So excited to be reading through your blog! I am also a mother of four great kids (oldest a girl and three little boys, all ages 2-10), a fan of baking sugary treats (like cupcakes), a fan of American Idol (though this year I'm not so into it), and married to a wonderful DIY guy who says, "Decide what you'd like and I'll do my best to make it happen." What more could I ask for?
Maybe ... some decorating talent would be nice! I just don't have it! Check out Erin's room here.
A year ago I jumped into redoing my dining room full force. We've been redoing this old house from end to end in just the past 2 1/2 years, including a complete kitchen redo (I love my maple glazed cabinets and black trim), knocking down walls, and a fireplace makeover. So I found an inspiration room on HGTV's Rate My Space and couldn't wait to get started on the dining room, but then as I miserably failed practicing the glazing technique on a piece of scrap drywall, I halted the whole project. The room's been a storage space and sometimes dining area for almost a year now.
Now I've got the momentum back. I'm attempting to put together my dining room and trying to look at it again, abandoning the glazing plan altogether. I found your blog because I'm questioning the existing crown molding I don't see the crown molding??? and how to handle the walls now that I've scrapped the glaze and diamond pattern (on top) that was part of my original vision. From what I've read on your blog, it seems the chair rail is a little too high in my room. Should I remove it? Move it? Add crown? Do a finishing of some kind on the bottom like faux wainscoting or beadboard? The height is OK- yes- I would add wainscoting or beadboard.
I just want the room to come together and me be happy with it, so I'm trying to plan everything! I'm not very confident about putting things together. How big a light fixture to I need for the large scale dining table? Is 24" round big enough? Would the rectangular 36" chandelier be better? With a rectangular table- an oblong or rectangular chandelier is ideal. Yes- 36 inch is a good size. Do I worry about putting all rectangles in the room (chandelier, table, buffet, art?) or do I need to vary it with some circles and squares? No- don't worry about that. In certain categories repetition can be boring- but with a rectangular shape- it is not a concern.
Another thing ... I tend to like things that match, but I realize it often looks better when they coordinate instead. So, if I have pillar candles on the chandelier, I'd like pillar candles as sconces. Does it matter if their finish amongst the sconces and chandelier is different (one more bronze, one black)? I would not do pillar candle sconces and a pillar candle chandelier- now that is where the repetition thing is bad. If you love that look- use it on the chandelier- as it is larger and makes more of an impact- but then choose something entirely different for the sconce- but something that still coordinates- like the sconce below from Bellacor - only $97.
I'd like to bring out red in the artwork and then with some accessories, are there rules other than to repeat the same color three times in the room? What you really need to make your room look more like the inspiration room (which I put at the top of the post) is some pattern. Don't use solid drapes-- use a pattern- same with the rug. The patterned fabric above is from Beacon Hill. The rug is from Dash and Albert. Add more color in the art work and centerpiece. The poppy print is from House in the Country- and is available in different sizes- framed or just canvas wrapped.
Then, is the table too big for this room? I've measured and staged the area with the furniture I already have and I'm thinking I'll like it fine, but I have a lingering doubt. Your table is not too large. My overall vision for this room is to be a casual dining area that we use almost daily for our family. Kid-friendly and durable is a must and we want to have guests and not have to say "let's put the leaf in." The only furniture will be the table and chairs and a buffet on the wall parallel (black or bronze mirror above). The sconces will be installed on the far end of the table (opposite the doorway to the kitchen), with the focal artwork in between. Simple window treatments on either side of the French doors, likely on swing away arm rods. We NEVER use these French doors, but I want the option kept there with the swing rods. No rug planned because it will just get ruined by my wonderful but messy boys.
Here are several photos, especially of things I've picked out online. I can't spend a ton on light fixtures, so that's unfortunately limiting. I love the pillar chandeliers at Restoration Hardware but $1,000? Not in our house!
In case it matters, I love traditional and tend toward cottage and Tuscan looks. My whole house is in the green family you see above including the kitchen adjoining the dining area, or a caramel/gold family. Housewide white trim. Black accents just seem classic to me right now.
I've asked a ton, I know. Please know that I am soooooooooooo grateful for any input at all. I'm so glad I found your blog. I'm decorating-challenged and usually just end up with nothing on the wall for years because I'm so scared of deciding, hating it, regretting it and thinking of the expense! It's a debilitating fear.
Thanks a million again. Wish you and yours all the best!!!