I have a blogger confession to make this Monday morning! Of late, my slow-down in post schedule has not been due to lack of material to post; but instead, difficulty capturing projects and rooms in photos. I know that sounds a bit ridiculous; however, I reeeaally want you guys to see what I see in real life. When I walk into a finished space or stage a project that feels all crisp and magical and special, I get really frustrated when I can’t capture that same magical essence in photos. (I am far from a professional photographer, but that doesn’t keep me from wanting top-notch photos here on the blog.) Lately, our weather has been drab and my styling skills have seemingly been in hiding, so I haven’t been able to take some “final” photo shoots of some rooms in our house and some other projects I have waiting in the wings. Well…I proclaimed THIS the weekend to tackle one of the rooms on my list…my favorite space in the entire house: our dining room. It only took me about 800 photos across 6 different shooting sessions (told you, I’m no professional!) to get these 30 or so “magical” ones, but I’m pretty gosh darn excited for this room reveal today! Here we go!
The base housing that we live in is really nothing special, and our before photos are evidence of that! Here’s our dining room the day we received the keys: a white box with laminate flooring and a tacky chandelier, no architectural details or charming features. Still, it’s a really great size and has good natural light!
I had big plans to make this a fresh and dramatic space, so I started with a two-color paint treatment on the walls with a chair rail to add some visual interest and create a clean border. The top blue color is Martha Stewart Azurite (my favorite paint color ever!) and the bottom white is Martha Stewart Tailor’s Chalk.
Two+ years and a bunch of DIY projects later, here’s the completed room! Much of this space fell into place rather quickly and early on. It’s only been in recent months that I added a few final finishing touches and then waited around for the sun and my photography skills to align in order to capture these shots! (Note – links to all projects and a source list are at the end of this post!)
In the center of the room is our table and chairs. About 6 years ago, we purchased this set (the Angled-Leg Table, (4) Porter chairs, and (2) overlapping square back chairs which are no longer available) from West Elm. While they are still holding on, work fine, and look decent, these are next on our list to be replaced (not for a while, but they will probably be our next big furniture purchase). I’m actually amazed at all the buzz West Elm receives in the design- and blog-world. Greg and I furnished our entire San Diego apartment with West Elm furniture, and this table set is all we have left besides our bed and a set of shelves. We’ve gotten rid of everything else. We have found that their items are high on style and high in price, but they majorly lack in quality. Nothing was solid wood, and the veneer has come off of almost everything we’ve purchased. I will buy decor accents from West Elm, but won’t buy furniture from them again. Bummer – because their stuff really does look great in a space!
To add some color and pattern around the table, Henry’s high chair was spray painted a bright leaf green (still as good as the day I painted it!), and I covered our chairs with removable/washable slipcovers in this amazing cobalt outdoor fabric. The olive jar on top of the table was a “treasure from my parents’ basement” – they lived in Spain and collected a variety of these in all shapes and sizes. This one lived in my childhood bedroom for a long time, so I was excited to bring it home this past summer. It gets moved around the house pretty frequently, but its favorite spot is right here!
Directly to the left of the table are two tall bookcases that we use as a dining hutch.
We painted these solid wood bookcases long before I started this blog (they actually could use a fresh coat of paint!) and for the longest time I couldn’t figure out how to style them that made sense. Using the pieces as a dining hutch has worked brilliantly, and the pops of kelly green throughout really bring the whole display to life!
This view is really one of my favorites in the entire house. Thankfully, this is what I see whenever I enter the house or come out from the bedrooms!
The green accents on the shelves really conrast with the black, blue and white and were the exact “pops of color” this room really needed!
In the back left corner of the room is a storage piece we bought overseas while living in Okinawa. While it’s not my typical style, I absolutely LOVE it. I love the unit itself, but more so, I love how I acquired it (long story, but essentially I got it from a dear dear friend and it just reminds me a of a great chapter in my life!) Not only does it serve as a great focal point/conversation piece, but it also holds our fine china, crystal and party-serving supplies!
The light here in the corner by the sliding glass door is the best for keeping plants happy, so unfortunately, all the plants around the house typically end up here! I don’t have the best green thumb, so I just consolidated all my living plants into these two planters! The hanging lantern was a thrift store score already in the exact right shade!
In the back right corner of the dining room, you can see the entrances to the kitchen and the laundry room…
…and on the last little wall to the right, we proudly display all the places we’ve lived so far!
Underneath is a petit but oh-so-handy butterfly console table, also bought overseas.
All together, this room has a very modern but very preppy vibe. Two+ years in, I am still smitten with this color scheme (which is rare for me!) and I am super proud of how this space came together. I’m not quite ready to show you the adjoining family room yet, but below, you can see how to the rooms “talk” to each other through coordinating window treatments and color palette 🙂
Bonus points if you can spot the snuggly 3-year-old in the picture above!
This room had a good bit of DIY projects, so here are the links to everything made for this space!
And a few more sources for non-DIY things:
- Wall colors: Azurite and Tailor’s Chalk, both by Martha Stewart
- Rug: Safavieh Loretta Rug purchased from Joss & Main
- Angled-leg table: West Elm
- Porter chairs: West Elm
- Overlapping square chairs: West Elm
- Olive jars: vintage
- Butterfly cabinet and console: purchased in Okinawa, Japan
- Black bookcases: yard sale
- Green pail: Marshalls
- Dark green vase and mini stool: purchased in Okinawa, Japan
- Boxwood wreath: Target
- Brass candlesticks: vintage
- Sea urchins: collected from the beaches of Okinawa, Japan
- Blue, white, and green pitchers: Fiestware collected from various sources
- Small white planters: Marshalls
- Garden stools, blue and green: purchased in Okinawa, Japan
- White metal plant stand: Target
- Wooden candlesticks: Marshalls
- Glass cake plate: Pier One
- Tori stools, purchased in Okinawa, Japan
- Blue hanging lantern: thrift store
- Green high chair: thrift store
If there’s anything I forgot or you’re curious about, email me or leave a comment!
I can’t even tell you how excited I am to have this room documented here on the blog. I feel like it took me forever to get photos I was truly satisfied with, so I hope it was worth the wait! Hope you all have a great start to your week!