Gorgeous Dining Rooms: Part Two

By Kate Riley May 1, 2009

Last week, I posted some of my favorite dining spaces. Here are the rest of the images I’ve collected over the last few years.

house beautiful dec 08

House Beautiful, December 2008: Perfect blue walls and Chinese Chippendale chairs, paired with a dark wood table and floor, an elegant console and simple drapes. Photo by James Merrill 

house beautiful march 08 (2)

House Beautiful, March 2008: Have you ever seen such wild fabrics and colors used together so seamlessly? These three ring chairs do not project a circus at all. Au contraire, their lacquered white paint adds modern glamour. Photo by Lucas Allen

house beautiful july 08 

House Beautiful, July 2008: An amazing foxed glass mirror paired with a unique concrete table top and (gasp) upholstered white dining chairs. I give the owner points for bravery there. Photo by Thomas Loof

traditional home april 07

Traditional Home, April 2007: How gorgeous is the use of white paneling with black on the upper wall? Effect ? That chandelier absolutely pops. Study this. It is classic elegance at its best.

house beautiful jan 08 (2)

House Beautiful, January 2008: The coordination of those burnt orange curtains with the chair stripe is stunning. I’d spend some serious cash to own that table too. What a lovely Old World style combination. 

house beautiful jan 08

House Beautiful, January 2008: A mix of styles here, with clean lines. A mission look sideboard, mixture of chairs, and a large but simple chandelier balanced very nicely. Notice the curtain detail? You can have this same custom look by upgrading any of your store bought curtains with just a bit of trim. Photo by Eric Piasecki

southern accents nov dec 08

Southern Accents, Nov/Dec 2008: Simplicity and symmetry reign here. Look how nice simple wood floors look with elegant white doors and a white circular table. A little punchy fabric makes those chairs absolutely wonderful.

traditional home march 08

Traditional Home, March 2008: A mix of wood tones, linen slip covered chairs, and eggplant paint on the walls. Photo by Robert Young


traditional home oct 05

Traditional Home, October 2005: Even more beauty in simplicity and symmetry with traditional rattan back chairs, stone flooring, elegant curtains and a chandelier, and no area rug. Photo by Colleen Duffley

trad home june july 07

Traditional Home, June/July 2007: Would you believe this is a beach house? Who would have thought with those beams and that floor and the elegant use of cream and blue fabrics. That bench adds such an interesting touch. Isn’t the blue/gray paint just lovely? Photo by Colleen Duffley

traditional home sept 07

Traditional Home, September 2007: Going green is easy when it looks like this. The use of various shades of green and dark wood leans a bit masculine, but the mirror, lamps and botanical prints add balance. Photo by Deborah Llewellyn

elegant homes spring summer 08

Elegant Homes, Spring/Summer 2008: I just oooh and aaaah at this dining room.  The colors are so warm and inviting, and that sideboard is gorgeous underneath those stunning botanicals. 

cottage living jan feb 07

Cottage Living, Jan/Feb 2007: This dining space is one of my favorites for its mix of elegant chairs and dark wood tones juxtaposed up against all that white. Photo by Roger Davies


traditional home april 08 2

trad home april 08

Traditional Home, April 2008: Here are two photos from a dining room with some serious style. Look how the decorator mixed painted paneled walls with neutral rustic floors, classic white chairs and a dark wood table. What a dining experience there is to be had here with that conversation piece chandelier and the grand piano in the background.

traditional home may 08 (2)

Traditional Home, May 2008: Environmentally friendly everything here, from the reclaimed wood chairs to the organic cotton fabrics. Traditional, botanical, beautiful, and green. Photo by Edmund Barr

house beautiful march 08

House Beautiful, March 2008: A soothing sand-and-sea color scheme makes this stylish space very airy and inviting. Photo by Eric Piasecki

traditional home may 08 (3)

Traditional Home, May 2008: I feature this image above simply for the perfect dining room chairs and table. Perfect fabric, perfect shape, perfect style, perfect colors. Photo by Kim Cornelison

traditional home may 08

Traditional Home, May 2008: The owners added all the elements of a formal dining space to a “casual” breakfast nook, and created a very elegant room just a few feet from the kitchen appliances. Lesson learned: who in the world needs both a casual and a formal dining space when one that looks like this will do so perfectly?


traditional home oct 07 (2)

Traditional Home, October 2007: Look how a little corner of your home can be transformed with antique chairs,   tablecloth, a little chandelier, and some interestingly hung art. Photo by Tria Giovan

traditional home oct 07

Traditional Home, October 2007: Don’t you love a cushy window seat upholstered like this, with an elegant table pushed up against it? Those rustic beams and that lantern are wonderful. I would absolutely love this space in my home – my laptop might be a permanent fixture right on that table. Photo by Gordon Beal

Southern Accents Sept Oct 08

Southern Accents, Sept/Oct 2008: These painted wood floors are stunning. This very simple country style breakfast nook would brighten any morning.

house beautiful april 08 (2)

House Beautiful, April 2008: I love how this owner chose a rustic table and elegant chairs instead of an island, right in the heart of the kitchen, don’t you? Don’t forget the silver candlesticks. Photo by Francis Janisch

traditional home april 08

Traditional Home, April 2008: Here is another dramatic kitchen setting, complete with check floors, nailhead trim chairs, a rustic bench and an elegant chandelier. Photo by John Grannan

trad home april 07 (2)

Traditional Home, April 2007: Here is a very cozy yet elegant space, with a mix of chairs, some library books, some classically framed art and a beautiful chandelier. The use of the mirrored backdrop is genius. Photo by Michael Weschler

decor fall winter 05

Decor, Fall/Winter 2005: This is one of my ultimate favorite dining nooks. I love the mocha colored walls against that white dining hutch, the little iron table and that very cozy upholstered window seat.

In summary, these elements are, in my opinion, necessary for a (photo worthy) stylish dining space:

  1. Conversation worthy chandelier and sconces
  2. Upholstered or slip covered chairs in fabulous fabrics
  3. Dreamy drapes in complimentary fabrics
  4. Beautiful wall color with tasteful, perhaps unusual, art
  5. Interesting botanical centerpiece or sculpture
  6. Antique buffet, a console, or glass front armoire (space providing)
  7. A mirror, somewhere, anywhere, to reflect:
  8. Candles, candlesticks, and more candles

Totally unnecessary:

  1. Matching china or dishes
  2. Matching chairs
  3. Area rug
  4. Frou-frou or pretention

Do you agree? Do you have a formal dining space? If so, do you actually use it? What do you think makes a dining space stylish?


  1. Great inspiration photos, I don’t think I could pick just one favorite! I agree with your list of necessaries too! I only have a dining room and no eat in kitchen so we use it 3 times a day.

  2. Way too much inspiration, girl! I would have a hard time deciding between all those beautiful looks. I am struggling with our dining room because it’s the first room you see, but we don’t ever use it. i’m leaning toward the simplistic perfection look! Great post!

  3. Fabulous photos. Just goes to show what a statement the chandeliers alone can make! Beautiful blog! Thanks a bunch.

  4. That Oct 2007 Traditional Home: I like those timber beams. They don't come like that anymore.

    They exude a touch of nature. Throw in a couple framed prints of wild birds, and voila! You might almost hear them chirping.

  5. Ok… so I have a weird question… how do you get a page from a mag on your site? For instance, I wanted to blog about House Beautiful Mar 10, a picture on page 86. I cannot find it anywhere on the web. How do you do that?????? Thanks so much for any help you could give me.

    Ps… all those rooms are to die for!

  6. Thanks for the great inspiration rooms! I am currently on the hunt for farm table with chairs and I enjoyed looking at these! Happy Monday!

    MomTog Diaries

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