Dining Room Design


One of the first rooms I wanted to design was the dining room since, for me, it’s one of the most important rooms in the house. It’s where people gather to share a meal and connect; this room is also right at the front entrance so it’s one of the first things you see as you enter.

I thought about the dining room design, and since my style is more light and airy, I wanted to continue that style for this space. Our home is total open concept. When you walk into the house you can see every room except two bedrooms and the laundry room; other than that the entire main portion of the home is visible.

When we moved from Virginia to Tennessee we downsized our main home considerably; this home is much smaller with not really any separate main rooms. The dining room design has to flow with the living room, kitchen, foyer and sunroom/office toward the back of the house.

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Dining Room Design Board

Original Dining Room Design

When we moved in the dining room was dark with Kendall Charcoal on the walls; a color that we considered for the barn. Although I love a dark color and Kendall Charcoal is one of my favorites and best selling paint colors; the color wasn’t for me for the dining room. I left the space as is for a couple months to see if I liked it, but overall my desire for light and airy won out. It’s just my style.

While the original space was lovely, it wasn’t me. A new dining room design was needed; on that was light, bright and would reflect the rest of the house.

Dining room with dark walls, long table, cane chairs with chandelier and windows along the wall

Dining Room Design Elements

In our previous home I updated the dining room using a lot of the elements we had and plan to do the same with this space. Most of the furniture will stay and decor elements will be changed.


We did the rest of the house White Dove like we did our previous home but for the dining room I chose Chantilly Lace for the board and batten and all the trim. White Dove in this house is looking not quite how I would prefer, but another topic for another time.

Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace gives me the right white I was looking for with the wallpaper and perhaps the rest of the house will be changed from White Dove to Chantilly Lace but don’t tell my husband…

chantilly lace paint swatch

Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace OC-65

Dining Room Trim Work

I knew I wanted some sort of trim in this space; since we love board and batten we did a more fancy version by adding two layers of board and batten with an additional trim piece inset as well. This project took us way longer than we planned because in order to create the square boxes on top we couldn’t miss the electric outlets and then had to move electric outlets. It was rather a pain and a drawn out process but glad it’s finished.

dining room with table and chairs


Wallpaper is all the rage right now and I LOVE it!! For the dining room I knew I wanted some wallpaper just not the entire wall space; for our open concept home I felt that might have been too much, that is why the board and batten was added. The wallpaper above the moulding really added to the space to give it a finished looked.

We selected William Morris Willow Bough Wallpaper in Porcelain after looking at several samples. Since blue is more my design color this was perfect and I love the antique/vintage element William Morris paper brings to a space. Morris produced his first wallpaper in 1864 and his prints are still timeless today; I seriously can’t get enough of his design and prints. Gorgeous!!

Dining Room Lighting

The original light was way too heavy for my style. Since I loved the new light we added to our previous home, we added another one to this dining room. I love how it compliments the wallpaper stems and is visible but not heavy in the space.

Dining Room Furniture

The table and the chairs are staying but the dining room cabinet I sold because it was just too heavy for the space and made the room feel tight. It was too big and not really my style anyway. I got it for free in VA, brought it with me and then decided it wasn’t for the space.

We purchased our dining table more than ten years ago from a company called Lorts Furniture through a friend who was a designer and could order certain pieces. We love the table; it’s super heavy and a very solid wood piece that I plan to always keep. I have listed a few look-a-likes to the table that are easier to source online.

farm dining table

Extendable Dining Table

Dining Room Decor

Decor is the finishing touch to any space; the icing on the cake for sure. Since we already have wallpaper and trim work I will keep decor to a somewhat minimum as I don’t want to overload the space.

The current rug will go to the barn as a blue rug and blue pattern wallpaper above makes it a bit too much…a different rug will help to anchor the space and give variety.

Doubt I will do anything on the windows, but I could always change my mind. I am still trying to determine artwork if any but feel it needs something to truly finish the space.

Final Thoughts on Dining Room Design

Use what you already have to update a space and add paint, trim, wallpaper and some new decor. Maybe there are elements you already have that you can keep so costs stay low. Adding wallpaper and the board and batten had some significant costs but keeping all the furniture kept costs down and selling the dining room cabinet added to our overall budget. Find ways to update without breaking the bank, do the work yourself and repurpose.

Dining Room Design Board

Dining Room Design

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