Here are 5 great ideas to get you started in your jiffy makeover:
The easiest and most noticeable change would be to vary the table linens. Put away the heavy cloth placemats and bring out bamboo. Even if you don’t usually use cloth napkins, fold and put them on the placemats for color and contrasting texture. Pick something bright and spicy and startling. They’re only napkins! If you don’t have any, save money by only buying 2 placemats and 2 napkins that are just for “show” and put them on opposite sides of the table in between meals. Check thrift stores and garage sales – be bold in your combinations! If you usually use a table cloth, take it off and go “bare”. Replace your brocade or tapesty table runner with something cotton or, even better, something sheer like these luscious, shimmery organza runners (108″ long!).
- Pick up some theme fabric on sale and try making the easy dining chair ‘sleeves’ that I described in an earlier post.
- In the kitchen find a place to set out a pretty tray with a teapot and mug or a collection of shot glasses on a mirror tile (pick up at a craft store for just a couple dollars) or bring out your prettiest serving bowl (why have it hiding in the pantry?) and fill with fruit or maybe floating candles.
- If you have a buffet or china cabinet, take everything out. When you put things back in follow the rule “everything has to go somewhere new”. Try new pairings: wine glasses with a teapot; a dinner plate with a short, wide vase; use books instead of dishes and bookended by interesting rocks; clear glass with wood. Really play up the contrasts.
- Painting a room when you’d rather be outside can become a chore. So just paint a stripe. One wide horizontal stripe on one accent wall. A quart of paint. Go subtle and pick a color close to the current wall color or go bold and choose something in a contrasting color. Make the stripe at lease 12″ wide, though 18-24″ is better. Put it about 2/3 up the wall (so with an 8′ ceiling height, the stripe would start about 45-55″ from the floor depending upon how wide the stripe is). Just make sure it’s above the halfway mark. Again, now’s not the time to be timid. Play up the size of the stripe to really increase the drama.