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How to: create your dream dining room

With a bit of inspiration, a lot of determination, and a few buckets of paint, a couple transformed this bare, white-walled corner of their new rental apartment into a seriously drool-worthy dining space – rich in texture and detail. Surprise, surprise: pulling it together was simpler than you’d think. Take it one step at a time, and you can do the same in your home! Here’s how:

1: Get those paint rollers ready

Wall colour is one of the simplest, most powerful ways to transform the mood of your space. But with a million different shades and swatches to choose from (enough to make your head spin!), where do you begin? Our tip: start with the feeling you want your room to have, and the furniture you already own, and let that guide your colour choice. This couple, for instance, wanted their home to feel cosy and down-to-earth. Paired with their furniture and accessories in black and natural fibres, this warm brown shade (painted in a rich, suede finish) is where they landed.

2: Next, add storage

Trust us: it’ll be a lot easier to move around a dining table than a large cabinet, bookcase or sideboard – so get these in place, and secured to the wall, first. Find a position where they don’t overwhelm the room, but will still be accessible when other furniture comes in. With an impressive collection of glassware and crockery, this couple opted for two glass-door cabinets that store and display their things at the same time. Smart, right? Together, they make for an eye-catching backdrop that really draws you in.

Start with the feeling you want your room to have, and the furniture you already own, and let that guide your wall colour.

3: Let’s talk rugs

Finding the right rug for your dining space isn’t rocket science, but there are a few points worth keeping in mind. For size, rather go bigger than smaller. Make sure your chairs won’t catch the edge whenever someone takes a seat. Just as important is the texture: short-pile or flat-woven rugs will be less of a drag for your dining chairs – and much easier to clean if food finds its way to the floor!

4: The set that suits you best

In a home that hosts on the regular, this 8-seater table made perfect sense. Maybe something smaller would suit your needs and space better? Or an extendable table, for the best of both worlds? Here, all black chairs pair well with the table’s black legs, but there’s nothing to stop you from mixing and matching. If you’d rather not have to make another decision, though (planning dinner tonight can be hard enough!), then these ready-matched dining sets might just make your day.

5: No dining in the dark, please

Lighting, lighting, don’t forget the lighting! After all, a well-lit dining table is as much about function as it is about atmosphere. This couple went for a single bamboo pendant, but don’t be afraid to play around with plurals. Two or three smaller lamps, hung together at differing or identical heights, can look equally wow.

6: Little things you love

As we fast approach the finish line, now’s the time to fill in the gaps with those smaller, more decorative items that show who you are. Vases, glassware and crockery move into the cabinets, pictures go on the walls, house plants and flowers are in final position, etcetera, etcetera.

7: The scene (and the table) is set

Weave the feeling of the space into every detail: from the walls, all the way to the tableware. Sparkling glasses, wooden serving boards and sandy-glazed crockery stick to the script of natural tones and textures. The room is finally ready – and so is dinner!

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