Bistro Tables! I love them! When I first saw the scene represented by this photo, I wanted to write a post centered around it. What is so special about it? After all it is only an ordinary kitchen bistro table. It certainly is not the high fashion design that one would get in a home decor salon, or from any designer. The kitchen is ordinary with an eclectic assortment of appliances on a modest counter, a simple bistro table and chairs in the middle. What came to my mind when I saw were childhood memories of summers days in a French country home where I would spend vacations with my aunt. A simple, unassuming vacation kitchen, where life is easy, relaxed, where we are carefree, and life is kind. That is the true spirit of a bistro table.
It is no wonder that more than 150 years after bistro chairs were first introduced bistro table and chairs sets are still the best selling furniture around the world every year.
If we look at this image again the bistro table shown here and the bistro chairs were probably not bought at the same time. You do not have to buy a bistro set. If your finances are a little stressed but you would really like to have one, think about buying the table first and later the chairs (or vice versa, depending on what you need more).
A bistro table and chairs that match can give a particular look to your kitchen or patio, and that look may also bring about a convivial area, but nothing would give the relaxed atmosphere better than a mismatched bistro set. It is saying that you live there and that it is your comfort that you seek, not a trend, not approval from others. It shows your individuality no matter how well planned was your purchase, to accomplish the look that the French would call décontracté.
By definition, by their use, by their function, bistro tables are the embodiment of casual living. A French bistro whether it has an outdoor terrace or not is a usually a small place where people meet after work to share a little time and have a drink. They are never stuffy or ostentatious, they are what people in the US would think about “Cheers” the old tv show. All you can get in a bistro is a drink and a sandwich. There is no special style assigned to these bistro tables and the chairs are often not matching the table.
The bistro table can be round or square, and even rectangular. It can have two, three, or four chairs. It would be difficult to have more because the bistro table is also by definition a small table. That small size is part of the charm. You can put one anywhere you want.
One characteristic of bistro tables as used in bistros was the pedestal foot, because it took less space. The pedestal foot is also very heavy giving stability to the table when used outdoors. Since bistro tables have become so popular with every segment of the population everywhere, designers have gotten into the market and have created any kind of table legs you can think of, and the styles have changes a little along the years. What is interesting is that no changes to the design of bistro tables have altered the basic function and attractiveness of this kind of furniture. It remains the most practical and loved furniture around the world.
Here are a few bistro tables legs for you to appreciate not only the way they have been seen and changes by designers, but also for you to see that they do not affect the way we feel about the table itself, it is only a difference in style and your personal preference is what counts.
As you can see on the image above style can vary and this is only a small representation of what is available. Some of these even come in a different finish and/or a different color, and some offer a way to have a folding bistro table. It is only a question of finding the right supplier. On line merchants are more likely to have a larger choice than any small store in your home town, and while you can special order in a local store you can certainly save a lot of time by perusing the online offerings to help you reach a decision of what you like best and what will serve your purpose.
Another thing I would like to point out is that pedestal feet like these can be bought separately from the table, this means that if you have a table top that you would like to modify you can do it easily. If you have a wood top or a mosaic bistro table top you would like to salvage this is the way to get it done inexpensively. By the same token you can use a pedestal you have and replace the top should it be past its prime. What might be a more difficult task with a larger table become an easy project with a small bistro table.
The selection of bistro table tops is even larger than is the selection of table legs. All materials have been used and are still being used for tops. You can have a glass bistro table top just as easily as you can choose a marble table top. The finish and look will be dependent on the brand that you choose and on your budget. Of course your selection will be dictated by the foot you select and by the use you will make of the table, as well as where you will place it. Any material is suitable for an indoor bistro table, but you must ensure that you have a material capable of withstanding the elements if you are buying an outdoor bistro table.
Teak bar bistro tables as well as standard size tables are great for outdoors, as teak is a rot proof, insect proof wood that cannot be out-shined for outdoor use, teak is also a good wood for indoor. Metal bistro tables are a favorite in many households as they are long lasting. Today’s metals if finished properly are rust free and beautiful. The most commonly used metals for outdoor bistro table sets are aluminum and wrought iron.
A mosaic top can be found for both metal and wood sets. The variations of mosaic are endless, the presentation below gives you a couple of examples. You could also make your own mosaic top for a truly individual design. Many designers offer their services for custom made table tops, this of course is more expensive. Stores like Amazon will carry some very inexpensive bistro table sets.
Cast aluminum bistro tables and chairs will never rust, while a wrought iron bistro table might need a little more care on a yearly basis to clean out the rust, wrought iron can now also be protected from rust.
Metal bistro chairs look beautiful, more personal and comfortable with cushions. Cushions add a touch of color to your decor and much comfort to your chairs, they are an easy, quick and inexpensive way to change the decor once in a while as a set will very different depending on the choice of cushion.
Prices on bistro tables will vary greatly from about $150 shipping included, to very expensive sets. As I said earlier you do not have to buy all the pieces at once, and I advocate for quality over price whenever possible because in the long run you will get more enjoyment while you are using your furniture and you will get to use it much longer. Cheap bistro sets are available online if you want one.
The presentation above will only give you a small sampling of what is available online, many more bistro tables, bistro chairs and bistro table sets can be found at any price. Most manufacturers will ship directly to your home and many of them will do it free.