Integrated leaves provide added flexibilty to your table
Removable Leaf Tables
This is the most common style of leafed table. It requires physically lifting the table and pulling the ends apart to make room for the leaves. The leaves are then stored in an alternate location and brought out when more guests are expected. This style of table allows for nearly limitless flexibility in size; the table can be sized to fit the number of guests by using multiple leaves. Very large tables will require additional legs integrated within the mechanism to support the weight of the leaves. With this style of construction the grain of the boards will run across the narrower width of the table so the grain will nicely match when the leaves are added.
Refractory Leaf Tables
Refractory leaf tables are often referred to as “Dutch Pullout” tables. In this style of construction the leaves are stored under the main top; when closed the appearance of the table is a double-thickness top. When guests are expected the leaves can be pulled out from the end, and they automatically rise to match the height of the main tabletop. One advantage of this leaf style is that the physical table does not have to be moved to add the extra space. In addition, the main table doesn’t have to have any place settings reset to open up the leaves. The size of the leaves is directly related to the overhang of the main top past the apron of the table, so small overhangs should be expected. Aprons are required for this leaf style in order to hide the mechanism. In addition, tables with legs at the corners are recommended for this construction. Depending on length, the grain of the wood can be run in either direction (width or length) to create a continuous grain appearance. Edge treatments should be carefully considered so that the table looks elegant when the leaves are stored and to assure that the surface is continuous when expanded.
Butterfly Leaf Tables
Butterfly leaves are truly a unique method of using table leaves. In this style, the top slides apart in the center to reveal leaves hidden within the table. The leaves fold in the middle and slide into the space in the apron. Multiple leaves can be used to increase the flexibility of the table size, although leaf size is limited by the overall size of the table base. This is the least physically demanding style of table to expand. Aprons are required for this leaf style in order to hide the mechanism. With this style of construction the grain of the boards will run across the narrower width of the table so the grain will nicely match when the leaves are added.