over the dining table within a dining room decorated with a rich red colour. It also creates a lovely ambience for winter meals in a dining room. However, red may be viewed as too dark
or severe in a kitchen diner. Think about wallpapering in a design that compliments your kitchen - perhaps a retro design such as one of the Mini Moderns designs or a quirky wallpaper by Turner Pocock.
Furniture Traditionally, dining room furniture was combined of a mahogany or teak sideboard, extendable table with matching chairs but it is becoming much more practical in recent years. More people are turning to paint to create upcycle old furniture and to create something that is truly individual and perhaps eclectic. Pick up a subtle colour in a wallpaper
such as in the Ibis wallpaper pictured and paint your sideboard in a co-ordinating colour. Why not paint each chair a different colour - this is particularly effective if you have a motley collection of dining chairs. If you are dreading the thought of
sanding, priming and undercoating a number of chairs, fear not. The Annie Sloan paints require neither sanding, priming nor undercoat and the good news is that Eclectic Interiors, in Castlecomer, Co. Kilkenny is now stocking Annie Sloan paints and will be running painting workshops to teach various painting techniques there too.
Pretty napkins give a meal a very special touch. Linen digitally embroidered napkins by Jennifer Slattery Textiles are really elegant for a special meal. €32 for a pair at www.garrendennylane.ie
Dining Rooms W
hether your dining room is a separate room in your home or you have a kitchen/diner,
it is worthwhile taking the time to eat at least one family meal a day together at the dining table - for quality family time, to digest our food properly and to relax and enjoy our food. Here’s some tips to ensure your
dining room or area is a pleasant place to sit and enjoy a meal.
Lighting The lighting is so important in a dining area, you need it bright enough to be able to see your food but dim enough to allow you to relax, particularly if it is a winter’s evening. The right ambience can be created by special attention to lighting.
22 A light fitting over the table that
works on a dimmer switch is perfect for moderating the strength of the light but for a romantic meal, candles on the table with table lamps on the sideboard are perfect. The lamps will wash the walls and room with pools of light and shadow. Aoki Interiors have a striking wall light
created from five vibrant and contrasting lampshades - perfect if you would like to create a feature wall with something quite different.
Colour Red is traditionally the most popular colour for dining rooms? Are you wondering why? It is because red stimulates the appetite and conversation - so you will enjoy your food more and be willing to enjoy long debates
Dinnerware Mixing and matching your dinnerware creates interest and a more casual approach to dining. It also means that you can add more designs each year. Choose a main colour that shouldn’t go out of fashion and buy plates in a solid block of the colour, large plates in co-ordinated florals which contain your main colour and perhaps bowls in a polka dot. Three designs are sufficient within dinnerware for a dining room, but more designs would work in an informal kitchen eating area. Table mats or a table runner will dress
the table nicely and are easier to launder than a large tablecloth. Finish the look with pretty paper napkins or some linen napkins for a special meal.
Flooring Carpet, wooden floors or wood-effect tiles will all work well in a dining room. If you have young children, you may prefer to stay away from carpet for a while. Introducing a rug during the winter months (which is larger than the table) will add a cosiness to the room and ensure your toes are kept warm. Make your dining room feel inviting
with comfortable furniture, colours you love, ambient lighting and pretty crockery and you will enjoy your meals and your conversations so much more.
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