Dining Room Design Ideas

A dining room can be used for casual dining, integrated into an open plan and connected to the living and kitchen areas; or as a formal space reserved solely for entertaining. While it may not be used frequently, it is a great focal point in the home, and requires little furnishings. Here's what you need to consider before you start planning a new dining room...

How will you use your dining room?


First, consider how frequently you will use the space. If you plan on using your dining room on a daily basis, a casual dining set-up with sturdy, long-lasting furniture is best. As for where you position it – well, any unused space in the home can be converted into a casual dining space, whether it be at the end of a kitchen island, or at the bottom of the stairs. A formal dining room, on the other hand, is more suited to a dedicated space, which is more common in heritage homes where space originally wasn’t at a premium.

Perhaps you want your dining room to multi-task and accommodate everyday meals, homework sessions and grown-up dinner parties… If that’s the case, furniture is key. Look for versatile dining tables in either Australian or New Zealand hardwood or weathered timber for a more rustic look. These won’t show up sticky fingerprints as much and can be dressed up for guests.

What size and shape should your dining table be?


Your dining table should be able to seat all family members with some room for additional guests – each person should have at least 60 centimetres of space at the table. The right size, however, also depends on how much room you have. A general rule of thumb is to leave no less than 1 metre from the dining table to the wall or any additional furniture, so people have enough room to comfortably move around the space.

Rectangular dining tables are versatile and can work in a variety of settings, while oval dining tables are more traditional and can turn any meal into an occasion. If you have a tight space to work in, a round dining table is best, and also a great option if you want to encourage conversation. A square dining table can be a dramatic addition to a dining room, but only if you have the space. It allows everyone at the table to see each other, but the bigger the table, the harder it will be able to hold a conversation with someone at the other end.

What type of dining chairs should you choose?


Once you’ve decided on a dining table, look for dining chairs that share a common design element. If your dining table legs are curved, for example, try to match them with dining chairs that have a similar curve, either in the legs or back. Next, consider the dimensions of the chair. The height of your dining chairs should allow at least 30 centimetres between the top of the seat and the top of the table. And to keep your tush happy, avoid dining chairs narrower than 45 centimetres.

How can you decorate your dining room?


Dining rooms are relatively minimal spaces, but that makes them a great place to splash a little colour through artwork, especially if yours is a formal dining room. If your dining room is lacking warmth, consider painting the walls a deep shade of red or blue, or go contemporary with black or grey. A cosy rug will make the space feel more intimate, while a sideboard or cabinet of curiosities will further personalise the space.

Often overlooked, dining room lighting can also drastically alter the mood of a room, creating drama, spurring romance or encouraging conversation. Opt for soft lighting in the dining area with dimmer switches, and choose oversized pendants in large, open spaces or to make the dining area more of a focal point. Finally, add some table settings, such as a lace tablecloth for a whimsy feel, or a more basic table runner for a chic look.

If you need some help designing your dining room, consider checking the Houzz directory of interior designers, home stylists, cabinet makers and more!
Photo of a mid-sized contemporary dining room in Sydney with grey walls and no fireplace.

Anson Smart http://www.gregnatale.com Want these Tiles? Exclusively at http://www.teranova.com.au
Hall n kitchen colors - sai_sikharam

Contemporary open plan dining in Sydney with white walls.

Contemporary open plan dining in Sydney with white walls.
Love the colour scheme of this entire space. - gniygnij

Design ideas for a large contemporary dining room in Sydney with beige walls, light hardwood floors, a ribbon fireplace and beige floor.

Diakrit
Design ideas for a large contemporary dining room in Sydney with beige walls, light hardwood floors, a ribbon fireplace and beige floor.
Dining room lights - carinharris11

Contemporary dining room in Melbourne with white walls, medium hardwood floors and brown floor.

Cheyne Toomey @CTP__
Contemporary dining room in Melbourne with white walls, medium hardwood floors and brown floor.

Large transitional open plan dining in Sydney with medium hardwood floors and multi-coloured floor.

This kitchen renovation required major layout changes to open up the space and create this fabulous island bench. The island seating is oriented at one end and along part of the front face to create an inviting space to congregate at the end of the island. The re-design creates an easy flow in and out of the kitchen from either end of the home. The floating marble shelf adds a unique and beautiful feature in itself and for display of special pieces. The Arabescato marble makes a statement that defies any trend, a stunning addition to this space. The clients existing dining chairs were re-upholstered in a plain and patterned Mokum fabricin a rust / terracotta colour.
Different coloured kitchen cupboards - webuser_933968896

Design ideas for a transitional open plan dining in Melbourne with beige walls and light hardwood floors.

Open Plan Kitchen and Dining - Pemberton 300 from the John G. King Collection by JG King Homes.
Design ideas for a transitional open plan dining in Melbourne with beige walls and light hardwood floors.
Table chairs stool lights - webuser_805685007

This is an example of a small scandinavian kitchen/dining combo in Melbourne with white walls, linoleum floors and no fireplace.

Tom Roe Photography
This is an example of a small scandinavian kitchen/dining combo in Melbourne with white walls, linoleum floors and no fireplace.
Lights hanging down over breakfast bar. - trist02

This is an example of a midcentury kitchen/dining combo in Brisbane with white walls, concrete floors and grey floor.

Angus Martin
This is an example of a midcentury kitchen/dining combo in Brisbane with white walls, concrete floors and grey floor.

Mid-sized contemporary kitchen/dining combo in Melbourne with white walls, dark hardwood floors and brown floor.

Natalie Jeffcott
Mid-sized contemporary kitchen/dining combo in Melbourne with white walls, dark hardwood floors and brown floor.
Laundry in cupboard - stephaniecoard

This is an example of a beach style kitchen/dining combo in Sydney with white walls, dark hardwood floors and brown floor.

Thomas Dalhoff
This is an example of a beach style kitchen/dining combo in Sydney with white walls, dark hardwood floors and brown floor.
Bench seat with dining chairs - matt_morsello

Expansive industrial open plan dining in Sydney with concrete floors.

Expansive industrial open plan dining in Sydney with concrete floors.
dinning table and general concept - nicolad67

Mid-sized contemporary kitchen/dining combo in Melbourne with white walls and medium hardwood floors.

A contemporary bushland house on the Yarra River, designed for a young family that love the connection to the outdoors & entertaining This Warrandyte site occupies a prime location on a stunning bushland perch above the Yarra River. Covered in trees, with restricted access and falling steeply to the river it was not without its challenges however, including Environmental and Bushfire Overlays (BAL29). The views, orientation, topography and context have very much generated the form and materiality of the house as the dual wings of the house slide with the landscape to articulate privacy for neighbouring properties whilst also maximising views, daylight and access to external entertaining spaces. Twin butterfly roofs lift the eaves to catch daylight from every direction and enhance the sense of space and connection to outdoors whilst a glazed circulation slot creates a dramatic but efficient connection between the two forms. A generous roof terrace with external fireplace and arbour allow for contemporary outdoor entertaining whilst allowing the natural terrain of the site to fall below, relatively untouched. Photography by Marvelle Photography
Lean/flat roof with highlight windows. Feeling of height. - seanmcclintock

This is an example of a contemporary dining room in Melbourne.

This is an example of a contemporary dining room in Melbourne.
This colour scheme? With sml timber overheads under white? Plus timber and gold/concrete pendant? - nikkigrover

This is an example of a country open plan dining in Sunshine Coast with white walls and grey floor.

Villa Styling
This is an example of a country open plan dining in Sunshine Coast with white walls and grey floor.
19. Sunshine Coast, Queensland - suzie_davies

Traditional open plan dining in Melbourne with grey walls, medium hardwood floors and brown floor.

Hannah Caldwell
Traditional open plan dining in Melbourne with grey walls, medium hardwood floors and brown floor.
Back windows - eliaseh

Midcentury open plan dining in Sydney with white walls.

Midcentury open plan dining in Sydney with white walls.
Table chairs - juliehum21

Modern kitchen/dining combo in Hobart with white walls, concrete floors and grey floor.

Adam Gibson Photography
Modern kitchen/dining combo in Hobart with white walls, concrete floors and grey floor.
Use of benches instead of individual chairs - jonathanyangwo

Design ideas for a contemporary kitchen/dining combo in Sydney with medium hardwood floors, white walls and no fireplace.

Pilcher Residential
Design ideas for a contemporary kitchen/dining combo in Sydney with medium hardwood floors, white walls and no fireplace.
love this - essayontimecom