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Interior Design Ideas: Informal Dining

As we discussed yesterday dining with family doesn’t have to be a stuffy stiff-backed affair as it was in the past. Informal dining, whether it’s inside in a dining room or alfresco on the patio, should be a relaxing and enjoyable experience for everyone.

We’ll start by taking a look at informal dining inside the home, in the dining room or dining area, and although we say informal we don’t mean sitting in front of the television with a plate balanced on your lap! In this instance we refer to a dining area which is designed and fit for purpose – which is of course eating.

Yesterday we looked at how colour can stimulate appetite with reds being the most well associated colour. But you don’t have to use red, bright citrus colours also work well in dining rooms as they co-ordinate particularly well with all shades and types of wooden tables and chairs. For example darker tones of oak and mahogany look stunning when paired with lime green curtains and soft furnishings.

If you prefer a more contemporary look and have a light ash or beech dining room suite and wooden made to measure blinds, white curtains and co-ordinating accessories will enhance the woods’ natural colour rather than swamping it by using darker colours. If the room looks a little ‘lost’ adding a splash of colour via a single accessory will give the room a colour boost which catches the eye momentarily to evoke interest.

Another aspect of informal dining is the placement of the table and chairs. Central placement is ideal if it allows sufficient room for people to walk round to reach their seat. If you’re pushed for space benches make a great alternative to individual chairs and will accommodate more people. Make cushions from material bought from an online fabric warehouse or use pre-made seat pads – these can also be taken outside when needed to make your alfresco dining a little more comfortable.

Don’t forget that modern interior designs also give you the opportunity to mix and match, so if you’re table and chairs have see better days you can always use a table cloth or table runner to hide any imperfections, likewise an assortment of mismatched chairs painted in different colours or with different patterned seat pads will bring a fresh new look to your informal dining area without costing an arm and a leg!

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