10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!

Dining rooms! You love them, you hate them, you use them… or not! But if you have a formal dining room in your home chances are you are not using it as much as you should. And maybe it’s just a little outdated or tired. Or maybe it just needs a little bit of change! Today’s dining rooms can be very formal or very relaxed and laid back. But one thing they are not is boring! And when you have a great dining room with easy care fabrics and other surfaces you will want to use them more! Am I striking a chord with you? Let’s talk about ways to update… and use… your dining room!

If you have never listened to Decorating Tips And Tricks you can listen to a little snippet below… we are talking about how to antique shop and Kelly and Anita are so passionate about vintage and antique shopping they are on a roll! This snippet is me trying to get a word in edgewise! It’s about 30 seconds… click the tiny white arrow in the bottom left corner! We sure have a great time!

Today on our podcast DECORATING TIPS AND TRICKS we are having a lively discussion about Dining Rooms. What we need and don’t and how to update them too! Also, could there be a better use for a dining room space! I think you will love this episode!

Listen below:


Listen to all 33 episodes HERE and get the show notes!

Now let’s look at updating our dining rooms. 

10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


Today’s thinking when it comes to a “formal dining room” is to use it and not let it sit like a museum display. And that might mean changing things out and updating what we have so it can be used and we don’t have to worry about things getting stained or food laden!

No problem, we will address ways you can update a dining room to make it user friendly!


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!

Do you worry about people spilling things on your table? I think we all do. But when we use things they risk looking like they have been used. I say, use them but take care of them. A little wear makes things look lived in!  

If your table is decades old and you are itching for something new… get a new one and sell your old!!!! Tables these days can be quite reasonable and durable. Even a vintage table that comes with nicks and dinks can be beautiful if you love the wood! 

Think about painting your table or at least the base. Nothing will update your dining room like a new looking table in it!


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!

New chairs also are a very easy way to update a dining room. But before you replace the one’s you have think about upcycling them.  Paint them, slipcover them, reupholster them! Mix and match them with other chairs or benches! The key to an updated look is to break up anything that is too matchy-matchy. Starting with your chairs is the best way to mix things up in your dining room!


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


A cluttered, collection filled dining room looks dated.  Go for a fresher look by getting rid of “stuff”! If you have more than one hutch or sideboard or buffet in your room free up the space and keep only one!  If you have a small dining room go without a hutch or any big piece. Try adding a sleek bar cart instead.

I get so many emails asking where do I put my dishes etc. Great question! Do you really need to display your wedding china? Or can you store it away somewhere to use on special occasions? An updated dining room is free from lots of clutter, even if it is dishes you love! My wedding china is stacked neatly in the buffet. And instead of a hutch top I opted for a pretty mirror over my buffet. Can you imagine how different my dining room would look with all my dishes displayed in a hutch? It would make it look cluttered!

Keep all papers, art projects etc out of sight. Clean everything up if you are using your dining room table as a work table.  Store papers, pens, and laptops in lidded baskets in a corner. 


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


I used to have a very expensive oriental rug under my dining room table and before that I had wall to wall carpeting. They both got ruined because of spills. We must expect spills in a dining room. It just doesn’t make sense to have costly rugs under our tables unless we don’t want to use our dining rooms. Right?

I now have an indoor/outdoor rug in my dining room and I could not be happier! Nothing stains it! And if there is a stubborn spill I can take it outside and hose it down! And even better than that, it looks like a million bucks and was very inexpensive! It makes me want to use the dining room because I’m not worried about spills!


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!

Simple is the key to a dining room. The basics plus a couple cozy extras! Nothing more needed! ‘Nuff said!


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


A hutch is a big, big piece. They were a necessity ages ago when storage was not built into a home. But today, we have so much for space to stash things like dishes!

If you love your hutch then keep it. I’m all about keeping what you love!

But if you are ready for a change, take the plunge. If you need extra room for dishes you can add open shelves for a new look! 


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


A mirror reflects light and can make a room look larger! It’s a great way to add some sparkle to a dining room.


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


Go big and put away small accents. Bigger pieces look chic and make a great statement. Less is best for sure! Assess your dining room and take out most of the tchotchkes in it!



Try a lighter wall color. You will be amazed how updated simple paint can make a dining room. For some reason, dining rooms tend to be dark. Maybe to hide spills etc!

And update your chandy! You can find chandelier’s for a great price these days!  If you don’t want to replace it, try spray painting it another metal. 


10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!

Heavy drapery really date a room! Let the light shine in! Hang straight drapes high on the wall and let them beautifully puddle on the floor. Go for simple designs and colors that compliment your room.

A fabulous look for a dining room is a rattan blind and straight curtain combo. So pretty!

10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!


Even the smallest changes can freshen up a room. Pick one thing that would make a difference in your dining room and then do it!

Click on the number below…





You might like to follow me on Pinterest and see what I’m finding to pin every day HERE.

10 WAYS TO UPDATE YOUR DINING ROOM-If your dining room needs a little updating this is a must read!

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  1. just painted my antique cabinet white and love it! what a difference it makes! thanks

  2. I love your dining room, never thought about a lamp on the buffet, not sure if I like so many things on the table though.

    1. A lot on the table is beautiful when not in use. It’s like any other room. There for beauty only. When you’re having company, then you remove it all for the FOOD!

  3. I’ve started to declutter and lighten up my diningroom and it makes a big difference. Still have a long way to go and it takes time to figure out what to keep, where the vignettes go, etc. It is all worth it though as it transforms into a brighter room. Good post!

    1. Linda we started working on our dining room almost 5 years ago and we are still tweaking it. Yes, it does take time but enjoy the process.

  4. Oh my goodness, I have a big beautiful mirror I purchased 5 years ago on a whim only because it was so pretty and cheap, but I have never found the proper place to put it in my home so it’s been shuffled and stored in various places all over the house. That will change today, it’s going in my dining room above a cluttered side board after I get it cleared off. I can’t thank you enough for this post, my mirror will finally get the wall space it deserves.

  5. Just removed the wall between my kitchen and living room and made one big kit Ching dining area, less furniture and more open space, we love it, less is more sometimes, put a few decorative item on my cupboard and server, has a fireplace in it so very cozy dining with gas logs….love your ideas.

  6. I too replaced a 100% wool oriental rug under our table with an indoor/outdoor rug. The upkeep is fantastic!

    1. I have one more bedroom to makeover Patricia and I’ll put the oriental rug I have rolled up in there. Yes, so much less stress!

  7. Babette Thurston says:

    Hi Yvonne,
    I do love your dining room! I have a very open concept home yay! However, when you come in my front door little narrow hallway off to the left is a living room, you walk right into my dining room and kitchen then right into my family room. It is all very compact. I wish I had a room all for dining! I am already downsizing because we are going to be moving in the next few years so guess what I’m looking for, yep, a house that has a room for dining and its own laundry room because mine is in my kitchen which I despise! Thanks for these great tips because hopefully, I will get to use them sooner rather than later!

  8. Thanks for sharing all your fabulous tips. I love your table. Have a blessed Friday.

  9. Vicki Lay says:

    Love, Love, love your Blog. I just replaced my 45 year dining room, glass-front breakfront and replaced it with an updated tall sideboard. Wow! What a change. New upholstered French-style chairs with host/hostess chairs monogrammed. Painted walls above cream paneled board and battened walls a neutral Comfort Tan by SW. Now I’m looking for the right table. Thanks so much for the decorating suggestions. Read you every day.

    1. Oh my goodness, Vicki!!!! I love the sound of your dining room! Oh I would love to monogram my head chairs.

  10. Are dark walls out of style? I really like a deep rich color dining room.

    1. No Harriet, if you love them then keep them. Going lighter will make your dining room seem brighter and bigger.

  11. Your dining room is fabulous! I enjoyed my dining room in my previous home but do not miss it all that much in my new house .. although I do miss having another room to decorate! Many of your dining room ideas can be adapted for other rooms so it’s all good!

  12. I love decorating my dining room table and yes it is a pain to remove all the stuff to eat, but my family doesn’t complain. They know it’s what I love so they just grin and bear it!

  13. Jill Miglin says:

    Great ideas. Love your concrete topped table, wish I could fit one in my small dining room.

      1. Thank you for the link to the round concrete table. I love it’s softer lines and it would fit my space.

  14. I never know what to put on my dining room table…you have given me some great ideas! I’m thinking of painting the legs of my table, but I’m not sure what color yet so I am taking my time to make sure it’s just right. Thanks for your inspiration, as always!

  15. Just beautiful! What is the best fabric to re-upholster kitchen and dining room chairs. Last I purchased hasn’t worked very well. I need something durable especially in kitchen…grandkids…:)

    1. Great question, Ann! I think you need a very durable decorator’s fabric. But even more important than that is to have a reputable company come and scotch guard your upholstered dining room upholstered chairs.

      Every year your upholstered fabric should be cleaned and re-scotch guarded. Hope this helps.

  16. Good Friday morning Yvonne you have such wonderful tips and ideas for decorating. I look forward everyday to read your post. Thank you and have a great day!

  17. Robin Talley says:

    I found this very helpful!!! It has given me inspiration and a few ideas! Thank you so much Yvonne! Have a very safe and Blessed Easter Sunday!

  18. Great ideas! I am on the hunt for the right host chairs and can’t stop thinking about painting my large hitch to lighten up the room. Thank you!

  19. Love all your ideas. I always learn something new from you.

  20. Always can count on a lovely room to look at when I visit your site….do you pinch yourself everyday living in such a gracious atmosphere? Bright, white, and cheerful….so beautiful. When you walk around your home your spirits must be lifted each time….you did it…what an inspiration….even just a table top….if not the whole room….. thanks, S

  21. I love your blog and have used many of your ideas!! Please keep them coming!!

  22. I just painted my dining room and living room putty,the rooms are open to each other.We also
    got a new dining room table, chairs and a glass door cabinet instead of a hutch.A bit more of a
    farmhouse look in cream and grey.It’s very light and looks pretty.Love your room with the light
    and airy look.Thanks for the tips.

  23. Carol Elkins says:

    This post came just in time. I’ve been wanting to update my dining room. It’s currently painted a dark red and I’m going to change it to some lighter blue color. I love the idea of using an indoor/outdoor rug!

  24. Yvonne
    I’m in process of remodeling my kitchen and dining room.

    I think the rug you have under your table would work in my dining room. I looked it up from the link you provided. The one I’m interested in may be the one you have. The description listed it as having yellow in it. How bright of a yellow is it?

  25. Anne Marie says:

    Great tips – i need to reconsider my dining room.

  26. Dianne Lanier says:

    Your dining room is truly beautiful…I was so inspired that I had to find a bench to match my table!

  27. I have been slowly updating my dining room and my next project is to make slipcovers for the chairs and bench. I have a farmhouse table and just love it. I change out the table decor every season to keep it interesting!

  28. Thanks for the good tips. Your dining room is beautiful.

  29. I shared this in the comments on 4/8, but thought I would post here, as well.

    Enjoyed the podcast today! One of my best girlfriends and I are faithful listeners. I was at her home the other night, and we were sharing at the dinner table with her family how we are both listening to DT&T, and we looked at each other, and simultaneously said (in a loud voice), “Your designers are here!” We literally laughed out loud, and the rest of the family just looked at us like we were crazy. 🙂

    I think we are okay with crazy. 🙂

  30. You’re a genius…indoor/outdoor rug under table

  31. I’m tired of my table and chairs but my daughter found them and I used my wedding money to buy the set. Oh? Twelve years ago. I’m ready to paint them but my hubby simply loves wood. Where I blew it was the hutch. It’s massive and dark. All is in my kitchen eating area. And here I sit. Another day. I get inspired by your posts and see what I could do with what I have. I’m ready to change up what I have! Thank you for inspiring me!

  32. lovely ideas! thanks for the inspiration.

  33. Beautiful Ivonne; then again I’m a fan of everything you do.
    Happy Easter and many blessings,


  34. I’ll be painting my dining room soon. I love your colors. They would really Brighton up my room.

  35. I use my dining room table for everything! I have an oilcloth tablecloth that I always use. Wipes up spills and protects table too. I got rid of the rug under the table because it got so easily stained and dirty! I will look into something like your rug. I personally do not like the look of puddles of drapes hanging all over the floor. Messy looking!

  36. Minnie mccoy says:

    As always,so pretty!

  37. Gerri Aman says:

    I love the “new” look. I just purchased a similar buffet and wondered if you refinished it yourself. If yes, can you share what paint/process you used? It is the finished look I am looking for Thanks!

  38. Your dining room looks great. I am thinking of reupholstering my chairs for an update.

  39. Maggie Nelson says:

    I agree with you about the indoor/outdoor rug and I love all the podcast. I listened all of them and is easier for me to live comments in here about them. I have a hard time to leave comments on the other site.

  40. Great way to make the transition! Thank you!

  41. On my bloglovin’ feed, this post is titled “living room”, not “dining room”. And yet the post and all the comments are about the dining room. I love the post and the ideas, just wondering why the title says “living room”?

  42. Our chandelier fell a few years ago and I was never able to find replacement shades or any that were the right size. This past Christmas I hung ornaments I’ve collected – some from our first Christmas tree (1965) – all over the chandelier. I liked this new look so much; I didn’t take the ornaments down after the holidays. Amazing how well the ornament go with my seasonal dining room table decorations! Am I lazy or planning ahead for this Christmas?!

  43. Karen K Markham says:

    Love your decorating style and ideas that simplify life. Can’t wait to see your new posts.

  44. Thanks for the get the look links.

  45. We bought new dining room furniture when we built our home 36 years ago and it’s still holding up pretty good. When our kids were growing up the rule was you had to be 18, graduated or married to go in there. Of course on special occasions, that rule went out the window. I do believe that’s why the furniture has held up. Then along came grandchildren and everything changed. We’re not as hard-nosed about keep rooms perfect anymore. I love your tips and my task this summer is to remove lots of glasses from my china cabinet. It’s much too crowded. Where to put them is the challenge. Thanks for the inspiration!

  46. Thank you for another beautiful, informative blog post. My TV room and dining room are next. BTW – Above, your header says Living Room and your photo headline says Dining Room. Don’t you just hate when that happens?

    1. Yes I do!!! Just goes to show you that multitasking is not the best thing to do!

  47. KitsyKeel Smith says:

    Love your ideas. My dining room is small and I definitely have too many tables in it. Am going to see what I can do to declutter it. Now I need to find places for the things I love that I need to remove.

  48. Such great advice! I think l need to go bigger on a couple accessories. Amso, l think everything is beautiful, l’m particularly drawn to your lamp and shade, wow, wowwy!

  49. Awesome tips Yvonne! Mirrors can definitely add space and brighten up the room! Which parts of your house do you put mirrors on?

    1. I have a mirror in almost every room in my home. I love the way they reflect light.

      1. Couldn’t agree more. I love mirrors in my living area. Gives an illusion of bigger space. Thanks for responding Yvonne!

  50. Norma Rolader says:

    Love your dining room decor and ideas Thank you and God bless

  51. Hi Yvonne, I love the beautiful elegance of the dinning room you designed and put together. Very cozy and inviting.

  52. Ellen Sorce says:

    I have my grandparents furniture, so I won’t change that, but you’ve given me great ideas on how to accessorize and get a whole new look.

  53. The interior of your house is so pleasing to the eye and tasteful. Do you have plans to show us what the exterior looks like? I am sure it is just as lovely as the inside. I would love to see your gardens and landscaping. Spring is officially here and I am ready to get in the yard and dig so bring us some fabulous ideas!

    1. I have many times. Google “stonegable porch” “stonegable story” “stonegable patio” etc. Hope this helps.

  54. OMG, I love these ideas, and will be working in my dinningroom this weekend. Yout tips is just in time for me, because I will be using them. Thank you so much. Your home is breathtaking!

  55. Selia F. Holloway says:

    I love the IDEA of a buffet table! I just dont think my dinning room is big enough. I plan on changing out my table but not anytime soon. Just cant afford it right now. But thank you for the ideas your home is so inviting and lovely.

    1. So smart to not crowd a room Selia! Save this post on Pinterest so you can go back to it when you are ready!