Saturday, November 17, 2012

Dining Room Help!

Hi, my name is Kari, and I'm a fall-aholic.  As a result my house is busting at the seems with shades of oranges, yellows, reds, greens and browns.  Ever since our Chicago days, I've been trying to find a way to incorporate some cool hues into the mix of all things autumn.  A few weeks ago, while perusing, I found a rug that I really love and would like to incorporate it into our dining room.  

Our Dining Room (we are going to pull up the carpet and put down hardwood)

"The" Rug :)

I'm so pumped about this rug because it does exactly what I've been trying to do for these past couple of years: bring in some shades of blue. 
Now, here's where I need your opinion.  My mom and dad got new dining room furniture last year and graciously gave Stephen and I their old set.  We inherited a table, 6 chairs, a buffet, and a china cabinet from them.  Since they gave it to us, all but the table and chairs have been stacked up in our garage.  You see, the problem is is that I'm not feeling the current state of the furniture.  It needs some help...
The buffet and the bottom of the china cabinet, stacked on top of one another.

This past summer, Family Handyman magazine had an article on how to refinish furniture like a pro (specifically on how to stain your pieces darker).  After reading the article, I felt empowered and just knew that I wanted to darken the current stain and give the pieces more of a walnut look.  But then, I would see pictures of different two-toned furniture and I would fall in love with the way it looked...

(photo from here)

My Chicago friend posted on instagram a beautiful buffet that her friend found at the Salvation Army and refinished it by painting the bottom of it a grey and staining the top of it a dark stain.  I immediately fell in love with it was won over by this two toned look.  My new idea is to paint the bottom of my table and buffet a heathered blue to go with the blue in the rug, and then stain the tops of both pieces a dark, walnut stain.  Buuuuuuuuuuttttttt, there's a catch....
If I do try to accomplish the two-toned look, what can I do with my china cabinet to keep it from looking like a stuck out sore thumb?  Do I paint the whole thing or stain the whole thing?  Here's where you come in....
(photo from here)
What do you think of this two-toned china cabinet?  What if I painted the bottom the same heathered blue as I want to paint the rest of my furniture, and stain (just like in the picture above) a darker stain to match the top of my table and buffet?

If you have an opinion, I would love to hear it, as I don't know what I should do to refinish my furniture.  Should I stain it a darker stain and just keep things moving?  Should I do a two-toned finish using the clue from the rug on the bottom?  If I do that, what should I do with my china cabinet?  
Decisions, decisions!  What's a girl to do?! :)  Leave a comment and give me your opinion - I would love to hear it!


  1. Paint them two-toned Kari!!! Once you see my house you'll know how much I love painted furniture, particularly shades of blue. ;) And your rug is gorgeous! Absolutely love it! Can't wait to see the play-by-play as you redecorate the dining room! :)

  2. I like the two toned china cabinet above! Go for it!!

  3. I agree! Do both the two-toned with the dark stain and blue. It'll be great :)

  4. I'm going to be the annoying person that second guesses everyone else. I would just stain everything darker. I like the 2-toned look, but I would do it in a location with a single piece of furniture. Having 3 pieces that are all done in the 2-toned look kind of concerns me, since I think the purpose of the 2-toned look is not to be matchy-matchy, but if you have 3 pieces all in the same room like that, it defeats the non-matchy-matchiness you were trying to go for. Also, I worry that you will really like it now and not feel the same way in 10 years, where as staining it is more timeless. I like the 2-toned look, I just wouldn't do it with 3 pieces of furniture in the same room, or with your parents dining room furniture :)

    Sorry if that made your decision harder, but if you do go for it, I won't be mad ;) And I could be wrong, it might look really great!


I love to hear your thoughts - leave me some loving!