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I hate my dining room! Would this curtain fabric work?

gobruno
10 years ago

I have hated my dining room from day one. It started with the paint, which I think is just not saturated enough or just doesn't go with the rest of my house. Then I added the drapes, which I also don't like bc, again, may be they are just a bit off in color or design, etc. The whole rooms just feels like it is just off the mark. I tend to prefer warm saturated colors, and these are too sallow, for lack of a better word. Here is my current dining room:

And here the great room, which I am happy with, which is open and adjacent to the dining room:

So, after pondering this for over a year, I was thinking that it's the orangey/yellowy tone of the blue in the walls and curtains that I don't like, and that I should just go with red curtains, and either the same wall color in my great room or something more saturated. What do you think of either of these fabrics for dining room curtains?

or

TIA!

Comments (32)

  • jlj48
    10 years ago

    Sorry, I'm no help. I LOVE what you've got. Love the textures, colors, and patterns. I'm sure others will weigh in with helpful opinions.

  • Valerie Noronha
    10 years ago

    Your DR has beautiful bones and a lovely view out the windows. You are so lucky! That said, I do agree that the present color is a bit off compared to the adjacent rooms and perhaps curtains read a bit more formal than you might prefer. I love the quirkiness of the first print! I also like the second, though the scale of the print looks smaller and could read as a solid from far away, it's difficult to tell from the pic. but could be a choice for reupholstering the chairs or accent pillows.

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    Beautiful job! I don't know if you have time to go back to the fabric store. If so, get the same fabric and smush it up. See how it will hang. You might only see small parts of the fabric or things you're not especially interested in seeing. Though I really love ikat (I might be in the very minority here), I think of them as more of a trendy fabric even though it's been around for thousands of years. The floral is pretty and it reminds me of the fabric in your living room on the ottomans you like. Though, it does have a modern look to it. But to me (hoping you don't super love it) it doesn't do your room justice. The monkey one is really more traditional to me and I like it a little better. And, from your posts, you run more contemporary. How about a paisley? I have a fabric that I picked out (I won't be offended if you hate it) that I finally ordered. I think it would be pretty in your room, too. I like that it's a linen, so you get more texture. And, it picks up the colors you have in your room. I guess it's an updated jacobean fabric. I thought it was just a floral. I learned it from the gurus here. :) Here are a couple more- just quickly looked on their site. I can't load up the rest. Sorry. They have a paisley that I thought would be pretty. http://www.fschumacher.com/search/ProductDetail.aspx?sku=174800 As a rule (supposedly), you're supposed to have the bottom third the second fabric. At least, that is how I was told. I prefer curtains to romans or shades. Normally, i'd put a roman or a grass shade underneath, but you'd lose the top windows due to the shade. So, I vote no on those. I wouldn't cover up the top windows at all. So, just a vote for curtains. And, I vote for figuring out which fabric you love the most and going off of the colors in there. :) You won't be happy if it's not right! Good luck! Here is a link that might be useful: hot house- spark.
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  • Fun2BHere
    10 years ago

    Would you consider painting the DR walls the same color as the leading edge of the draperies?

  • busybee3
    10 years ago

    to me, the color of the walls just doesn't work very well with the drapes or the fireplace...
    i think the drapes may look really nice if you change the wall color... maybe to a red similar to the banding??

    i like the 1st fabric choice, but i would probably go with a green wall color with that one- not blue. the 2nd would be similar to what you have right now in that i think it would seem primarily gold when made up into drapes...

  • vidyaram
    10 years ago

    It is a beautiful room with great bones. I agree that a different color will change the look of the room itself. I like the second pattern better though!
    Love your great room. It feels cozy even though it has high ceilings. Could you post a picture of the great room so that I can see if it is a two story room or not. Love everything about the great room. I remember seeing you in the building a house forum. I don't remember if you did a whole house reveal after moving in! Where do you have the outlet for the 2 lamps? I have a similar arrangement in my head for my great room and would appreciate your help.

  • kimiko232
    10 years ago

    I like both of the fabrics. I tend to like the elephant more. Only because I have kids and I think that would be something they would like and remember when they are adults. Why can't you do both? Reupholster (if they are really close to the same color family) the chairs in the elephant (easier to get rid of if you get bored of them.) and make the drapes in the ikat.

    I actually like your room a lot. But, maybe it's the color of the walls. They don't mesh that great with the drapes. How about a closeup of the drapes or find a better color within them.

    Will it bother you if you paint the walls the same as your great room? It seems to me that they are close to the yellow of your tiled fireplace. Would that be too much yellow?

    It seems to me that your home looks more contemporary. Are you trying to be more serene (like the living room) in your styling or more vibrant? Perhaps the color of the drapes and the walls seem more traditional. Maybe that is why you don't like it so much.

    You've got to remember that if you change out the drapes your drapes to red, they will be the focus in your room. Are you okay with that?

    I'm really bad. I'd probably repaint and match a color in the fabrics you've picked. Once I hate something, I'm never satisfied until it's completely changed. With that contemporary chandelier (which I love), the room doesn't mesh that well. I normally like a nice tension between contemp and traditional. But, I think that the chandelier might be too far over the contemp. I think you need a modern drape (that ikat) that pushes it a little bit over to the contemp side (even with the trad. table and chairs). I think that a nice more artichokey green or leaning more yellow green would be better than the color you've got on the walls now. I think that it would match better with the fireplace.

    Sorry to bombard you with all that. I remember seeing your room before and you hated it then. Hope you find your bliss!

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Yes, I agree the wall color is wrong. I can't put my finger on it, but it just feels wrong. I feel like the current color in the curtains is too cinnamony, and needs to be a deeper red or something.

    After having stepped out of my comfort zone with the greenish blue, I'm scared to do another shade of blue or green. I had thought about the 1st fabric with either the deep teal or green in the fabric, but I'm afraid that it will be more of the same wall color, which I think it the root of all my problems!

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    vidyaram, yes, the great room is 2 stories. The wall of windows, however, is 12 feet high and it slopes upward to about 15 feet. There are then a row of clerestory windows that reach up to the 2 story height. Does that make sense. Sorry I don't have any good pictures of the finished product. Here is an older photo just after we moved in of the 2 story part of the great room:

    Here is my best picture of the window wall:

    I do like the great room, and that's the feel I'd like in my dining room. Although there are still a few things that I'm tweaking in the great room (like pillows, etc).

    I have my lamps plugged into floor outlets that are just under the edges of the couch.

    kimiko, yes, I agree that the tension in the room between traditional and contemporary is wrong. May be what I am hating about it is that the curtains are too traditional? I have tried to "fix" it and like it for over a year, and have finally given in to the fact that I don't like it bc things are just off.

    What is so frustrating about this room is that like many of you pointed out, it has great bones, and I feel like I have put it together in a way that does it the least justice to its great bones.

    Btw, I hate the chairs too! I'm still trying to figure out what to put there instead. I'm going to first start with walls and curtains though. The chairs are for our old dining room table, and they aren't in the best shape. If you have suggestions for chairs, I'm all ears!

  • robin_DC
    10 years ago

    Of those fabrics, I like the second one the best. And it seems to go better with the feel of your great room. But--although it's a totally different color, I think that a drapery similar to the fabric of the ottomans under the console table in your great room would look good in the dining room too.

  • arlosmom
    10 years ago

    My first reaction was the same as others' -- the wall color seems off to me. I think the curtains, fireplace, furniture, rug and floors all have a really nice warmth to them, but the wall color seems cold. Could you post a better picture of the curtain fabric? Maybe a rust or terra cotta color on the walls could work. I think your room is very pretty!

  • jjam
    10 years ago

    I honestly think the color is fine; to me, it's the rug and furniture that don't seem right. They seem too small for the space. Yours is a room that could use a big table, some upholstered DR chairs and a large rug. If that's not possible right now, I'd remove a few of the chairs and place them further away from the table to give it the illusion of being longer and wider. A runner would help, as well as a centerpiece with some weight. Gorgeous home; don't worry, your DR will find its way. In the meantime, have you thought of a red DR? That takes the emphasis away from the furnishings and gives the room some drama.

  • blfenton
    10 years ago

    I think that the elephant in the room is the fireplace. The tile around the fireplace -yellowy/orange?- has not been taken into consideration when choosing paint colours. You look like you've incorporated it in the counter. (granite?) What about a red/violet or blue/violet (depending on if its orange or yellow) saturated colour?

    The fireplace also has a pattern to it. The pattern is a small/medium sized diamond pattern with variegated colours and the counter also has a bigger pattern to it. Those two are ok because the patterns are different sizes and the colour ties them together. By adding more patterns your elements are starting to fight. The current curtains have the same size pattern as the fireplace and so they will fight and the two that you have suggested are going to fight with the fireplace pattern as well.For patterns try a nice small stripe or a very small diamond.

    You already have a small/medium sized pattern (fireplace) and a larger pattern in the room (counter) and so anything else either needs to be very small or something like a narrow stripe or a tone-on-tone.

    This is just my opinion.

  • Leslie.in.NC
    10 years ago

    I actually love that wall color...but in this pic it looks like it competes too much with the color of the tiles around the fireplace. I would use the color of the tiles as the starting point for everything else, since that seems a main focal point in the room. It's hard to tell what color they are from the pic though. The floors are gorgeous and the bones of the room are great. I can definitely see it in deep warm colors.

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Thanks for all your feedback. As many of you notice, there is tension in this room, and not the good kind.... The tile is a honey onyx. So, may be the wall color clashes with it? Should I paint the wall more of a neutral color or a more saturated one?

    Tell me what you think if I use the first fabric as curtains, do a wall color similar to the great room, and then add these chairs:

    How about these chairs?

    Can somebody photo shop that for me? Pretty please?

  • blfenton
    10 years ago

    I forgot to mention the area rug. The area rug looks like it is a larger pattern in which case the first fabric and the area rug will not work together. You now have 3 patterns in the room and are trying to bring in a fourth. You need to be very careful.
    I can't tell what the colours are in the rug but is there something in there that you can use to go with the fireplace? You don;t have to go neutral and I think that you are on the right track by wanting to use a saturated colour - it just has to go with the fireplace and counter. Where, I think, you are going off-track is by wanting to put too many patterns in the room for interest but a saturated colour with your fireplace will be breath-taking.

    I would ignore the drapes for now and just concentrate on the wall colour. One step at a time. If you have some of your tile leftover take it to the paint store and put some samples together,if not take a photo of your room with you that shows the fireplace and the side counter.

  • jjam
    10 years ago

    I like the second chair, or something similar with a high back. The first one looks too low. Lucky you with a room that could accommodate those comfy chairs! If $$$ is an issue right now perhaps you could get two upholstered chairs (a la CL?) and use those at either end of the table along with the set you have. I wouldn't compromise on DR furniture; only get something you truly love. A lot of memories are made around a DR table :)

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Here is my rudimentary attempt to put those fabrics and the chair in the room. What do you think?

    The thing is that I want something durable for chairs bc this is actually the room we eat in every night for dinner. We have 4 very messy boys.

  • pricklypearcactus
    10 years ago

    I'm no expert, but I agree with what blfenton said. The fireplace color and pattern are competing with the rest of the room, especially the wall color. But I think even the highly patterned drapes are suffering because of the shape/size and color of the tile. Because the paint is such a contrast, my eye jumps from drapes to fireplace and while the colors are complimentary, the patterns are approximately the same size. I think having a wall color that is closer in tone/warmth/color to that of the drapes and the fireplace will help calm the jumping of the eyes. I think a warm, deep ivory color might work.

    I'm sorry that I don't think either of the fabrics you listed would really have much of an impact with the wall color as is.

    I really like the second dining chair you've pictured. In fact, it's one I've considered purchasing for my own home. I also tend to agree that your dining set and rug seem a little small. Maybe the contrasting chairs will help. Or possibly contrasting chairs and a larger rug.

    I look forward to seeing your changes. The bones of your room are lovely.

  • busybee3
    10 years ago

    i love the green chairs with the elephant fabric!... i personally like more of the red and less gold in the room, so the elephants look nice. the leather or leather-like chairs will be awesome for wiping clean!
    i would probably go either deep ivory (not yellowy ivory...) or a shade of the elephants for the walls... being very mindful of the honey colored fireplace when choosing a color.

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    pricklypearcactus, the wall color is definitely going to go! I was thinking something neutral too. A deep ivory sounds like a good idea.

    The dining table is actually one of the biggest ones I could find. Right now, it is pictured with one leaf, which is how we usually have it. I don't think I'd want to have both leave in at all times. Again, this is a room we eat in every night. The rug is an 8 x 10, and I was thinking of getting something bigger one day. The thing is that this room is very large. I can't remember the exact dimensions, but I'm thinking 19' x 17'. I was thinking that the room would be helped by upholstered chairs to soften the wood table and wood floors. Here is the room with the white chairs:

    What do you think?

  • abundantblessings
    10 years ago

    Here's how I'd prioritize the transformation. Start with new paint in a deep ivory, copper or light rust; any would be nice with honey onyx though I'd prefer the rust if you're going with bold drapes. I'd want to keep the room lighter than the other room adjacent to the great room. Changing the paint will really make a huge difference.

    Your room definitely calls for a 10' x 14' rug so that be my next focus. The rose tones in the current one don't seem to be the best with the onyx or any of the drape choices, so I'd look for one with a bit of rust in the pattern. I don't see your existing drapes as too traditional; it's just that the wall color detracts. You may be able to keep your current curtains once the walls and rug are updated, but either of your new fabrics would be fine. I'd go for the elephants for a bit of whimsy if you do change the drapes.

    While I like both chairs, I'd steer away from the green as I wouldn't want to be locked in with that color choice. I think the white will be much too stark. I'd look for a similar chair in a darker tone, deep cream through chocolate. That will provide more flexibility and better durability with everyday use. HTH!

  • jejvtr
    10 years ago

    Gobru
    Always feel bad for people who say "I hate my" your room is lovely, looks like you have a big family and lots of love in there.

    That said, i think it could use some tweaking. After my own ,and ongoing trials and tribulations decorating - I am a big fan of trying to work with what works and what you may have on hand. I would agree with the others who suggested wall color. The tile on fireplace should be where you
    get your wall color choice since it takes up such a big expanse in the
    room. After scrolling my mind keeps going to peach tones - My3 Dogs has a beautiful shade in a guest room with similar shades of case goods in the
    room. Ill try to find that and put it in separate post.

    I would keep the existing furnishing and consider new fabric on the chairs. Right now the current fabric doesn't say anything and just blends in. A fun kid friendly fabric would bring life.

    Have you considered turning the table , more pics of the room would help. I see granite topped something in the foreground

    A new rug and larger sized, I agree but being a mom of many I go to the
    pracitical brain - so think creativity may be suited. Like an oil cloth or if you are handy could DIY. They wipe clean.

    I would do wall color, rug, drape then chairs

    The other thing that is going on in the rooms the room and architectural details have height but none of the decor does. Maybe a tall greenery, tall
    case goods like linen chest The othe possible change would be a new Chandelier

    Ok I'm done
    Best to you I'll look for that wall color

  • lala girl
    10 years ago

    What a beautiful room!

    I think with all of the gorgeous windows and trim, the deep color on the walls chops up the whole room since there is not a lot wall space. If it were me, I would go low contrast on the walls - something that is warm and provides little contrast with the trim and blends more with the fireplace. (this way, I think your eye would not skip around so much noticing these small slivers of color and would notice the lovely view.)

    I agree that rug should be bigger, and I'd be tempted to pull in serious texture here - maybe a nice sisal or seagrass to warm up the room but not compete from a color/pattern standpoint.

    I think the DR set and chairs are probably a little small in scale for the space - I would be tempted to go chunkier. Maybe a farmhouse style table with sleeker more modern chairs (LOVE the white leather but I would want the table to have texture if I went that sleek).

    I love both fabrics but agree that the elephant is fun and offers up a bit of whimsy. Curtain panels in that would be fabulous (I would also be tempted to layer in some bamboo shades or roman shades for an additional layer of texture).

    Ack, I am saying texture a lot! :-) Sorry.

    I also think a huge ficas tree in an oversized basket would offer a lot of life in one of the corners (and would be so happy with all of that fabulous natural light!)

    good luck - you have a stunning room to work with!

  • vidyaram
    10 years ago

    Thanks gobruno for posting the beautiful great room window pics. They were as gorgeous as I imagined.

  • lori316
    10 years ago

    I really like the green chairs with the elephant fabric. However, as somebody said above, it's harder to change out if you tire of it.

    I also think the tile in the FP has to be your starting point. My eye is drawn to it immediately. Of course if you were to go with a big, chunky table, I think that would change. With a big family, a large farmers table would be beautiful in that room.

    Pretty room. Don't say hate. lol

  • birdgardner
    10 years ago

    I love the drapes you have! I think the problem is the wall color.

    The soft gold in your great room would work well with both your drapes and the fireplace tile. Or maybe a warm, soft terra rosa, glazed or color-washed? But personally I like the gold. Ivory or a paler version of the gold would also work.

    Do some big sample boards - just some old cardboard will do - but at least 2'x4' or 3'x3'.

    Your windows read very high-set - that stands out as not being the usual placement - you can experiment with the height the drapes are mounted and see if a different proportion pleases you better - maybe a little higher, even almost to the ceiling. The drapes are puddling, and maybe they have a hem that could be let out - they could go higher. Or sew on a contrasting band of terracotta on the bottom. (or whatever color the inner curtains are - hard to tell in pictures sometimes.)

    The bit of wall between the window and the crown molding is so narrow that it might be better not to treat it as the wall but as panelling, like over the mantel. All you would have to do is frame it with short vertical pieces of flat molding over the window casing verticals, just glue it on. Paint the molding to match your trim and either do the recesses the same or to match your over-mantel recesses.

    A bigger rug out to six inches of the walls. Something easy to clean and with a pattern - you have children eating there. My youngest is nine, we still have spills. Low pile, no loops, not fuzzy.

    Something to occupy the walls will make the room feel cozier - a long window seat with a bench cushion and pillows, and cabinets underneath. Do you ever have many people to a sit-down dinner - an L-shaped banquette would give you lots of seating. Kids could play there, do their homework, look out the window, keep you company as you worked in the kitchen - put away homework and toys in the cabinets - presto clean. Also your linens and servingware not used every day.

    Accessories with more weight and color, more dimensionality than the plates on the wall and the pictures and things over the hearth.

    It really is a good dining room, good bones, good molding, good view, good fireplace, good flooring, spacious. It won't be hard to love. The fireplace is your starting point because you can't change the tiles. Then either wall color, rug, or rug, wall color, working with the tiles. THEN drapes and upholstery. Then accessories. Paint is your cheapest element. Even if you hire someone to paint, you can buy the cans and do big sample boards yourself or directly on the wall. You don't like the color? Worst that happens is you're out the cost of the sample can. So it's worth experimenting, because it will set the mood of the room.

  • lynxe
    10 years ago

    OK I have only skimmed the responses, so my suggestions might be repeats of what's been said already. I agree with the people suggesting that the fireplace tiles should be the leading factor in choosing a wall color. Even if you were to stick with the green, I think in that case the large expanse of green wall seems not to work with the large (and low) expanse of white ceiling. It's possible that a new wall color also would not work with the white ceiling, so you might want to consider something other than white for the ceiling - but if you do, choose carefully so that whatever color you choose does not read as too dark. The thing I noticed next was that the print on your current curtains is too small and dainty relative to the larger, bold fireplace tiles. Plus the geometric pattern of the tiles and the pattern of circles on the curtains seem to fight rather than to work together. While I'm at it, from the picture you've posted of your DR, I think the amount of fabric is insufficient and there needs to be more draping and more fullness.

    There! If only I could do this with my own rooms, I might actually get close to finishing them! ;)

  • lynxe
    10 years ago

    I also think your curtains should read as darker and more dramatic in color than the fireplace tiles - you're obviously thinking along the same lines.

    Also, someone might have suggested this, too: I'm wondering whether you might want to paint the molding around the fireplace and the mantle in a color that goes with but is darker than the tiles. That color could be like the wall color, but darker, or it could be a dark color echoed in your curtain color (in part of the pattern or in the edge) or in the curtain lining.

  • lynxe
    10 years ago

    I REALLY need to read my commments with care before posting. In my first set of comments, what I was trying to say was that the amount of curtain fabric seems insufficient for the longer window. It seems perfectly fine for the window next to the fireplace.

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Thanks again for all the comments. I am definitely going to start with changing the wall color. I have many cans of paint lying around the house; so, I may just put a few samples on the wall. Since I am going to repaint anyway, I think I'll just put it directly on the wall rather than bother with sample boards.

    I don't know, once I paint the walls, the curtain may work, but I think that deep down (or not so deep down), I just don't like them. They are too traditional for my taste and don't go with the feel of the rest of the house. I don't know what I was thinking when I picked that fabric, other than that I was trying to step out of my comfort zone. I actually made those curtains, that's why they aren't that wide. They are dummy panels that are basically just the width of a standard bolt of fabric. There are actually cream roller shades tucked in right under the trim, which you don't really notice, unless they are actually down.

    I also agree that the accessories should be tweaked. I don't know what I could put on those skinny walls between the curtains though. Any suggestions?
    The other thing that crossed my mind was to just wainscot the room up to about a plate rail height. That would at least unify the room with the fireplace. What do you think about that idea?

  • homeagain
    10 years ago

    I love your drapes. They look custom and it would be a shame to get rid of them. I think a soft peach could be lovely in your room. A new larger, bolder rug, new mats for the prints over the fireplace and some new fabric on your current chairs.

    I'm not proficient enough to photoshop in the things you would like... elephant fabric, new chairs. But I did play in paint with a soft peach for the walls.

  • gobruno
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Wow, homeagain, thanks for the paint visual. I'll have to admit that I never thought of peach for the walls since I lean toward more saturated colors, but that looks really great. May be I'll go a shade darker and closer to the color of the band in the curtains. Not sure. My latest "decision" is that I may try to add some board and batten around the room. I have this plan to create that with a bunch of stock flat trim pieces. I've seen it on many decorating blogs, and it "looks" pretty simple. Any chance you could photoshop that in for me? Thanks again!

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