It seriously feels like I have been away from the blog for ages, but in reality it has only been about two weeks.
Speaking of which…sorry for just going MIA on you, but the family and I took our summer vacation to the beach and I decided to indulge my inner Zen goddess by totally unplugging and being mindful/not doing a damn thing. Shortly into the duration of my vacation, I realized my inner Zen goddess was nowhere to be found as I found myself screaming at my unruly boys things like: “No you can’t have a fifth chocolate chip cookie!” , “Stop dumping sand on your brother’s head!” and “Fine…please just don’t kill each other! ” (The whole sibling rivalry thing has finally reared its ugly head in our household and I am not digging it whatsoever ). For any of you with kids, I am sure you totally get where I am coming from-vacations with small children are not really vacations AT ALL. First world problems, I know!
And while my children did drive me to the brink of insanity, unplugging my electronics has been great for my creative drive – so much so, that I was overcome with an unshakable impulse to transform my dining room into a Modern Farmhouse haven of sorts, and I am going to share the design plans with you today.
For your shopping convenience, I will include affiliate links to the decor used in this plan.
Just for a little memory refresher, this is how my dining room looked the day I moved into my 1980’s fixer upper three years ago:
With a fresh coat of paint , new decor and a little DIY magic on the ceiling (click here for the Beadboard Ceiling tutorial), I was finally able to tolerate my dining room.
Notice “tolerate” is the key word in the former sentence. In all honesty, I have never been satisfied with my dining room, and I will even go as far as to label it one of the most challenging rooms I have ever worked with.
When I was more of a design rookie, it was harder for me to articulate just why my dining room caused me so much grief, but now that I have basically lived and breathed interior design for the past two years, I can finally put my finger on the problem: the problem here is architecture…..there are no effing windows on the focal point wall!!! I know…again…first world problems.I’m such a brat.
In fact, other than the puny chair rail moulding, there is nothing architecturally captivating about this wall at all.
So…what does one do to compensate for the lack of architectural interest? Well, it all depends on your aesthetic.
If your style is more fancy pants/preppy, decorative moulding like picture frame moulding, board and batten, or even wallpaper is a great place to start. However, if you live in a house full of rambunctious boys and feel “fancy” is a little too pretentious for your messy life, you could keep it feeling more casual with a wall treatment like shiplap.
Yes….you heard me correctly. I am going all Joanna Gaines on your a$$ with an infamous farmhouse staple….white shiplap!
In fact, my husband and his little helper, my oldest son Roman, began installing it this past weekend and once it is painted white, I know it is going to look amaze balls….
Hello texture and character! I am so glad to welcome you into my dining room.
So….now to address the elephant in the room…..why am I going all farmhouse on you guys?
For those of you OGs who have been with me since the beginning, I am sure you have noticed my style evolution (coastal glam, boho, eclectic)- it is basically always changing. You see…I don’t believe interior design is just accumulating random stuff to make your house look “pretty”. To me, interior design is basically an integral aspect of self-care and general well-being. Think about it….your surroundings set the tone for your mood and ultimately your life.
Before I had children, I was more of a glam girl: mirrored furniture, silk drapes, “too pretty to touch” accents. But as my life has gotten messier and more chaotic, I crave simplicity, comfort and durability- this is where Modern Farmhouse really resonates with me. Not to mention, it is geographically suiting for me. In case you didn’t know, I am a country bumpkin who dwells in the hills of Tennessee.
But farmhouse doesn’t necessarily have to equate to “country bumpkin”. When executed thoughtfully, it can be fresh and refined. In fact, Modern Farmhouse is different from other, more kitschy interpretations often associated with the earlier years of “farmhouse” decor ( ya know…the cutesy “fresh eggs” signs, chipped paint on all of the furniture and cluttered styling that makes me want to claw my eyeballs out of my skull).
Sure…. Modern Farmhouse aesthetic definitely includes plenty of clean lines, no-frills utilitarian elements and a strong sense of rustic durability, but there is always the opportunity to incorporate a general sense of understated elegance and femininity into the mix and this is exactly what I am aiming to achieve in my dining room. Want to read my post completely dedicated to Modern Farmhouse inspiration? Click here to read that post.
Modern Dining Room Plans
Lately, I have found myself falling hard for high contrast design- I absolutely love just how elegant black decor appears against fresh, white walls. The first element I started with were the dining chairs. I knew I had to get me some black Windsor chairs. Void of any fussy upholstery, not only are these chairs kid-friendly, I am enamored by their timelessly elegant silhouette.
Because I am working with a minimalist palette of black and white, I had to add plenty of earthy, warm texture to the mix to keep the space from feeling too stark and sterile. This is where the sisal rug, warm wood accents and a Juju hat, full of organic texture, save the day. Killing two birds with one stone (gah….I sound like an old person), the brass lamps and bar cart , which I already own, not only warm up the space but add some bling – delighting this former glam-girl’s heart.
As far as the chandelier is concerned, I have not exactly made up my mind yet. When I originally purchased the Capiz chandelier a few years ago, I was in a more “coastal” frame of mind. While I absolutely adore coastal and all things Capiz, I am not sure if it is all going to read too “beachy” for me once all of the other elements are in place. I will just have to see how it all comes together in 4D. Therefore, I have decided to wait until everything else has been installed to see if my existing chandelier will work…..I would really hate to part ways with it though. Nonetheless, it is a design risk worth considering.
Here is a “safer” option…
I am not completely sure if I like this rope chandelier better or not… is it too generic/ predictable for my taste??? I always love a jolt of unexpected, edginess in a design. In fact, when I browse Pinterest, I find myself most captivated with those spaces that include an element of the unanticipated or juxtaposed. What do you guys think?
Only time will tell what I decide, so be sure to tune in for the full reveal!
Now get out there and design some good vibes. Please also be sure to spread the love and Pin!