Be brave and turn everyday dining into a glamorous affair with moody shades, shiny surfaces and plenty of pattern
Whether you do your dining in a cosy nook, a dedicated room or just the corner of your kitchen, it’s time to dial your decor up a notch. Who’d want a drab TV dinner when you could be dining at a marble table, sitting on a plush banquette beneath an over-sized chandelier, or gazing at a striking artwork?
For dinner à deux, family mealtimes or just tea and toast, these fabulous ideas have one aim – to elevate everyday dining to something special.
To prevent the dark, eclectic palette feeling oppressive, layers of texture have been woven in to this scheme, with plenty of reflective surfaces and luxe finishes. The wallpapers, which trick the eye, bounce light around and bring lashings of personality and humour.
Get the look: The ocelot-print wallpaper on the ceiling and lining the arch is Pantanal by Osborne & Little. The candle is by Diptyque.
The Versailles parquet floor pattern is subtly echoed in a wall of mirrors sliced into diamonds and reflected in shiny tin ceiling tiles.
Get the look: This is the Waste table by Piet Hein Eek. The Paper chandelier is by Studio Job for Moooi. The banquette is upholstered in Pierre Frey velvet and the curtains are in Dedar fabric. The vases are from Mint. The ceiling is clad in tin tiles shipped from the US – Rockett St George sells similar.
The grey-painted walls actually consist of three different colours, which creates a distressed look. Air-conditioning and heating pipes made from copper become a design feature. Similarly, rather than channelling the new wiring into the walls, an electrical grid of fabric-wrapped power lines joins plug sockets and light fittings. It’s as if the apartment’s nerves and blood vessels are revealed, a stylistic life force that pulses through and connects the rooms. A dramatic artwork stands out against these fabulous features.
Get the look: The sofa and table are by Jaime Beriestain. The artwork, called SP95, 2015, is by Barcelona-based artist Yago Hortal.
This room’s interior is all soft edges and sinuous curves thanks to the liberal application of plaster. The enormous polished-plaster dining/work table is the most used piece of furniture in the house. It weighs over a tonne, but can be moved with ease as it’s fitted with aviation casters. The dentist’s chair by the window was sourced from an antiques dealer in Wiltshire.
Get the look: The multipurpose table was designed bespoke and enlisted the help of Ciprian Zama, of Atelier Zama, for its creation. The pincushion boudoir chair is upholstered in a deep-dyed black silk dupion by Designers Guild. The large photographs were taken by the home owner in Rome’s Stadio Olimpico and converted into 2.8m lenticular prints by Jake Purches of Base 2 Studio. The Seventies American chinoiserie chests are from Paul Smith’s Mayfair furniture shop.
Here, furniture from different periods has been teamed with contrasting art, fabrics and finishes for extra edge.
The playful yet polished look is down to the rich palette of luxurious fabrics, mirrored surfaces and brass finishes, with the oversized chandelier as a starting point.
Get the look: The vintage marble dining table is by Willy Rizzo. These are Milo Baughman chairs, recovered in a Dedar velvet. This is a Seventies Vistosi chandelier. The rug is from Stark Carpet. The artwork is Jason Shulman’s The Wizard of Oz.
When it comes to symmetry, everything in this home comes in pairs. And then there’s the attention to detail. In the dining area, there are multiple chandeliers rather than just one. Matilda the zebra was bought from a taxidermist in Islington.
Get the look: The Kenta table and benches were custom-made by Lombok. The ballroom chandeliers are from Abigail Ahern. The plant pot is by marthasturdy.com. The kitchen units and island were custom designed, made in Poland via architect Waind Gohil. For this inset stove, visit Fisher & Paykel. The Singing bowls are by Donna Karan.
The original fireplace, printed wallpaper, trailing plants and evocative artefacts give an eclectic, global feel. Walls and surfaces are peppered with artwork and unusual finds, such as photographs, framed poetry and a blush-rose, semi-precious quartz.
Get the look: The wallpaper is by Cole & Son. The photos are by Nick Brandt. The pendant lights are by Ochre. For a similar Victorian chair, try Sideshow Interiors. The dining table is from Xyleia Natural Interiors. The Febo chairs are from Maxalto at B&B Italia. The side table is from Anthropologie.
An all-dark background punctuated with warm textures creates a modern classic look with added drama. The kitchen features concrete worktops and screed floors and tin tiles along the sides of the kitchen island complemented by a metal dining table.
Get the look: The Stanbury bespoke kitchen is by DIY Kitchens. The Island units are from Ikea. The tin tiles on the island are from Rockett St George. The dining table is by Urban Grain. The Mia Spindle chairs are by Graham and Green. The Olde Bayswater Blend brick slip wall tiles are by Brickslips.
This room was renovated on a tight budget, with most of the furniture found at flea markets or upcycled. Relying on found pieces can be a risky business but a tight edit of colour and materials brings the scheme together. A cluster of lamps and overlapping ceiling roses turn lighting into an art installation on the cheap, while plenty of luscious plants bring the look to life.
Get the look: The pendant lights are flea-market finds. Moroccan Bazaar does similar. The large mirrored light came from Hadeda in Cape Town. The Chandelier & Mirror Company sells mirrored lights. The table came from Lim in Cape Town. Find similar at Fish Fabrications. Head to CB2 for a similar shelving unit. These are Nguni chairs from Vogel Design in Cape Town. West Elm stocks similar John Vogel chairs. The benches are junk-shop finds. Try Metro Retro for a similar style.