Often times, I meet a client who thinks their dining room is the easiest of all rooms to furnish. Once they’ve made the decision on their table and chairs, they tend to think that’s all there is to it! Not so! While that may be one of the biggest decisions to be made, it’s far from all! I submit that you still need to consider providing for the comfort of guests as well as the convenience of the hostess. I find that there are often problems unique to this room that often make it a design challenge. With that in mind, it does take some considerable planning to create and design a dining room that will take center stage in your home.
Chairs alone are a far from simple choice. Massive ones take up too much space, so it’s important to search for well designed chairs that are comfortable as well. Don’t worry about having enough dining room chair shapes and sizes to pick from - there are so many it’s bewildering, unless of course you have professional help! Tables, too, come in all shapes and sizes. The size should fit both the room and your family and ideally be designed for easy expansion. Expandable tables, with drop leaves, built-in extensions, and inserts/leaves are all practical. Today’s table design options can convert from a small cozy table to one that can be instantly enlarged when company is expected.
The lighting above your table should be carefully selected to assure the right wattage and the best light direction for the diners. The height of the chandelier is another important decision. It’s also more convenient to have silverware, linens, and serving pieces stored right in the room. A sideboard, or chest will help to give you the storage you need, and can also handle the food for a sit down buffet. If you opt for this additional furniture piece, consider its top! It’s best for these pieces to be covered in a moisture and stain resistant material such as marble or tile.
Other storage options to consider are cabinets or armoires. A very attractive unit might also become the room’s focal point – an extra added design benefit! You’ll find it helpful to think through the many uses of your dining room. Because our modes of entertaining are many and ever changing. Ultimately, this means that your dining room design plan should be one that features flexibility. Whether you’re hosting a Sunday brunch for 6 or a midnight snack for 20, versatility and comfort should guide you toward the best furniture and design plan.