WIMBLEDON FAMILY HOUSEShabby-chic Style Dining Room, London
The lower ground floor of the house has witnessed the greatest transformation. A series of low-ceiling rooms were knocked-together, excavated by a couple of feet, and extensions constructed to the side and rear.
A large open-plan space has thus been created. The kitchen is located at one end, and overlooks an enlarged lightwell with a new stone stair accessing the front garden; the dining area is located in the centre of the space.
Photographer: Nick Smith
What Houzz contributors are saying:
Repeat shapesThese vases aren’t a matching set, but the similar shape creates a collection. Mixing the colour and finish results in a stylish, but informal display. A pile of books balances the arrangement visually. You could create the look with other similar, but not matching, objects, such as candlesticks, wooden boxes or cut flowers.What do you keep on your coffee table? Is it full of books and ornaments, or left clear and minimal? Share your ideas and photos in the Comments below.
Natural remediesTimothy Dahl, home improvement expert, DIY enthusiast and editor of American design and DIY website Charles & Hudson, says he’s had success removing water marks and rings with some surprising techniques. He experimented on a table of his own using three different removal methods: toothpaste, mayonnaise and baking soda. ‘They might seem a bit far-fetched,’ he says, ‘but we were pleasantly surprised.’ Although he successfully removed water marks from the tabletop with each technique, Dahl says a big part of whether a stain will come out depends on how long it’s been allowed to soak into the wood. ‘There’s a point of no return,’ he says. ‘It depends on how long the moisture has been locked in there and how long it has dried.’ The white water rings he worked on with the following methods were several months old.
Zone multi-functional spacesIt’s now quite common to see open-plan living spaces in period properties, with many of us knocking through dividing walls or extending out to the back or sides. Lighting is a great way to create different zones in these new multi-purpose spaces. Task lighting in a kitchen keeps it highly functional, while pendant lighting over a dining area gives an even wash of light for meal times. And occasional lighting in a living area ensures it’s calmer compared to the rest of the room, for relaxing in after supper.
Introduce subtle touches This inviting, family kitchen introduces a mix of fresh flowers and floral prints in the most light and inviting way. The barely there print on the sofa is enhanced by the soft, washed-out jewel shades, while a line-up of glass vessels filled with pretty garden flowers transforms an uninspiring sideboard.
Fashion freewheeling furnitureThis tip often used by shoot location houses, where flexibility to rearrange the space quickly and easily is paramount, works equally well in rental homes. Simply opt for furniture with wheels, or add castors to the bottom of your existing pieces. By employing flexible furniture, such as this coffee table on wheels, you can easily reconfigure your space at a moment’s notice with minimal disruption (and with no worries about scratching floors, either).
Shift focus to the dining table Don’t make the dining table an afterthought. In this sociable room, the sofa takes second place to the central dining area. The bold white chairs help to create a strong zone that doesn’t get lost between the kitchen and living space. This room is clearly for cooking, eating and relaxing – preferably in that order!Find photos of open plan dining and living rooms.TELL US…Do you have a living and dining room in one? What have you done to make the most of the space? Share your tips and photos in the Comments below.