Fill your mealtimes with the right kind of drama – of the decorating kind – and you’ll find your guests will remember the experience as much for the ambience you’ve created as for your, no doubt, inspired cooking skills. Most of us don’t have the luxury of a separate dining room these days which is exactly why you can give whatever eating area you do have a dramatic makeover.
You can stamp personality on a space in a variety of ways, it could be as simple as investing in a standout dining table or curating a selection of different chair styles or positioning a striking lighting fixture above the table. Making a feature wall by using arresting wallpaper in just a small area, like a backdrop to the table and chairs, is a nifty way to zone the dining space if it is in an open plan room. Think about theming the area in a style you love; vintage maps or posters could reflect a hobby and give you and your guests something to talk about as you chow down.
You could even design your own wall coverings by having a favourite picture blown up in size, but perhaps the easiest way of creating impact is by choosing a powerful colour scheme. Some of the examples in this gallery are really ‘out there’ and require courage, after all, you do have to live with this space every day. If you have a small dining space like a breakfast nook in your kitchen you might prefer to keep it simple but you can still achieve standout by choosing co-ordinating accessories, even a beautiful bowl or vase which is kept on the dining table when it’s not in use, can make all the difference.
Is Heston Blumenthal coming to dinner? For the mad scientist in all of us, go back to the alchemy of cooking and dining with a chemistry lab-style design like this one. We love the plant pendant lights and assortment of pharmacy jars. Accents of zesty lime green stop this dining room from being too clinical.
If you’re lucky enough to live in a converted church, you’ll know that choosing your decor can be really tricky; you don’t want to compete with the original features of the building. We love this traditional, softly Baroque-style dining room with a grandfather clock, chandelier and stunning stained-glass windows.
Stripes and spots can be a little dazzling but when teamed with a simple colour scheme the effect is striking. We love the bright blue plastic and glass furnishings, and the contrast between the floor and the large French windows.
Want to see some more weird and wonderful decorating ideas? Check out our favourite quirky living rooms and 10 even quirkier kitchens. Whatever you do, don’t forget to share your decorating tips and tricks on our Facebook page and via Twitter.