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dining room furniture

Buying Guide: Ultimate Dining Room Furniture Checklist

Have you ever wondered, when designing a room, what pieces are essential and which things are simply nice to have if you have the space or budget for them? Well, wonder no longer! With our buying guides, we’ll walk you through the essential pieces for your space, the nice-to-haves, and the little touches that make a space shine.

At Modsy, we’ve helped countless people design their dining rooms—which means that we have a pretty good handle on what pieces no dining room should be without and which pieces you can wait on, save up for, or skip altogether. And we want to pass that wisdom along to you!

Today, we’re going to give you a checklist of what dining room furniture you should definitely include in your dining room (like a table and chairs) and what furniture helps add a feeling of intentionality and ease to your space. Because, ultimately, you want your dining room to work for you and meet the needs of your space. So, we’ll walk you through everything from the essentials to the little things that will make your space sing. And, since everyone has a different budget, we’ll also include a general price range for each piece of furniture.

Early Considerations

Before we get into the checklist, we want to talk through some early decision-making filters you should think through—things that will help you narrow down your search early on, so you don’t waste your time hunting and shopping for furniture you don’t actually need for your own space.

First, consider the size of your dining area. This will not only influence the size of the pieces you include but it will also help determine how many pieces of furniture you include and what they look like.

You should also consider your lifestyle needs. How does your dining room need to function? Does your dining room double as your home office? Do you have young children or pets? Do you host frequently? All of these variables will influence your personal needs for your dining room and will help guide the choices around what kind of furniture and materials to include.

Now, on to our dining room furniture checklist!

dining room furniture

The Dining Room Essentials

These are the pieces of furniture that you absolutely need for your dining room to function properly.

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dining room furniture

Dining Table

You can’t properly dine without a table! In fact, this is piece number one for dining room essentials. Without a dining table, you really don’t have a dining room! However, there are so many different table sizes, shapes, and styles to choose from when choosing the right dining table for your needs.

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When it comes to size, consider how you use the space (and how much space you actually have). If you always host during the holidays but only have small family meals day-to-day, you might want to consider an expandable dining table that can size up or down depending on how many seats you need.

If you don’t have a ton of space, you could simply do a bistro table to keep the footprint small—or you could go for a counter or bar-height table. In terms of shape, you can go for a more traditional rectangular table, or an oval, square, or round table. Along with the size and shape of a dining table, you’ll also want to consider style, to give your dining room and home a unique point of view. A dining table is a big investment, so make sure you choose one that you love!

Price Range: $400-$3,000+

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Chairs

A dining room table on its own doesn’t do much good—so chairs are another dining room essential. You need something to sit on, after all! There are so many different styles and types of dining room chairs, and we recommend choosing chairs that coordinate with the style of your table. You can also incorporate benches or even stools in a small space. When choosing dining room chairs, consider your needs—like comfort level, durability, and materials. If you have kids, you’ll probably want chairs that are easy to clean and can endure some wear and tear. And something worth remembering: some chairs come in pairs or in sets of 4-6, which can help save money when outfitting full dining room sets!

Price Range: $75-$600+ (for a single chair)

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Nice-to-Haves

These furniture and decor pieces won’t render your space unusable if you don’t have them. But including them in your design and budget but can greatly increase the functionality or your dining room. Consider these items a bit lower on the “must buy” list.

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A Credenza or Buffet

Credenzas and buffets are great multipurpose pieces of dining room storage furniture that are really nice to have. On top, you can display decorative objects, create a drink station, or place a lamp for layering lighting in your dining room. But they also offer a ton of storage space—often featuring a mix of cabinets and drawers. You can use the concealed storage to stash dinnerware, linens, serving platters, and special-occasion dishes while still having easy access to them. While credenzas or buffets are pricier and more of an investment piece, they really do add a finishing touch to a dining room.

Price Range: $600-$3,000

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Ambient Overhead Lighting

Good lighting can make or break a room. That’s why we love ambient overhead lighting in a dining room design. And you don’t have to settle for what’s in your dining room when you move into your home! Swapping out lighting can make a huge difference for a reasonable price. They’re one of those great pieces that can help pull the style of the room together and make it look complete—and they’ll give you just the right ambient lighting that’s nice for dinner.

Price Range: $150 – $2,000

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dining room furniture

Bar Storage

When possible, it’s nice to put drinks and mixology tools in a separate area. This can be accomplished through the use of a bar cart or bar cabinet. A bar cabinet is great if you prefer concealed storage and want a really sleek and clean look. A bar cart is perfect for entertaining, as your drink mixing essentials are out in the open, and the cart itself can easily be moved to wherever you need it most! Either option adds a polished element to your space.

Stylist Tip: Style your bar cart with a mix of practical and decorative items to really make it pop.

Bar Cart Price Range: $150 – $1,000

Bar Cabinet Price Range: $500-$2,000

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An Area Rug

An area rug helps your dining room feel more styled and pulled together; it anchors the table, especially in a large dining space or open living space. Rugs also add some pattern, texture, and color to your space. Since there are so many different styles of rugs, it’s an opportunity to further drive home the interior design style and color scheme of your dining room.

Stylist Tip: Get a rug that is easy to clean in case of any food or beverage spills during your next dinner party! (Also an absolute necessity for parents of toddlers!)

Price Range: $250-$2,000+

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Window Coverings

While you may not need blinds or curtains in your dining room for privacy in the same way you do in other rooms of your home, window coverings are still nice to have. But it’s nice to be able to close them if you’re enjoying a late dinner, and it adds an aesthetic touch to the space. Whether you choose blinds, curtains, or Roman shades simply depends on the look you’d like to achieve. However, between the options, curtains have the ability to add the most personality to a space. Like an area rug, curtains are a great way to infuse a little pattern or color to your space. The material you choose can impact the vibe of your room; whereas a linen curtain would add a sense of airiness to your space, velvet curtains would bring in a sense of drama. And a solid-colored curtain is a great way to add a sense of formality to your space.

Stylist Tip: Go for curtains with a pattern if your dining room is mostly solids to add a punch of pattern to the space.

Price Range: $120-$800

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dining room furniture

The Little Things

These little things are the finishing touches that make your room feel complete—styled, considered, and intentional. They’ll take you from a merely functional space to one that really sings!

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Candles

Candles are a great way to add ambient lighting for romantic or cozy dinners—or to simply make each evening feel a little bit more special! Even if you have overhead lighting, it’s nice to have candles as an option for additional layered lighting. And, whether you’re using pillar candles or tapers in candlesticks, they become simple decor on your table.

Stylist Tip: Don’t want real flames? Try battery-operated candles for a fire-safe option that you can leave on all the time. You can even get ones that flicker like a real flame!

Price Range: $5-$100

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A Centerpiece

A centerpiece can be anything from a vase of flowers or a small plant to a bowl of lemons or a trio of candles—and so much more! They can be small and simple or large and elaborate depending on how you use your table and your personal preference. Whatever it is, having something decorative in the middle of the table can make a room feel well thought out and visually serve as a finishing touch in your dining room. A tablescape is also a great way to bring in seasonal elements, as it’s something simple that you can switch out each season—if not more often.

Price Range: $50-$500

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dining room furniture

Wall Art

Whether it’s sculptural art, a painting, a woven tapestry, or a family photo gallery wall, art will add a personal touch to your dining room. It’s also a great way to further define the style of the space. You can use wall art to pull in colors that are used elsewhere in the space to help it feel more cohesive.

Price Range: $100-$2,000

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small dining room layout

Small, Medium, or Large? Our Best Tips for Designing a Dining Space of Any Size

Looking for some dining room design ideas? Whether you’ve recently moved and are designing a dining room from scratch in a new space or you’re simply assessing dining room essentials, size is a big factor in considering furniture and layout for your space. What you can fit in a large dining room will be vastly different from what you can fit in a small dining space.

Different sized dining rooms have different layout and furniture needs. So, the size of your dining area really dictates what will go inside. It will help you choose a dining room table that’s the right size and shape (see our guide to choosing a dining table if you need extra help in that department) and how many dining room chairs to include.

It can be overwhelming to assess what all can fit in your space. So, we’ve created a layout guide for small, medium, and large dining rooms, complete with images and tips to help you know what to include in your space. Keep reading for our ultimate dining room layout guide!

small dining room layout

For a Small Dining Room

The Challenge: Getting all the functionality you need out of a small space.

When planning a small dining room layout, it’s important to keep everything in proportion. A small space means opting for a smaller table and fewer chairs. If you’re including an area rug in your layout, you’ll want to keep that on the smaller size, too (the rug pictured here is 5×8, for reference) to keep it proportionate with the smaller table.

small dining room layout

The Key Furniture

A Round Dining Table: We love using round dining tables in small dining areas, as they offer a lot of surface space for eating, but their shape creates a better flow for movement throughout the space. Here, we went for a tulip-style pedestal table, which also allows more foot room in a small space. In a particularly small dining room or a breakfast nook, you could even go for a cafe or bistro table and only two chairs to really minimize the footprint.

Leggy Dining Chairs: Opting for chairs that are leggy and open helps keep the small space visually open and light. And if you want to have extra dining room chairs on-hand for entertaining but don’t want them to clutter your small dining area, consider other places you can put spare dining room chairs throughout your home.

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small dining room layout

Lighting and Decor

A Petite Pendant: When you have a small dining table, keep your light fixture on the smaller side. This pendant is about one-third the size of this round table’s surface size, which is a good proportion to keep in mind. Keep the tabletop decor on the smaller side as well. A simple duo of a small plant and a candle feels considered and also proportionate to table size.

Decorative Mirrors: To help open up the space a bit, hang a mirror on the largest wall rather than artwork. Mirrors are great to use in a small dining room on the wall opposite a window or natural light source. This opens up the space and helps light bounce around, one of our favorite small space hacks. A piece of artwork on the opposite wall, next to the window, balances out the look.

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small dining room layout

The Supporting Furniture

Bar Carts and Benches: While a small dining room doesn’t offer much space for supporting furniture, you can likely squeeze in a few small additional pieces to help with versatility in the space. A small bench adds an extra seating option for when you need to entertain extra people—but it can easily be tucked into a corner or against a wall so it’s out of the way for daily use. A small bar cart offers a surface for mixing drinks, or simply adds storage for cookbooks, glassware, or as a serving tray. Plus, it can be wheeled around for extra room when needed.

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The Key Elements of a Small Dining Room

  • A small, round dining room table
  • A small light fixture and simple decor
  • A petite bench for additional seating
  • A bar cart for storage and serving versatility

small dining room layout

For a Medium Dining Room

The Challenge: Designing a functional and stylish dining space.

A medium-sized dining room is the most typical sized dining room. It’s where you’ll be able to fit a standard sized table and seating for 4-6 people. To keep everything in proportion, go for a medium sized table, which typically runs around 60” and seats six people, along with a standard rug size, like an 8×10, beneath.

small dining room layout

The Key Furniture

A Rectangular or Oval Dining Table: Either a rectangular or oval dining table is suitable for a medium dining room—though an oval table gives you a bit more versatility to seat more people, since there are no corners to contend with. The standard size of the table and the room itself means you can take more liberties with your combination of chairs and seating options.

Versatile Seating Options: Four chairs suits the size of a medium dining area, but you could keep more on-hand for entertaining. You could go for mismatched dining room chairs, or combine a few chairs with a bench. Either way, you have the flexibility to create a more interesting look with versatile seating.

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small dining room layout

Lighting and Decor

A Proportionate Chandelier: Keep your chandelier in proportion to the table and your art in proportion to the room size. The light fixture pictured here is medium sized, still about one-third the size of the table’s surface.

High-Impact Wall Art: To keep the art in proportion to the space, consider your ceiling height. Here, the ceilings are high, so we took advantage of them with a vertical gallery wall. However, keeping it simple with three pieces keeps the room open and maximizes the visual size of the space. With a more standard ceiling height, you might want to do a horizontal trio of coordinating art pieces.

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small dining room layout

The Supporting Furniture

A Credenza For Storage & Display: Instead of a bar cart like in the small dining room, a medium dining room allows you to upgrade to a credenza. Not only can you display either your bar accessories or even a record player on top for playing background music during dinner, but credenza offer tons of hidden storage as well. You can store table linens, fine china, and glassware or seasonal decor inside. And, while adding plenty of function, credenzas also add a sophisticated and polished touch to a dining room.

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The Key Elements of a Medium Dining Room

  • A standard-sized dining room table
  • Four chairs or a mix of chairs and a bench for more versatility
  • A credenza for added storage and to help proportionally fill out the space.

small dining room layout

For a Large Dining Room

The Challenge: Making use of all the space and filling it out in an intentional way.

For a large dining room layout, you want to make sure you proportionally fill out the space. This means scaling up the size of your furniture and the rug (going for a 9×12), but also adding in additional furniture pieces that you wouldn’t have space for in a small or medium dining room. However, the layout is still spaced out enough for visual breathing room and makes it easy to move throughout the space.

small dining room layout

The Key Furniture

A Standard-Sized or Large Dining Table: While the table size in this large dining room is similar in size to the one in the medium dining room, it has a different look and feel due to the tables around it. However, you could also go for a larger table—perhaps in a farmhouse or rustic style, that has more visual weight to it.

Six Substantial Chairs: We included six chairs around the table to help proportionally fill out the space and make entertaining a breeze. Opting for armchair-style chairs not only further fills out the space but also creates a more formal feel to the table setting. But you can also explore other more substantial types of dining chairs.

Lighting and Decor

A Larger Light Fixture: Since the chairs give the dining table area a larger footprint, we opted for a larger chandelier to be more proportionate to the table and chairs and to make more of a visual statement in the space. We also placed a large lamp on the buffet to give the option for layered lighting in the space.

Surfaces for Styling: With more accent furniture, there are more surfaces to show off art and decor. Make use of the long buffet by styling it with plants, books, and small decorative items. You can also use some shelves in the glass-door bar cabinet for additional display. All of this lets you add extra bits of personality to your dining room.

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small dining room layout

The Supporting Furniture

A Long Buffet: A long buffet offers a lot of concealed storage for dining room essentials. The long surface area not only offers a place for a lamp and styled decor, but it can also be a serving station when you’re hosting guests. If you’re using your dining room as a home office, you can also use your buffet or credenza as a place to stash your work things at the end of the workday to keep your dining area functional for meals.

Accent Chairs: Adding in two flanking chairs adds extra seating options as well as being decorative space fillers to visually fill out the room.

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small dining room layout

A Bar Cabinet: In a large dining room, you have enough space for both a buffet and a separate bar area. But, instead of a bar cart, include a bar cabinet if you have the space. This offers a designated place for bottles, glassware, and bar tools—while also being a beautiful statement piece in the space.

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The Key Elements of a Large Dining Room

  • Furniture that helps fill out the space, including a large table, buffet, and bar cabinet
  • Six dining room chairs, perhaps in an armchair-style for a more substantial look
  • A bar cabinet rather than a bar cart for more storage and to create more of a visual statement

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traditional interior design

April Edit: Best Dining Rooms of the Month

Now that most of us are working, studying and eating at home these days, dining rooms are getting a lot of extra attention. If you’re spending more time there, you might be on the lookout for dining room design ideas to spruce up your dining space. Or maybe you’re just getting inspired and need some modern or formal dining room ideas to kickstart your project.

How do you design dining rooms?

The best way to revamp your dining area is to start with your foundations and go from there. What size and shape is your dining space? What do you want to be the focal point? Are you looking for a traditional dining room with a wood table and dining chairs or do you have more modern dining room in mind? Once you have a sense of your interior design plan, you can move on to more specific elements of the dining space.

Dining Table

Your dining table is most likely going to be the focal point of your dining area. Do you need a large dining table? Expandable? Consider how many people you’ll need to seat on a regular basis and what else you might be using the dining table for. You can explore our guide to dining tables to get a sense of your options.

Your dining table will also set the stylistic tone for the rest of your space, so give some thought to what kind of look you want. Are you thinking about a formal dining room? Mid-century? Farmhouse? Explore our guide to dining table styles for more dining table ideas and the pros of these most-popular styles.

dining room designsDining Chairs

Next up is selecting your dining chairs! You’ll want to consider the chair material—ideally it will match your dining table (i.e. wood table and wood chairs) or add contrast (i.e. metal chairs and wood table). Upholstered chairs add comfort but can also pose a challenge to keep clean depending on your lifestyle and if you have kiddos who love eating with their hands!

Decide if you want all matching dining chairs or if you like dining room designs that mix and match a bit. For instance, you could add a bench on one side (great for kids) or make the two end chairs different to add a formal air.

Dining Room Decor

The style of your dining room will depend a lot on your decor! Dining room designs are a way to express your personal tastes and style with elements like light fixtures, rugs, table top decor, and more. These pieces can help determine the focal point of your space and add finishing touches and polish, whether you have a modern dining room or a traditional style.

Ready for some dining room inspiration? Read on to take a tour of 20 of our best dining room designs of the month!

dining room designsOrganic Modern Dining Room

This formal dining room design is a blend of modern and minimalist styles. It features a neutral color palette with a muted green backdrop that makes the light and dark contrasting elements pop. It’s very minimal in styling, but still comfortable. And the look feels balanced with the repetition of arches and circles in the round table, globe pendant, bookcase, and even the  fireplace.

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Country Cabin Charm

We love the rustic country style that makes this dining room feel just like home. It’s a very cozy and casual space with a two-tone matching dining set that’s very trendy in rustic, farmhouse dining room styles. The faded rug helps pull together the overall color scheme and the mason jar lighting fixture adds a trendy and simple element to the mix.

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dining room designsDine in Rustic Minimalist Style

We love how the rustic minimalist style of this dining room fits so well into the big open, airy space. The neutral color scheme gives it an earthy, organic essence and pops of black and white add a modern twist. The natural wood dining table creates a bold statement in this space and looks great with minimalist white ceramic decor. The geometric patterned rug adds visual interest and texture to the otherwise solid furniture pieces and color scheme.

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Coastal Comfort

For those of you who love dining a bright, airy space, this type of coastal style might be just what you need. It features a neutral color scheme with warm tones and sage green walls and casual style furniture in a formal setting. A round dining table with woven chairs feels beachy and laid back. And the light, washed wood in each of the materials makes the overall aesthetic feel soft and lived-in.

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Classic Elegance

This dining room blends traditional and classic style in a way that doesn’t feel stuffy or old-fashioned at all! The crisp whites and neutral palette give it a modern upgrade and touches of gold add sophistication and a little sass. The classic rug pattern in florals mimics the floral centerpiece on the table and the upholstered chairs paired with the two captains chairs offer a  more formal feel.

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dining room designsMid-Century to the Max

This dining room is mid-century modern all the way, with avocado green and blue as staple mid-century colors. The brass tapered legs add sparkle to the dining room and the dynamic rug adds a pop of color and pattern for heightened visual interest. And the atomic starburst lamp is one of the iconic looks of mid-century style, adding a sculptural element to the overall design.

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dining room designsGlam-a-Go-Go

Pairing mid-century modern with glam touches is a great way to give your dining room a totally unique and gorgeous style! Here, the distinctive mid-century features stand out, like the tapered legs on the dining chairs and the starburst chandelier. It creates a formal setting that’s great for entertaining—plus the white banquette provides a spot for extra storage. There’s a neutral color scheme with heavy use of brass, gold, and creamy whites to up the elegance of this setting and then the plush greenery adds extra texture.

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dining room designsContemporary Composure

This contemporary dining room style is cool, calm, and composed—perfect for big gatherings where you need a large dining setting and don’t want the space to feel overwhelming. It’s simple with no frills, the perfect practical dining room for a busy household. And the durable jute rug adds just the right amount of visual interest without creating too much distraction in the calm, collected space.

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dining room designsSeaside Sleek

We love the blend of modern and coastal styling in this sleek dining room. The black and white color palette gets tons of warmth from the wood tones and the metal light fixture blends both modern and coastal styles. The gallery wall adds a personal touch and an editorial aspect with the grid of black and white photos. Woven chairs are coastal but the sleek wooden table feels modern, and the patterned rug helps to balance out the two styles.

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dining room designsEarthy Eclectic

This dining room style uses a colorful, earthy palette and eclectic furniture pieces and decor to create a cool, collected look. The vintage rug pulls together the color scheme and the mid-century modern style dining chairs add a lovely decorative touch. A gallery wall in the same hues adds visual interest and cohesion and it creates a cozy, casual setting for a dinner gathering.

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dining room designsBoho Chic Treat

This dining room design uses an eclectic style to set the tone and incorporates bohemian style with rattan and tropical elements. The high top table and stools keep it casual and offer a unique take on the dining space. A floating wall shelf adds space for a funky, layered gallery wall. And the neutrals, green and yellow colors used feel tropical and beachy for laid-back dining vibes.

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Eclectic Elegance

We love how this eclectic dining room design uses a black and white color scheme with sand toned accents to warm up the space. The woven texture in wall art and pendant looks funky and modern in the space and the Moroccan style rug adds pattern, texture, and warmth, pulling the whole style together. Elegant style dining chairs add extra sophistication to the dining space.

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Sophisticated Safari

This dining room features a sophisticated design with a safari-style flair. It’s an organic and earthy space with a sense of adventure! The woven teak chairs add a casual feel and the abstract art ties in blues and greens throughout the color palette. The patterned rug feels global and lightens up the muted color scheme. And to top it all off, the beaded chandelier adds a stylish sculptural element.

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Eclectic Roots

We dig the mix of minimal, rustic, and modern styles in this eclectic design. It has a warm color scheme with warm tone woods, reds, and subtle pops of blues. The natural wood of the dining chairs and table and the woven elements of the decor and furniture pieces give it an organic feel. And there’s a delicate balance of light furniture complemented by larger forms.

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dining room designsEdgy Industrial

This look is as stylish and hip as a dining room design can get! The dining chairs feel retro with an S-shape, but the padded leather gives them an extra comfort. The black and white color scheme isn’t harsh because muted tones and the green accents help warm it up. Sleek edges are balanced by organic touches like plants and curved chairs to create a formal setting that still manages to be inviting.

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dining room designsLight and Lively

This stylish dining room blends mid-century modern and industrial style for an airy, light-filled look that your guests will love. The lighting and rugged table feel industrial and the tapered legs and furniture cover the mid-century aspect. It has a bright and lively color palette using retro-inspired hues but still offers a very sophisticated look with captain chairs and a styled buffet table.

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Rural Rustic

We love this elegant rural rustic dining room design featuring a neutral color scheme with pops of black for a little drama. It’s a serene setting with light colors and the upholstered chairs give it a soft texture. The rustic art and weathered wood add extra texture to the space. The handsome buffet and fireplace setting give it a formal look but using lightwood and casual furniture make it feel comfortable and laid-back.

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dining room designsCasual Kitchen Nook

This dining area is tucked away into a casual area of the kitchen to create a simple and compact dining nook—a great dining room layout idea for a small apartment! It uses a half bench and chairs to create a “booth” feel in the kitchen. The neutral color scheme and vintage style rug have mid-century appeal, and the whole look is pulled together by the greenery both indoors and out!

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dining room designsFormal Mid-Century Style

Mid-century modern is such a versatile style, it can go well in both casual and formal design schemes. This dining room design uses iconic Jenerette dining chairs (which have a great backstory) with their cane seats to create high style. And the setting in front of the fireplace is very formal with a touch of elegance. The straight lines of the table balance out the round pendant and mirror for a classy look overall.

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dining room designsClassy Coastal

This style is simple and sophisticated, with a classic blue, white, and sand palette contributing to the calming coastal vives. It is very seaside-themed but in the most elegant way. The furniture, colors, and materials give it a beach house feel and it is sophisticated with casual touches, like the bench seating and jute and woven textures.

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dining room design

5 Dining Room Designs that are Better than Brunch

dining room design

It’s safe to say that we’re all dining in at the moment—so maybe it’s time to give your dining room some love! You’re probably spending more time in it right now. Whether your dining table has become your temporary work-from-home office or you’re simply sitting down for more meals at home, it’s worth taking some time to give your dining room a spring refresh! And hey, it might inspire you to host a gourmet brunch for your family at home or remotely with your friends, bottomless mimosas and all!

How do I refresh my dining room for spring?

The first step in a spring refresh? Spring cleaning! This is a great opportunity to give your dining room a deep clean and sanitize all the hard surfaces. Other than sanitizing, our main spring cleaning essentials for a dining room include dusting, wiping down, and cleaning all fixtures, fans, baseboards, wall art, the table (obviously), and mirrors. Then, spot clean upholstered dining chairs or wipe down non-upholstered chairs. Finally, dusting those plant leaves—whether they’re real or fake—is a spring cleaning must!

Once the cleaning is done, you can get onto the fun: decorating ideas! One of our favorite dining room decor updates for spring includes swapping heavy drapes for breezier alternatives like a linen or a gauzy material. Centerpieces tend to be very seasonal, so for spring we love the idea of restyling centerpieces with smaller bud vases filled with seasonal greenery and blooms. Because fresh flowers and greenery can really breathe life into a space! It’s also time to store away winter dinnerware and restyle your credenza with some spring touches.

Want some specific tips and dining room ideas to refresh for spring? Keep reading for five spring-ready dining room designs to inspire you as you refresh your space!

dining room designThe Discerning Collector Dining Room

In this space, eclectic design meets minimalism for a seriously stunning dining room. While seemingly opposite styles, they actually do work together. In fact, for this look we took a cue from the minimalist-maximalist trend, which is the very best in the world of opposites attract. This is simply a spring-ready take on this style blend, with some added brightness!

The Key Elements

Key to this dining room look is a super neutral palette with a lot of contrasting elements. This type of contrast adds energy and vibrance to the space without requiring color. You’ll notice that all the furniture is very streamlined, with modern or minimal aesthetics. This space also features plenty of geometric shapes—found in the severe lines of the table, the sleek chairs, and the sculptural pendant.

Some of the eclectic nature of this style is found in the interesting mix of materials—from marble and metal to cloth, ceramics, wood, and woven seagrass. It’s a texture-palooza! These materials add ornament without adding extra stuff to the space. The furniture pieces themselves become the works of art. We especially love the sleek, frill-free forms of the chairs and the gorgeous veining found in the marble dining table. Overall the mix of textures is the perfect balance of a minimalist aesthetic and an eclectic approach to materials.

Why We Love It

If you love Leann Ford’s latest collection for Crate & Barrel, this dining room idea is for you. It has a sleek and trendy look, but it also pulls in elements of organic modernism with its earthy and organic shapes, materials, and textures. Pulling inspiration from the forms and materials of nature is a big design trend right now, and one that we’re all about, especially in this space! All of the natural materials help this space feel relaxing and approachable.

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dining room designThe Serene Modern Farmhouse Dining Room

This dining room is equal parts rustic, minimal, and mid-century modern. It’s the perfect look if you love modern farmhouse vibes but also enjoy cool, clean spaces. Somehow, this space effortlessly manages to be both fresh and cozy at the same time!

The Key Elements

This look is all about the tension between vintage and modern. How did we pull it off? We paired a vintage-style farmhouse table with sleek, mid-century wishbone dining chairs. The dining table is rugged and substantial, made of rough wood and featuring ornate carved details. Meanwhile, the chairs are delicate, made of a glossy, blonde wood with woven paper cord seats. The juxtaposition of these pieces embodies the push and pull between old and new, casual and refined.

Also essential to this look is a neutral color palette. The lack of color and contrast in this dining room gives the space a serene and airy vibe. You’ll notice that the only “colors” present are warm woods, creams, and whites—plus that beautiful pop of greenery, which brings the space to life. It’s an essential decor touch for spring! But the mix of natural textures found in the jute rug, the wood table, the woven chairs, the shell pendant, the gauzy curtains and the shiplap walls certainly keeps the look dynamic! There’s nothing flat or boring about this space.

Why We Love It

This dining room is a perfect spring-ready rendition of a modern farmhouse look. It’s fun to see the farmhouse style continue to evolve in new ways, and this space is just one more iteration of it. And it’s also great for hosting large family gatherings in the future—this trestle table can handle large groups and kids like nobody’s business!

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The Refined Rustic Dining Room

This small dining room beautifully combines rustic design elements with classic formal elegance, for a space that’s full of countryside charm! It creates a dining room that feels put together and polished but still has a relaxed vibe. Overall, it feels elegant, livable, and welcoming—one of our favorite dining room ideas to welcome in spring!

The Key Elements

For a refined rustic look, you want to start with some classic foundations. In this space, that means slipcovered dining chairs, a pedestal dining table, and an ornate chandelier. But you’ll notice that each of these pieces is infused with rustic, countryside touches. The whitewashed and distressed woods. The linen upholstery. The glass-front credenza. The artwork and the casual styling of the credenza also speak to the rustic nature of this style. But to keep it from leaning too rustic, you want to make sure there are still some ornate, refined touches—like the beaded chandelier, the sconces, the streamlined slipcovered chairs, and the carved table base. All of these pieces bring a sense of classic formal elegance to the space.

This space also features a neutral palette, but one that’s warmed up with small pops of color. The foundations are neutral or warm wood, but the pops of yellows and greens liven up the room. And the tulips certainly help with that, too!

Why We Love It

This dining room strikes the perfect balance between formal and casual. It’s a cheery space that feels welcoming. The countryside charm puts you at ease and just feels right for spring. It’s a comforting style that’s perfect for these troubling, unstable times. We’re big fans of looking to classic and traditional decor elements for a sense of stability right now!

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dining room designThe Mod Collector Dining Room

This modern dining room is a fun mix of mid-century modern and eclectic ideas that make up one cohesive look. It has a youthful feeling, while also feeling like it effortlessly came together over time. It’s the perfect style for someone with a strong personality who wants their home to reflect who they are!

The Key Elements

The furniture found in this dining room features an informal mix of styles—a truly eclectic move. This tulip dining table with a marble top is a nod to classic Saarinen design. But the industrial chairs are a very different vibe, with a school-house feel to them. Meanwhile, the Sputnik chandelier comes straight out of the mid-century modern handbook!

This space also features an interesting and unlikely combination of patterns and materials. The patterns in this dining area are from all different “genres”—like the traditional rug, the geometric art, the industrial chairs, and the striped basket. And the materials in this space run quite the spectrum too—from marble and metal to textural materials like wool, leather, wood, and seagrass. Mastering the eclectic side of this style is all about layering on the visual and tactile textures in a space.

To really drive home the mod collector look in your dining room, you need a bold approach to color and contrast. This is most notable in the black accent wall. But between the wall color, the art, and the rug, you’ll notice that there are no limits when it comes to this color palette! The art pulls in blues, yellows, and greens while the rug adds reds and oranges to the mix. The key is simply balancing the ratio of color to neutrals. (More neutrals in a space keeps things balanced).

Why We Love It

This is a style that breaks (almost) all the rules. It’s a fun way to show off your personal style in your dining room! And with such a fun, interesting space, it makes eating in way more fun than going out—a feeling we all need right now!

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dining room designThe Rustic Boho Dining Room

A bohemian design sensibility meets a rustic approach to materials with rustic boho dining room. This smaller dining area is warm, inviting, and full of personality. It looks effortlessly on-trend, doesn’t it?

The Key Elements

Key to this dining room look is a mix of modern and traditional design ideas, pulled from different styles and time periods. The modern, sleek dining table contrasts with a more traditional china cabinet. The dining chairs have a distinctly mid-century modern profile. And the decor? It has a contemporary feel. All of these pieces mix together for a boho vibe that still creates a harmonious feeling.

The more rustic elements come into play with the choice of materials. Warm woods show off the natural beauty of the material, and opting for no-frills designs lets the wood grain do the talking. Woven chair seats add even more texture to the space. Meanwhile, the chunky knit wall hanging feels cozy and oh-so boho.

A signature element of boho style is a more eclectic and informal approach to layout. Unlike other dining room ideas, this one features a smaller table and more casual arrangement of chairs and furniture. Ultimately, you can push your space to be more or less boho with some simple layout choices.

Why We Love It

We love the cozy, informal hosting style that this rustic boho space creates. While it’s on-trend, it won’t feel dated in a few month’s or a year’s time. It’s also proof that small dining room designs don’t have to compromise on style!

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contemporary dining room design

13 Contemporary Dining Room Designs That are Anything but Boring

If you’ve ever wondered what goes into contemporary design, you’re not alone! People often confuse contemporary and modern design, but there is actually a world of difference. Fundamentally, contemporary design is simple and deliberate. The focus is on the basics: color, texture, and shape. Contemporary spaces are “clean” and fresh in appearance—this style is much more approachable than minimal or modern dining room design.

Contemporary design typically focuses on a palette of neutral colors paired with metal accents and wood tones. Good lighting is a central element and you’ll usually see a lot of accent lighting in a contemporary style. Overall, it’s a look that keeps things simple and sleek.

Why is contemporary design great for a dining room?

Contemporary style is a popular choice for dining room designs. The ambient lighting creates a warm and welcoming place to gather, entertain, host dinner parties, etc. It’s a super comfortable and versatile look that can be dressed up or dressed down as needed.

These 13 contemporary dining rooms show off a range of how contemporary design can come to life and blend with other styles. Take a look and get inspired!

contemporary dining room designHigh-Contrast Dining Room Style

This dining room is all about crisp and clean elements that speak to contemporary dining room design. The round table with geometric elements and the patterned rug add interest and texture to the dining room while the white/wood dining chairs add sophistication. The natural wood sideboard is attractive and practical—it anchors the bold black and white art. Maintaining a grey color palette keeps the dining room calm and easy on the eyes, along with the simple and practical decor stylings. To keep the modern dining area from being too monotone, add a plant for a pop of greenery/texture and a few hanging pendant lights (like this sputnik design) never hurt either.

High-Contrast Dining Room

We love this contemporary dining room because it’s tasteful and streamlined, yet still so full of energy. Notice how sleek all of the forms are—the chairs, table, and sideboard have sharp edges and absolutely no ornament. A rich, high-contrast color palette featuring bold blues and crisp whites creates just the right amount of drama and visual intrigue.

Industrial touches like the metal chairs and dark wood floors look elegant with the large windows and view outside. It seamlessly blends contemporary forms with a minimalist edge that gives off an air of sophistication and refined taste. The stark white table on the vibrant white and blue rug helps ground the room and the long blue curtains balance the look. A key element of this look is the small details, as well. We love the geometric forms used in the table setting and the striking white giraffe lamp placed next to the simple mirror and decorative vases. It’s a super bold dining room that makes a statement but is still totally approachable.

contemporary dining room designNavy Blue Contemporary Dining Room

This blend of contemporary and Industrial dining room styles is moody and masculine to the max! The modern dining room features a blue and grey color palette with pops of white and wood for contrast. The brass/bronze light fixture adds geometry and interest and the classic X-Base dining table makes a substantial statement as the dining area’s focal point.

It’s a contemporary dining room design with simple, sleek chairs in a dark fabric so you don’t have to worry about spills. The woven jute rug adds durability and the curtains help to visually frame the setting. The simple but bold styling on the sideboard and the plants add pops of texture and life to the modern dining room.

contemporary dining room designCozy Contemporary Dining Room

This lovely dining room oozes with mod contemporary style and shows off the beautiful, light-filled space and high ceilings. It’s mid-century modern to the max with a transitional edge that makes it more approachable. The mid-century modern undertones in the furniture are unmistakable but also rendered in a more pared-down way so they are less stark.

The dining table is beautiful and substantial and looks great with this minimalist table setting. The key to this look is a mix of materials and shapes, like the forms of table and chairs, the stunning mid-century modern sideboard and the rounded mirror leaned up against the wall with the dramatic vase. We love how the patterned rug underfoot adds lightness and balances the design. And the stylish globe pendant lights are a sure-fire way to start a conversation and add a playful pop that’s cool and casual all at once!

contemporary dining room designEarthy Neutral Dining Room

This dining room has a super sophisticated and curated look that is all out contemporary. It focuses on minimal styling so that what you see has a bigger impact all around. Notice the frill-free chairs and furniture, including the bar cart for entertaining, and the simple pieces of wall art for impact.

The neutral colors of the furniture set against the green wall with blush accents create a sumptuous, luxurious feel while the rug brings in some grounding energy. The sculptural waterfall light fixture adds the perfect amount of mood lighting for this contemporary dining room.

contemporary dining room designContemporary + Industrial Dining Room

If you want to go for a totally unique dining room, try something like this blend of contemporary and industrial styles. The minimalist chairs feel iconic and avant-garde and the tulip-style table doesn’t overwhelm the dining room. The round, striped jute rug echoes the circular shape of the dining table and touches of black and white add a high-contrast, modern flair.

Elements like the hanging pendant lights and the single, bold piece of art bring all the earth tones together with added greenery for an organic touch. It’s an ideal dining room for those who love a little something unexpected and conversational.

contemporary dining room designMonochrome Contemporary Dining Room

If you want a uniquely curated dining room that makes an immediate impression, you might love this monochrome contemporary look! It’s a cheery, inviting space with tons of style and originality. The sleek, transitional forms give it a slightly posh edge and the green monochrome scale adds tons of personality and warmth, bringing it back down to earth. It’s a great option to consider now, just in time for spring!

We love these leather chairs because they are simple, easy to clean and make a statement while not being over-the-top. The gorgeous stone and wood dining table grounds the room in earthy tones and looks sharp and savvy. The colors look fabulous against the cool mint walls and the striking graphic art adds a pop of contrast, pulling the whole room together.

contemporary dining room designContemporary + Modern Dining Room

This dining room seamlessly blends contemporary and modern styles to create a colorful and playful dining room. Jewel tones and elaborate dining chairs give it a luxe feel and the vibrant rug adds color to the modern dining room. The bold, white cement table is ultra-contemporary—talk about a statement piece!

The design pairs well with the tapered legs of the mid-century-style dining room chairs and the striking oversized chandelier. We kept the decor simple with just a large plant next to the sideboard so as not to distract from the beauty of the dining room chairs and table.

contemporary dining room designContemporary Minimalist Dining Room

This minimal dining room pares down to the bare essentials for a gathering atmosphere ready for hosting. Comfort meets design with the upholstered dining chairs. And the honeycomb rug pattern is a smart choice for dining rooms because the busy pattern can help hide any accidental spills!

The blue color palette with greyscale is perfect for lovers of crisp, sleek, and modern dining room design. And when it comes to keeping your dining room clutter-free, there’s nothing better than a practical sideboard with storage.

contemporary dining room designContemporary Chic Dining Room

We love the mix of contemporary and glam touches in this stunning dining area. The regal blue color palette is offset with warm wood and brass tones that give it a luxe feel. Velvet dining chairs against the light, woven rug create a formal modern dining area and the chic sideboard styling helps accentuate the sophisticated vibes.

The unique sculptural pendant light fixture is the perfect ambient lighting situation for a contemporary dining room style. Complete the dining room look with a symmetrical and bold gallery wall to create a striking contrast and a trio of plants to add a modern, earthy feel.

contemporary dining room designContemporary + Rustic Dining Room

This dining room has a distinctly Tuscan feel with dark woods and iron elements that create an immediately inviting vibe. Barrel back upholstered dining chairs add a sophisticated touch and the sculptural sideboard offers storage as well as extra aesthetic appeal. The geometric dining room rug and black and white bold art bring the classic, formal styling down to earth. And a simple color scheme, one of the hallmarks of contemporary design, allows the bold furniture pieces to be the star of the show.

contemporary dining room designCool Contemporary Dining Room

For an urban, contemporary/modern dining room, you can’t go wrong with a look based on a greyscale color scheme. This dining space has just the right amount of mood and edginess and the sleek modern dining chairs are so cool they could be functioning art pieces. This is definitely an entertainer’s dining room—the sideboard can be used for bar/party storage so you can be ready to entertain at a moment’s notice!

The handsome stone dining table with a wood base grounds the room and balances out the black chairs. Then, we added a light neutral rug to bring a little extra relief to the dark colors. And the oversized wall art and tall tree plant in the corner add impactful pops of color alongside the grey chairs. This is the kind of look that’s serious yet swanky, with sass and sophistication galore.

contemporary dining room designUltra-Minimal Dining Room

This contemporary dining room takes a cue from the understated and simple stylings of minimalism. Wire dining room chairs and a glass tabletop give it a clean, crisp lightness that doesn’t impede the beautiful view. The white captain’s chairs at the ends punctuate the table for impact and make the modern dining room feel more formal while the unexpected organic metal chandelier brings nature inside.

For a little mid-century flair, we added the tweed patterned area rug and a single plant for a pop of greenery. Overall, it’s a welcoming, yet cosmopolitan dining room with enough chairs for a small dinner party.

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rustic family dining room

5 Tips For a Dining Room That Encourages Family Meals

mid-century dining room ideas

You know those especially long days where, by the time you’re finally home the last thing you want to do is cook a meal? You know there are groceries in the fridge but ordering takeout is so much easier. Us too. Making dinner at home is one of those things that we say we’ll do but we always seem to find an excuse to get out of it.

It’s not surprising then that sit-down family dinners are becoming a rarity in American homes.

On the flip side, many studies have shown that eating together is a great way for parents and children to deepen their bonds in today’s fast-paced world. But what gives when it comes to making more time to eat together at home?

A well-designed family dining room might just be your answer to making it all happen. Make your dining room a place that is comfortable and inviting so that it encourages family dinners. A dining room that’s dedicated to meals and family time can also reset old routines and inspire a new way of eating together.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry. We’ve rounded up five tips to help you create a dining room that’s sure to get everyone around the table at dinner time.

Read on for 5 tips to create your perfect family dining room.

rustic family dining room1. Invest In A Dining Table (That Works For You)

First things first: If you want a dining room that encourages more family meals, a nice table can make all the difference. Think of your table as the centerpiece that everything else will be built on.

Choose one that fits your space and suits your family’s dining style. A long communal table is great for dinner parties if you like to have friends and family over. A shorter table or a round one is ideal for casual everyday meals and if you have a small family dining room.  A wood table can be especially kid-friendly and easy to clean. And, finally, a glass top option is great for small spaces.

contemporary dining room2. Find Comfy Chairs

The key to any great family dining room is comfortable seating. If you want a space that’s all about getting people to gather and dine together, it’s got to be comfortable.

Find chairs that not only speak to your style, but are comfortable enough that people won’t think twice about lingering for dessert or to finish that bottle of wine.

Don’t worry if all your chairs don’t match—embrace a more eclectic look as you add chairs to your space over time.

For kid-friendly seating, opt for chairs in leather (it’s easy to clean) or wood (upholstered ones are prone to stains). Or add a bench on one side for a seat that’s spacious with lots of room to move around.

dining room storage3. Incorporate Everyday Storage

Want your dining room to feel less utilitarian and more like a true family gathering spot? Take full advantage of the space by rounding it out with a credenza or buffet that can be used daily.

This is a great place to stash everyday dinnerware that you can pull out at meal time as well as for excess kitchen equipment (or any clutter you just don’t have room for). And you can dress it up as a self-service bar, food station, or just a simple decorative focal point during dinner parties.

dining room ideas4. Make A Statement

Warm up your dining decor so that it feels inviting. And don’t hesitate to take some interior design risks.

You likely won’t want to change up your dining room decor frequently. This makes it the perfect place to try a statement wallpaper or bold chandelier that makes it feel extra welcoming. This will also give it that one-of-a kind WOW factor that guests won’t be able to stop ogling over.

family dining room5. Set The Mood

What’s the one thing trendy restaurants have in common? Ambience! And that’s just as important in your dining room. An experience involving all your senses, striking the right mood with your lighting is key to a great dining space.

If you can, opt for a dimmable pendant or add an extra table lamp to your credenza. And don’t forget to light a candle or two (or a dozen) to add that final touch. It all adds up to setting a cozy and inviting mood that gets everyone excited for time spent together around the table.

 

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