Help a Girl Out Please

Calling all my brilliant decorating friends. I have been stuck on my dining room for a month now and I really need help. I have taken several pictures so you can get the overall view. Please tell me what you think I need to do. Nothing you see in the dining room is set in stone except the furniture. All accessories are just there because I've been playing and moving things around.

The picture above is the living room that you see when you walk in the front door. It will not change I just wanted you to get the idea. The area is all open. See the accessories sitting on the floor? Well, I've had stuff sitting around here dangerously for awhile now.

This chest is in the front area which is adjacent to the dining room.

The dining room has been painted Echelon Ecru by Sherwin Williams. Most of the house is this color and I love it. It's a creamy color with a hint of yellow. It's really pretty on a bright day. I'm so happy that the red is gone. I was really tired of the darkness that it brought.

I bought this console table a few weeks ago. It's the first table that I've ever found that wasn't too deep for the space. We don't want the room to feel crowded because we actually eat in here pretty often with friends.

The other side of the room. I have played with the idea of drapes but today I'm thinking not. I like the clean lines of the shutters without drapes.

Remember, all accessories are subject to change so you won't hurt my feelings.

Here are my questions and thoughts:

1. Should I leave the girl print on the wall and reframe her? The frame is too small, I think. I still have that huge round mirror that used to hang there. You can see pictures of it here.
2. Should I get rid of the toile on the chairs? If I do I have no idea what to put there.
3. What do you think should be on the walls? You know I have red and white, and green and white transferware on the walls in other rooms.
4. I have to keep the rug for now. I do still love it.

Usually when I redo a room, I start with fabric for inspiration. This time it was a wall color change that prompted my dilemna. I'm confused!!


  1. Stacey it is a beautiful and bright dining room! It all looks welcoming and very pretty. I adore your new wall color, table and the chandy. ~Stunning job!

    I am wondering how the mirror would look in the room? The lady print may be a touch small like you thought. Hmmm... I really like the red table runner scrunched up like that in the center. I had seen that on another blog as well and need to try something with mine. I do like toile and the plantation blinds you have are amazing. ~WOW!

    I have no idea if I helped you at all. I think was too busy admiring everything. I LOVE your living room too. Can we see more of it soon?

    Have a great day. ~Melissa :)

  2. I'm no decorator so my advice is just taken with a grain of salt. OK? First off, I LOVE your home. Love the wall color too. I would leave the chairs with the toile. So elegant. Love the shutters just like they are--no drapes. The girl print--may need some more color. Like put a red mat with a new frame to enlarge the whole thing. But the mirror might look really good there. But either the print or the mirror would need something red (or your other colors) on the walls with it--even candle holders with red candles would look good but the transfer ware would too. Wonder about red or a color shades on your chandelier? But I am not good at decorating. I'd love to have a dining room just like yours with no changes. Ha It is beautiful as it is. Have fun. You are so good at decorating I know something will come to you. M

  3. Stacey,
    I love your color choices.And of course I think the toile is beautiful. :) What about white ironstone plates around your re-framed girl? That would be pretty and crisp looking. Whatever you do I know it will be gorgeous. Can't wait to se what you decide.

  4. Stacey, I am flattered that you would ask for my advice. I love your toile chairs and would keep them. I have shutters, too and love them. I do have a panel hanging high on both sides just to warm up the room a bit with all the hard surfaces, but certainly is not necessary in your case. I can't see the whole window though in your room. I think the mirror brought back in would really make a statement. You could add a half circle of plate over the top half of the mirror or put three on each side. I would add some greenery to the table below to soften that up a bit. You could even put the greenery in the terrarium you have on there. I would probably add something else to the top of the armoire for added height. Maybe three tall chucky candlesticks, or vases or pottery, etc. Maybe carry another piece of red up there in something. Your room is beautiful as is. You could also change the shades on your chandy to black. That would really be pretty. Hope this helps some...Kim

  5. Okay . . . if I'm wrong, let me know, but it looks like the two end chairs at the table are not done in the red toile -- is that right? 1) I think you should keep the red toile, but then redo the end chairs in a leopard print similar to that of the ottoman in the living room. (A little touch of the unexpected!)

    2) Paint your chandy a glossy black and add red shades,

    3) The red girl picture may seem small, but I think the large round mirror will overpower the console table, so . . . I think you should find a huge frame (thrift stores, GW, etc. are great resources for big ol' frames that are begging to be transformed), paint it glossy black (or antique it black) and insert a piece of fabric into the opening. (A beautiful floral print containing red, maybe some black accenting, and some greens and golds would work beautifully.) Hang it above the console table, and THEN hang the red girl in the middle of it. (Once you get her hung up, you can then decide if you need to replace her white mat with a black mat to echo the outermost frame.)

    4) Hang some of your red transfer plates on each side of the whole finished art piece.

    5) Move the red toile runner from the top of the china cabinet to the center of your dining room table and then add some chunky, detailed burnished (antiqued in black)gold candle sticks of varying heights with fat deep red and/or some black candles.

    6) Add some kind of greenery (an ivy can grow ANYWHERE!) to the leftside (closer to the window wall)top of the china cabinet. Balance the other side of the top of the china cabinet with more red transferware (a large plate on a stand, maybe?) and your silver teapot.

    Well, that's definitely a shove in one direction! (Probably more than you wanted to know!)

    We'll all be waiting to see what you do, that's for sure!


  6. Stacey! What a beautiful bright room. Please leave the toile!!! I love it; I'd just add some more red in the room i.e. lampshade and/or chandi shades or maybe a mix bringing in a floral with greens/reds in it?n plus I see a large rooster on top of your cabinet and possibly a red check mat around that pretty girl with transferwear plate collection surrounding it!again bring in some green too? I agree the shutters are gorgeous and clean lined. We all know you are going to dazzle us with whatever you decide!!! Really pretty bones here! Sincerely, Jeannette

  7. I like the toile on the chairs. But there isn't enough color (yes, I know I would add too much color for most folks!) on the wall. I would either change the girl print or have it reframed and matted with some contrast to that wall. The elements below the print blend into the wall too. Need some more textures. Maybe some plates surrounding either the print or mirror, if that's what you choose. That's what I'm seeing anyway.

  8. Oh, and Texas Preacher Woman is correct. The chandy needs a different color and shades.

  9. Stacey,
    Have you ever considered changing places with the china cabinet & side table? Just a suggestion. I like Pamm's idea about adding red shades.


  10. I'm far from being a decorater, but my first thought is not enough color. I like the idea of black for your chandy, but I wouldn't do glossy. And if you decide to do that then I would paint the frame for the girl black as well, even the mirror if you decided to put the mirror in there instead. But, if you keep the girl then why not try some sort of sconces on each side. I do like the toile on the chairs...but maybe a darker print would work better. Something grounding, maybe a curtain panel on each side would help, Have fun!

  11. I too think you need to keep the red toile and add red shades on the chandie...I like the touches of red and I love the idea of the leopard print on the two end chairs...
    Have fun!

  12. Well, I just read down through every comment and I think you have some talented friends in blogland. I think your house is decorated beautifully, and I really like the paint shade you chose. As for the dining room, I do think the framed girl print could use a bigger frame and some deep red matting. As for the other ideas I thought of, they have already been mentioned. I am looking forward to seeing the finished room.

  13. Wow, some great ideas here, Stacey. My first thought was moving the armoire to the wall where the girl painting is...does that fit? And then she could go on the smaller wall. Then you could put some statement large pieces on top of the cabinet. Also, I would paint the chandelier too, maybe a rubbed bronze.....with red shades. And if you don't want to move the cute little console, then I'd try the round mirror over's hard to tell proportion without seeing them together......if you use the round mirror, then you could add some sconces or something rectangular/longer on either side of it. Also, do you have room to put the arm chairs on either side of the console sort of angled in? then you could add a funky, colorful pillow in each one for color. Maybe with all these ideas from everyone you will be inspired to find what's perfect for your dining room!!! ;D


  14. OK Stacey I will be NO help at ALL because I just think it looks beautiful. I did read all of the comments and I can't wait to see what you end up doing.

    Glad you enjoyed the sun today. We had it for most of the day too...YAY.♥

  15. Stacey, your dining room is beautiful! I do love the color of the walls and the toile on the chairs.
    Everyone had such good suggestions. My fav is painting the shandy a darker color and the shades. And trying the big piece of furniture on the big wall if possible. Looks great like it is girl. Have fun with it.

  16. Stacey,

    Your home is beautiful. I love the red toile and would definitely keep it..I do like the suggestions of adding leopard in the room, in a runner or covering the two end chairs. I think some transferware plates around the girl print would be nice! I like the idea of red or leopard shades on the chandelier! I love the shutters and would just leave them plain. I think the wall color lends itself to go in any direction...I've heard a decorating rule( not that rules matter that much) is to have something black in every room ( maybe a black chandlier) and to have some type of greenery. I know whatever you choose will be it already is a beautiful room. I think it's important to find what you love and go with that! Happy decorating!

  17. I agree with Pamm. Add some leopard print. That is the first thing i noticed looking at your living room..I do like all Pamm s ideas. mishelle

  18. Also that little girl picture is adorable but the frame needs to be a darker color to make it pop more. What about sconces??

  19. Stacey, I love your new table, and like the idea of the mirror hanging over it, especially if it would reflect your pretty living room. Perhaps you could add two lamps on either side of the mirror, with a large orchid (real or faux) in the middle.

    Another suggestion, to tie the two rooms together, would be to select a striped fabric for your chairs that would coordinate with the colors in your living room.

    I agree that the chandelier would show up better if it was darker, but, being from the "less is more school of decorating," I would probably try shades in a cream color.

    It looks as if you get a lot of light in the room, so, perhaps, you could "fill in" with a large fig tree or corn plant in a corner.

    I love the color of your walls. It's such a classic look and gives you a lot of options to work with.
    I know whatever you do is going to be beautiful.

    P.S. -- I'd love to see more of your living room someday.

  20. I love this color and your dining room is beautiful! The dining room chairs? They're red, they're toile, what's not to love? I think they are beautiful. I really can't see any problems with the room except the wall with the picture of the girl looks a little empty. I'm sure you will find something pretty to fill it out. Maybe just take the picture down so you can rethink the wall without any restrictions. Sometimes that works for me:>)

  21. You know I love the toile! I have been using it for probably 7 or 8 years now at least and just can't seem to do without it. If you like a french country look, then roosters and rabbits look great whether in artwork, lamps, or figurine pieces. I think a lamp and some accessories would look great on top of that piece (antique?) by the window. I love a lamp up on top of something tall. I also love plates hanging on a wall together like a collection. I have been wanting to do that somewhere in my house. I look at lots of magazines, books, and of course blogs to inspire me then try to somewhat copy looks but also make it my own.

  22. I like the idea of re-framing the print. But I love your the red and white.... And I might change the color of the walls, but I like what you have.... Sometimes small changes make a big difference.
    Good luck... can't wait to see what you do.

  23. keep on picture...bring in more of the lemony yellow and a dash of black ~ but what do i know...

  24. I love the room. I think you're right about the frame on the girl picture. I love the picture itself though. I love the fabric on the chairs too.

  25. Stacey,

    I have a couple of ideas you might want to try. Keep the toile. I love your chairs. I think you need a chair rail and box trim below. I'll try to find a picture and send it. I'd put the picture of the girl somewhere else and put a big mirror above your serving table. No curtains. I love all your plantation shutters.

    Hugs, Gretchen

  26. How I would love to have plantation shutters on my windows! We have those old plastic vertical blinds that are beginning to break and I am sooo glad. They don't make them anymore and I couldn't be happier.

    Your colors are lovely. I struggled with mine as well.
    I wish I could help, but my taste is just a lot busier ..and probably too old fashioned for you. I love your chairs and would not get rid of them. Here I am painting rooms red..and you are getting rid of yours! My red is rose red so it goes with my pinks. I used to play it safe with color, but no more!
    I am going to invest in a bit of wall paper too very soon. I never tire of wall paper. See? I am NO help at all.
    LOVE your new table! Those legs are just beautiful!

  27. Stacey, since I'm late getting here, I see you've already been given so many wonderful suggestions. Of course, you know I think you should keep the toile. I've always loved the toile on those chairs. I think the idea of some black accents (and the chandy) are great. Doesn't the mirror that was here before have a black frame? Your new table is so pretty, and I wondered about a red toile runner (or, as some of suggested, an animal print runner) on that new table top. Whatever you decide, I know it will be wonderful, and I look forward to seeing it. laurie

  28. ok who ever said this I can't remember, put the cabinet where the picture of the girl is, put the girl pic where the cabinet is put a tiny table under it...put a large plant on top of cabinet get a plant that hangs over one side, place a chair on each side of the cabinet flat against the wall, straight back chairs, similar to dining room chairs and they should be matching each other, maybe with solid red seats of striped, not sure, love the room and I think this will look fab when entering the room and the beautiful cabinet will not be so hidden, hope this helps, (I may not even know what I am talking about but I have designed for years, it's just hard when you can't see the whole room....pretty furniture......

  29. It is a beauiful room as is, but if it were me I would add some greenery on the console, table and cabinet. Since it is a dining room, dishes displayed on console and walls would be great. I love the red toile on the chairs. I also love the plantation blinds, but maybe a valance for color would look nice, especially if you have more of the toile. I like the light color of the walls and your furniture is beautiful

  30. I'm late to this party but still want to join in :)

    Disclaimer - take what I say with a grain of salt because my decorating is do and redo.

    Love your room. Love it. It's an honor that you've asked us, your followers, to help you. I would put more color back into the room with accessories. The chandy is lovely but would really stand out if darker. Can you paint it and add red shades? A mirror would be lovely in the room. The picture of the girl is great, but the frame not weighty enough. Keep the toile and recover the end chairs in a coordinating print.

    Isn't it fun getting to redo? I go back and forth when redoing a room with love to decorate and wanting to throw up my hands in frustration. I'd love to see the day when I'm confident enough to make choices without second guessing myself.

    Make sure you post pics as you make changes. I love to learn from other decorators.

  31. Gmorn ~ The only thing I would do is put the mirror where the girl print is & would reframe the girl print. Everything else is gorgeous!

    Have a wonderful weekend.
    Hugs, TTFN ~ Marydon

  32. Hi Stacey,
    Would you mind sending photos to my email address so I can blow them up at look at them. I would love to give you some suggestions. Did you realize that I was redecorating my blog and lost everything!!! I had to completely start over a few weeks ago, bummer huh!

    Seriously, send me your


  33. Hi Stacey!
    Just wanted to stop by to say I LOVE the color you chose for this space. It is so soothing and pretty. I know what you mean about being ready to change out the red color. I got rid of my red bathroom and I love it. had asked me about your dining room windows and drapes and such. I will say that when I moved into my house I thought I wouldn't want drapes, so I put the plantation shutters up. But then slowly I gained confidence in my fabric choices, and now I have drapes on all my windows. I just LOVE it. Somehow it never makes a room feel too busy for me, but instead it seems to make the window look bigger and just generally "homier." That being said, there are so many rooms, including yours, that look homey without the drapes, so I don't think you need to pressure yourself.

    I probably haven't helped at all, but I can't wait to see what you do! :)

  34. OH Miss Stacey....I'm late getting by here..but I have read all the much great advise! I have to agree with Kim and Angie...I like the ides that they shared! I know what ever you do it is going to look wonderful! already looks wonderful...even if you don't do another thing!

    Hope you are having a wonderful week! Blessings to you! Nancy

  35. {I'm, I'm some decorating expert!} I'm sure I've told you before how much I love your chairs. I have the same ones in green toile from Ethan Allen. I think you should add some red chandelier shades, maybe some red plates around the picture and something red on the sideboard. It's a lovely room!

  36. My 2 cents, for what it's worth...I love the toile print on the chairs, and that would be my inspiration. I would have kept some red on the walls because I think that warms up a room, but also understand how it could make it too dark. While looking @ your blog, I was thinking it might be cool to harlequin w/ red, or put moulding (sp?) around the middle & box out the bottom in white & red the top. Also like the idea of hanging a crescent of plates over a mirror. (I have that gold mirror too, btw). Also liked the idea of greenery. I battle w/ the drape thing over windows too b/c I like light, so that's hmmmm for me. Like that girl print too, so using her wouldn't be bad either.

  37. I love your style! What color is your floor? It looks Butterscotch.

  38. I am reading backward today and enjoying your blog again :^)
    Could you please tell me the paint color in your dining room? We are up for a change and I think your color might do well with all of my red and white.
    Many thanks for any info.


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