10 Dining Room Decorating Mistakes: With Real Examples

Did you know your dining room lighting can make it where people don’t even want to go in there? Whether you’re having a dinner party or just sitting down for lunch, your dining room should be a place for more than just special occasions.

If it’s not, try changing one of these 10 things. I’m going to show you examples of decorating mistakes that can make your dining room look less than it could.

1. Undersized Rugs

Rugs can add a lot of style to a room. If you use one that is too small, it takes away from the space rather than adding to it. You can see the impact of the rug being too small in the examples below.

dining room with small rug

Make sure if you get a rug that it’s at least big enough so the chairs can push back 18 to 24 inches from the table and still be firmly on the rug. Don’t undersize your rug.

dining room with small rug

2. Outdated Lighting

Do you have outdated lighting? Lighting is like jewelry; it can make one of the biggest differences in your dining room.

This is an example of an outdated fixture.

oudated lighting

I had the same problem in my own house. I swapped out the original light that came with the house for updated lighting. Here is the new light fixture. 

dining room with updated light fixture

3. Lighting Not Correct Size

It’s not just that your lighting is updated. Lighting also needs to be sized correctly. It’s almost always better to have a bigger fixture than too small.

Also, the fixture needs to hung at the correct height over the table. You don’t want the fixture to be hung too high over your table or off to the side.

lighting not over table

It should be no more than about 36 inches above the top of the table. As seen below, this gives it a more intimate feeling at the table.

good example of lighting height

4. Too Much Furniture

The next mistake is just too much furniture in your dining room. You don’t want it to feel like you can’t push your chair back because you’re going to run into something. It’s better to have a little bit of room to move around the table. 

5. Too Matchy

Another common mistake in dining rooms is when everything in the dining room matches. This used to be the way people decorated their homes. You don’t want everything to be too matchy-matchy. If everything matches, it looks like you just went to one store and bought everything from the same store to decorate the house. It’s okay for the table and the chairs not to match.

matchy matchy

6. No Window Treatments

Another decorating mistake that makes your dining room look less than what it could is no window treatments. This example below doesn’t have a fantastic view. What would look a lot better in this dining room are some gorgeous drapes.

no window coverings

This dining room has mini blinds. It could take a step up if a window shade is used. The rule of thumb on curtain measurements is that you want enough fabric to cover the window around two times. If your window is 30 inches wide, at least 60 inches of fabric is needed. Don’t miss this Curtain Size Calculator, where I guide you through selecting the correct curtain size.

mini blinds in dining room and outdated lighting as dining room decorating mistakes

7. Art Too High or Low

The next few decorating mistakes are about art. Make sure that you don’t hang your art too high. Aim for the middle of the artwork to be at eye level. What’s eye level for most people? It’s around 58 to 60 inches. 

art hung too high

8. Art Over Furniture Not Anchored

If hanging artwork over a piece of furniture like a hutch, anchor that to the piece of furniture. You don’t want it to look like it’s kind of floating above the furniture. Here is an article to help guide you on hanging artwork: How High to Hang Pictures.

9. Art Too Small

Another thing I see is artwork that is way too small for the wall. Check this dining room for an example. You want what you’re hanging on the wall to fill about 2/3 of the visual space on the wall.

too small art in dining room

10. Not Enough Lighting

The last decorating mistake is a lot of dining rooms don’t have enough lighting, period. Sometimes it’s not enough just to have a ceiling fixture. It adds a lot of mood to your room if you can add in either lamps on a buffet or sconces. 

good example of enough lighting

These dining room decorating tips take your dining room to the next level. If you want to learn more about how to add more light to any room and how to get the three kinds that every room needs, see these tips: Lighting for Every Room – The Tool Interior Designs Master.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *