Rooms dedicated solely to dining that are completely closed off from adjoining parts of the home are not as popular as they once were in the early to mid twentieth century. Part of the reason is because families are leaving the table and dining in front of the television. My family is no exception.
This common practice has made formal dining rooms just about obsolete. However, it is possible to successfully make a dining room flow into the kitchen or another adjoining part of the home for a more useful purpose. I once had a formal dining room that was closed off to the rest of the home, and I successfully made it flow into my kitchen in a striking new way. In the end I had more space than ever for storage, entertaining and more.
Add French Doors Instead of Solid or Pocket Varieties
My traditional sandstone beige dining room had double pocket doors, and they closed the dining room off from the kitchen on one end and the living room on the other. I felt completely isolated when the doors were closed, and I had to find a way to bring the space into the twenty-first century.
I began by having the pocket doors removed, the framework changed, and I had French doors installed instead. When the French doors were closed I still had a view of the other rooms in the home. The glass-paned doors looked absolutely gorgeous whether they were opened or closed, but I found additional ways to make my dining flow into the kitchen.
Paint Both Rooms the Same Hue
When I moved into the home the kitchen was robin’s egg blue and the living room was eggshell white. This would have to change if I wanted to make the dining room flow into the kitchen. After adding the French doors I decided to paint the kitchen sandstone beige. The transformation was amazing. Not only did the dining room appear to flow into the kitchen, but both rooms looked much more spacious.
Decorate Both Rooms in a Specific Style or Theme
Another one of the most effective ways to make a dining room flow into the kitchen is with decor of a specific theme. In this particular home I chose an Amish decorating scheme. I hung two black metal silhouettes of horse drawn carriages in the dining room along with two Amish countryside paintings and a shelf that held three ceramic Amish children with a small metal wagon. I continued this decorating theme in the kitchen. Because the two separate spaces had something it common they seemed to flow together almost seamlessly.
Install Matching Cabinets in Both Rooms
I really did not need my dining room since I only held family get-togethers a few times a year. What I really wanted was more cabinet space for storing dishware, baking supplies and non-perishables. Since my uncle designed the kitchen cabinets I knew he would be able to successfully design more for the room and obtain a perfect match.
In the end I transformed my dining room and kitchen into one huge eat-in kitchen. It included upper and lower cabinets as well as a small sink. I also had a second built-in dishwasher installed. Even with the dividing wall and doorway, I was able to make the kitchen and dining room flow together into one very large space. It was my dream kitchen and dining space all rolled into one.