Monday, August 22, 2011

Help a friend out: Dining room decor

A good friend Lena asked me to help her out with some decorating ideas. So I decided to create this "help a friend out" series. This week we'll look at some ideas of what Lena could do to spruce up her dining room, living room and bedroom.

First, a little bit of info about Lena:
She is a beautiful 34 year old fashionista- she works in the fashion world, blogs about fashion and is the most stylish dresser I know! Check out her blog Quality Rivets.

Second, about her space:
Lena and her hubby purchased a new home in Laval, Quebec. The space is clean and classic. It makes for a great decorating canvas.

Objective for her dining room:
Lena wants some ideas regarding how to decorate above her buffet so as to give the room some design appeal.

Here is the picture of the space as it stands today
A very pretty space, don't you think? The furniture has clean lines and a rich color. The paint color, the crown moldings, the drapery, and the chairs have an elegant look to then.

The buffet table:
Lena wanted to hand a mirror over the buffet table but one problem is the location of the light switches. In my opinion a square or rectangular mirror hung in the center of the buffet wouldn't work for two reasons: 1- the mirror would appear disproportionate to the size of the buffet table (it would appear too small) and 2- there are already many hard angles in the room.

My suggestions:

1. I would like to see a large round or irregularly shaped mirror.
Here are some examples:

I love the mirror and the balance created by the lamps at either end.

Sunburst mirrors are very trendy and would look great in your space. If you find one as large as this, hanging it off center is the perfect solution. Very designer-ish. You would place a taller item such as a lamp on the opposite site. This look is simple but beautiful!

This look is light and bright and would also look great in your space (but with a fewer items on the buffet).

Now, I said I'd prefer to see a round or irregular shape over the buffet but I would also love to see a piece of art over the buffet because it would add a pop of color. In this case you would hang or lean it off center as in the images below:

Source: via Nancy on Pinterest
I think a lamp with a round lampshade would look great on your buffet regardless of whether you decide on a mirror or art work.

My suggestions for the rest of the room:
1. I really like the idea of the four art works on the back wall, but I feel that these are too small for the space and that the frame is too thick and dark. These would look great on a thinner wall hung in a square shape with two rows of two frames. Another option would be to purchase larger frames that simply have more matting. This way you can reuse the images and still fill up the space. 

2. For the table to pop, a table runner in a light color (silvery, light blue, etc.) with a vignette would do the trick. I would love to see a platter or tray with a collection of short flower vases or even a collection of candles (I know you were thinking of candles on your buffet so maybe they could go on the table instead).

Here are some examples:

You can have three little vases- anything you have or anything you can find that's inexpensive and put some tight bouquets of colored artificial flowers (Le Living at Carrefour Laval has amazing artificial flowers).

I love this idea. Place candles on a cake stand. If you have two other candle holders (don't have to be the same) to place on the side, all the better.

Or this idea of a long display of candles. They can be the same height or various heights. The flowers on the side are pretty but not necessary.

I also love a collection of glass candle holders- very elegant.

Look through what you have to see if there is anything you can use to create a similar look to one of these.

Hope these ideas and images offer some inspiration. Don't feel pressured to buy everything a once. Find a mirror or artwork you love first and then find the rest. Also, look through what you have- books, serving trays, etc. make for great decor.

Please feel free to comment and let Lena know what you think she could do with the space.


Linking to:
Between naps on the porch and other link parties on my Link Party page


  1. Hi Nancy. There is some great inspiration here!I love the silver idea. it always brings a touch of glam to any space!


  2. My first love was a round mirror but Andrew aka 'The Hubby', said round wouldn't look good. HA, what does he know. Round it will be :)
    As for the 4 picture frames in the back, they look smaller in these photos than they do in person for some reason.
    Great tips and suggestions. I will definitely post pics of the room when I'm done.

    Lena xoxo

  3. Love your ideas, I think it would help the space a ton :) Would love to see after photos!

    Coley @

  4. I love love love that sunburst mirror & it works wonderfully

  5. These are great tips and wonderful inspiration. I'm filing these ideas away for our dining room in our new house! I'd love it if you would stop by my blog and check out the giveaway I'm having for a Dremel Trio!

  6. Ooooo ahhhhhh. I love the ideas you posted already! I ALWAYS put a fab mirror over any buffet. Does that make me boring or consistent? :)

    Thank you so much for linking up at Savvy HomeMade Monday. We are partying again and I hope you will stop by!

  7. Nice tips... gives direction to my thoughts.

    We have a link-up party going on - Tea Time Thursdays @ Kreative Korner. I would really appreciate if you'd link up some of your awesome posts there. Hope to see you at the party.

  8. have a great eye... I wish i had a fashion decorating bone in my body.. I just purchased a home in Ile Perrot and looking to find someone who can help me decorate it...would you know of anyone? I can be reached via email at:


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