Need help with my dining room decor
amywambach
September 9, 2012 in Design Dilemma
Please help me decorate my buffet. I just bought a new chandelier seen in the picture and now I'm trying to make the buffet look more elegant ..or more polished, or just less messy and put together! I'm not looking to buy new furniture, but am looking for advice on how to decorate the wall and top of the buffet. There is just too much going on right now!! Any ideas are greatly appreciated :)
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hotdrysunny
It's hard to tell from the photo perspective but my first thought is that there are too many tall things on the buffet. The chandelier is so graceful and delicate, I feel like you want that to be the showcase in the upper portion of the room. What about hanging the mirror horizontally? I would also take the lamp and urn out and stick to low, smaller items. You don't want to compete with those sconces. Keep the tea service or whatever that silver thing is, as well as the goblet (?candlestick?) next to the lamp and maybe get rid of the plate/bowl. I would put maybe one other thing on the buffet, perhaps in a different metal finish than what you've got. What about a low-profile, hammered copper bowl with wicker balls or something rustic in it?
The main thing is I think you have too many tall elements on the buffet, dwarfing it and taking away from the delicacy of your chandelier and sconces.
Good luck! and post what you come up with, I'd love to see it! :-)
September 9, 2012 at 2:51pm     
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elklaker
I would also hang the mirror horizontally. If the sconces are candles, is there a window around which they could be hung? The lamp is too big. If you need the light, consider a taller, more narrow-based buffet lamp. Less is more with the accessories. Maybe just the lamp, the bowl that is on the table and the plate. Remove whatever is to the right of buffet.
Hope this helps. Your room is otherwise lovely!
September 9, 2012 at 3:26pm   
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lefty47
HI -- I don't think you need the sconces . Off set the mirror a little to the left of center , lamp is ok where it is and take off the vase that looks like a waste bucket and the other item by the lamp base , move the little server set and the plate on stand to the left side. Yes, you could try to hang the mirror horizontal but I like it the tall way and think that looks best. That should do it ! PS: I would also paint the chair rail the color of the wall . I don't like the white line around the room.
September 9, 2012 at 3:28pm   
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decoenthusiaste
If the chandelier spoke to you, I think it said "Simplify, simplify!" There is too much going on here. Clear everything carryable out of the room, pull a chair into the doorway, sit down and soak it in. If you've invested in the chandelier, how are you going to make it the "piece de resistance" in this room? If the decor items here were all you had to work with, I'd suggest simply the mirror and the two hurricanes on the buffet. The table needs nothing since it has the chandy.
September 9, 2012 at 3:46pm   
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charleee
Agree! Just pare down a bit, less is more. Nice chandelier!
September 9, 2012 at 3:50pm   
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amywambach
Thanks all for the awesome comments, I cleared it all out and left the waste bucket vase lol in the middle. I'll sleep on this for awhile. I do think another style mirror would like nice,I am just not sure what style so it won't take away from the chandelier. I have had the sconces for awhile and I had been planning to take them down, so thanks for the encouragement :) I had a small table that I put in the corner with the silver tea set, it's probably too small but helps give the idea of moving it to another area and I actually like it. I was thinking if I could find some nice thin buffet lamps and move the vase to another area, then I would put the silver in the center of 2 buffet lamps.
September 9, 2012 at 4:20pm     
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amywambach
Maybe I need a wider as well as a tall mirror, I do like that the tall mirror gives height to the room.
September 9, 2012 at 4:25pm   
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Manon Floreat
I second the idea of the hurricanes on the buffet - one on either side of the mirror and perhaps a silver dish/tray in the center. The one you had as a centerpiece in the first photo might work.

I really like your room, by the way!
September 9, 2012 at 4:55pm   
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amywambach
Thank you great idea on the beveled edge mirror that would compliment the chandelier, and using the hurricanes on the buffet, it would be nice to use them! It feels like a better space already!!!
September 9, 2012 at 5:21pm   
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Lanie Brown, REALTOR®, Martha Turner Sotheby's
If you don't find a proper place for your silver tea set in your dining room, maybe it could be showcased in a lovely guest room.
September 9, 2012 at 6:09pm   
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Gina Leitz
I'd put the hurricanes on the buffet as well put I'd put some sort of greenery around their bases. You need something floral in the room and I would consider hanging the mirror horizontally because as you have hung it, it might as well be propped on the buffet and it is reflecting everything on the buffet as well as across the room beyond the chandelier. The bucket you currently are showing in the last picture wouldn't look bad if you had tall stems of greenery coming out of it and placed it to one side of the buffet, but I think the hurricanes will look better. It is a beautiful room with nice pieces!
September 9, 2012 at 6:29pm   
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nuraljufri
balance the 'accessories'
maybe mirror tray (DIY-frame with mirror and put a handle on both side) in the middle
:)
September 9, 2012 at 7:34pm     
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Lisa Gilmore Design
Hi Amy! I would like to recommend that you take down the mirror all together. I feel that the mirror is what it making feel so busy. Simply because you are reflecting everything you have going on with the opposite wall. I would love to see either a great piece of art, or a collection of simple plates in a nice arrangement. I also think some simple candles would dress up the piece nicely, creating a warm and inviting ambience when lit. Happy decorating! Good luck!
September 9, 2012 at 7:48pm     
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amywambach
Hi Lisa, thank you for the suggestion, I think hanging a piece or art would look nice, I always felt like I needed a mirror to make the room feel bigger, but perhaps it is not helping the space. I don't know what art would work there, do you have any suggestions? I took away the waste bucket and added back the hurricanes and the small silver bowl, so far it is looking much cleaner :)
September 10, 2012 at 4:51pm     
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Lisa Gilmore Design
Can you upload a better photo of the two little pieces you have? It's hard to tell from the photo the style of art you have existing.
September 10, 2012 at 4:59pm   
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Lisa Gilmore Design
This is a great example of a plate installation that I think would look lovely. I know that sometimes it seems a mirror will make a room look bigger, but often, it doesn't provide a very good visual anchor. http://pinterest.com/pin/64105994666939889/
September 10, 2012 at 5:06pm     
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Lisa Gilmore Design
Also, the cleaned up buffet looks really nice with the simple accessories you have placed on there. It's really look great so far!
September 10, 2012 at 5:07pm   
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pcmom1
I would put the two hurricane vases with candles back on the table, but buy a larger similar vase for one side of your buffet. I liked the small plate you had displayed. I was going to suggest you add another more substantial one next to it.

I liked the gleam from the silver items you had displayed. The small dish under the mirror just doesn't add much. I would find a different home for that.

I would replace the current mirror with a round one framed in a white wood. One about 36 inch diameter.

Then on your dining table add an elegant runner (buy several to try) and place the two vases on it.
September 10, 2012 at 5:07pm   
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amywambach
Here is a better pic of the 2 pieces of art I have on the side wall. I do love the room with the plates! It might be hard to find that many beautiful plates to make it work though, it would require alot of plates !
September 10, 2012 at 5:27pm   
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amywambach
argggg :) had to crop and add the top pic
September 10, 2012 at 5:30pm   
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Lisa Gilmore Design
Good design takes time and patience. I honestly think that the plates would be a beautiful balance and not compete with your current art. You could hit up garage sales, antique shops and vintage stores. Don't be afraid to mix and match and find beautiful objects that speak to you.
September 10, 2012 at 5:44pm     
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H.M.I Designs
frame on the mirror is too dark for the rest of the room. Hang it horizontally. you can smear it with some white paint and rub as you go for a lighter look.
September 10, 2012 at 5:49pm     
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karen paul interiors
Several ideas. One of your problems is the chandelier with the semi-opaque fixtures that reflect in the mirror and most likely reflect back a glare onto the diners. That's the first thing. Next, it's so important to do a mix of materials and to alternate between hard edge and soft edge in a room. You will note every piece in your dining room has a hard edge. Flowers on the buffet could make a huge difference for added texture and color. If you want to keep a mirror over the buffet then I would recommend a chandelier that deflects the light, such as using little shades or perhaps a totally different look. If you love your chandelier, then I would install a piece of art to replace the mirror.
September 10, 2012 at 6:01pm   
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amywambach
All great ideas! I have a lot to think about and some fun shopping to do:)
rionnessone posted a comment but it's now gone, can you resend?
September 10, 2012 at 6:46pm   
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pcmom1
Someone made a very good point about the mirror reflecting too many small objects. A mirror is only good as its reflection! Move the mirror someplace else and do the plate collection. It is fun to have something to hunt for! Check out all off the wall places: thrift, furniture consignment, antique stores.

I would put the tea service on the table. I like to stage a table a little. I even pull a chair out slightly to look like someone just left. Adds a little life to the scene!
September 10, 2012 at 7:25pm   
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larryhinkle
the wall seems weird without the sconces. im not saying add the sconces but the mirror cant handle that wall on its own
September 10, 2012 at 7:27pm   
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lindabuzz
Hi Amy , I agree with other comments about taking the mirror down. Mirrors are great if you have something really nice to reflect. The idea of a colorful plate collection would look great but try it asymmetrical. I have seen pictures of interesting ways that you can do it. try accessorizing in odd numbers as well...it always seems to look better. I would keepnthings very simple on the buffet if you hang the plates above it. it might be nice to put the sconces on either side of your window since they compliment the chandelier. maybe you could put the pictures on another wall or in your kitchen. one other thing that is throwing me off are your chairs. could you try separating the wooden chairs a little. Putting them close together makes me feel like your buffet is not long enough. If you have 2 extra wooden chairs, it would look good if you put them around the table and flanked the buffet with the fabric chairs. A beautiful floral arrangement on the table would ground the space. good luck
September 10, 2012 at 8:21pm   
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pcmom1
Might try a rustic sort of table cloth, topped with a shallow large bowl filled with lemons or artichokes. Sort of "go" with your pictures of food.

Something "real" , either food or flowers, or even grasses or leaves would be a good addition.

And someone mentioned putting a little more space between the chairs. They do seem a little crowded.
September 10, 2012 at 8:54pm   
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Natalie
Would love to see the entire room before offering any sound advice... You do have some nice pieces and the wall color is warm and welcoming...
September 10, 2012 at 9:04pm   
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Darzy
Oh! I thought I commented earlier! This room is greatl. I agree it a little bit crowded...I would remove the lamp and vase on the buffet left/right side. Buuutttt...the lamp shade is perfect for the head chairs colors. So, I would just paint the lower of the wainscotting walls the color of the lamp shade on the buffet and call it done, and pefect. (THen put the lamp in the adjoining room).
September 10, 2012 at 11:34pm   
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Darzy
simplified. paint the bottom wainscotting the color of the buffet lampshade and pair down accessories. Done,.
September 10, 2012 at 11:36pm   
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amywambach
Thank you all for the comments!! I agree about the chairs, they do seem overcrowded, I will try moving the upholstered chairs to each side of the buffet and see how that works. What about something along these lines for art above the buffet? These are all from Ballard Designs.
September 11, 2012 at 5:32am   
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amywambach
Natalie, I can take more pictures tonight of the entire room, thank you!!
September 11, 2012 at 5:33am     
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Gina Leitz
If I had to choose art for the room it would be the piece you pictured to the right with the red on top. I am guessing you like modern art? AllPosters.com has a wonderful selection of art and it comes in different sizes. You can have it mounted on wood which is extremely durable. There are other choices as well on how to mount or frame what you purchase. I would prefer something that makes a statement of how you feel about the room....one large piece or 3 (an odd number) of something else.
September 11, 2012 at 10:08am   
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amywambach
I like modern to a certain degree I thought the red would add a nice pop of color but I love the softer colors in the other art too! I will check out art.com! Thanks!! I am in love with ballard design style such beautiful things!!
September 11, 2012 at 11:25am   
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bamamom
Amy, I liked how you had the hurricanes on the buffet. Try those back on the buffet with the tea service centered under the mirror (leave it hanging tall) and then put the sconces back on either side of the mirror. I think the rest of your room (artwork by the window/door?) looks fine and the chairs are great.

Sorry, had to make a correction, put bowl (basically how you had the table decorated) and hurricanes on the buffet and the sconces back on the wall.
September 11, 2012 at 2:48pm   
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furniturefinder
It has been awhile since you posted this, but I would save for a more formal larger mirror. Then, I would add two preserved boxwood topiaries on each side of buffet and then maybe your tea service in the middle if you want to display it. But truly, how often is it used. Sometimes, less is better. Beautiful chandelier.
October 27, 2012 at 2:10pm   
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wedes
I love what you have accomplished so far with the great ideas. I also love the plate installation idea. Glad the bucket is off the buffet and feel also that mirror frame is too dark, all the more reason to maybe try the plate idea in shades of white to go with the buffet.
October 27, 2012 at 2:59pm   
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wedes
I am glad the scones are down and I like maybe one hurricane set on buffet not two.
October 27, 2012 at 3:00pm   
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