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picture houzz dining room 1
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- June 5, 2017
Dining room ideas can range from the dramatic overhaul of layout, walls, doors, fireplaces or lighting features, to the refresh of furniture such as dining tables and chairs, or even smaller details such as dinnerware, cutlery, chair covers and small decorative features. So whether you are looking to completely redesign your dining room or you’re just looking for some dining room decorating ideas, you’re bound to find some inspiration from other homeowners, designers and stylists who’ve uploaded images of their dining rooms on Houzz. How should I choose my dining room table?Dining tables can be large, imposing pieces of furniture and so it’s a good idea to choose your table first and plan your decor around them. Comfort and ease of movement in dining rooms is key – even though we spend most of our time sitting, it’s preferable not to dine in cramped quarters (and crucial as a host to be able to move around the table to serve your guests). When choosing your dining room table, consider the number of people you expect to regularly seat – the perfect size for a dining table allows an intimate meal without feeling crowded. A round table leaves plenty of room for serving food at its centre, but a rectangular table is more flexible for seating extra guests at either end. If you’re after true versatility, drop leaf or extendable dining room tables are the most convenient option. The material of your selected table will set the character of your room. Glass dining tables look sleek and modern, whilst a pine or oak dining table will lend dining rooms a rustic country vibe. For a more traditional dining table opt for a dark polished wood like mahogany. Check out all the dining room decorating ideas on Houzz to see how different materials of dining table are incorporated into different rooms. What are the best dining chairs for my table?If your table hasn’t been sold with matching chairs then you have some extra flexibility to select dining chairs that suit your desired dining room feel. For traditional dining rooms you will want to opt for a full set of high backed formal dining chairs, whether these are upholstered, leather or wood framed. If you are looking for a more informal dining room, then a selection of mismatched chairs in different materials such as moulded plastic and even metal can be a great way to achieve this. For a really relaxed dining experience, you could even opt for a full length bench, which has the additional advantage of saving space as it can be tucked away under the table when not in use. How should I decorate my dining room?Elegant, neutral palettes are the safest dining room decorating ideas for smaller rooms, creating a calm dining environment for your guests. Pattern in a dining room can be a great choice to create drama but in order to not overwhelm your guests you might want to stick to a few stand-out elements – for example, wallpaper, curtains or chair covers. If you are lucky enough to have a large formal dining room then you could consider bold, opulent shades for your walls to create a grander feel. Your tableware and serveware should ideally be chosen to coordinate with your decor choices, but if all else fails keep it white, bright and simple. Lighting is also key to your dining room decor – aim for dimmable light that you can adjust to create the mood that will allow your guests to relax but still be able to see their food. Low pendant lights directly over the dining table are both practical and striking, or for large formal dining rooms you may want to opt for a traditional chandelier hung from the centre of the room. Additional wall sconces along the walls can be a great way to brighten up the room for late night dinner parties, and don’t forget how a couple of candles along your dining room table can add a delicate, finishing touch.
How will you use your dining room?First, consider how frequently you will use the space. If you plan on using your dining room on a daily basis, a casual dining set-up with sturdy, long-lasting furniture is best. As for where you position it – well, any unused space in the home can be converted into a casual dining space, whether it be at the end of a kitchen island, or at the bottom of the stairs. A formal dining room, on the other hand, is more suited to a dedicated space, which is more common in heritage homes where space originally wasn’t at a premium. Perhaps you want your dining room to multi-task and accommodate everyday meals, homework sessions and grown-up dinner parties… If that’s the case, furniture is key. Look for versatile dining tables in either Australian or New Zealand hardwood or weathered timber for a more rustic look. These won’t show up sticky fingerprints as much and can be dressed up for guests. What size and shape should your dining table be?Your dining table should be able to seat all family members with some room for additional guests – each person should have at least 60 centimetres of space at the table. The right size, however, also depends on how much room you have. A general rule of thumb is to leave no less than 1 metre from the dining table to the wall or any additional furniture, so people have enough room to comfortably move around the space. Rectangular dining tables are versatile and can work in a variety of settings, while oval dining tables are more traditional and can turn any meal into an occasion. If you have a tight space to work in, a round dining table is best, and also a great option if you want to encourage conversation. A square dining table can be a dramatic addition to a dining room, but only if you have the space. It allows everyone at the table to see each other, but the bigger the table, the harder it will be able to hold a conversation with someone at the other end. What type of dining chairs should you choose?Once you’ve decided on a dining table, look for dining chairs that share a common design element. If your dining table legs are curved, for example, try to match them with dining chairs that have a similar curve, either in the legs or back. Next, consider the dimensions of the chair. The height of your dining chairs should allow at least 30 centimetres between the top of the seat and the top of the table. And to keep your tush happy, avoid dining chairs narrower than 45 centimetres. How can you decorate your dining room?Dining rooms are relatively minimal spaces, but that makes them a great place to splash a little colour through artwork, especially if yours is a formal dining room. If your dining room is lacking warmth, consider painting the walls a deep shade of red or blue, or go contemporary with black or grey. A cosy rug will make the space feel more intimate, while a sideboard or cabinet of curiosities will further personalise the space. Often overlooked, dining room lighting can also drastically alter the mood of a room, creating drama, spurring romance or encouraging conversation. Opt for soft lighting in the dining area with dimmer switches, and choose oversized pendants in large, open spaces or to make the dining area more of a focal point. Finally, add some table settings, such as a lace tablecloth for a whimsy feel, or a more basic table runner for a chic look.
Achieving an effective dining room design can be a little tricky. However, one of the easiest changes you can make is swapping out your furniture; as the focal point of the room, your table should be your biggest investment. Take time to consider various furniture pieces and what works best for your needs. Don’t be afraid to splurge — a good table can last you decades! Once you have this cornerstone piece figured out, you can then focus on implementing your favorite dining room decorating ideas and storage options. What kind of dining room furniture should I get? Dining areas come in all shapes and sizes, as do their accompanying tables. As you browse dining room ideas, consider a few things. What is your dining room layout? How often do you entertain? How many people usually attend? What kind of events do you like organizing - big dinners or intimate gatherings? What kind of dining rooms are you personally drawn to at other homes? If you don’t host anything because you are hindered by your current dining room design, consider what kind of soirees you would ideally throw and work from there. If you want a dining table with options, purchase one with a leaf so you can accommodate varying numbers of guests. Keep in mind that to ensure visitors won’t be bumping elbows with their fellow dinner guests, each person needs about two feet of eating space (typically the table manufacturer will be able to recommend the amount of people that can comfortably sit at the table). In terms of shapes, round tables are optimal for achieving some of the smaller dining room design ideas you might see. They fit into tight areas and have no sharp corners to bump into when you’re serving a hot casserole or pouring a glass of water. Round pedestal tables are also useful alternatives - they offer more legroom than conventional designs. For a larger space, a square table works well, and a rectangular table is ideal for a long, narrow room. No matter shape, size or material, make sure you measure table-to-wall clearance. To do this, measure the space around the room. Try to leave 42-48" between your table and the walls so diners can sit down and get up easily from their chairs. If there is furniture in the dining space, begin your 42-48” measurement from the edge of the furniture instead of the wall. What kind of dining room decor should I have? When looking for dining room decorating ideas, remember that you don’t want to overwhelm this refined space with too much clutter. However, simple does not mean plain, and this is a room where you can take some stylistic liberties. When decorating dining rooms, think about color schemes (after choosing your table, of course!). Usage of color can really make or break dining room designs, and the cohesion of a matching furniture set allows for colorful decor choices. Try light blue or gray walls for an elegant look, or go timeless with a black and white theme. If you want to stick to white paint, throw in some gold or copper accents, or splashes of bright colors to keep it interesting; geometric patterns, custom-painted ceilings and unique wallpapers are also effective at livening up a dining area. Top off your dining room remodel with a statement light fixture, some inspirational artwork and a large mirror to reflect more light throughout the room. Lastly, don’t forget the dining room table decor! A seasonal centerpiece, table runner or plant arrangement can immediately brighten up the entire space. How do I add storage to my dining room? When choosing storage for dining rooms, focus on functionality. Do you want to have a place to lay out food? Do you want more storage? Do you want to showcase any items? Take a look at various dining room pictures to see how others have incorporated storage and pull the ideas you like for your own. A china cabinet or hutch is a great way to store and display dishes or art pieces. If you need storage as well as a place to lay out food, sideboards - a long, low storage piece with short legs (also known as a “buffet”) - typically are your best bets as they have cabinets. “Servers” tend to be smaller, more formal and lighter in scale than sideboards; they can have drawers and an open bottom on taller legs, or they may have cabinets. Credenzas tend to be long, low cabinets on slender legs, often with sliding doors. Lastly, if you’re going to be using your dining area primarily for cocktail hour (or even if you’re not), consider investing in a rolling bar cart or a permanent wet bar. The dining room ideas you can choose from are really endless, so try not to get overwhelmed and remember you can always change the design down the road!