Susanne Fritz

Autor

Susanne Fritz
Zürich   Suiza

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables


Which piece of furniture plays a more dominant role in your life? Your table or your bed?
Most of us have both, but whereas a new phase of life or a new relationship often tends to make us exchange a narrow bed for a wider one, without expecting to have to downsize again, many people prefer to retain a certain amount of flexibility in the size of their table. Accommodating one or two people only or a group, extendable tables can be adapted to a romantic tète-a-tète, a family with children or even a large festive gathering. Here we present the various types and systems which are available.
 

Tables with extendable ends and fixed frames

Tables with extensions that can be added to the end are available in versions with fixed frames and with frames that move. Where the legs are fixed, an extra leaf is simply attached and a support fixture is then folded out or pulled out. This system has the advantage that the main table top in the centre can remain in one piece. It is also possible to attach the extension leaf to one end or to both ends, making a two-stage extension possible.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables

One example is 'Artus 09' by Schulte Design. The table can be extended by 55 cm at each end, with extensions that are available in both wood and stainless steel. This is especially practical for hot pans and also creates design consistency in that the change in material explains the join in the table top.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
„Artus 09“ by Schulte Design can be extended by 55 cm at each end, with extensions that are available in both wood and stainless steel.
Artus 09 by Schulte Design Artus 09 by Schulte Design

The '1120' solid wood table by Thonet is a simple system that features attractive details of craftsmanship. The extension leaf, which is hidden under the table, is attached at one end and is supported by extractable cantilever arms.
Model '1131', in a new interpretation by Naoto Fukasawa, impresses with its clean and simple lines. The extendable table with two insert panels is available in beech, natural or stained oak and in the exclusive wood macassar.
The table top of 180 x 90 cm can be extended by means of insert panels to a length of 225 or 270 cm.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Thonet 1120"; Designer: Delphin Design
Thonet 1120 on Architonic Thonet 1120 on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Thonet 1130"; Designer: Naoto Fukasawa
Thonet 1130 on Architonic Thonet 1130 on Architonic

'Domino', a table collection by Zeitraum, is based on the idea of multiplicity of use. The clean and functional design enables flexible use both in the living area and in the office. In a logical lo-tech concept, the large table can be extended on the side by smaller console tables. The advantage of this is that if these are not required they have a wide range of uses as stand-alone items of furniture, for example as a wall console or escritoire. The disadvantage is that if the console table is not put to use in the same room, then extending the main table is not very practicable. Domino is also available as 'Domino Zoom', with an integrated extension system on the end.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Domino" with smaller console table by Zeitraum
Domino by Zeitraum on Architonic Domino by Zeitraum on Architonic

The side extensions of the 'Pragma' table by Tossa are hidden inside the table, with the frame of polished chrome steel supporting a 30-mm-thick top of solid wood.

The 'ErQu' by Team by Wellis is fitted with the same system.
Here, the frame consists of an L-shaped aluminium frame which, because of the dimensions and the material itself, provides a combination of filigree airiness and maximum stability.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
„Pragma“ by Tossa
Pragma by Tossa on Architonic Pragma by Tossa on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"ErQu" , manufacturer Team by Wellis
ErQu by Team by Wellis on Architonic ErQu by Team by Wellis on Architonic

'Refektorium', the solid wooden table by Draenert, is named after the dining room in a monastery. The 4.5-cm-thick top is, in addition to many other types of wood, available in red beech. From an age of 120 years onwards the beech tree develops red colouration in the core of its trunk, with grain and colour nuances ranging from red via rust and orange through to brown. These form a unique pattern and tell the story of the long life of these trees, thus making every table unique. In addition to the extension leaf, other accessories include a bench, a stool and attractive black leather cushions.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Refektorium" by Draenert
Refektorium by Draenert on Architonic Refektorium by Draenert on Architonic

Draenert is one of the few manufacturers who produce extendable tables of natural stone. The 'Adler I' model impresses with its excellent mechanism made of steel and aluminium, with the aid of which two extensions of 48 cm each can be attached to the ends of the monolithic tabletop. The veins of the stone are continued with precision and the table top is available in all the types of stone and wood in the manufacturer's range.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Adler I" by Draenert
Adler I by Draenert on Architonic Adler I by Draenert on Architonic

Extendable tables with adjustable frame

The frame which extends with the extra leaf is more sophisticated, in that after the extension process the table legs are still the same distance from the outer edge of the table. The principle remains the same – an extra leaf is added to the end of the table.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables

'Dolmen' by Poliform, a solid wooden table designed by Carlo Colombo, can be extended on one side to a length of 250 cm by the insertion of a wooden panel.
The 'Magnum' table by TEAM 7 is available with a wooden or glass top, with the insert panel enabling optional extension by 50 cm or 100 cm. The one-handed extension of the table features the patented '2soft' swivelling mechanism, which conserves the material and is easy to operate.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Dolmen" by Poliform
Dolmen by Poliform on Architonic Dolmen by Poliform on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Magnum" table by TEAM 7
Magnum Tisch by TEAM 7 on Architonic Magnum Tisch by TEAM 7 on Architonic

The 'Laia' collection by Alki prides itself on the sustainable production of all its elements. The dining tables are available in three different sizes and can be extended by 50 cm on one side.

The 'Ospite' table, which is today manufactured by Cassina, was designed as early as 1927 by Charlotte Perriand. The table top, which is pulled out and pushed back on guide rails like roller blinds, can be extended to a length of 300 cm. The top is supported at one end by two chrome-plated steel trestles and on the other by a rectangular wooden frame which is painted matt white and contains the roll-out extension leaf. The black table top is coated with a special material which can be wiped down.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Laia" by Alki prides itself on the sustainable production of all its elements
Laia by Alki on Architonic Laia by Alki on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
The 'Ospite' table, which is today manufactured by Cassina, was designed as early as 1927 by Charlotte Perriand
Ospite by Cassina on Architonic Ospite by Cassina on Architonic

Tables which can be extended in the middle

Instead of extending the table at its ends, it can also be extended in the middle. In this case, the main table top is separated by a join. At this point the table can be pulled apart so that one or more panels can be inserted. The winged system represents a special mechanism, with extension panels fitted below the table top which automatically lift into place when the table is pulled apart.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables

A classic among tables which can be extended in the middle is in the 'CH_322', which was designed by Hans J. Wegener in 1960 and continues to be produced to the present day by Carl Hansen & Son.

The 'RR Folding Dining Table' by Rud. Rasmussen looks like a posh bit of camping equipment, with a simple but highly functional system which enables a central section to be inserted into the folding table.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"CH_322", designed 1960 by Hans J. Wegener
CH_322 by Carl Hansen & Son on Architonic CH_322 by Carl Hansen & Son on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"RR Folding Dining Table" by Rud. Rasmussen
RR Folding Dining Table by Rud. Rasmussen on Architonic RR Folding Dining Table by Rud. Rasmussen on Architonic

With its simple and elegant lines, the 'S 1070/1071' by Thonet is suited both to private use and to contract furnishing. The extensions are hidden in the tabletop and are inserted in the middle. The tabletop is available in a range of natural woods and the frame is made of matt enamelled or chrome-plated steel tubing.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
„S 1070/1071“ by Thonet
S 1070/1071 by Thonet on Architonic S 1070/1071 by Thonet on Architonic

A bevelled pedestal carries the oval table top made of mahogany with star-shaped veneer of the 'Oval' table by Röthlisberger. External insert panels enable the table to be extended in three stages to a length of up to 365 cm. The base separates out and moves with the extension.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Oval" by Röthlisberger
Oval by Röthlisberger on Architonic Oval by Röthlisberger on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Maximo" by Röthlisberger
Maximo by Röthlisberger on Architonic Maximo by Röthlisberger on Architonic

The 'Bryant tavolo 180' by Porada is made of oak and can be extended from 180 cm to 240 cm by folding the integrated central extension section upwards.

The dark wood and solid table top give 'Tadeo' by Walter Knoll a slightly rustic touch, but the geometrical frame is modern and elegant. The table can be extended by a central fold-out section.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Bryant tavolo 180" by Porada
Bryant tavolo 180 by Porada on Architonic Bryant tavolo 180 by Porada on Architonic

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Tadeo" by Walter Knoll
Tadeo by Walter Knoll on Architonic Tadeo by Walter Knoll on Architonic

With 'Canaletto', Zanotta also offers a solid-looking dining table with an unexpectedly sophisticated integral mechanism. The extensions are extracted from the end of the table while a clever transition to the narrower extension leaf provides a visually consistent cross-section.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Canaletto" by Zanotta
Canaletto by Zanotta on Architonic Canaletto by Zanotta on Architonic

The solid-looking bevelled table top of the 'Extendable Dining Table' by Vitra rests on two pairs of legs made of polished aluminium, which are formed by cross members into a trapezium at the top and bottom. Slightly tilted inwards and gradually tapering towards the base, this solid frame makes a slim and elegant impression, not least because of the mirror effect provided by its surface. The table has a hidden metal mechanism on which the table top is fitted and which has room for the additional insert panel.
A high-quality synchronised mechanism enables the table-top, which is joined in the middle, to be opened up far enough to expose the insert panel hidden in the metal container below it without changing the position of the table legs, in other words without making it necessary to lift the whole table laboriously first. Now the insert panel, which is jointed along its lateral axis, only has to be folded upwards and the additional table top area is already in position. Slight pressure on the narrow side of the table top is sufficient for the joints to close, after which the table, which is extended by a good third, is ready for use. A locking mechanism ensures that the different sections of the tabletop can't be pulled away from each other by accident.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Extendable Dining Table" by Vitra
Extendable Dining Table by Vitra on Architonic Extendable Dining Table by Vitra on Architonic

Fully extended the 'UPW' table by wb engros has an impressive span. The legs of the table move with the extension, which means that they always remain at the ends of the table. No matter to what length the table is extended, which can be 146, 212, 278 or 344 cm, the entire length is always available for chairs and no table legs get in the way of guests.
The extension panels are integrated into the table and are positioned centrally.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"UPW" Tisch by wb engros

Extendable tables with a lateral folding mechanism

Extension leaves which can be folded up at the end of the table represent a simple but highly functional principle. They are either located under the table top or form a solid section at the end of the table.
The latter option has the disadvantage that when the table is not fully extended it is not possible to sit at the end of the table with one's legs under it.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables

The 'Haugesen' table by Fredericia illustrates this system and impresses with its simple elegance. The filigree, visible folding mechanism made of metal is reminiscent of the look of a steel support structure, and the pronounced join between the table top and the extension highlights the function of the table instead of trying to conceal it.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Haugesen" by Fredericia
Haugesen by Fredericia on Architonic Haugesen by Fredericia on Architonic

In contrast, the fittings of the 'Keramik Extension T' extension system for the ceramic tables made by MDF Italia are almost invisible. These fittings, for which a patent has been registered, enable an extension leaf of 55 cm to be attached at either end of the table, supported on nickel-plated steel rods. Together they can extend the table by an impressive 110 cm. Provided with a magnetic system for positioning and fixing that has been patented by MDF Italia, they are easy to apply to the frame.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Keramik Extension" by MDF Italia
Keramik Extension by MDF Italia on Architonic Keramik Extension by MDF Italia on Architonic

Wogg offers the greatest possible flexibility in that the 'wogg 6' can not only be folded outwards and inwards, but can be folded up completely. The filigree frame is available in matt black or in chrome, while the laminate table top is available in white, grey or black.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Wogg 6" can not only be folded outwards and inwards, but can be folded up completely
Wogg 6 on Architonic Wogg 6 on Architonic

Extendable glass tables

Extendable tables made of glass represent a special challenge. Whereas in the case of tables made of materials such as wood which are not translucent the connections and the extension mechanism are easy to hide, in the case of glass the aesthetics of these fittings requires a great deal of thought because they are visible at all times. They have to be glued to avoid the necessity of drilling holes in the glass top, and the heavy weight of the top is a further challenge. For this reason swivelling side sections have established themselves as an extension system, using a technically sophisticated but also elaborate mechanism, which is applied in particular to this material.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables

Setsu & Shinobu Ito have designed the 'Tribeca' glass table for Fiam Italia. Here, the mechanism of the table is turned into a design principle, with the angled glass supports of the table top highlighting the high-tech aesthetics. The extension mechanism is filigree and perfectly detailed, forming not just an extension to the table but blending with the glass sections into a kind of transparent apparatus for an artistic installation.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Tribeca" by Setsu & Shinobu Ito for Fiam Italia
Tribeca by Fiam Italia on Architonic Tribeca by Fiam Italia on Architonic

Also from the design duo Setsu & Shinobu Ito comes 'Shinto', which in design and look may be similar to the 'Tribeca' model but in formal terms makes a more mainstream impression. The two pedestals of the table are available either in glass or in steel painted black.

'Ray Plus 3', also by FIAM Italia, can only be folded out at one end, which does not negatively affect the proportions of the table however, because the glass frame is asymmetrical.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Shinto" by Setsu & Shinobu Ito for FIAM Italia
Shinto by FIAM Italia Shinto by FIAM Italia

Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Ray Plus 3" by FIAM Italia
Ray Plus 3 by FIAM Italia on Architonic Ray Plus 3 by FIAM Italia on Architonic

The 'Magic' extendable table by Pedrali is available in a clear or satined finish and has a stainless steel frame which can be dismantled.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Magic" by Pedrali
Magic by Pedrali on Architonic Magic by Pedrali on Architonic

Extendable round tables

Circular tables are formally demanding because of the question of how their radius can be changed. One solution is extending the table top by circular sections which can be suspended.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables

As early as 1963, Paul Kjaerholm developed this system for the 'PK54' table, which continues to be produced to the present day by Fritz Hansen. When not in use the extension segments made of walnut can be stored in a retaining bracket and in themselves represent a notable object in the room.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
As early as 1963, Paul Kjaerholm developed this system for the 'PK54' table
PK54 by Fritz Hansen on Architonic PK54 by Fritz Hansen on Architonic

A different kind of geometry is displayed by the 'Radicequadra' table by Zanotta. This table can not only be extended, but also changes its form, with folding circular sections changing the square table top into an oval or circular shape.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Radicequadra" by Zanotta
Radicequadra by Zanotta on Architonic Radicequadra by Zanotta on Architonic

New ideas

The designers Paolo Pallucco and Mireille Rivier have also tackled the subject of changing geometries. The result is the 'Campo d'Oro' table which they have designed for the traditional Italian firm of De Padova.
Although the table top cannot be extended to provide a larger area, a system of hinges and three trapezium shaped elements enables the table itself to take on different shapes, resulting in longer or shorter sides to provide the required amount of seating.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Campo d'Oro" by De Padova
Campo d'Oro by De Padova on Architonic Campo d'Oro by De Padova on Architonic

The 'Diverso' table by Team by Wellis is another design which does not fit into any of the above categories. A system which is as visually attractive as it is innovative makes it possible for the table to 'grow' steplessly. At the centre of the table, the wood is perforated with a filigree incision and a simple winding mechanism enables the table to be widened like an accordion by 30 cm.
Furniture with growth potential: extendable tables
"Diverso" by Team by Wellis
Diverso by Team by Wellis on Architonic Diverso by Team by Wellis on Architonic

However, the table which grows is not just original but almost philosophical, in that objects made of materials which can grow in line with our needs are extremely sustainable. And, if the status of your relationship does happen to change after all – you can always downsize your bed again.