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 December 2016

Fresh Ideas for Your Home

A casual dining spot helps
people feel at home.

It's a beautiful solution for impromptu dining and off-the-cuff conversation.

Formal dining rooms are a fabulous part of a house and home. But just because you have a formal dining room doesn’t mean you can’t have a casual dining space too. Why not create a flexible and beautiful spot for unplanned get-togethers and daily family time – from lounging in the morning with a cup of coffee to afternoon homework to late evening talks with a cup of tea. And when guests are invited, it’s nice for them to be close to the cooking action, enjoying a pre-dinner beverage and chatting with the chef!


A casual dining table is usually in the kitchen or great room, but it can be somewhere else too, maybe even outdoors if you live in a year-round moderate climate! And often it’s not even a stand-alone table and chairs, but instead a counter top with high stools or a built-in table with a banquette.


Practicality is key with a casual dining spot:

  • Washable surfaces

  • Comfortable seating

  • Flexibility to use the space for homework and as a buffet

  • Durable materials for chairs or stools, maybe even washable slip covers

  • Good lighting since this area may be used for schoolwork or catching up on email

  • Open shelving nearby so family and guests can help set the table or hand the cook a serving dish or pot


A casual dining spot can come in most any decorating style. A contemporary look with mid-century furniture will give off a casual vibe, while a traditional or country look will feel comfortable and safe. Don’t worry about everything perfectly matching in style or material. Part of the charm of casual dining is its unpredictability.


Think kid-friendly, family-friendly and friend-friendly with a casual dining spot in your house. You and your loved ones will love the spontaneity this flexible space provides.

© 2016 Hunter Douglas

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