Mood Board: New dining room finds old character
This room was designed for a client fighting some serious room obstacles. This dining room, in a newly built apartment, was an empty box. It is a small room, with two arched doorways leading to the galley kitchen and the narrow entry hallway. The room has no windows. This was the client’s first dining room in her first home. She wanted an inviting space with some real charm that allows dinner guest to linger at the table. She also wanted to make sure she invested furniture pieces that would last…
First things first, we had to do battle with the serious lack of light in this room. We mounted the large floor mirror on the far wall of the dining room, opposite the view from the entry hallway. The scale of this piece tricks the eye into seeing it as a window. A large mirror is also helpful to add visual square feet to a small room. We complimented the mirror with a large chandelier on a dimmer, in the center of the room. The mirror will reflect the light around the room. The shade on this chandelier acts as a light diffuser, which will be lovely for entertaining.
Next, the wall color was chosen. We chose this smokey blue to add some luxury to the room. Under lower light, this saturated color will also add some recessed corners to the room, giving it some extra depth. Blue is a soothing color to most people, which will help the client’s guest to feel more relaxed around her table.
Choosing the right table for this room is a great example of why taking good room measurements is so important. While there were many tables that seemed to fit in the room, when you actually look at the space people need to move around a table, pull out chairs, etc., it cut down on a lot of the choices. The client has always liked round tables, so we chose this classic round oak table, with an optional leaf to be the focal point of the room.
The chairs are in a slightly different style, but the same oak finish as the table. By choosing a chair with the back cut out, the chairs feel lighter in the space, and again, give the illusion of more spaciousness. The chair seat upholstery is a simple blue and brown toile, echoing the tone of the wood and the wall color. With the use of the table leaf, the room will seat six people. The client keeps the extra two chairs as accent chairs in her guest room when they are not in use in the dining room.
A sideboard or buffet table is always a helpful thing in a dining room, but we just didn’t have the floor space for a traditional sideboard in this room. By repurposing a console designed for entryways, we found a handy place for wine bottles and hot serving dishes to live during meals. The antique glass candlesticks add some dimension to the surface of this sideboard and offer another way to decorate with light when entertaining.
While we had solved the light issues with this room, it still didn’t have much of a view. By adding two large, detailed landscapes in similar frames, this room now has views worth noticing. The gold of the frames contribute a little sparkle to the room, too. The easy-to-maintain Ficus tree is small enough to live in several places in the apartment. By using it in the dining room when entertaining, the client can bring some soothing nature into the room, which compliments the art work.
The large orange area rug takes its color cues from the oranges found in the art and as a natural complement to the blue wall color. You can also find orange stripes in the silk curtains we chose to frame the two door arches. The long curves of the draping fabric help soften the crisp lines of the doorways.
By adding color and pattern to this small dining room, it has found some charm and individuality. Choosing classic furniture pieces and using some architectural tricks has ensured this dining room will have a long and busy life.
Unique, affordable, comfortable living.