Dining Chairs Don’t Have to Match Table

Dining Chairs Don’t Have to Match Table

Elissa’s friends had some questions when she showed them the inspiration photo she had chosen for her dining room makeover. They included: “You’re doing wallpaper, seriously?” And, “You do realize that those chairs don’t go with that table, right?”

Clearly, she recalls, her friends didn’t realize that wallpaper is back! And who says the chairs have to match the table? No designer we’ve ever heard of.

Her vision for the room was clear and there were some unchangeable requirements.

Bird plates would be showcased

This room would showcase her mother’s collection of bird plates.

But there was a lot of work to do before we could get there. Elissa inherited this home from her parents.

“Dated” would be a short description for the dining room.

Dining room before

Dining Room BEFORE Makeover

No worries. Colors, flooring and furniture are easy to change.

We already knew we would go from high-energy to calming and peaceful on the color wheel.

And when we said wallpaper, we did not mean this one would stay.

Elissa’s inspiration image

The eclectic and natural feel of the inspiration photo had to come through, although we would refine it.

A botanical-print wallpaper would go above the chair rail, but we would tone it down. And, we would use the inspiration’s chevron pattern in the chair seats and the rug — in a more elegant way.

Inspiration Image

Oh, and forget the chandelier in the inspiration. It’s not going to happen.

Colors get complete makeover

The high-energy pink/mauve walls needed to change to peaceful and calming. We quickly gravitated to greens and blues.

What to replace the carpet with was a simple choice. We would continue the 2-1/4 inch maple strip hardwood from the adjacent kitchen.

A round-leg dining table, similar to the one in Elissa’s inspiration photo, took center stage. A matching credenza with a cream and black marble top also met with her approval.

The furniture needed to complement the style in the visible and adjacent foyer and living room. What’s there has clean lines and is accented with a few, beautiful round-leg tables.

Chairs complement but don’t match

The perfect chairs wound up being a custom order from a company that offers an array of stains and upholstery fabrics. A blue-green chevron pattern was available, and we chose a dark smoke finish for the wood. We repeated the chair colors in a custom console table – dark smoke top, pearl green bottom – ordered from the same company, which makes everything from solid wood.

This company also is committed to sustainability and reduces its environmental impact by recycling dyes, solvents and paints, buying local and using recycled packaging materials.

We repeated the chevron pattern, in a green-blue and cream colored natural wool rug.

Dining Room AFTER, mirror still to be hung.

The dark-smoke wood color balances the room by adding:

  • A black, Edison-bulb chandelier that replaced the dated, existing fixture.
  • A black-framed arched mirror.
  • Console lamps that also have marble bases that match the marble on the credenza on the adjacent wall.

And, as a center point for the bird plates that eventually would hang on the walls, we found the perfect black-framed bird art.

Elisa’s friends still are not sure whether they approve. Elisa doesn’t care. She loves her new elegant-but-modern, peaceful space, where she can remember her mom and smile.

— Nancy Kibbee designs rooms, sources products, and sometimes writes about it for naturalinteriors.com.

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