• Cheryl Libutti

Week 3: The Dining Room.

Yes! FINALLY! Moving forward in the Organize Your Whole House and Drive Your Readers Crazy series, we move away from the kitchen and pantry and head into the Dining Room.

Aaaaaand.... I have no organization projects to show you.

My dining room is very straightforward and has very little stuff in it. The table is always cleared off, the chairs are always pushed in , and the buffet shelves are arranged the way I like. The bottom drawers/cabinets are organized and full of items we use for fancier entertaining (fine china dishes, linens, and silverware).

We used to have a rug until our now-deceased cat decided she wanted to use it as a litter box so we got rid of it and never replaced it. The paint was here when we bought the house. The pretty table, chairs, and hutch are hand-me-downs from relatives who bought a new set. (Lucky us!) The hardwood is original to the home and in pretty good shape.

The items in my hutch are special to me: picture of my grandmother, Dan and I on our wedding day and our 10th anniversary, milk glass from my mom.

Collection of pewter from my grandfather's family, a picture of my mom, uncle and grandfather, and my Alec in his baptism gown along with a collection of little wooden Lake Placid buildings.

In the vein of having something fun to show you, I have pulled together some pictures of what I'd love to eventually do with this room.

I'd first love to repaint in a soothing gray or cream or very light gray/blue on top with crisp white board and batten on the bottom of the wall. Something light and soft and peaceful.

I'd love to find curtains in a pattern similar to these in the "after" shot:

Or maybe a darker color on the walls to really make the trim work pop (and how gorgeous is the white trim work in these rooms??):

I'd love to put a rug back down that is either a very subtle pattern of grays and blues or a solid natural color. I have to keep in mind that my house is a formal colonial style and my furniture is quite formal, so that really influences what I would choose. As much as I hope for it, this house doesn't live on Cape Cod.

A new, airy, larger scale chandelier would do wonders to update this room and draw attention to the nice tray ceiling. You know, something Joanna Gaines would put in one of her houses.

Where my big fruit painting is, I would change out the artwork to be either a gallery wall of black and white photos of my family, or a handmade painted sign with a phrase on it or something more modern coastal in feel. I'd love to fit a shallow buffet on that wall but I just don't have enough clearance for the chairs.

And of course I love the look of stone like this.... but can't figure out how to transform my lovely-but-cookie-cutter-built dining room into this custom-10-ft-ceilings-and-full-of-windows dining room.

I also love this rug... natural but nicely tailored and finished:

Will all of this happen? Maybe. Someday. I think I have the best chance of getting the room painted and possibly the board and batten put up if we are feeling very ambitious sometime in the next year or two. Possibly a new chandelier. The bottom line is that the room functions quite fine as it is and this is just not a priority for us.

So no, my dining room's not really trendy or modern or how I want it to feel. But I love that it's spacious and organized and has room for when we have family parties. I know what's in the room and it's easy to keep clean and neat.

And that's good enough for me. :)


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