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Setting a Perfect Table: Dining Spaces With Style

Even if you don’t entertain a lot, creating a gorgeous dining room – or even a dining area off the kitchen – will help you enjoy your meals more. Yes, you can eat in the kitchen or in front of the TV, but after a long day at work it is nice to be able to treat yourself to a nice, quiet sit-down meal. If you have a family, a dining area can be a great place to reconnect over meals every day. When renovating your space, make sure that you:

1) Take care of dining room storage.

You need something to store your dishware and other items for your dining room settings. If you have a small home, your dining area storage can even be a sneaky way to store extra books, collectibles, or other items you may want to show off to guests. Storage ideas range from traditional hutches to modern-looking bookshelves and sideboards. When making your choices, carefully consider how much storage space you need and what items you need to stow away. Be sure to check out this houzz post about storage ideas for your dining area.


2) Opt for comfortable chairs.

You can buy dining sets that include tables and chairs, but in many cases it can be a better idea to buy tables and chairs separately. Not only can you save money by checking out the best deals for each piece, but buying chairs and table separately also ensures your dining space doesn’t look over-matched. Look for chairs that work with your table – but don’t necessarily match it perfectly. The overall look will be more interesting than a pre-fab “set.”


When looking at chairs, consider the material and comfort of the chairs in question. Look for a material that will repel stains and a style that will be comfortable enough for a long dinner party. While you’re at it, look beyond just dining room chairs when considering seating. Upholstered easy chairs, padded benches, and stools can all also work well. In fact, there’s no rule that says all your dining seating has to match. You can have a soft bench along one side of your dining table and padded dining chairs along another side. Mixing and matching creates a more unique look and allows you and your guests a few more choices as to where to sit. Once you have your tables, be sure to visit this GMC Trade Secrets blog post for tips on how to arrange your dining room seating.

3) Pick a great table.

A great table is the cornerstone of your dining space, and you will want to invest in the right piece. If you have the space for it, a huge table looks dramatic and is very practical. It can double as a work area once you clear off your meals and it gives you the flexibility of hosting larger parties. If a larger table is not in the cards, look for a smaller table that can expand into a larger piece. Be sure to choose something that is visually appealing and looks great both with and without a tablecloth. Apartment Therapy has this post about great dining room tables.


4) Choose flexible lighting.

Lighting in a dining area should never be overpowering. If you must have overhead lights, have a dimmer handy so that you can lower the lights for dinner. Or, use lanterns or candles to cast a gentle glow. Introduce plenty of reflective surfaces – such as mirrored tables or furniture and clear glasses – to add some sparkle.


5) Buy what you need to set a beautiful table.

Real cloth tablecloths and napkins may seem fussy and stuffy, but they can actually transform your meals into something special. Man-made fibers are easy to clean and won’t wrinkle, so cleaning up is as simple as running your washer and dryer. Napkin rings, beautiful plates and glasses, and candles will make each meal an event. When your meal is done, you can store these things in your hutch or dining room storage.


6) Keep some personal items in your dining area to create interest and to give the area a lived-in look.

If you have a separate dining room, one of the risks is that it can eventually start to feel a little stuffy and unused, especially if you tend to eat in your kitchen some or all of the time. Keep your dining room feeling alive by using it regularly and adding a few unique items – such as vase with flowers or a few books – that you change up regularly. This can make even a formal dining room look a little less cold. If you are trying for an ultra-modern and sleek dining room, add some personal touches with art pieces. You will still have that modern look but without the impersonal feel.


7) Cover the walls with fabrics.

This is an old trick that has been used in dining areas to reduce reverberations while enhancing voices and music. As an added bonus, fabric on the walls looks luxurious. You can create the effect with tapestries or curtains, but one of the sleekest and most stylish options is simply to use a gorgeous fabric as wallpaper. To get the step-by-step instructions, check out this blog post by Jessica Jones.

Dining spaces can range from formal to ultra casual, from grand to modest. All can look fabulous. Need proof? Check out this Pinterest to check out a range of gorgeous dining rooms in just about every style possible. Then, get started on your own dining area.