IT’S THE SEASON FOR ENTERTAINING
PREPARE TO IMPRESS YOUR GUESTS WITH THESE DINING ROOM TIPS BY ALINDA MORRIS, ALINDA MORRIS INTERIOR DESIGN LLC PHOTOS BY HAILEY ROSE CALDERA AND ALEX HAYDEN
hether you’re cooking or not this holiday season, now is the time to make sure your dining room is ready to welcome family and friends. The Basics You really should start with your table and chairs. I try and avoid an overly fussy, formal table. I take inspiration from nature. I like reclaimed wood and natural materials because they are easy to live with. You can pair a rustic table with more formal chairs for a comfortable, relaxed result. Your larger statement pieces set the tone and should speak to your personality and lifestyle. I love to mix genres in the dining room. Scale I always consider the size of the space and how my client will use the space. The dining table is the centerpiece of this space, and you want to allow at least 24 inches for each person. A 7-foot-long table will seat eight people and 8 to 9 feet long will seat 10. If your table allows for it, you might be able to squeeze in another seat or two for those occasional larger gatherings.
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Circulation Leave about 36 inches of space from the wall
to the table. Ideally, 42 to 48 inches is the perfect clearance between the table and walls. Mix and Match Entertaining should be fun, not stressful. If you have not found the perfect table yet—or if you are just starting out—you can save money by draping your table. When you drape it with fabrics, you can make the table appear as big as it needs to be so you have ultimate flexibility. Start with a color scheme of no more than three colors. I like to mix styles and textures. You can also get funky chairs that have a lot of chicness without spending a fortune. They do not have to match but should be “friends.” Look for consistent colors or materials, as this will add continuity. Finishing touches: The key to a space that feels relaxed and comfortable is that it feels finished. Add art to the walls and fresh flowers to finish the space. Also be sure to keep the table centerpieces low so guests can see each other. Best Advice Invest in the very best you can afford. If you are struggling to find your design style or are overwhelmed by the options, hire a professional to help.