As I type these first few words, I am tiptoeing around my office at the thought buckets full of tomatoes being thrown at my head by purist “Steel Magnolias” reading this blog. EEK! Nonetheless, I will step out on a limb today and write about the use (or non-use, perhaps? *GASP!*) of RED paint on dining rooms walls (pregnant pause…). Now, before anyone goes nutty on me, let me explain myself further. My fellow Southern belles – love them dearly! – have taught me through my years of designing for them, that RED is most definitely the time-honored wall color of choice for so many of their formal dining rooms. I am a girl who completely appreciates the joys of honoring tradition (hillbilly roots and all!) … even within the realm of interior design, specifically dining rooms. After all, this is a room unique from any other in our home. The dining room is the setting for exceptional holiday meals (“exceptional” meaning food which was prepared in my kitchen and not originating from a box), often served to loved ones from our most treasured fine china. It is the place where many a magnificent memory has been fashioned. Therefore, one might pose the valid question, “What could be more appropriate than to decorate this distinctive space with the utmost of traditional décor?” Good point! An elegant and timeless design is paramount for the room in which you will continually host your most momentous gatherings of traditional fare (“Chicken fingers!”, yell my children!). However, at the same time, does the room in which such significant events take place not also deserve an individualized design as unique as the family it serves (ummmm, perhaps we should not wish for a design QUITE as “unique” as MY family, though!)? If so, then perhaps, a fresh perspective on conventional dining room design could be modified to integrate traditional color with an updated flair. Check out the “fresh” usage of red in the pictures below! Bet you won’t find THESE dining rooms in your grandma’s house….
The room to the left was photographed by Grey Crawford for Metropolitan Home and was designed by San Francisco designer, Jay Jeffers. He uses neutral walls in the dining room with unexpected peeks of other colors from the adjoining rooms. Traditional shades of red are used in the two elegant fabrics showcased on the dining rooms chairs and the interesting choice of floor lamps.
The lovely dining room below right was photographed by Henry Bourne for Elle Décor. Designer, Michael S. Smith, adds interest by creatively incorporating a mural on one of the walls. For a pop of color, a rich shade of red covers the elegant dining chairs.
WOWSA! How about this for a twist on traditional red walls?! Created by New-York-based designer, Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz, the dining room below is abundant in hues of delicious pomegranate. HOT!
Below, New York designer, John Lyle, as featured in Metropolitan Home, creates a modern dining room design using vintage chairs re-upholstered in stunning red leather.
Those are only a few examples of rooms in which conventional red walls were exchanged for dramatic, updated designs. Even if none of them exactly fits what you had in mind for your dining area, always keep your eyes open for ways to individualize your space while also maintaining the integrity of your favorite traditional elements. If you follow this guideline, it will point you in the direction of creating the perfect dining room as uniquely individual as you and your family. Oh, and one more thing… If any of you Southern ladies out there vehemently disagree with what I have written today, PLEASE REMEMBER…. tomato red is DEFINITELY not my color!
P.S. How about today? Have you started your “Favo-RED” things lyrics yet? If you missed that blog, go back 2 days and read about a FUNNNN contest we are putting on this week! A PRIZE hangs in the balance!