Should I Buy Dining Benches Instead of Chairs?

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Q: I need to buy a new dining table to accommodate three small children as well as the informal dinner parties I frequently host. Our home has a mid-century modern vibe and a long rectangular living room/dining room, so I have been contemplating using benches for the long sides of the new table. 

I am curious about readers' opinions on benches at the dining table. Are they a yea or a nay?

Sent by Jamie

Editor: Readers, what do you think? Do you like dining benches or do you recommend buying dining chairs instead?

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Related: Church Pews in the Dining Room

(Image: West Elm)