District resident Stella Dawson is having trouble coordinating the dining room of her 1947 home with the kitchen, porch and hallway that surround it, calling it a “hodgepodge.” She’s open to a new wall color, rug and buffet but would like to keep her American cherry wood table and modern chairs. (Leah L. Jones/For The Washington Post)
THE CHALLENGE

District resident Stella Dawson is having trouble coordinating the dining room of her 1947 home with the kitchen, porch and hallway that surround it, calling it a “hodgepodge.” She’s open to a new wall color, rug and buffet but would like to keep her American cherry wood table and modern chairs.

THE SOLUTION

Working around the existing table, designer James Merida creates an open and airy space with a touch of formality. Merida, of Bountiful (410-819-8666, www.bountifuldecor.com), is based in Easton, Md.

Replace the window treatments with shades that allow some light to come through but still offer privacy.

Removing the glass top from the homeowner’s dining table highlights the warmth of the wood.

A new rug adds visual punch and accommodates the table and chairs while showcasing some of the hardwood flooring.

Stella Dawson. (Leah L. Jones/For The Washington Post)

A warm, light tan wall color pairs well with the kitchen’s blue tones. Try Benjamin Moore’s Oat Straw.

A new buffet, in a similar finish as the table, hides clutter.

For a formal, glamorous feel, add a metallic wallpaper to the ceiling.

SHOPPING GUIDE

Furniture: Interval buffet in classic walnut ($1,573, www.diningroomsoutlet.com).

Accessories: Timeless white table lamp ($397, www.lampsplus.com); Gotham round distressed sunburst wall mirror ($394, www.wayfair.com); “Sojourn” stretched canvas print ($250 for 33-by-411 / 2-inch print, www.art.com); antiqued nailhead gallery frames in antique brass (prices vary by size, www.restorationhardware.com); Silhouette shades in White Diamond (prices vary by size, www.hunterdouglas.com).

SPLURGE . . .

Reels rug in white and beige ($3,895 for 10-by-15-foot rug, www.langhornecarpets.com).

Oro Caldo wallpaper in white gold ($99 per four-yard roll, www.decoratorsbest.com).

. . . OR SAVE

Surya Fallon rug in yellow ($1,116 for 9-by-13-foot rug, www.rugsusa.com).

Sagri wallpaper in moon coral ($67 per nine-yard roll, www.thibautdesign.com).

6See past room makeovers by local designers at
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