(The Washington Post)

Eileen and Abas Adenan would like a less traditional look for the 20-by-17-foot dining room in their Annandale home. They want to keep a table and chairs for occasional dinners when entertaining but also would like to incorporate a sitting area near the window. They prefer to keep the window treatments and artwork but are willing to get rid of everything else in the room, particularly the light fixture.

(Leah L. Jones/For The Washington Post)

Designer Zoe Feldman creates separate areas for dining and casual conversation but unifies the space by using similar materials throughout. She chooses a sideboard, chairs, lamps and pillows in colors pulled from the homeowners’ window treatments to further tie the room together.

(Interior rendering by Rodney Co/3D Storm Studio/ for The Washington Post)

To create a fresh, neutral backdrop, try painting the walls Chantilly Lace by Benjamin Moore. Natural greenery adds life, and a splash of color, to any room. Light from a variety of sources — a chandelier, sconces, table lamps, a task lamp and a strategically placed mirror — brightens the space. Balance asymmetrical structural elements such as windows and doors with design pieces, such as lamps, sconces and chairs. A large area rug acts as a canvas to unify the seating areas. Plug-in wall sconces add style and ambiance without the cost of having an electrician install fixtures. Use a carefully curated blend of materials, such as brass, wood, acrylic and leather, to make the room look like it was put together over time, rather than decorated all at once.

(Dominique Fierro; The Washington Post)

Feldman, with Zoe Feldman Design (202-719-8062, zoefeldmandesign. com), is based in the District.


(Shop Candelabra; Wayfair)

SPLURGE: Meredith four-door cabinet in blue with gold finish ($3,349, shop candelabra.com), left. SAVE: Carney four-drawer, four-door sideboard ($1,214, wayfair.com).

(Serena and Lilly; Nuloom)

SPLURGE: Niles 11-by-14-foot area rug ($3,698, serenaandlily.com), left. SAVE: Hand-woven Ago ­10-by-14-foot area rug in ivory ($679, nuloom.com).


Furniture: Frankie dining table in brown ($1,489, luluandgeorgia.com); Gloria oval side chairs in black velvet ($453 for two, domino.com); modern magazine side table ($399, wisteria.com); Argenziano upholstered entryway bench in white ($405, wayfair.com); 32-inch acrylic coffee table ($240, amazon.com); Kaia club chairs in peach ($429 each, urbanoutfitters.com); Coalwood end table in dark gray ($266, allmodern.com).

Accessories: Cool-mint gourd lamp ($195, shopsocietysocial.com); Odyssey 4 chandelier in true-black finish and 30-inch length ($419) and L plug-in sconces in true black ($179 each), both from schoolhouseelectric.com; Mercedes mirror in gold ($363, luluandgeorgia.com); Troilus 72-inch task floor lamp ($324, allmodern.com); Bunglo 20-by-20-inch aquamarine pillows ($126.50, shopcandelabra.com); spun-metal standing planters in medium and large ($69-$89, westelm.com).

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