Decorating Dilemma: Debra’s Living and Dining Room

Decorating a small living and dining room

Decorating Dilemmas is a weekly column in which our stylists answer your design questions, so you can tackle your home decorating project with complete confidence.

Dear How to Decorate,

I have a space that is shared for the dining room and living room. I’m having a hard time figuring out my furniture placement that doesn’t make the living room too small or the dining room too small. Also, the entry is right into the living room with the stairs right inside the door to the right.

Thank you,


Dining area

Sofa view

Dear Debra,

We can relate to small spaces.  Our furniture is scaled to fit wonderfully into your space.

We’d like to centere your sofa in front of the window and placed a Durham Side Table on each side with the Durham Cocktail Table in front.  A pair of Suzanne Kasler Large Gourd Lamp in Camel will look great crowning the side tables and bring soft light to this side of the room.

Consider the Slim Chadwick Media Cabinet in Black against the entrance wall.  It will house a 42” television and also add some needed storage.  You can re-hang your hooks in a more vertical pattern tucked closer to the door.

Since your space is a bit limited, we suggest bringing in a Larkin Swivel Glider in Aruba Turquoise opposite the sofa.  This fabric adds color and pattern for a cheery look!  Another bonus is the Easy Care Fabric is spot cleanable with soap and water.  We have also placed your ottoman across from the sofa for extra seating. Your photo clock … tuck it between the windows.

Since chairs are missing around your fabulous table, consider several Constance Dining Chairs in black for the long side and two Slipcover Parsons Chairs in Off-White Twill for the ends.

We have added the Spring Walkway Giclee for color on the wall next to the bar.

On the wall between the stair and the kitchen opening we placed a 2-door Dehavilland Console for storage.  Above the console we love the Ogden Mirror to reflect some light on this side of the room.  The Malia Seeded Glass Lamp will add a little sparkle to this area as well.

We hope these suggestions will help your room function well and be family friendly.  Thanks for letting us help with your home.

The Design Solutions Team

Decorating a small living and dining room

Do you have a decorating dilemma? Send us your own questions here.


How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.