Dining Room Inspiration

One of my goals this summer is to finally decorate my dining room. I’ve been talking about it for months now, and it’s time to make some changes!

The room is a little awkward because it’s square and open on three sides, so the space for a table is quite small. When the table has two leaves and opened all the way to seat 8+, it’s hard to walk around to get to/from the adjoining rooms.

Here’s what the room looks like today:

dining room, before^View from the hallway. Yes, we only have five chairs, and they don’t match. dining room, before^View from the corner. The room opens up to the hallway and into our family room. The rest of the house has a lot of blue/gray undertones so I think painting will go a long way in improving this room! Also, photobomb by the lovely Leia. :) dining room, before^View from the office, with french doors that can be closed to make it cozier. The table isn’t centered because it would block off the walkway from the kitchen. I’ve tried to put the table the other way and it also has its own challenges.

Can you tell why I’m eager to redecorate it?! Right now this room is pretty blah, but I think it has great potential.

Here’s my dining room inspiration:

Dining Room Inspiration

WALLS: Dark blue walls with a bright white wainscoting around the base.There was a sale on paint over Memorial Day, so I went ahead and got the top coat. I debated against peacock blue, dark teal, and even chalkboard black, but ended up choosing Sherwin Williams’ Smoky Blue, color-matched to Behr’s premium ultra paint. I’m not one who gets the hankering to repaint every season, so I think this color will be more timeless than the others I considered. Now I just gotta build up my courage to DIY wainscoting, and I can get started. Eeks! Those tutorials look intimidating!

CURTAINS: The giant window is one of my favorite parts of the room, and I’d love to frame it with beautiful curtains. I’m thinking either plain white or a simple graphical print in navy or gray, hung high and wide. I love West Elm or World Market‘s curtains, but I may find some fabric and make them.

HUTCH: First option, paint the hutch in chalk paint or refinish to have a rustic look. The other option is to take off the top part and just keep the base since it’s a pretty dominating piece in a small room. Then I could create a bar with hanging shelves and glasses on the wall, or just put a huge piece of art over it. Last option would be to sell this hutch and buy a new one. (What do you think?) Picture above found via Better Homes and Gardens.

ART: Once the room is painted and curtains are picked out, I will have a better idea of what art to place on the walls. But I am thinking something fun, happy and subtle. Art shown above: Out to Sea by Carolyn MacLaren. If Her Heart Could Sing by Christina Baker. And Lluvia by Michelle Armas (not available anymore – boo!).

LIGHTING: I’m not crazy about our light fixture, but I’m not in any rush and am determined to work with what I have for now. But, if I am dreaming here, I’d get a bentwood pendant from West Elm. :)

TABLE: I have two ideas. First, getting a round table to center the room, like this West Elm 60″ one I’m swooning for:

West Elm Arc Base Pedestal Table

Or use what we have, paint / stain it, push it against the window with a bench for more room and center the light fixture over the table.  Until then, I will most likely use what I have until I find either a nice round table or gorgeous tufted bench for a good price.

SEATING: One of my favorite things in all the world is lingering around the dining table with friends, long after the meal is over. That’s much more likely to happen if the seating is comfortable! I love the idea of doing a bench (I am eyeing this upholstered loveseat from Target) or upholstered chairs. But even uncomfortable seating can be so expensive! Hopefully I can score some on Craigslist or at Yard Sales.

So that’s the inspiration.  I’ll keep you posted on what changes this summer! :)

PS – If you’re curious, here’s what the house looked like the day we bought it.

  • Dorothy Clement

    Is the dining table and hutch a set? i would sell them and get what you want or just sell the table and chairs and keep hutch. I love, love the new look. You have such a great idea for this room!

  • I don’t think they are a set, but could probably be sold together. Glad you like the room! You’ll be one of my first guests once it’s done. ;)

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