Now that the mirror project is finally done and I've added a few other touches, I thought I'd give a little "360 degree" tour of our pretty-much-finished dining room. First, here's how the room looked about four months after we moved in (in June 2009):
And here's what it looks like today:
The most dramatic change was opening up the kitchen into the dining room (which entailed removing the built-in bookcase on the right and the shelf that ran across the bookcases). We also repainted the entire dining room/living room area (way back in June when we were smack in the middle of the kitchen overhaul). It went from that kind of salmon color to a nice gray, which definitely goes better with the espresso table and the medium brown kitchen cabinets. We actually replaced the door going out to the backyard during the summer of 2010—it was the only big project we did that year while we were saving up for the kitchen. Painting the back of the bookcase and adding a pendant light over the table were easy changes that made a big difference.
Here's another view of the room from the kitchen:
And remember that bookcase we removed? It found a new home on the other side of the room:
I knew we'd have to remove it to get the look we wanted for the kitchen, but I just couldn't bear to throw it out or discard it. The bookcases are original to the house and one of the things we loved when we first saw the place. Thankfully the contractor who took out our wall was able to cut off the bookcase in one piece and move it. Then he added crown molding around the top to make it look cohesive with the space. It was great to salvage the bookcase and keep some much needed storage and display space. It's where all of our board games, candles, and photo albums live:
And although it's not dining-room related, I have to say that hanging up this little coat rack by the carport entrance has kind of changed my life.
Instead of plopping down my bag and keys wherever, they go right on a hook. If you're thinking about getting one, go for it.
Here's a larger view of the entire area so you can kind of see the lay of the land:
So I would say this turkey (a.k.a dining room) is pretty much done in my book. I'm comin' for you next, living room: