Blue House Tour: Dining Room

Dining Room at

When we bought our first house, a dining room was on the wish list, but it wasn’t meant to be. (I made the most of what we did have, though.) Before we even moved into our blue house, I was beyond excited to finally have a dining room and spent some time dreaming up a mood board. You can read about my intent with the mood board here. I actually did end up purchasing similar curtains and the buffet from the below mood board around the time we moved into our blue house, and I absolutely still adore both of them to this day.

Dining Mood Board at

Our dining room has come a long way since we purchased our blue house back in December 2012. (Click here to see before photos of the entire house!)

Dining Room Before at

One of the main reasons we fell in love with this house was the floor plan. The dining room is right off of the kitchen, but it still has easy access to the rest of the house. This has been a perfectly functional layout for us and all of the entertaining we do — especially around the holidays.

Dining Room at

After we moved in, we made a few changes to the dining room. We moved the light fixture seen in the before photos above into the hallway leading to our master suite, added a new chandelier, painted, changed out the window treatments, added our furniture and called it done for a few years.

Dining Room Sneak Peek at

We also replaced the large window within the first year of living here. The seal had broken, so it had begun collecting moisture between the panes of glass making it impossible to see outside. A family friend volunteered to replace it for free, so we only had to pay $150 for the new window itself. The new window lets in so much more light, plus it’s not a total eyesore anymore. I thanked our family friend with a tin of frozen cookie dough.

Window with Broken Seal at

New Dining Light at

Earlier this year, we made a big change to our dining room: we ordered a completely custom dining table and chairs! This has long been a dream of mine. When we were first married, we borrowed a table and six chairs from Travis’ parents. It was beautiful, and we were so fortunate to not have to make a major purchase early in our marriage. We used the borrowed table and chairs for about eight years. As seen in the above photo, the borrowed table and chairs were beautiful. However, they were not fitting in with the new style of our blue house.

Dining Room at

We custom designed our new table and chairs at Braden’s Lifestyles to our exact preferences. Our dining set (excluding the two head chairs) was designed by us and built by Palettes by Winesburg. We love that this furniture is 100% American made and is solid wood. It should last a lifetime… at least. We have three, 12″ leaves we can add to the table, which means 12 people can sit comfortably in our dining room for holiday meals. For everyday use, we leave one leaf in the table and store four of the dining chairs, which were also custom made by the same company.

Braden’s Lifestyles made it so easy to design our table to exactly what we wanted and needed. We designed the furniture on Black Friday of last year, and it was delivered to us about four months later since each piece had to be built to our specifications. Since the table and chairs are natural products that are still living and breathing we had to let it acclimate to the conditions in our home for about a month before we could find places to store the extra chairs and leaves. We keep two of the extra chairs in the dining room corners most of the time for extra seating, the other two extra chairs in a closet, and the leaves are stored under our bed.

Dining Room at

Decorating our dining room has been a lot of fun. I added a plate rail from a local store to one wall, and I enjoy changing out the decorative plates for different seasons. Currently, I have plates from The Pioneer Woman collection at Walmart. Pretty soon, I’ll change the plates out for a fall look.

Dining Room at

Next to the plate rack, I have two black and white prints from one of our favorite cities: St. Augustine, Florida. We spent part of our honeymoon in St. Augustine. My grandparents also honeymooned there and brought back our entire family year after year. We purchased the prints during one of our many trips from a street artist. I added the prints to some simple black frames, and they’ve lived in our dining room for several years now.

In the above photo, you can also see the metallic sheen of the walls. We used Valspar’s Brilliant Metals product in a color the seems to no longer be available. This was a finicky product to use, and I’m not sure I would recommend it or ever use it again. However, we receive so many compliments on the wall in this room that the difficulty of using this product may have been worth it. After having this color on the walls for nearly four years, I’m still not tired of it.

Dining Room at

The opposite wall displays a large-scale Ikea piece. Typically, I don’t like purchasing art from Ikea, but when I saw this canvas art piece a few years ago I immediately fell in love with it. I still love it, and I expect to love it for a very long time. One of the spoons looks like it has an “S” on top. Our last name begins with an S, so I enjoy sneaking in another “monogrammed” element to our home.

Dining Room at

The buffet from the mood board sits in the corner by the door to the kitchen. I had glass cut for the top, and it’s definitely helped protect this little piece during the years. The sign on the top was purchased from a craft fair in Georgia and reads, “Bless the food before us, the family beside us, and the love between us. Amen.” I love the little reminder to be thankful for all that we have. The topiary is a preserved boxwood purchased 90 percent off after Christmas several years ago. It needed some minor repairs and a new ribbon. The boxwood leaves are dusted with a silver glitter that is so pretty in this room year around.

Our dining room is one of my most favorite rooms in the house, and I am so excited to dress up our new table for Christmas this year!

Source List:

Table and Chairs: Braden’s Lifestyles
Buffet: Amazon
Chandelier: Home Depot
Sheer Curtains: JCPenny, Aqua Dust
Gray Curtains: JCPenny, Techno Gray
Plant: Gifted
Plant Pot: IKEA
Table Runner: Target (no longer available)
Rooster Candle Holder: Yard Sale
Candles: Hobby Lobby
Dinner Plates on Display: Walmart
Salad Plates on Display: Walmart
St. Augustine Prints: Purchased from street vendor
Spoon Art: IKEA (no longer available)
Lamp: TJ Maxx
Sign on Buffet: Craft Fair
Topiary: Burkes Outlet, after Christmas sale
Art Above Buffet: Gifted

Paint Colors:

Above Chair Rail: Valspar’s Brilliant Metals
Below Chair Rail: Mark Twain House Ombra Gray, Valspar

To see some of the other posts from this room, click any of the links below:

Favorite Things Christmas Brunch

A Pretty Black Christmas Tree for the Dining Room

New Dining Room Art & A Fall Table

Navy and Orange Tablescape Celebrates the End of Summer

Happy Birthday Tablescape

A Pretty Spring Buffet Table

Thrift Shop Challenge, Part II: A Parisian-Inspired Tablescape

A Baby Shower Menu

The Great Lighting Shuffle of 2013, Part I: Dining Room

Dining Room Dreaming

Simple Update, Big Difference

Linking up to TDC.

Gender Neutral Sweet Baby Shower Details

I think it’s about time to wrap up the gender neutral baby shower posts, and what better way to do that than with a post all about the details? After all, it’s all the little details that come together to make an event (or anything, really) something extra special.

Table Decorations

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details at

I used mostly vintage table linens purchased at yard sales. Some of them had stains or tears, but by overlapping and layering them, I was able to hide all of the damaged areas. None of the linens “matched,” but I think they all coordinated together perfectly. Plus, the vintage fabrics lent themselves well to the shower’s sweet baby theme. I believe I only used one linen that I already owned, and it was actually used at the couple’s wedding shower I hosted several years ago. #howsweet

The candle holders in the above photo were so, so simple to make. I purchased the glass candle holders at the Dollar Tree. I considered using them as is, but they were just too plain. I cut a piece of scrapbook paper to fit  around the vessel and taped it to the glass. It still looked too plain, so I added the ribbon. (Both the scrapbook paper and ribbon were purchased specifically for the shower.) At this point, I thought it still looked a little too plain, so I tied on the “tweet baby” tags with some ribbon I had on hand. Super simple, super cute.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details at
I used a lot of different pieces for centerpieces. All of the milk glass vases were found at a yard sale for 50¢ each, and I used parts of a grocery store bouquet for filler. The vases were sprinkled throughout the space. Any paper products, such as the print above or the “tweet baby” tags, were free printables. (Check out my Pinterest board for the printables.) The cute little bird house is actually from Bath and Body Works. It was living in my kitchen, so I pulled it out for the big day. Sometimes shopping your house is a great way to add free decorations for a party.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details3 at

All of the table centerpieces were no muss, no fuss placed together on the day of the shower. There was, however, some prep work like assembling the candle holders in the top photo and arranging the flowers in the milk glass vases. The table above has mints housed in some more Dollar Tree candle holders.

All of the flowers used at the shower were purchased at the grocery store the day before the shower. I knew I was taking a risk by not preordering flowers, but the cost savings was totally worth the risk. I think we spent around $15 for all of the flowers. That was a lot of bang for my buck, since I was able to get quite a few arrangements out of two bouquets thanks to the small milk glasses. I sent the potted flowers above home with the mom-to-be as a keepsake from her shower.

Simple Decor, Big Impact

While balloons might not be the cheapest option, they do make a large visual impact. The cheapest price I could find on balloons in my small town was $1 per balloon, which didn’t sound too bad at first. Once I realized I needed 40 balloons to make any sort of impact, the numbers started adding up. However, I still think balloons are a fabulous, somewhat low-cost option.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details at

We used balloons as markers for our driveway — many shower guests didn’t know which house was ours — along with a simple, inexpensive sign. Do I have any pictures of this? Nope. We tied about 10 balloons to a shepherds hook at the end of our driveway and planted a baby shower yard sign beside it, just in case anyone might be confused.

I had planned to use the rest of the balloons to mark a path to the backyard, but it was way too muddy to have guests traipsing around on the ground. Instead, we had guests enter the front door and we used the balloons as shower decor. I’m so glad it worked out that way, because the balloons can be seen in most of the baby shower photos, and they look adorable. I was able to choose custom colors (turquoise and ivory), which made the balloons even more special.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details at

I whipped up a few tissue paper pom poms for this shower just like I did for the Pretty in Pink [and zebra] baby shower I hosted earlier this year. These were white with pastel polka dots or stripes, and they were oh so sweet.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details6 at

In the background of the above photo you can see one of the Pinterest-inspired projects I made for this event.

Another project I completed for this event turned out absolutely darling. My grandmother and I tackled making bunting for the cradle. We actually made a couple of different sizes of bunting to be used throughout the space, but the small one on the gift cradle ended up being sufficient.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details at

The bunting couldn’t have been simpler to make. All we did was create a template, pick coordinating fabrics, cut the fabrics by the template, fold over the top and stitch, string on a line. Easy!

Buffet Table

The buffet tables received similar treatments to the other tables: vintage linens, simple flowers and an assortment of decorations. I think having an extra-long, vintage runner was the perfect linking element for these two tables. The ivory linen below was the one we used at the couple’s wedding shower all those years ago.

Baby Shower Buffet Table from

To read more about the menu, click here.

Wishes for Baby

The wishes for baby cards were a huge hit with party guests. Below is my Dad and the dad-to-be filling out the wish cards.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details8 at

We had so much fun reading all of the wish cards, which was made easier by the sweet display I set up for the completed cards.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details9 at

All I did was take a collage frame (from Kirkland’s) and run a ribbon through the decorative loops around the edges of the frame. I hung the frame on the garage door with a wreath hanger. Almost every guests made their way over to read the wish cards.

Below the wish card frame, I had a small table with blank wish cards, a pen, instructions and a few other fun items.

Gender Neutral Baby Shower Details10 at

The feed the piggy bank was another Pinterest-inspired project. I’m not sure how many guests participated in this game, but I made sure there was enough change to at least rattle around a bit. A decorative bird (shopped from my house), and some mints housed in another piece of milk glass rounded out this functional little table.

And that marks the end of the Gender Neutral Sweet Baby Shower. I hope you can take some inspiration from this event. To read more of the posts relating to this shower, click below.

I’m linking up to TDC’s Before and After Party!

Dining Room Dreaming

I’ve always wanted a dining room. When we bought our first house, it was on the wish list, but it wasn’t meant to be. I made the most of what we did have, though.

Happily our next house (assuming all goes well during the next month and we close) will have a dining room! Hooray!

I’ve been spending a lot of time dreaming of what our future dining room will look like, so I put together a little mood board to show you what I’ve been thinking.

I’m pretty much madly in love with the wallpaper (top right). I’ve never hung wallpaper, but I’m excited to try it. I’d like to hang it above the chair rail and then paint below. Paint color is to be determined.

I’d like to use pops of blue to break up the rest of the neutrals in the room. I’m loving these curtains (top right) because they’re light and breezy. They won’t block sunlight, but they’ll still provide a bit of color. And at $14.97 a panel, if I get tired of them it won’t be a huge financial burden to change.

I think this buffet (bottom right) is gorgeous. It has lovely raised details, nice legs and pretty glass knobs. Plus it’s solid wood. I just may need to convince the husband we need to purchase this piece before the move.

I really love the antique silver chandelier. It’s also not a huge financial commitment costing only $159 at Lowe’s. I think it would add some character to the room, plus it should fill the space nicely. It would look really pretty with a ceiling medallion, too.

The apothecary jars are also from Lowe’s. I’m sure I probably have some white decor I can use, but I’m really digging these.

I think this is a pretty good starting point for the dining room. It’s neutral enough so that I can layer different decor throughout the year. I also think it will work with with the furniture we already own. I’ve still got to get Travis to sign on with my ideas for this room, but I think he’ll like it just as much as I do.

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