For some, the dining room is the social center of the home, not the living room. Some love to bring their guests directly to the area where food and drinks are served. It’s also the place where the family can gather around and talk. It’s the place where families and friends make precious memories, so it’s only appropriate that you decorate it nicely. Create an inviting space for your family and friends with these dining room decorating tips and ideas:
- Start with a table that suits you best.
The table makes the dining room a dining room. So, first things first: opt for a table that fits comfortably and just right within the size of the room while still having enough space to move chairs and walk around. If you have a limited space, choose a small round table. For larger spaces, a long, rectangular table is suitable. But also, consider your household size and lifestyle. If you’re a couple, you don’t need a big table just yet – it will occupy valuable space you can use for other purposes. If your family have different schedules and doesn’t eat together a lot, opt for a more casual and informal style of table that can fit all your family members in the smallest amount of space.
- Mix and match your seating.
Dining tables and chairs doesn’t have to be matchy-matchy all the time. If you’re buying new furniture, selecting a matching set might be a more convenient option, but if you’re redecorating, try mixing dining sets. It adds depth and variation to your décor. And chairs doesn’t always have to be individual seating. You may add a bench seating on one side adjacent to the wall, and individual seats on the other side. In an open area home with limited space, you can fill a kitchen corner with a low profile couch and then bring in a square table.
- Choose the right height of chairs for your dining table.
Don’t just look at styles and colors of chairs to determine what’s suitable for your table. For you to get the right seat height for your table, take the height of the table and subtract 12 inches. For instance, in a dining table 30” high, the appropriate chair height would be 18”. The backs of the dining chairs must be taller than the table top. Lower chairs look more modern, while taller chairs feel more formal and traditional.
- Decorate the walls.
Don’t underestimate the impact of your wall color and décor for the dining room. Even if you have brought all the finest furniture and accessories, your room would only look fully furnished and beautiful if you have painted the walls in a color that suits your interior and your furniture. A wall painted in a solid color would look complete with the right wall decorations, but a patterned wall can look good on its own. Hang an oversized piece of artwork to serve as a focal point of the room. But remember to hang it lower so it would be at eye level when people are sitting in the chairs. You may also mount an open shelf to display your collection on your dining area.
- Choose calm colors.
Dining rooms must have a soothing ambiance to ease the mind and body while dining. Calm colors like buttery yellows, green smoke and muted corals look great for the dining area. But if you want a truly relaxing ambiance, then go for neutrals like cream, gray, browns and whites. And if you’re going for neutrals, add striking accents to prevent your dining area from being dull.
- Add built-in furniture.
If you’re renovating your home or constructing a new home, consider making built-in storage for your dining room. Built-in china cabinets can help save floor space, while still providing practical storage. Plus, it can add visual appeal to your room since you can include architectural details with these types of cabinets.
- Maximize natural light.
The warmth and glow of natural light makes a dining room a pleasurable place to dine, talk and hang out. It’s best to install a wide window that gives a great view of the outside world. Use light curtains to cover up windows for privacy, while still letting light in.
- Add statement lighting.
Lighting must be a key feature in any room. The dining room is one of the major rooms where you can provide a bold piece of lighting that makes a statement. If you have a large dining room, you can go extravagant with a big and gorgeous chandelier. But if your room’s smaller, use hanging pendants to achieve the same effect without taking up a lot of space. The lighting looks better if it complements your dining table below, too. If you have a rounded table, choose a suitable round fixture. But if you have a long, rectangular table, it’s better to choose an oval or a linear fixture. You may also use a round one, but make sure it’s large enough to look suitable for the rectangular table.
- Layer lighting.
Ideally, the bulbs and fixtures you need for a dining area must produce between 200 to 400 watts, but it would be best to layer the lights. Layering lighting means using a mix of lighting sources like wall-mounted fixtures, overhead ceiling light, floor lamps, candles or windows. Soft lighting and dimmer lights can help create an intimate dining vibe.
- Consider installing pocket doors.
To make a private dining area, a lot of people use dividers or half walls. But for some, it’s not enough, especially for private family members whose other family member is entertaining guests in the living room or kitchen. Sliding pocket doors are perfect in an open floor plan so residents can achieve the intimacy of a closed dining area.
- Place an area rug.
Area rugs define the main dining area. They feel good on the feet and they can add a hint of color to your room to help unify your color scheme. Dining area rugs should be around 24-30” wider and longer than your table, so the back legs of the chair will stay on the rug when they are pushed out.
- Play with colors, patterns and styles.
Mix and match colors and patterns to achieve a personalized look. Mix upholstery fabrics to add textural depth. Just make sure the chair frames and backs are covered in one solid color. If you have a traditional styled dining area, add details and essentials in neutral colors like white, gray, brown and beige. But if you have a lively style, add pops of color with your choice of linens, dishes and other dining essentials to set the tone for your dining room, especially if your main elements are already in neutral colors. Add patterns like polka dots, stripes or chevron in either walls, tablecloth, rug or chair upholstery to add visual interest. You can also mix and match furniture styles for a unique look so your dining room won’t look like it’s patterned from a catalog. Just make sure you unify it with color.
- Update the room’s look with linens, runners, slipcovers and curtains.
Simple accessories like linens, table runners, slipcovers and curtains can help set the tone for the whole dining area. Linens set the tone and the main color of your dining area. Table runners can spruce up your dining room based on your mood, tastes or occasions. Slipcovers can easily change the look of your upholstered chair if you’re getting tired of it. Curtain and other window treatments can bring the space to life.