The art of entertaining
In our fast-paced world, dressing the table has become outdated and often overlooked aspect of entertaining, yet a well-set table is a showcase for all your efforts. Along with music, candles and flowers, your table helps create the overall atmosphere. You don't need to spend exhorbitant amounts of money to create a beautifully laid table. By using carefully selected pieces, combined with flair, you'll be amazed at how many different looks you can achieve. You are limited only by your imagination!
ABOVE: To visually increase the height in a dining room and to make an impact, raise window treatments.One of the most common mistakes is hanging the treatments just above the windows no matter how tall the ceilings are. Use the vertical and bring the eye up to the top of a room to expand the feeling. Paint a silver chandelier a bronze colour to make it look more elegant and stand out in a room. For this project, we did it inexpensively with Rust-Oleum Antique Bronze spray paint.
ABOVE: Give your curtains a one-of-a-kind look. Add embellishments, trim and fabric panels in contrasting shades to update existing or store-bought panels.
As the room where you entertain family and friends and celebrate special occasions or happening in your life, you want a dining room that meets the requirements for entertaining - no matter what the event. While bold, bright colours are still popular for dining rooms, in the future they will be used more as accents. No matter what colours you use to decorate your dining room, a touch of glamour or a dash of ethnic spice will showcase your individuality and give guests plenty to talk about.
"A congenial atmosphere is elementary, and I believe that lighting establishes this more than anything else. No one can relax under a spotlight. Traffic flow is also important when serving and seating guests. No one enjoys being repeatedly bumped and jostled. And in my book, a good chef is de rigueur." Geoffrey Bradfield
With a few simple changes to the existing decor it is quite easily to breathe new life into a dining room. One of the most simple ways to add a touch of elegance to a dining room is to add mirrors. Not only do mirrors visually enlarge the space but they also reflect artificial light - an essential element for evening dining and entertaining.
"An easy menu - because it’s not about culinary gymnastics, it’s about people - great lighting and really great music." Thomas Pheasant
"A great mix of people, funny conversation, gorgeous flowers." Steven Sills
Paint and paint techniques are an option that magically changes the look of a dining room for very little money. When selecting paint colour, take along samples of your furniture fabric, or shade of wood, to ensure that colours will work well together.
ABOVE: This dining room is a perfect example of how less can be more, and simple can be stunning. The dramatic artwork is such a strong statement piece, that you hardly need to say anything more by adding strong colours to the walls. In today's lifestyle people are looking for simplicity in their lives, and this is being reflected in the coluors of their living spaces. Neutrals are colours that simplify.
Setting a mood is essential for any dinner party, and this is easily done with elegant candles. Pull together a variety of candles for a unique, eclectic display or choose matching tapered ones for a sophisticated look.Create a dining room that looks like a page in your favourite design magazine. Set the table with gorgeous linens, a simple table setting and a unique centrepiece.
janice anderssen - images architectural digest