Fine Dining

By Karen Parr-Moody

Sadly, dining at home — in a bona fide dining room — seems to have gone the way of the Dodo bird for denizens of the modern era. Many households find their tables simply tucked into a breakfast nook and hijacked by books, mail and laptops. This sad state of affairs has many of us pining away for the days when dining at home was a fine affair — and this can still be achieved by blending style with practicality.


For many, the items in the dining room — as those in most rooms in any house — evolve from many sources, from antique treasures to modern finds. This mix-and-match look can mean that everything goes together, even if it wasn't planned that way. The clever combination of tables and seating in the photo, right, emerges from that school of thought (tufted bench, $275; four Hollywood Regency chairs, $800; white farm table $550; all at Booth T-270, which is at the new GasLamp store, GasLamp Too). The rustic farm table, Hollywood Regency chairs and tufted bench all benefit from a common color palette, which allows items of various silhouettes and styles to intermingle harmoniously. There is also a practicality to this seating arrangement. A bench, instead of chairs, on one side serves two purposes: It feels inviting and saves space.


A dining room can still be glamorous, sexy and sophisticated; adding some stunning tabletop items will ensure that. That is what I personally love about the Hollywood Regency chairs above, and also about this electric turquoise foo dog in the photo, left ($58, Booth B-225). This dog belongs in a décor that is clean and bright, and would be the perfect companion piece for a buffet or china cabinet that blends in with the Hollywood Regency chairs above. The dreamy silhouette of the foo dog  — complete with bugged eyes, fangs and roaring mouth — speaks of stone temples slathered in vines and emperors passing by in a formal train. If that doesn't conjure up visions of mystery and glamour, I don't know what does.

Along the same lines, I love the idea of a bright pop of modern orange finding its way into a dining room. Such can be found with these industrial style pendant lamps from Jason Parker Counce's booth (photo, right; $95; Booth B-309). These pendants are playful, so they help convey a feeling of comfort, even if the rest of the dining room happens to be glamourous. Such a lighting choice provides an offbeat alternative to the traditional chandelier over the table.

Placing a dark wood farm table into a dining room, such as the one in the photo, left, creates a high-functioning room that still looks stylish ($400; Booth B-104). Such a table would be perfect for a family that believes in creating a home that doesn't feel precious. When they invite friends into their home for dinner, everyone will feel comfortable and at ease. Four white ladder back chairs, shown here, can be added for a mix-and-match look that is thoroughly modern ($199; Booth B-104).

Who hasn't enjoyed a wonderful meal with friends and family in a dining room? This is the site where memories are created, so it should be one of the most beautifully decorated rooms in any house. At GasLamp and GasLamp Too, decorating a dining room is easy to do. 

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