Dining Room Painting And Planning

I feel like kind of a jerk talking about our dining room makeover and the plans for that makeover (which is tonight’s long overdue blog post topic).  For our friends and family who have been to our house recently, like at Sunday’s Super Bowl fete, you know where we stand in this makeover process and it’s soooo different from our original plans…well…kind of.  But alas, I had already spent too many hours of my life on Photoshop coming up with some plans than I care to share.  I can’t let that all go to waste so we’re going to talk about it.  So here’s where we started with the dining room before (although I had already made a little bit of door/trim painting progress in this “before” shot):

Dining Room Before Painting

There were a couple of major but general goals I wanted to accomplish in this room when I started thinking about the plan for the space.  One…freshly painted everything.  Like most of the rooms in our house, everything truly needed (or still needs) a fresh coat of paint, especially after sitting vacant for three years.  We’re talking walls, ceilings, windows, doors, and trim.  The dining room alone has four doors and three windows in it so painting the space was no small feat.  Two…I wanted to break up all the brown.  The buffet, table, chairs, and hutch looked a little too matchy-matchy for my taste.  And I’m craving a rug to soften up all that wood on wood.  And three…a budget-friendly chandelier and curtains.  Easy enough, right?!

I figured a rug was a great place to start so I started picking out some of my favorite rugs and started Photoshopping away.  Dining room option #1 with a rug from Pottery Barn (sadly no longer available but here’s a similar one).

Dining Room Plan Option 3

I liked Option #1 and I dare say that it was my favorite out of all the plans.  It included a brass chandelier which we found at a thrift store (more on that later), adding a Pottery Barn kilim rug, making some mudcloth chair cushions, painting the buffet an army green color, painting the walls a deep blue like Hague Blue by Farrow and Ball, and adding some neutral curtains (these are from Anthropologie).

I loved Option #1 and was ready to rock it out but then I hesitated.  Knowing that we’re about the embark on a full bath remodel (not cheap) and a kitchen remodel (also not cheap) I didn’t feel ready to pull the trigger on a new rug, especially the pricey Pottery Barn rug I was in love with.  And while I hesitated, the rug that was on clearance sold out.

So onto Option #2…same room but with a much cheaper Rugs USA rug, the Beaumont Medallion rug.

Dining Room Plan Option 2

I was so so about the rug.  But as I was rug contemplating, Rugs USA was having one of their epic 80% off sales so I was feeling the pressure to find a rug and commit.  I must have “tried out” a hundred rugs for the dining room thanks to Photoshop but none of them felt just right for the room.  Enter Option #3…when in doubt paint the room white and try a more saturated blue rug, the Farroe Bleached Frame rug also from Rugs USA.

Dining Room Plan Option 1

It still didn’t feel right.  No matter how many rugs I “tried on” or how many different wall or buffet paint colors I switched up, nothing felt right.  I just kept thinking about the Pottery Barn kilim which then got me thinking about vintage kilim and Persian rugs (and their typical hefty price tag).  I LOVE vintage rugs…like all the heart eyes love them.  I’ve found a few amazing, affordable choices in the 9′ ish by 12′ ish size, the size we need for the dining room, on Craigslist.  But it never fails, as soon as inquire about said rug, it’s gone.  I’m never quick enough.  There are some very lucky rug hoarders out there in Vermont!  Long story short…still have no rug and have decided to hold off on the rug purchase until I find one that makes my heart skip a beat, even if it means waiting a while, saving up, stalking Craigslist or eBay, and spending a little bit more than the so-so ones at Rugs USA.

But back to the dining room paint color.  I wanted to paint the space and start getting rid of the previous yellow/cream color but I had no idea what direction to go in.  I liked the idea of using the rug as a jumping point but alas, no rug.  I waffled among paint colors and went in about a thousand different directions.  Thankfully my painting mantra, “When in doubt, paint it white” came to mind.

Painting Doors And Trim White Dove By Benjamin Moore

No matter what color the rug ends up being, it should easily go with white.  So white it is, Benjamin Moore’s White Dove, which is my go-to white paint color for this house.  It’s the same color I used to paint the hallways, staircase, and entry.  It took forever and a day to paint all the trim, windows, and doors in the room but the second I did, it was very obvious how yellowed the old paint job was.

Dining Room Prep For Painting

Two coats of White Dove on the walls and ceiling and it was looking much cleaner, brighter, and more inviting.

Dining Room Painted Benjamin Moore White Dove

Nothing like a big ol’, freshly painted, neutral room to start tackling.  It didn’t take me long after painting the room to start filling the hutch back up with vintage treasures and start hanging art on the walls again.

Dining Room Painted Benjamin Moore White Dove

But alas, another post for another day.  I think 1,000 words on my paint/rug choice waffling is enough for one day.  Sheesh!  But I can’t be the only one who suffers from analysis paralysis.  Right?  Please, someone tell me they have the same problem!  I’ve always had a hard time committing to and making decisions but it seems so much worse in this house, a house we see as our forever home.  I want it to be just right and oh-so-perfect and with us for the long haul.  I know that’s ridiculous and things will change, but seriously, I can’t escape it!

So stay tuned as we accessorize, paint a buffet, hang some curtains, and refinish a metal cart for a super awesome indoor garden station.


  1. Totally not alone! A rug is a huge choice and commitment. Did you just learn to do all that awesomeness in photoshop on your own or did you take a course. I’d love to know how to do that!

    1. Thanks Whitney! So Photoshop is super easy once you get the basics down (you can soooo do this!). I’m self taught but I’ve also been using Photoshop on a daily basis for my day job which helps. When I was first learning it, I did alot of Googling and YouTube video watching. Oh…and layers are your BEST FRIEND!

  2. I hear you girl. I’ve changed rugs in my living room more times than I’d care to admit. Have you tried esalerugs? They have some great options at affordable prices! I fell in love with their hot pink palazzo rug, but alas, it didn’t come in the size that I needed.

    P.S. I LOVE the first one. But…you always seem to pull it together so fabulously, even with this road bump, I think it will look beautiful in the end. 🙂 Good luck!

    1. Sarah, thanks so much for the website tip! I haven’t heard about this site before but I just spent way too much time on it and found an 8 x 10 for $299 that’s calling my name. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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