Decorating a dining room in stages

2015-07-30 06:00
Making your dining room look beatiful doesn’t have to leave a hole in your pocket.

Making your dining room look beatiful doesn’t have to leave a hole in your pocket.

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WHEN youand#039;re starting out, home décor doesnand#039;t have to be expensive. Try these easy dining-room decorating ideas to create ambience without committing to new furniture.

Stage one – stick to the basics

You’ve moved into a larger house with your first real dining room (bye-bye eat-in kitchen), but you donand#039;t have the bona fide furniture or the budget to fill it right away. Still, you want to entertain friends with a modicum of style while you settle into the house and think about what furnishings youand#039;d like to have in the room.

In this instance, the best solution would be to go with a French bistro setting. Utilise basic dinnerware from your bridal registry, pieces of furniture you already have and a bevy of affordable accessories.

Keep your colours neutral, your style simple and your costs at a minimum.

In order to do this, you’ll have to put what you already own into play. Use whites and blacks in your décor, and buy accessories you can layer or use in different ways.

Compose compelling place settings so that your guests focus on the food and conversation, and not on the empty room. Put your wedding registry dishes and basic stemware alongside Grandmaand#039;s love-it-forever flatware. Be creative, mix classics with margarita glass votive holders and use curtain ring clips as napkin or place card holders.

Use a half a dozen empty cool drink bottles to spread a bunch of blooms into a big arrangement for just a few rand.

For affordable art, use photo-graphy in wide white mats and black frames. Choose meaningful subjects to personalise your space such as travel photos, nature images and still lifes. Later, you can move the art to a guest room.

Use that wooden wine rack you bought for your first apartment in the nineties as a buffet or bar. Make it part of a wall composition, placing a platter on a stand on one side and an ice bucket for chilling wine on the other.

Once youand#039;ve found your perfect dining-room table, start investing in a few good pieces for the décor. Hold off on painting your walls until you’ve settled in fully.

Stage two – work on comfort and style

Youand#039;ve settled into your house and desperately need to ditch the folding table and chairs. Budget-wise youand#039;re not ready for a total makeover, but youand#039;d like to gradually buy core furnishings and accessories that add substance, colour­ and comfort to a room. Your final decorating style however, is still undecided.

To tackle this dilemma, you’ll need to evolve from French bistro to a crisp botanical style. Buy furniture and build on the basic white and black accessories, adding colour, texture and substance.

At this stage, youand#039;re investing in furniture and nicer accents. However, if youand#039;re not ready to commit to a new colour scheme yet, decorate using a botanical motif via special napkins, fresh cut or potted plants and flowers.

Keep the interior airy by making use of clear glass vases, candle hurricanes­ and water carafes. Strong curves add shape and interest to a table, but the glass lets the light shine through, plus, glass pieces­ are versatile.

As you begin to invest in tableware and accessories, get a chic cabinet to store your wares. This could also work as a bar or a buffet server. Tall vases, crystal barware and the same framed photos will keep this area stylish until you’re ready to buy new artwork.

Set a more sophisticated table by layering new square plates on woven chargers atop linen runners. Grandmaand#039;s silver flatware and your original glasses still work great so keep them close at hand. Potted fern place cards are special and inexpensive, so use these to impress your guests.

Finally, youand#039;re ready to paint. Once youand#039;ve found that piece you canand#039;t live without, in this case, the fabric for the draperies, you can build your room around them.

Stage three – add the finishing elements

After a few years you finally find it - a dreamy fabric for draperies that works perfectly with the dishes you now collect. It sets the elegant tone youand#039;ve come to admire as your tastes and budget have matured.

So firstly, finish the room, taking colour and formality cues from the fabric for a brave new wall paint, a rug, dinnerware and wall elements. Use pieces youand#039;ve carefully gleaned along the way, and enjoy this look youand#039;ve built over time.

At this stage in your life, you’ve made a full commitment in terms of décor, but youand#039;ve taken your time and you’re sure that it fits your personality.

With an exciting drapery fabric in hand, you have the road map to make the rest of your design decisions with confidence. Keep what you love and add in what excites you.

When it comes to your dining table­, add slipcovers to the chairs. Blend in a colour-themed collection into the mix to jump start the final decorating phase. Start with one serving piece, then ease in some place settings as your collection grows. Amber glass chargers, bowls, wineglasses and curtain rod finials tie to the tones in your draperies, slipcovers and rug. Now your home is done but the decorating journey is never complete. Swop old accessories for new ones, play around, be creative and enjoy the decorating process. - Property24.

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