Like all the rooms in our home, the dining room is still a work in progress. Part of our push in 2017 is to finish our projects we have already started, or need to finish.
So were starting with the dining room in January and finishing a few things that have been lingering since the porch remodels. Things like painting the room, fixing the crown molding, finally installing a light fixture that lights up the table adequately, and putting up some art. Eventually (were thinking next fall) were going to take another stab at our live edge slab table. Which warped on us over the last year.
So its time to start making some product and design decisions. Those can be difficult even for those of us with lots of experience. Heck sometimes I think its even more difficult because I have had so much design experience, I appreciate many styles, textures, and patterns.
When I find it difficult to finalize decisions its usually and indication that I need to slow down, add some constraints or design guidelines, and then look with fresh eyes.
So basically I had to peel my fingers of the pin it button … just walk away from the screen Susie.
What do I mean by guidelines?
First, I go ahead and look at what I have and really think I’m reusing in the current design. Like our live edge table, cafe stools, and mid-century side table.
Then, I take the architecture and homes age into consideration. Since our home has so much character already built in our door casings I don’t want the small rooms to get busy.
So that already narrows down some things and creates some guidelines for the dining room. All the new items will need to work with the items I already have, and our homes bungalow/cottage architecture.
Now, I can narrow down the search. When I come across something I absolutely love (like an idea posted on Pinterest) I can let go of it if it doesn't fit within the guidelines. It makes it easier to find the stuff that will work. Instead of being stuck on too many ideas that won't work and getting overwhelmed.
Once I find inspiration in some photos (possibly with similar items to what I already have), I go ahead and draft a design.
If I’m still having issues with the design and colors, I will make a coloring page. That way I can really feel free to try some ideas (with no one overseeing).
I’ll even create a couple of designs that have different styles (something a little more traditonal , mid century modern, boho, etc).
Free Printable Coloring Pages
So that leads me to your free coloring pages. You have a couple of different design layouts and styles to choose from and can play with the colors till your hearts content.
How can interior design coloring pages really help?
- Help you color in your current guidelines (like our floor color and the white cafe stools we already own.)
- Start to answer those tough questions for yourself. Like do I have too many metals mixed into this room? (It helped me to color in our brass fixture above the dining table since we don't currently have a brass fixture in our house.)
- Try new styles (you know spread your wings and fly....) If your space is very traditional, how would it look to mix in some mid-century modern pieces? Its easy to take the risk on a coloring page you can just throw out if you hate.
- Try risky colors. Their is something about coloring it all in yourself that helps you finally make that decision. (Like if green walls will work for you. O yeah that's what I started with when we moved in.)
Doesn't it just feel great to make some of those decisions on your own (or as a couple)? You can end up receiving so much advice about designing your space (friends, family, design shows, co-workers) that your really not sure. Going through a process yourself helps calm the nerves and puts you back in the driver's seat.
You can download the three different designs below and try it out yourself. Go ahead and color your pages in. Don't forget to tag us in your posts so we can see what beauties you come up with!
Let us know if these pages were helpful and what styles and rooms you might want to see next in the comments. I'd love to create some more for other spaces and styles you might be looking for.
Finding Dining Room Inspiration
With my guidelines in tow I find it easier to love something, and then let it go, and not get my mind jumbled with too many ideas. You shouldn't just follow every rule in design blindly, but guidelines can help you let go of too many ideas. Which will help zeroing in on the ideas that will work.
So I ended up pulling some inspiration off of Houzz.com, and if you haven't ever check it out, your missing out.
- We love this amazing giraffe print. It would be a nice reminder to embrace our tall goofy selves.
- I don't want the dining to end up too Mid-Century modern with the addition of a fixture like this, but I just keep going back to it. Here's a budget friendlier version.
- We painted the entry this Sherwin Williams color and have loved it, most likely you will eventually see it on the kitchen walls as well.
- The side cabinet will store our barware, what better then to have a vintage mid century decanter on top like this one. Or this one.
- I mean who can resist? Maybe a cactus inside, or maybe a bowl to hold our wine stoppers, and other miscellany.
Once I put together this mood board I realized our colors are very muted. Although my inspirations had white and grey walls, they brought a generous amount of color in with the art and plant life.
I've been playing with my dining room coloring page to see if I'll keep it all muted like below or add color with a giraffe print and plants. The color really looks great in these spaces, maybe I'll embrace the eclectic side and get some more color in everything.
Nothing is ever exactly how you originally envisioned it, the beauty of design is in the process to which you get to the end result (does a room ever really stop evolving?). When I first started designing our dining room table I had decided I wanted to find all different vintage styles of barstools, but it just never lined up where I could find the right height (our table is counterheight) and in reasonable condition to be rehabbed. So we ended up purchasing some and I'm very glad we did, but they still aren't my absolute favorite....
They blend in to the small dining room with a little style, they are so much easier to clean than I would image something we painted would be, and they all came in time for Christmas and guests the year we bought them.
The point is, you don't have to love every single thing in your home to have a wonderfully designed space. Stay tuned in January for how this room comes together, here on the blog, and on Instagram!
Anyone else finally finishing some spaces in the new year?