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  • Writer's pictureRicardo Lopez Sanz

ASK: How to place your dining table when the lights are not right?

Updated: Feb 22, 2022

I am sharing a dining room that has been designed through our online consultation service. This room is part of a series of virtual consultations that I have done for the same property. Normally we do not recommend an online consultation for a whole property but in this case, the homeowners just needed to be pointed in the right direction to achieve their dream home.

The living room after painting


Homeowners: When we initially bought the house, it was nice, but there were quite a lot of rooms that were not to our taste. Additionally, there were a lot of different floor finishes on the ground floor, so it felt very bitty.

The dining room was laid out as a games room and was very blue. It wasn’t a nice sophisticated blue either, it was a very primary navy blue with no grey in it. Additionally, it had a very fashionable wallpaper on one wall which was multi-coloured and far too bright and bold for us. We are not fans of wallpaper generally. We have replaced the carpet with the same dark wood floor and removed the wallpaper. We currently have a range of sage green/grey paints on the wall and are trying to select which we like the most (if they are right for the room)?

We would like you to help us:

1 - Finalising the paint colour selection, so the whole scheme ends up being cohesive and ensuring that all the colours work together.

2 - Checking our current plan and making suggestions to improve it.

3 - Stopping us from doing things that wouldn't work.

Before pic - dining room

Here is my response:

Your dining room is beautifully proportioned and has lovely architectural features. The new dark wooden floor provides a good visual ground. I would go for the darker shade of green to link the interior with the outdoor area. Then I would choose the same neutral colour that you are using thought the rest of the property to keep the home cohesive.

Note that this room has not one but two featured walls. The first one is the back wall with the arch, which is a highlight itself. The second one is the wall you see from the sitting area. As these doors will be open most of the time, it is particularly important to treat that wall as a feature.

The big challenge for this room is the lighting, as it is spaced out so much it is not possible to centre a table under the pendants (unless you get a very long table for 12-14 guests, which in my opinion is unnecessary). I recommend moving the table closer to the patio doors and using a long offset pendant light. A rug will also help to define that dining space (I would use a low pile or a woven rug that is easy to clean).

Then you can use the back of the room, with the arch, to place a sideboard and possibly a nice armchair. This extra space between the table and the back wall will also be helpful for the children to play while you’re having a lovely lunch.

Overall, you have a room that feels elegant and light, yet cohesive and comfortable. It will look fantastic from the sitting room and you will use the whole space well.


Are you in need of a little design advice? If you have just a few questions that could be answered by someone with some experience in the field, this service might be right for you. Here's more about my Virtual Consultation service.

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