in. tablecloth for a 4 ft. x 8 ft. tabletop. The tablecloth should rest just shy of an inch above the floor.
- Table runner: You need at least a 8 ft. table runner to span the whole length of the table. A table runner that’s 10 ft. or longer can drape down the edges.
- Centerpieces: If you plan on placing serving platters on the tables then your decorating is done. However, if the tables are just for dining then you can go an extra step with centerpieces. You can keep it simple with a single centerpiece or use a few pieces. Whichever you choose, our recommendation is to keep it low profile and easily contained to the center of the table. This way guests can still easily see and chat with one another, and nothing is encroaching on their space.
Before & After
As you can see, the 6 ft. folding banquet table went from barely seating eight people to seating 10, plus more room between settings and space for either decorations or food. You could even possibly seat up to 12 people if you were to seat them on the ends.
Like what you see but have some questions? Well we got answers to the most common questions about this 10-seat dining table hack. If you don’t see your question below then ask us in the comments and we will get back to you.
How to Space Your Tables
Not sure you have enough space for a 10 seat dining table, or are you trying to figure out how many tables you can fit in a space?
Here are some standard guidelines to help you determine if you have enough space for your table.
It is recommended that there is at least 36 in. of space around your table so that people can easily get in and out.
It is recommended to allow 18 in. out from the table for chairs. If the chairs back up to another set of chairs then you should add another 6-12 in. so guests can get in and out without disturbing guests at the other table.
How to Resize Your Table
Is a 4 ft. x 8 ft. sheet of plywood just too big? Fortunately, you could have the plywood trimmed down at the hardware store before you leave.
Our 10 seat dining table creates 48 in. wide table. For a narrower table cut it down to a 36 in. or 30 in. width so that a standard tablecloth fits correctly.
Note: For a narrower table it may be more comfortable to seat four people along the length and one person on each end to seat 10 people.
6 ft. VS 8 ft. Table
This hack works with either a six or eight foot table and you should just go with whatever you have access to. However, if you are buying a table or renting then there are small advantages to each.
6 ft. Table Pros & Cons
A six ft. folding table will provide guests with more foot room and they will be less likely to kick the bars beneath the table if they are seated on the ends. However, you may experience slight bowing of the plywood. We experienced this initially, but it went away once we dressed the table. You could also fix this by creating some height with the poster putty on the corners.
8 ft. Table Pros & Cons
An eight ft. folding table will offer more stability and you shouldn’t experience any bowing. You could even go with a thinner plywood. The main drawback to an eight ft. table is a little less foot room.
Poster Putty VS Mounting Tape
Both of these products work great. Our TIA employee prefers mounting tape. However, as we mentioned the poster putty could be used to correct bowing by piling it higher to reverse the dip of the board.
In the end this will come down to personal preference or what you had access to.
So that’s how you can turn a six or eight foot folding table into a 10-seat dining table. Not only will everyone have a place to sit, but you can invite even more people! If you do this hack, come back and share with us how it went.
Did you like this article? Check out our other TIA Holiday DIY & How-to articles: