Experiments in home decorating, DIYing, and vintage furniture collecting.

How to create a masculine dining room

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October 21, 2015

These photos are of Spruce, an amazing restaurant in San Francisco that I visited last summer: it's been the inspiration for the first dining room or study I have when I move into a place where I'm allowed to paint the walls! Here's how I would copy this look to recreate a moody and masculine room of my own:

#1 Mix rich colors, textures and tones
Like deep navy walls combined with warm camel faux ostrich leather and dark brown velvet chairs, plus touches of crisp white in the tablecloths. Think how different (and boring!) this room would be if the walls were white. 

#2 Play with proportions
The oversize sketches on the walls are hung in enormous silver frames and make an extremely bold statement. I love that they're offset with delicate, antique picture lights and ornate chandeliers. The bold look of the colors and textures is balanced with subtle touches like small, understated succulent centerpieces and minimalist place settings.

#3 Combine decor styles
It's traditional, luxurious and modern all at once, thanks to a handful of well-positioned abstract paintings on unfinished canvases. The lack of an overall theme makes it feel pulled together but not overthought, and reads masculine when combined with the bold choices in paint colors and artwork.

If you're not ready to commit to navy blue walls, get the color combination by using rich rugs, fresh white drapes, and oversize sketches sourced from Etsy and hung in silver frames.

Meanwhile, I'll get started on re-creating this look by hunting for a vintage chandelier, trying to convince my landlord to let me paint, and attempting to recover a distressed pair of studded leather office chairs that my dad pulled out of the garage and hand-delivered to our home along with other Kelly family castoffs (including at least six different types of cacti that have been flourishing* in the Chicago climate).

*They arrived drooping and nearly dead, handed off by my guilty parents who didn't want the blame for killing them off (aloe is on their hands).

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