The dining room is a place that deserves enough attention and care because it hosts our dinner parties and celebrations. Here we sit together with our guests, friends, and family for having a delicious meal and spend some quality time. Our internal designer and decorator offers in this article some guidance and advice about dining room design.
There is a place in our homes which, although not as essential as other rooms, all of us love. This space is the dining room. Nowadays, with the fast pace in our lives, we don’t have formal dinners very often, and we usually have our meal on the kitchen table. Nevertheless, most homes have a complete set of a formal dining room, even small homes with lack of space.
Certainly, an impressive and well-designed dining room can be a central point of attention and become the “star” of our home. But how can we achieve this? What do we need to know about dining room decoration?
First of all it would be a good idea to analyze the components that make up a complete formal dining area. This will give us an overview of what we really need in a dining room. So let’s go:
Table of Contents
THE DINING ROOM TABLE
Suggested Reading: Comparison of different Dining Room Table Materials and Styles
The dining table certainly is the key element and we all understand why. Usually, it also determines the style of the other furniture. The following types of tables are the most common in a dining room:
– Rectangular dining table:
Easy to setup, fits in most areas and is the most common choice. These range from modern to classic and from very small to huge “monastery style” sizes.
– Square dining table:
It occupies a lot of space and is usually convenient in square large spaces. The placement of furniture around it is based on the lines of its diagonals. Lately, the square table has been in fashion but it needs special attention because it doesn’t fit everywhere!
– Oval or elliptic shape
Like the rectangular shape, an oval dining table is easy to position in space. The round shapes on the edges of the table make it more beautiful since the smooth corners give an airy aesthetic feeling. Moreover, you can usually fit two chairs on each head, so it is practical and it can serve more people.
– Round dining table
The famous rotunda shape! In the past, this was the table shape everyone wanted to have in their home. In recent years, as the Minimal Architecture dominates, round table shape is forgotten and this is unfair … I would not deny that the round tables “consumes” more space than we think. Nevertheless, the rotunda is the perfect dining table, because its shape “connects” all people sitting in the dining area and creates a great atmosphere.
The chairs are the most important element of a dining room, since we need to sit somewhere to eat!! With high or low back, with armrests or without, what matters most is to have good symmetry and a comfortable seat. And because chairs are difficult to manufacture, they are the most expensive item. Usually, at least six chairs are needed in a dining room, which can cost the total value of a large table!
The sideboard/buffet is the main storage area of a dining room, in which we store dishes, table utensils, tablecloths etc. Also it helps a lot in serving the meal since it can “host” what does not fit on the table when we have many guests. It’s a good idea therefore to position it next to the table but allowing also some room for people to serve themselves.
The showcase display is the furniture that “encloses” the precious objects of a formal meal. Crystal glasses, expensive carafes, special dishes, sometimes even jars have their space in the display to admire but also to use them during a formal dinner. Many times the showcase can be used also as wine cellar, since we can store our wine bottles and other beverages.
THE CHINA CABINET
Finally let us mention the forgotten china cabinet, the use of which reaches back in the centuries. First the Ancient Greeks were making small furniture to retain valuable family heirlooms. The Romans imitated them and created the “scrinium” – small chests with glass doors and shallow drawers. Following in the Renaissance and throughout the period of Neoclassicism, these small furniture got biggest dimensions which nowadays constitute the union of buffet and showcase display on the same cabinet.
All the above constitute the set of a complete dining room. Many times you may replace the buffet with a console, the showcase or china cabinet with a shelf etc, but we will always need some storage facilities close to the table with the chairs.
And now it’s time for some decoration tips. When you want to decorate a dining room you should be aware of some specific parameters that will create the right room layout and make the furniture stand-out. So we have to bear in mind the following:
– We need to choose the perfect size and shape of our table according to the space you have in the dining room area. Squares and round tables take up more space, but they are ideal for corners of squared rooms. Rectangular and oval tables help to divide big rooms. But all these depend on the size of furniture and the square feet surface of our space. Take great care not to “flood” your home with a huge dining room just because it looks impressive.
– In open plan house layout, it is advisable to arrange the dining area in between the kitchen and the living room and not near the entrance. If this arrangement is not possible, we advise you to “hide” the dining table by choosing something light in size and style. A very good solution is a glass table which seems “invisible”.
– In interior design, it is a big mistake to have two dining tables in the same area and make it look like a restaurant place!! In case there is a dining room and kitchen together in an open plan layout, the dining area in the kitchen should take the form of a bar and the chairs should be replaced with high stools. If our space is too small, you can choose a simpler table and place it in the kitchen only.
– The lighting above the dining room table is better to be hanging low enough, just above the table surface. It will look much more special and unique. That way, we will have better lighting at lunch time. It would be good also to install a couple of lamps on the buffet or sconces on the wall. They will help in lighting and provide focus on the furniture.
– We choose highly decorative items to place on top of the table, such as plates with candles, two or three jars with different heights in the corner, or a large bowl in the middle. Natural and fresh flowers are the also a great choice! At the buffet table, we can also attach or place a mirror in combination with various decorations which can make a big difference.
In the market you will find many different kinds of dining rooms that cater to all tastes. Whether you choose a complete set or experiment to combine some different pieces, with the above tips you will be able to create a real “star” in your home.