The Dining Room Makeover

We are on “round one” of our home renovation. Round one is defined thus: get it clean, get it livable, and get some paint on the walls for the sheer relief of my eyeballs! Round two will be more important things like, replacing floors, windows, maybe even getting doors which open and shut…novel concept to be sure. Let’s not underestimate round one though…it may be small budget stuff, but it’s a ferocious beast. Want evidence? I have plenty. This way if you please…this is my dining room before paint….and before extreme sanitary measures were taken.

dining room make over by chapter37

And this is my dining room after paint…white to the walls, black to the doors.

Dining Room Makeover by chapter37

See that wall separating the kitchen and the dining room? I wish I had a close up shot of the counter before I messed with it, It was so. gross. I don’t even have words really. I didn’t want to clean it or look at it, I wanted it gone. Every last splinter of it…until I found out how much it costs to install ducking and an AC system (ouch!)…and then I discovered that the upstairs bathroom needs all new pluming (double ouch!). So the wall and I had some counseling (as in, the hubs put his foot down and said no-can-do) and we learned to like each other. Really, I think we resolved our differences quite nicely. Although, I’m still perplexed as to why anyone would want the same materials that are on the floor, to also cover the counter. It does illustrate how nicely my floors could look if/when we refinish them though. It matches fairly well, although not perfectly, with the wood counter tops we put down in the kitchen. (Don’t miss part one of the kitchen remodel HERE!)

black and white dining room via chapter37

Next we have this little situation in the corner here.

Dining room makeover chapter37

The swinging saloon doors were the first thing to go. Saloon doors to a kitchen? I’m not sure I want to understand. Entirely too many doors going on right there me thinks. The corner cabinet is quaint, but, in my opinion, it’s a waist of space. It’s hard to make the shelves all that useful since they are triangle shaped. I do so enjoy things that are useful, and square. Again though, budgets must be considered (unless it’s Congress we’re talking about, but for the rest of us…). After deliberating the cost of leaving it vs. ripping it out, I went with a paint job for the time being.

white dining room via chapter37

Why the massive fruit basket on the top shelf you ask? Simple. To chuck all my mail until I’m ready to sort it of course. Don’t pretend like you don’t have one too. I hung the mirror there to try to create the illusion of more space. For a dining room, this is a pretty tight little spot. (You can read more about that black painted door and the entry way, HERE) The other remarkable change to this dining room, which caused me unreasonable amounts of joy I might add, is the update to the lights. These two little lights might as well have been candles for all the good they were doing.

dining room make over chapter37

We switched them out to these two flush mount lights. I wanted sparkly, little chandeliers or pendent lights, but they would have visually cluttered up the already small space. These still look classy, but don’t over crowd the space. (You can see the rest of the lights we updated HERE.) I can’t remember if these came from Lowes or Home Depot, but it was one of the two.

flush mount dining room lights chapter37

I don’t have any intention to mess with the wood ceilings throughout the down stairs. I like wood, just not wood everywhere you look! It gives a nod to the original look of the house to leave some of the wood as is. Here’s a nice little teaser picture for you. This shot is from the living room looking toward the dining room and kitchen.

dining room renovation via

Don’t be jealous. You know red carpet is amazing. And here is the updated look….

black and white dining room makeover via

…You’ll have to swing back around later to see the living room update. It’ll knock your socks off…or your super cute gold flats from Target that you just love to pieces as the case may be.  This room makeover was very inexpensive, because we followed the ways I shared HERE to save money. I hope this post encourages you to A. appreciate the fact that your own home is not as hideous as you thought or B. to at least do what you can do when a project is large, expensive and overwhelming. What you can do may make more of a difference than you thought!

Ephesians 5:2   And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us…

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About Abby

I'm a mom and blogger. I love all things creative! Follow along at
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28 Responses to The Dining Room Makeover

  1. rick & merry says:

    We like all you’ve done. Thanks for sharing

  2. Donna Wilkes says:

    We have a small breakfast room paneled with knotty pine. I’d love to keep it in the style of my 1950 house, but after seeing this makeover, I might have to lighten it. Beautiful job.

  3. Amber says:

    Love love love!!! Amazing the power of paint and some styling! Eager to see the rest!! Also love where you left wood!

  4. Mary says:

    Amazing! Where did you find the sign with the family name? Or did you make it? Very cute.

  5. Deidre says:

    WOW! This is sooooooooooooooooo lovely!What a difference,great job!

  6. Deidre says:

    Im your newest follower ;)

  7. Cindy says:

    What an amazing difference paint can make. Looks like a whole new room and so much brighter. I can’t imagine living with all that dark wood – how depressing. I’m sure your spirits are brightened by the difference.

  8. Huge transformation!! Love it. Coming over from the link at Remodelaholic.

  9. Roberta says:

    Beautiful. The ceiling looks great with all the white walls.
    Are you kitchen countertops holding up.

    • Abby says:

      So far the counters are holding up great! They do tend to dent if something heavy is dropped on them, but we haven’t had any major issues with them yet. Thanks so much for visiting!

  10. Haley says:

    Hi! I am in a similar wooded-castle! Where did you get those lights for the dining room? I’ve been looking for something similar for our hallway!

    I can definitely understand the “I like the wood, but not EVERYWHERE!”. I think wood on the floors, ceiling, and trim is enough. I can’t wait to rip out/paint our paneling (in half of the rooms of our house). I’ll be following along now! Got here from remodelista. Thanks!

    • Abby says:

      Haley, the lights came from either home depot or lowes, I honestly can’t remember. Sounds like you have quite the project ahead, gotta love a wood castle. =) Good luck! Thanks for visiting!

  11. sally says:

    Love it! I have wood walls in too many areas and have thought about doing just this. What paint, color and sheen did you use?

    • Abby says:

      Sally, I used Behr paint in a semi gloss. I can’t remember what the color was, I’m sorry! I used 123 Bullseye primer by zinsser before painting. Thanks so much for visiting!

  12. Trisha says:

    I love what you’ve done with the place!! Truly! Have you thought of painting the dining room ceiling the same aqua blue you painted that bedroom ceiling? That way it wouldn’t feel like the ceiling was low and you could possibly use a chandilier. Just a thought.

  13. Jocie@OPC says:

    That is one effing amazing before and after abby! i love how you kept the ceiling dark! xoxoxo thanks for linking up!

  14. Ceci Bean says:

    Wow, the power of paint never ceases to amaze me. I really like the unpainted ceiling and new light fixtures work in the space. I probably would have just kept painting everything and missed out on that!

  15. Pingback: Patience pays off – $12 Desk Makeover - Chapter37

  16. Erin@UU says:

    Abby- this looks totally amazing! Congratulations! I love that you kept the wood ceiling as a nod to the room’s history, but it looks classy and not overpowering! Just…Wow! Can’t wait to see the living room!

  17. mary w. says:

    I would love to see a subtle, pale bit of color on that corner cabinet, let it stand out just a little bit, ya know? Maybe even just the frame, not the drawers or the shelves…I think the paint job came out beautifully, and you inspire me to finally tackle the panelling in my basement!

  18. Nicki says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog, and leaving a nice comment! I have been perusing your site, and I really like your writing style. Nice work you have been doing as well!

  19. It’s perfect time to make some plans for the future and it is
    time to be happy. I have read this post and if I could I want to suggest you few interesting things or tips.
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  20. Sarah says:

    Hi! Just found your blog and I can totally relate. We just bought an old (1940) farmhouse and we’re working on painting and remodeling, etc… So. Much. Paint. It really makes a HUGE difference though! You’re doing a great job and I love what you did with the stairs. I’m probably going to do that too, eventually. :-)

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