The Origins of the Folding Table
A folding table can come in a variety of shapes sizes and materials. The tops tend to be made from either plastic or wood with the frames being made from either steel, aluminium or wood. Your particular use for the folding table will usually determine which material you go for, wooden folding tables are incredibly strong but rather heavy whereas aluminium folding tables are incredibly lightweight but don’t have the hefty load capacity that the wooden tables do. Plastic folding tables are somewhere in the middle and tend to be the most popular as the offer a great compromise of weight and load capacity.
Many people assume a folding table is where the actual table top folds in half however there are actually two common ways that a folding table folds. The first and most common is the fold in half table, this is where the table top is hinged underneath in the centre, and this allows the table to be folded up into a neat carry case. The second type is the folding leg style, this is where just the legs are hinged and fold flat against the table top, and these are less portable but people like them as they guarantee a completely flat surface.
There are a number of stories and pieces of evidence showing that folding tables in a very basic and primitive form may have been around since ancient Egyptian times. However, by the colonial and Victorian times, folding tables were common and found throughout most of the world. Even though they became common at this time they did not look like modern day folding tables, they were far more complex and ornate with some boasting incredibly intricate designs. It wasn’t until well into the 20th century that the folding tables started to resemble what we have now.
Today folding tables are commonplace, with a range of functional tables used for car boot sales, as extra workspace or for fetes and events through to more elaborate wooden tables which work fantastically for wedding venues and as an occasional table in the home.