Why are dining rooms so difficult to decorate?
Everyone in the design business knows this: dining rooms are notoriously difficult to decorate.
Have you ever wondered why?
Here are some thoughts, and some suggestions for avoiding some common pitfalls.
Dining rooms have very little in the way of upholstery to soften all the wood in the room.
I find that draperies are a must in a dining area, both for acoustical reasons as well as to visually soften the hard surfaces of sideboard and table.
No other room in the house has so many horizontally-planed wooden surfaces, think about it.
Even a wood-paneled study has vertically-planed wood, which for some reason, seems much different than the horizontal planes of the dining room wood.
And a study is filled with soft furnishings (like a sofa.)
Make sure that your dining room has a proper focal point. Below, it is simply the graphic black mutton and mullion
elements of the windows. The chandelier is so airy it almost goes away.
TWO CHANDELIERS OR ONE?
I usually prefer one, the two below keep the room from having its proper focal point, and are too delicate for the space.
Have you noticed many more rooms in magazines and blogs are showing two full-sized chandeliers? (This is just a trend, so it is going to look dated in a few years).
WATCH OUT FOR MATCHY MATCHY
What about a different pair at the host and hostess place to break up a matched set?
And here, for a very modern treatment, P.S. Dear Owner, please drop the painting 30-36″ and it will be visually correct. It is hung entirely too high.
A few common pitfalls:
- Make sure that your rug fits the space.
It is better–far better– to have a bare floor than to have a too-skimpy rug. A residential style expert or even a friend
with a good eye can help you decide the proper size for your space.
- Beware of banquette seating. It is one trend that looks great in photographs, but can be extremely impractical.
See my post here
- Consider a round table if you have a square or square-ish dining room: