Dining table-door

By Pat Lynch

How two cottagers came up with a space-saving solution for seating extra guests

Dining table-door

Photo by Tony Kicinski

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At the Kicinski cottage, there are no second-class citizens. Not since Tony and his wife, Judy, smashed the tyranny of the undersized table that had long separated their dinner guests into two distinct groups: the coffee-table clique and those with a seat in front of the feast.

“When we’ve got the whole family up, there are eleven of us, including the kids,” says Tony about the gang that assembles at their Shadow Lake cottage, near Norland, Ont. “And when we eat, it’s just not the same when we can’t all sit around the same table.”

Determined to put an end to segregated meals, they devised a plan to fit their crowd: Rather than buy a new table (which they had no room for in their smallish space), they used a piece of the place itself.

Tony popped one of the solid wood doors off a room used for overflow guests, screwed a set of folding legs onto one side and —presto! —they had a table big enough to accommodate extra diners.

The door latch stays on: Cottage gourmands simply work around it as they dig in. When dinner’s done, and the temporary table has been cleared, the legs are folded back up against the door, which gets re-hung for the benefit of overnight guests. Most of the time the door is left open, and the legs are out of sight, facing the wall.

“Now we can seat twelve for dinner,” says Tony, with no coffee table required.

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Pat Lynch