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Antique Dining
Kimbra Saunders
February 24, 2013 in Design Dilemma
I have proudly been given my great grandmothers table, china cabinet, china and buffet. They are beautiful pieces, but I am not sure how to display them to my taste. My "style" is a mix of traditional and contemporary. But these pieces are SO traditional that i cant see past them. I am so unsure, that I have done nothing. No rug, no drapes...I'm lost!

I have other pics that I will post in the comments. Specifically a chair, a dinner plate from the china and a closer look at the cabinet.

I am thinking I want a black and white patterned rug and drapes that are thick horizontal stripes. I am not afraid of color (but I don't want pink or purple...the colors from the china). Don't know what to do.

So, in short, I would love to hear your thoughts on furniture layout, drapery colors, wall colors, display of the china in the cabinet and on the buffet. And if you have seen anything...please post pics.
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apple_pie_order
Fabulous set, very formal. Would you post some photos of dining rooms you like in your ideabook?

Photos of other areas of your house that you like a lot would help show what styles you like and have already.
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 2:17PM
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aebj
Beautiful furniture! I would uncover the tabletop and show it off. Stripes sound good.
2 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 2:35PM
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Kimbra Saunders
Some pictures of other areas in my house...
0 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 3:24PM
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dlapollo
use this furniture, very beautiful
put it up against, Benjamin Moore - Decorators White
and let the furniture do its job ...
0 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 3:26PM
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Judy M
SInce you mentioned stripes, this room has much more casual furniture but I think you could pull off a variation of this to make Great Grandma's furniture more youthful to suit you. The stripes do not have to be this color


4 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 3:55PM
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apple_pie_order
The living room rug shows colors that are similar to the dining room chairs' upholstered seats (on my monitor). Would you try the rug in the dining room to see if you like that color in the room?

I think vertical stripes in curtain panels would be much better suited than horizontal, but horizontal stripes that are quite wide are very fashionable. The chair seats could be re-upholstered to match. Red or very dark brown stripes could work. Black and white stripes would be very high contrast and would fight for attention with the furniture. Look at some of the 34,000 photos on http://www.houzz.com/stripe-curtains

The china cabinet can be lightened up a bit by cutting foamcore to fit at the back of each shelf. The foamcore can be wrapped in any light colored or patterned fabric or paper you like.
3 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 4:04PM
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carole
would find curtains with more white than black in the print,and re-upholster the chairs in a white flock and a striped rug or a grey and paint the wall a very light gray
0 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 4:05PM
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Lydia (Kazza Design)
Not sure you'd be willing to do this but painting (white) the chairs, the mirror and the inside of the cabinet would really update the furniture. Also, reupholstering the chairs with a more contemporary fabric (zebra print would be a funky option).
2 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 4:14PM
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Barnhart Gallery
Hi Kimbra -- I've painted your walls grey, swapped out the ornate mirror for something to contradict the buffet's curves, and followed the lines of the beautiful bubble glass in a black and white rug. I've also recovered the chairs in something more modern and similar in style, but I'm banishing the arm chairs to another room in favor of this pair of tufted leather ones for the head and foot of the table -- no tablecloth. I'd also want to beef up your white trim.
9 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 4:16PM
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apple_pie_order
Another alternative is a simplified chinoiserie wall paper with plain curtains which would coordinate with your chinoiserie furniture in the living room. http://www.houzz.com/chinoiserie-wall-paper

or
4 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 4:24PM
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crazycollector
I personally think the furniture is beautiful! You are truly blessed! I think you should take table cloth off, and place a round vase of colorful flowers on it. Or, you can take a smaller table cloth, and place it diagonally on table(kinda catty corner) w/ some candles. But you def. need some colorful pics on the walls( flowers) w/ red and or blue. The buffet needs colorful dec-remove cake plate-or place some thing colorful in it! The room is perfect- you just gotta play w/it, and enjoy!
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 4:58PM
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Kimbra Saunders
somehow this didn't get posted earlier...sorry for that. I am really enjoying all the wonderful ideas from everyone! I agree, I need to lose the tablecloth! It was a trial fit...and I haven't liked it (although I have to admit, I really want to like it!)

A close up of the chair, a dinner plate and the front of the cabinet (bubble glass)
0 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 6:00PM
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mainstreetschool
Barnhartgallery took what you like and put it together very nicely, if you really want black and white. Or live with it for a while and see if you don't like the traditional style. If so, I like the blue paint suggested for the upper half of walls, put up chair rail and keep light color below it. Recover the chairs in blue velvety material. Use the china with silver-toned chargers. The silver and blue walls will pull out the blue in the dishes. Put skinny lamps on either end of buffet with mirror above it. Lose the tablecloth and get a runner instead. Lovely furniture.
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 6:39PM
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Keitha
If you want to tone down the traditional look I think JudyM 's suggestion is a great idea... A neutral horizontal stripe. Use the color of the chair seats in accessories. The china cabinet is beautiful but the bubble glass makes it difficult to see the contents so I suggest putting something interesting on top to draw the eye up. What about installing plate hangers on 6 plates and install 3 on each side of the china cabinet. These buffet lamps would be nice too!
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 6:50PM
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Keitha
Some accessory ideas... Blue/white would look great with your chairs!
7 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 7:01PM
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Barnhart Gallery
Kimbra dear I'm just bumping this thread ahead of your duplicate thread since this one has the majority of the replies. Here's a link to the other thread so that you don't lose any responses: http://www.houzz.com/discussions/366970/Antique-Dining#695984
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 8:22PM
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Lizabeth
I am really liking the blue with the wood.
2 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 8:32PM
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Kevin Retired Decorator
I would love to see a silver metallic very wide stripe wall paper on the walls for a very modern chic look to start. Then I would do a black rug with a white trellis pattern under the table. With Black & silver Ikat or Damask drapes, I would do the seats of the chairs in a deep purple & gray flame stitch. I would go modern with a pair of buffet lamps and a drum shade chandelier with cascading crystals dripping down from with in shade. Use your dishes with silver chargers. White orchid center piece on the table with white candles and silver candle holders. This would all work if you kept the fabric on the dining chairs too. But you said no pink or purple. But I think you need a bit of purple to blend with the dishes and the purple is one of the most modern colors to bring out of the dishes. It looks like you already have purple in toss pillows on the sofa. If it were me I would go with new china in simple white and a silver rim. Then just use a few of the larger floral china pieces in the china cabinet. Over all I would think this will give a more modern edge to the dining area.
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 9:16PM
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Kevin Retired Decorator
PS Do change the mirror out to a modern straight edge wide silver frame too.
3 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 9:18PM
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bumblebee728
I love the mirror and the china!
0 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 9:53PM
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Susan Mills Design
I also thought wide stripe wallpaper for this dining room. There is so much curve and movement with the furniture, the wide stripes would give a very strong and contemporary feel. The chairs require either a small print or solid with all those curves. Solid is blasé, what better for a small print but leopard! A lovely blue gray leopard print upholstery weight fabric would be fun and add a great vibe to this room.

Yes to the sparkle of a crystal chandelier and then add candles of differing heights to your buffet. You have wonderful pieces to work with and as your tastes change over the years these can adapt and work with your emerging style. Please don't paint them!

I am attaching a picture of wallpaper, and leopard fabric, the colours are not right but can help you get the idea.
3 Likes   February 24, 2013 at 9:54PM
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Susan Mills Design
The mirror is fabulous too, keep it!
1 Like   February 24, 2013 at 9:55PM
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carole
like the stripe wallpaper,but in a metallic shine you could even paper it lenghtways,(could not find a picture for that)
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 1:38AM
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ASVInteriors
I have read most comments and depending on how daring you are, I can see this working beautifully with some emerald green (pantone colour of the year no less!)
I find dark mahogany and a dramatic colour will bring these traditional designs and colours into the 21st century.


While I am a great fan of black and white, the colour of the wood of your furniture worries me that it doesn't get incorporated into the look. I would go with white and green accents only .

What you put inside your cabinet will really pop, for example finding some bright green jars and plates mixed with cream or white. This is a very contemporary and modern take that might fit the bill. But it does require some guts! All the best with your project.
3 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 1:51AM
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Vikrant Sharma Homez
The stuff you got from your Grand mother is Amazing and Beautiful , keep it safe , a way to connect with Generations , and the Antique Value , I love all of it ,You are Lucky !
3 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 2:16AM
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carolins
Beautiful furniture. But I can see why you don't want to 'drown' in the classical style and want to update it. Don't touch the furniture please, only reupholstering if needed, but painting? Shock horror ;-)

I've had a novel idea:
what if you divide the wall where the cabinet is into three vertical stripes. The middle one somewhat wider (about 20 centimetres or so) than your cabinet. Paint that middle band in a colour like the gorgeous green that ASVInteriors suggested. Or in a deep dark blue, or a gold. You can also go for a softer, more muted colour of course. Place your cabinet against that coloured backdrop.

The rest of the walls, so both sides of the coloured band too, in a light neutral. Can't see your window, but I'm thinking floor to ceiling curtains in the neutral colour, but vertical band (about 10 centimetres wide) of the same colour as the painted band behind the cabinet on the window side of the curtains. So that if you close them, the colour touches.
If you reupholster the seats, go for neutral.
Above the table either a drum pendant for the more modern look, or a modern chandelier for a more eclectic look:
Lucinda Branch Chandelier

Old Navy 2063 Paint
4 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 3:37AM
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Patricia Pelgrims
Strangely enough, the style of your kitchen and livingroom say more ECLECTIC to me than traditional/contemporary.
The furniture and china is absolutely stunning.
If it were me, I would go for a quirky/vintage style for these inherited pieces. Someone here (ASV Interiors) suggested chinoiserie wallpaper and I agree with them. Even the chairs could be reupholstered in a quirky fabric. Makes it all less formal, but oh so special.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 4:19AM
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Maison Pompeii Antiques and Interiors
Beautiful furniture, esp the chairs. The bubble glass is a little disconcerting but ok. I agree that a verticle stripe pattern wallpaper will help difuse the bubble glass. You can then do a modernist chinoiserrie fabric( large two color design) at the windows and then a cool 2 color animal print on the seat covers. If teh mirror can be used in another room try the suggestions from the other houzzers. Try to stick to only two colors for a more modern look. Also a transitional chandeleier will help keep it more light and different than what you greandmother would have used. You have a lot of potential here. As an aside I think the round rug in the living room does not work for the space but that is a whole separate discussion.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 4:40AM
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Doria Tremante
Gorgeous furniture! I would focus on lighting. A modern chandelier above the table, and possibly a couple of lamps on the buffet that are more your style to help "acclimate" the pieces. And definitely remove the table cloth - replace with a runner. Good luck :-)
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 5:09AM
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janishill
Pull the blue from the china and paint the walls a lovely deep shade like this: http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/paint-color/southernbelle

or this: http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/paint-color/mosaic

Or even this: http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/paint-color/paddingtonblue

Have the seats recovered in a blue velvet. Add a large sisal rug then, if you like, another rug can be layered over it. Maybe a chevron strip. Ivory linen drapes hung high and wide so as much light as possible can come in. Use lots of white to brighten the room and add apple green accessories.

A gorgeous chandy (don't see one) will bring it all together.

The other option is to use a print on the seats, add printed drapery panels, and use sunshine yellow accents.

I posted this on the other page where you had asked the same question as well.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 5:20AM
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eleri
gorgeous furniture, and I agree with carolins comments :)
2 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 5:22AM
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Amy Stanley
I would uncover that table for sure- The set has a very Victorian feel where the rest of your house seems more eclectic but I think mixed with the right decor it will fit in nicely . With that said I totally don't get an animal fabric feel as being your taste when looking at the rest of your house. You seem to have a very neutral back drop with splashes of color..What about taking your wall to a deeper neutral with perhaps just an accent wall behind the china cabinet. The furniture is very busy on it's own so adding too much movement in fabrics could make the room seem really over done compared to the rest of your spaces. I agree you need a chandelier in the space something less traditional more modern this I would choose first and work my way from there. I always have an inspiration that I start with. * side note because you asked,I don't love the basket on top of the china cabinet.
2 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 5:37AM
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A Crew of Two
I am assuming you only use this room for formal dining...with that said embrace the furniture. I also received furniture from my grandmother that was not my style at all. The first thing I would do is choose a color you love- I see reds in the rest of your home, but think red is too much for the dining set. I would choose a more relaxed color that is on trend. Gray, citrus green, or a soft teal. A neutral modern fabric will update and make the chairs more casual. Switch up the mirror- it is very bold and heavy.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 6:13AM
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A Crew of Two
I personally would not display the china. Put the things you love in the cabinet and use the dishes for special dinners. I love these or something similar to update the room. Layer colors in the same tone to neutralize the heaviness of the furniture. Add accents of silver and bronzes. See the attached pic to see how the color neutralizes the heaviness of the furniture.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 6:20AM
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Sigrid
If you want to mix your traditional inherited furniture with a modern vibe, play up the curves. You've for a lot of intricate curves in your furniture, find some modern textiles that have intricate curves, too.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 6:30AM
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soberg
That bold, jaw-dropping furniture needs some strong color on the walls. If you are planning to display the dishes, choose a wall color from the accents on the dishes (not the main colors), such as green, gold, or maybe even warm gray.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 6:33AM
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Jayme H.
Love your furniture! Some color scheme ideas..wondering about considering upholstered chairs at table heads to break up all the wood...Soft colors/rug/drapes to lighten the room...Add in some eclectic accessories in art and light fixture?
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 6:34AM
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Jayme H.
I really love the colors in this one..the upholstered chairs break up the dark furniture
3 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 6:43AM
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Barnhart Gallery
BTW Kimbra, now that you've posted it, your grandmother's china reminds me of the Wedgewood set that I inherited, so I dug up a couple of photos from a local flower guild competition that my sister in law invited me to put an entry in. (I'm not a florist, but I do provide the "derangements" for all family parties and holidays.)

Thought I'd show you how I've integrated the Wedgewood's floral into my much more masculine-skewing aesthetic, using my only somewhat coordinating pattern in black and gold. The combination worked nicely for the competition, as the task was to set a table for two, with the guest of honor being a local historical figure who was an ambassador to Turkey, then appointed US Postmaster General -- hence the copper lantern and letter "from the president." (Cursor over photo to see.)
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 6:57AM
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Kimbra Saunders
Ok, I wrote this whole post and it just disappeared. Which is also what happened when I was originally posting to the discussion. (That's why there are two separate threads...sorry about that.)

I want to start by thanking all of you for taking an interest in this dilemma of mine. To clarify, the kitchen and living area are eclectic. It is an open floor plan and it is to my liking. However, with the very traditional, formal dining furniture that I have in the dining room, I would like to transform the room with some contemporary accents. Also, the placement of the items in the room - no rhyme or reason. It has become a dumping ground (including that basket on top of the cabinet).

I love the idea of blue walls - maybe two tone vertical 12" stripes. And to calm things down a bit, take the two arm chairs out and add two white (or neutral) upholstered chairs and reupholster the existing seats. I think the curtains - ceiling to floor can be solid and neutral as well (especially if i do the dark two tone stripes on the walls. I would like to continue to display my Great Grandmother's china (I don't love the pattern, but I do feel connected).

The mirror seems to bring up different opinions. I would like to keep it (it's as much a part of the furniture in our Great Grandmother's room as the rest of the pieces). What if I turned it vertical?? Like in the photo Keitha posted. I think I need to add some buffet lamps (modern). I hid the ones my GG had. I should post a picture so you can see.

Thanks again for all of your ideas! I am really starting to see how this can work.
5 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 7:50AM
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Kimbra Saunders
More pictures of room and buffet lamps
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 7:56AM
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mainstreetschool
Kimbra, looks like you got enough ideas to start with. Do what you said above, and enjoy the family treasures. Your style will evolve after these basic steps. Turn the mirror as suggested. Post pics as you go. Love the blue. Her is mine
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 8:02AM
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mainstreetschool
Love the lamps. Use them.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 8:03AM
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Nancy Hehmann
Love your furniture and certainly would not paint it!
2 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 8:05AM
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Kimbra Saunders
I have no intention if painting the furniture. Not only do I want to keep the furniture as is...the detail on the furniture would make painting too big of a job for me.
5 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 8:07AM
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sgoldcamp
The pieces are beautiful. And the glass details in the china cabinet is very unique - and could be made to look modern. I would start with a fabric. Try to find a bright colored geometric fabric that has some ovals and shapes that mimic the glass cabinet. Use this for drapes and chairs(recover) Then paint the walls ome of the colors in the fabric - preferably the brightest/boldest color. Remove the table cloth, and add a few colored dishware to complement the color choice of the room to display in the cabinet.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 8:14AM
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carole
hi kimbra,like your plan for the changes,and hope we get to see more pictures once you made them!!!
i agree this furniture should not be painted,it really has a quality of its own,and i like your grandma's lamps too,but just for show,more modern lamp will help the room pull together....
3 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 10:18AM
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moreismoore
I agree with others that a bright color with a mix of prints would be fabulous. This room would be wonderful with a chinoiserie style, and that allows for lots of color and print. There are a lot of chinoiserie mirrors that could be fun.

And find a way to mix in a little animal print - they're wonderful as neutrals against other prints.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 10:38AM
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mainstreetschool
I would use the lamps Ina guest room dresser.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 10:49AM
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janishill
Furniture placement seems right. I would turn the arm chairs so they are against teh wall and not catty-corner.

The mirror is great turned as is; horizonal. Put the lamps on each end of the buffet. The fun, contemporary feel will come with the paint and rug(s), drapery panels adn newly upholsterted seats.

I like the idea of removing the arm chairs and adding two neutral upholstered chairs. Easy update for sure.

I do hope you will post updated pictures when you have the room finished.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 12:45PM
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carolins
Hmm... I sort of like the mirror the way it is. Seems to be a good size for it and it does go with the buffet. Kind of 'so ugly that it is beautiful' thing. No offence :-)
3 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 12:48PM
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Kimbra Saunders
A few computer generated pics...I am really loving the blue!
2 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 12:49PM
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Patricia Pelgrims
Sorry Kimbra, but the blue is just too harsh for the furniture AND for a dining room (IMO)
Maybe it's because of the solid block of colour, I'm not sure.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 1:25PM
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anne dee
Maybe this pic can help inspire ypu?
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 1:29PM
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Barnhart Gallery
I think carolins landed on the right idea. Anne dee, I hope you don't mind I used the inspiration pic you posted to illustrate how great the big fat stripe up the back wall behind the hutch could look. Grandma's color blocking!
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 1:35PM
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moreismoore
I don't necessarily agree that it's too strong, although I'm not a fan of blue. A strong color would be useful to overcome the the sweetness of the furniture. I'd go for maybe less color but more pattern.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 1:37PM
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Kevin Retired Decorator
When I see the photo above , maybe the answer is to take the buffet and use it in the living room for the TV to break it up some. Just a thought. I think it would give more balance to the area. Then get a coffee table that is more of a antique style to use with the sofa's I think using modern upholstery with antiques is a great look.
2 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 1:47PM
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anne dee
No problem Barnhartgallery. Nice idea for the black and white striping.
I thought the blue color blocking would be somewhat different .
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 2:01PM
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Dianne Ziegler
You could arrange the dishes in the china cabinet so that they show off and put the extra stacked ones in the bottom of the cabinet. To me it shows off the china so much better that way. I bet there is even a little groove at the back of the shelf to stand plates up. Then it appears to be for display, not storage.

I have dining room furniture very similar to yours.

I have nine inch wide stripes in my dining room above wainscoting. First it was painted with flat paint and the glossy nine inch stripes of the same color were added. I had a faux tray ceiling done with molding and painted the inside a lighter shade of the same color. The mirror has three smaller more contemporary mirrors under it. The center mirror is a longer rectangle and the two side ones are square. This softens the roundness and busyness of the mirror. And I have 2 lamps on the buffet below. On the top of the china cabinet I have some some contemporary pottery.

The stripes even work in a cream on cream paint.

I put a much narrower version of the stripe in fabric on the chair seats. I put one of my master chairs in my living room that can be brought in if we need it.
I have silk patterned drapes and a toned down somewhat colorful rug under the table.
I did this eight years ago and now from reading the suggestions for you I am going to purchase upholstered chairs for either end of the dining room table.
0 Likes   February 25, 2013 at 2:25PM
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Patricia Pelgrims
Haha, @moreismore. I didn't say the blue is too strong. It's just harsh next to the furniture. :D
I think we're on the same wave length, though, because I would also use a patterned wallpaper à la chinoiserie.
The furniture is begging for chinoiserie wallpaper and the chairs are begging for a different pattern fabric. A mix of victoriana/boho/shabby chic.
0 Likes   February 26, 2013 at 1:00AM
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carolins
@ barnhartgallery: I'm so glad you made that image, because up to now it only existed in my head (where it looked good) and now I'm seeing it for 'real'.... and it looks exactly the same as in my head. Hooray! :-)
2 Likes   February 26, 2013 at 1:04AM
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Destin4 Interiors LLC
I don't see how blue plays into this dining space? Also if it is open to that living room I would carry the red as an accent or a shade of it rhubarb or coral. If you don't want to paint the inside of the china cabinet use Velcro and solid colored fabric. I would eliminate the table cloth makes it look like grandma's add a long runner or curtain panel folded length wise. Edit the amount of dishes and glassware that you see in the cabinet store it below and add in modern accessories picture frames and some old books for stacking. The chairs upholstery looks in good shape and matches the china nicely add the black and white geometric area rug and keep the drapes elegant in a gold faux silk to tie in the mirror. Bold colorful art (simply painted canvas non-framed will add clean lines compared to the ornate mirror)and mercury glass accents will freshen your new found treasures. The hurricanes might be better suited in another room with more clean modern lines to add charm.(think about on a night stand)
1 Like   February 26, 2013 at 1:56AM
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Destin4 Interiors LLC
I agree not to caddy corner the arm chairs place them flat. In addition think about neutral upholstered head chairs (I recommend the Edwin chair by Ethan Allen) something to mimic the curve of the rest of the chairs
0 Likes   February 26, 2013 at 2:09AM
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