After refashioning their kitchen (which you can see here), creative homeowners energize the adjacent dining room with meaningful mementos presented in surprising ways.
This small dining room was closed off from the kitchen and seldom used.
“I wanted a look that was old and timeless, but clean and current, too,” says Michele Anderson of Leawood, Kansas about her dining room makeover. “Neutral backdrops would showcase my things in fun ways. I love to decorate with meaningful items, like family pieces and kids’ artworks, and a neutral palette and surfaces lets those pieces shine.”
The dining table was custom-built from barn-wood harvested by Michele and daughter Elizabeth during an antiquing trip to Iowa. It’s a rustic token of a shared mom-and-daughter experience that also reminds Michele and husband Dave of their own Iowa childhoods.
Assorted family-connected collections, furnishings, and accessories evoke additional recollections of their nearest and dearest.
Dave’s great aunt’s silverware sparks interest as a two-tiered chandelier. A quilt square stitched by Michele’s great-great-grandmother rises to artwork status, thanks to a frame and prominent placement.
“We built a lot of age-old character into this room, character that isn’t usually found in a 1960s home,” Michele says.
Kitchen chairs—used when the kids were small and revived with a coat of paint—supplement seating at the newly installed banquette.
“The new space is much more usable than before,” says Michele. “We love how it works for entertaining and how it looks every day! It’s lovely to be surrounded by family-related things and pieces that tell a story.”
A medley of color and texture creates a harmonious scene in the dining area. Sandy beiges repeat on shades, seat cushions, and pillows, and as pillows created from old coffee-bean bags, while splashes of bluish green pop on pillows and the whimsical rug.
Michele spent hours perusing Etsy.com seeking handmade goods for her remodeled digs. She commissioned one of the site’s artists to turn Dave’s great-aunt’s silver into a very cool chandelier.
Good Housekeeping covers depicting childhood pursuits and a sentimental-favorite quilt square move to center stage when displayed on a reclaimed window that Michele purchased at an estate sale.
A simple centerpiece of mason jar votives suits the style of this laid-back and family-oriented space.
The easy-to-make burlap runner complements the distressed finish on the farmhouse table crafted from salvaged barn wood.
Gather Your Materials
Cut a piece of burlap to desired length. Hem side edges if needed.
Gently pull cross threads from the runner’s ends to create fringed edges.
For ribbon embellishment:
With straight pins, mark placement of ribbon (these ribbons were placed about 2 inches in from the edges).
Use a tapestry needle and wide basting stitches to weave ribbon through the fabric.
Leave about 6 inches of ribbon hanging at each end. Secure ends with knots and let tails dangle.
Photography by Chris Hennessey
© Caruth Studio