How to Elevate Your Dining Room


The dining room is often a special space for many homeowners because it can take on many different uses at once. Some families use it for the kids to do their homework, social gatherings, family meals, entertaining, or even working from home! The dining room can be a diverse space, but how can you elevate it when so much goes on there?

It’s a tricky balancing act to create a practical dining room that is also sophisticated and stylish when the space gets used for different aspects of life. Over the years we have designed countless dining rooms for a variety of families. From selecting the perfect lighting fixtures to styling the table to perfection, we have picked up many design tricks that create a functional dining experience.

There have been many occasions when our clients have felt stuck with their dining rooms because they have felt bland and boring. The room serves a purpose after all, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t have style too! 

So how can you elevate your dining room and step out of the era of bland and blank walls? In this article we share our ideas on How to Elevate Your Dining Room so you can create a functional yet visually interesting space too!

Sherwin Williams Forever Green paint color


Many families I’ve worked with in the past have been afraid of using rugs in their dining rooms, however, I love how they ground the space! Rugs are used throughout a home to clearly define an area within a space, and it’s no different in a dining room. Plus – rugs are a quick way of injecting personality, color, texture, and pattern into the space! 

Instead of a traditional rug, I recommend using an indoor/outdoor rug for a dining room! Indoor/outdoor rugs perform well with food spills and are thinner than many other rugs which make them ideal for pulling dining chairs in and out. They are kid friendly, often hold up longer term, and are ideal for high traffic areas too. 

In this dining room, we used an indoor/outdoor rug because it’s the primary eating space for the family.

Architectural Detailing

Adding architectural detailing, such as wainscotting, instantly turns a bland room into something beautiful. Wainscotting adds sophistication and will look timeless for many years to come. It also creates an area above to inject color or pattern through paint or wallpaper.

In this dining room, we designed a board and batten wainscotting to formalize the area and add architectural interest because the dining room is open to the living room.

Mixing Metals

People often think of mixing metals in a kitchen or bathroom, but neglect to think about metals in a dining room. Mixing metals has also been something homeowners are afraid of doing, but can elevate a space and add elegance.

In this dining room that we designed, the metal from the light fixture is complemented by the small mirrors above the wainscotting. The silver vase and napkin rings complement each other but still relate to other pieces in the room. For example, the open pattern in the vase works great with the pattern in the rug and helps to tie everything together.


We regularly talk about lighting in our articles because it’s an aspect of interior design that often gets left behind! Lighting can have a huge impact in a dining room so it’s important to consider it carefully.

While the natural instinct is to install a large light fixture above the dining table and call it a day, adding recessed ceiling lights to the perimeter of the space can add dimension and flexibility. Wall sconces also look great in dining rooms, perhaps flanking a large wall mirror above a sideboard, or use picture lights to highlight framed pieces on the walls to add an extra layer of ambience.

Elevate Your Dining Room with Our Favorite Pieces!


8-Light Smoke Crystal Chandelier

This 8-light chandelier is a great way of elevating any dining room! We love the smoke crystal finish as it creates a stylish and modern look.

Tan Indoor/Outdoor Rug

Use an indoor/outdoor area rug to define the dining space and introduce pattern to the room. We love this Boho-Scandi style design!

Brass Wall Sconce

We love this brass wall sconce because of the organic and interesting shape!

Polished Brass Wall Sconce

Add a wall sconce to your dining room to elevate the space and inject some ambient lighting.

Wood Decorative Bowl

A decorative bowl or vase is ideal for styling the dining table, year-round!

Polished Brass Chandelier

Use a round shaped chandelier above a smaller or round shaped dining table to elevate the whole look of the space.

Personalize Your Space

Would you like a professional interior designer to pull your space together? Contact us for in person interior design services in the Chicagoland area or virtual interior design services anywhere in the world.