From Plain to Fabulous
A great thing about building a new home is that you are starting fresh. Being a Florida decorator, many of our clients are moving from the Northern or Mid-West states. We advise them to leave their often dark, large pieces of traditional furniture behind and just bring pieces that have value to them whether sentimental or monetary.
This dining room was a pleasure because it was a clean slate with large windows letting in the morning sun. The floors are hand-scraped engineered wood in Brazilian walnut which give the entire home a warm feel to counteract the stark white walls. The home owners have a large art collection and specifically chose the white paint so that the paintings can be seen at their best and moved around the home easily.
The owners host many dinner parties throughout the year and wanted a table that was virtually indestructible, and that visitors didn’t have to be careful with. This long Mango wood trestle table comfortably seats between eight and ten and has an antique grey, distressed look that is similar to driftwood. We alternated turquoise and light blue dining chairs for some contrast.
An outstanding centerpiece for the room is a dazzling grey chandelier with an outstanding display of brilliant graphite crystals. Hundreds of faceted crystals are suspended from ten fluted glass arms. Wall sconces in chrome with grey linen shades were added and all the lighting is on dimmers for a choice of bright or mood lighting depending on the required ambience.
To control the harsh Florida sunlight that can leech color out of furnishings within weeks, we installed light grey Silhouette window shades which keep approximately 97% of harmful UV rays out but still let in light even when fully closed.
Traversing draperies were installed floor-to-ceiling and wall-to-wall providing a spectacular color wall of cream, green, purple and turquoise. The hardware is hidden behind the crown moulding for a clean, modern look.
The best part of this design story lies in the large-scale artwork. The home owner had been given the painting years ago when she lived in Philadelphia but the colors didn’t suit her Northern palette. The painting was hidden in the attic but during the move was crated and sent to Florida. After not seeing it for sixteen years she had forgotten what it looked like and when she saw the crate about to be off-loaded asked the removal crew to take it away. At the last minute she decided to look in the crate and was surprised and delighted to find the perfect artwork for her dining room!
Lastly, hand-torn wallpaper was installed in a custom color in the tray ceiling.
As this room is used for dinner parties, games and even casual dining we decided not to install a rug for ease of use and movement around the table.
Photographer: Rolando Diaz