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Wise Design Tips: Updating Your Dining Room On A Budget

Updated: Dec 10, 2019

Well, here we are in November again all of a sudden. (I don't know about you, but this year, it really snuck up on me!) Anyhow, soon it will be time for friends & family to gather for the holidays. That can only mean one's time to make sure all the most used spaces in your home are ready for guests.

SW Modern Home

Now, it may seem like a daunting & expensive task to give your home a holiday face-lift on such short notice, but there are a few ways to pull it off even if you're short on time and/or watching the budget to save for Christmas (totally get it, it all adds up).

Here are a few (quick) ways that you can stretch that budget and pull off a celebration worthy dining room!

Bridlemile Midcentury

1. Change Out Your Light Fixture

Image Credit: Sophie Burke Design - Point Grey Residence

Replacing a tired & boring light fixture can do wonders for updating your dining room. Chandeliers and pendant lighting are like jewelry for your space, and they can really make your dining area pop! Lighting can definitely be expensive, but there are plenty of budget-friendly options as well.

For small to medium sized tables (seating 4-6), there are plenty of great pendant options out there at affordable prices. For larger tables (seating 8+) or if you have tall ceilings, a chandelier or two pendants are a great way to make a statement and many can be found at affordable prices as well. Here is a round up of some stylish & affordable lighting options.


Clockwise From Left: Worley's Portea Pendant 12", CB2 Vega Brass Pendant Light, World Market Black Bamboo Woven Pendant Light, Ikea Vaxjo Pendant, Urban Outfitters Bamboo Woven Pendant Light, Target Pamut Midcentury Modern Pendant Lamp


Clockwise From Left: West Elm Curvilinear Mid-Century Chandelier , DecoCreations Geometric Art Deco Chandelier , All Modern Presnell 5-Light Chandelier , CB2 Bubbles Brass Ring Chandelier , Anthropologie Oahu Fringe Pendant , Worley's Constellation Chandelier with Exposed Bulbs

Alberta Arts Bungalow

2. Add A Vintage (Or Faux Vintage) Rug

Image Credit: MyDomaine House Tour

Another great way to elevate your dining room game is to add an always-in-style vintage or faux vintage rug. This can be a great way to accent your dining area and give your room a collected & curated look. Here are a few great-looking & budget friendly vintage (or vintage looking) rug options.

Clockwise From Left: Akram Vintages Vintage Afghan Kilim Rug , Target Hearth & Hand Jute Rug Charcoal Stripe , Lulu & Georgia Frannie Rug Camel , World Market Beige Vintage Style Abby Area Rug , World Market Gray And Ivory Diamond Vintage Style Carrie Area Rug , HandwovenCarpetStar Vintage Turkish Rug

Rancho Mid Century Modern

3. Incorporate Vintage Furniture Pieces

Image Credit: Glitter Guide Taylor Sterling’s Dining Room Makeover

Another great way to update your dining room & give it some character, is to add some great vintage pieces. Vintage & antique furniture can make a room feel grounded & collected over time, rather than overly "decorated". It's always great to mix the old with the new for a modern look that stands the tests of time. Another great benefit to vintage pieces? You can find them at affordable prices!

There are several great sources for vintage furniture including: Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, local Thrift/Vintage stores, Nextdoor, and online Etsy, Chairish & 1st Dibs can be great resources too. Of course, sometimes vintage pieces are not always in perfect condition. Which usually is all part of its charm, just call it "patina". If the wear is extreme or past the point of being "charming", there is always the option to refinish or paint the piece. Here are some fun picks for affordable vintage furniture pieces.

Clockwise From The Left: MadeinYugoslavia Vintage Marcel Breuer Cesca Cantilever Dining Chairs , Chairish Mid Century Buffet , Chairish Mid Century Modern Hoop Back Windsor Style Chairs , Chairish 1930s Traditional Flame Mahogany Console , Circa60 Mid Century Modern Slat Bench , UrbanAmericana Mid Century Credenza

SW Modern Home

4. Add Interest With Decor, Plants & Artwork

Image Credit: Hither & Thither

If you're looking for a way to to add some character without introducing new furniture, lighting or a rug; decor is a great way to make an impact!

When adding decor pieces, it's best to find items that speak personally to you and resonate with your personal style. To keep a space from looking too cluttered, choose just a few items that work together as a "collection". When considering artwork, remember that scale is important. Depending on your available wall space, either choose a large scale piece or several smaller pieces to create a gallery wall.

Plants are other great touch to add life (literally) to your space. When choosing the right plant for your dining room, be sure to consider lighting & maintenance as well as aesthetics. Succulents are a great way to get some green into your space even if you forget to water your plants regularly.

Clockwise From Left: Urban Outfitters Bec Smith Life Or Something Like It Art Print , RyabaVoshCeramics 4 pcs Set of Pottery Planters , Chairish Doug Johnston Fromm Cord Sculpture , Scandinavianseance Modernist Vintage Wool Rya , Urban Outfitters Oversized Hub Mirror , West Elm Mid-Century Turned Leg Standing Planters - Crackle

So, no matter your budget or timeline, these are some great ways to update & add character to your dining space - just in time for entertaining season! Change out just one thing or all 4 things and you're sure to shine for the upcoming holiday!

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