Makeover: Fall Dining Room
Today's makeover isn't that dramatic, but was greatly needed so that my client would be prepared for the upcoming holidays.
Pro tip: start clearing clutter and getting organized now so that you're prepared for holiday entertaining. Clean-out can take longer than you think. Plus, the earlier you start, the earlier you can start enjoying your space again!
When I first spoke with this client, she described her rooms as "round." In other words, all of her rooms had clutter in the corners effectively making them round rather than square. I loved this description because I know many people who can relate.
Unlike most people I work with where there is way too much stuff so I don't recommend they buy anything until we're almost done, here there was a significant lack of storage that had to be resolved if we were going to get anything organized.
I often talk about prioritization in relation to the order we do things. The dining room had become a holding area for excess from the kitchen's excess area - the laundry/utility room. So before we could work on the dining room, we had to create space (read: let go of things) in the kitchen and laundry/utility room. Once that was done, we could work on the dining room.
We started by determining what wasn't needed any more and then let go of that through trash or donations. Next, we decided what really needed to live in the kitchen or laundry/utility room. Then those things were placed into those rooms.
Pro tip: If you use something often or what to use something often, put it where it will be easily accessible. This client loves to bake so we wanted to make room for her Kitchen Aid to live on the kitchen counter. (It was originally on the dining room table and was moved before the "before" pictures were taken.)
With everything that didn't need to live in the dining room now out of the dining room, it was time to work out storage solutions. We spent some time visualizing options and determining different layouts. We poured through many different furniture sites looking for storage options. We measured and re-measured to make sure that my client didn't purchase anything that wouldn't fit. We'd narrowed it down to a couple of different shelving options. After a slightly-traumatizing visit to IKEA, my client didn't like what we thought would work. She did, however, find some other shelving units that she liked and turned out to be a much better fit aesthetically than what we chose.
Pro tip: Don't rush to purchase something. Think it through. Measure your space. Visualize what you want your space to look and feel like. Then purchase what works best. I'm super-proud of my client for trusting her instincts and not buying what she and I decided on, instead finding something she's really happy with.
Once the new shelves were assembled (with only minimal cursing from her husband - Hooray!) we stocked them up with the items that needed new homes. As we were putting things away, we kept like with like so that it's easy to pull things while she's prepping for a party.
Hands on time: 5 1/2 hours.
* includes strategy, online shopping, and some of the laundry/utility room work. Does not include my client's shopping time or her husband's relatively curse-free assembly time.