Has your dining room been abandoned? Are you more likely to be sorting laundry on your table than serving a family dinner? As the way we eat and entertain changes, so must the role and design of the family dining room. It is unfortunately very rare for families to sit down every night to a formal dinner at the table. Our inability to tear ourselves away from the television has resigned the humbled dining room into a museum of how we used to live- cutlery still positioned in place as if there had been an evacuation? If the traditional is no longer functional, what does work in today's dining rooms? Basically, multi-functional furniture, contemporary materials and style statements that not only break the rules, but also reclaim your dining room and make it functional again. If you're ready for a design challenge, here are four simple, but creative, ways to restore your dining room to full working order without dipping into the red.
1. Make the space multi-functional.
Most families today are eating their nightly dinners in the kitchen, saving the dining room for small parties or get-togethers. So, recreate the space for that.
Start by opting for a table with leaves that can be pulled in or out. For cocktail events, you can keep the table small and give yourself more floor space while sit-down dinners can be accommodated simply by extending the table. If you have the space, a stylish and handy side cabinet can be used to store books and computer equipment so that your dining room is able to double up as a private study. Anybody with a home based business or who is studying for a set of exams, will really feel the benefit of such versatility.
2. Mix and match your chairs.
Just because you have a traditional dining room table doesn't mean you have to stick with the matching chairs.
Start by snatching up different chairs at local thrift shops, antique stores and flea markets. Look for a running theme, style or design to pull them together and try different sizes, like pairing a basic chair with bench seating. Just make sure you choose chairs that synchronize well with one another so that the overall arrangement looks thought-out, rather than thrown-together.
3. Replace your table.
While replacing your dining room table may be expensive, a contemporary and modern table can create a major positive impact. Wood is traditional, but why not opt for marble, glass, white oak or even living grass.
4. Update your linens and soft furnishings.
For a simple fix that creates an instant makeover, update your table linens. New tablecloths, placemats and napkins are an easy way to add some instant wow factor to a tired space. Extend the theme you choose for your tablecloth by choosing something matching for your curtain fabric or any cushions or throws you have in the room. This will create some unity, adding to the harmony of the room. If you have eyelet curtains, match the wood of the curtain pole to that of your dining furniture.