Creating a dining room

In our old house, we had a dining room, however, due to the style of the house, it was more of a walkthrough to the kitchen and bathroom.  We are lucky in out new home that we have a dedicated dining room where we are able to enjoy family meals etc.  Our current table and chairs were bought a few years ago in the sale and whilst they still have life left in them that aren’t the style that I would have chosen for our new home.

We are slowly working our way around the house making it our own and the dining room is on my list for the new year (although I would have loved to have had a beautiful space ready for when we eat Christmas dinner).  I’ve been thinking about the space and have come up with a few things to think about when creating a dining room.

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Dining Table and Chairs

The obvious focal point in a dining room is the dining table and chairs so it’s important that you think about what look you are going for and just how you will use the space.  Decide whether this is a space that is going to be the focal point of family life, will you have everyone gathered around it for Sunday lunch, birthdays and Christmas etc. Or is it something that you will only use occasionally and whether it will be a mainly adult orientated room.

For us our dining room is used everyday, from the children sitting in there eating their breakfast, completing homework and building LEGO with Daddy.  I often sit in their whilst Piglet naps to complete bits on my blog and household paperwork.  So for us, it is vert much a focal point of family life so I need a space that is flexible.

To create a flexible dining room an extendable dining table which gives us the option to have it smaller when we are doing out day to day bits and bobs.  Then gives us the option to open it up and extend it to allow for guests, parties and a larger space for the LEGO creativity juices to flow.  We all joke about the emergency chairs at birthdays and Christmas, however, when buying a new table and chairs consider how many bottoms will require a sit.  As a family of five, we will need to purchase at least six chairs, however, ideally, we would get eight to allow for family and friends at the table too.

Sideboard

It’s easy to think that all you need in a dining room is the table and chairs, and to an extent you are right.  However, where will you store the placemats, table linens etc.  You could store all of these in the kitchen but that is taking up valuable cupboard space.

One of the things that I can remember from staying at my Granny’s house as a child was the sideboard that she had in the dining room.  It housed the best china (which I can’t remember ever being used), extra cutlery, table linens and placemats.  It was always the job of the grandchildren to set the table whilst my Granny prepared the dinner.  I really like the idea of having everything to hand in the room that it is going to use in so for me, a sideboard is a must have.

Linens

This is a difficult one for me, as I can see the beauty of having placements, napkins etc. set up on the beautiful table you have spent a long time choosing.  Whilst I can also see the convenience of having a tablecloth covering it to catch all the crumbs and spills etc.  For me, it depends on who is sitting at the table and what type of meal it is.

Personally, I think that if I’ve paid out for a beautiful table I want it to be seen so I very rarely use a tablecloth. The children have their own placements which they use everyday, however, I have some slate ones that we received as a wedding present that I pull out whenever it is a special occasion or we have guests.  

Accessories

Like any room accessories can really finish off a room and a dining room is no different.  Whether you opt for a large picture hung on the wall, vases of fresh flowers sitting on the sideboard or little photo frames of family members scattered around the shelves.  It is the accessories that can turn a functional room into a warm and inviting space.

I’m loving the trend for using pastel colour jugs filled with flowers, that teapot sitting on the side that you never use but looks beautiful and a cake stand just waiting to be filled with cakes for the next tea party.

What does your dining room look like?

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Disclosure: This is a collaborative post

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