When you don’t have a huge house, every space needs to be extra useful. Our dining room? Not just for special occasions. We designed it to make everyday entertaining a little easier, switching out a wood buffet top for low-​maintenance marble and reupholstering chairs in stain-​resistant velvet. Because I love collecting china, I kept the color palette of my favorite pieces in mind while choosing the wall paint color-C2 Paint’s Brown Eyed Girl-and textiles. That way, even if I have to throw together a table setting in a hurry, it’ll coordinate beautifully. Just add flowers and serve dinner. Done.


Smart Details

1. Upcycled sideboard

A $125 consignment-​store find! We had our contractor Steven Fritz replace the top with marble, so we don’t have to worry about using trivets.


2. Vintage table lamp

Don’t just rely on overheads-​adding light sources at different levels will make the room feel more intimate (especially with dimmers!).

3. Lacquered chairs

I’m all for a DIY paint job, but when it comes to furniture that’s bound to get knocked around, it’s worth investing in professional lacquering. We used the Resplendent Crow near St. Louis to refinish these Craigs­list chairs.

4. Easy-care upholstery

The luxe-looking S. Harris velvet we used is actually a performance fabric, so spills can be wiped clean easily.


5. Ribbon trim

Elegant grosgrain trim from Samuel & Sons and brass nail­heads around a chair seat make a simple reupholstering job look extra-custom.