Amazing Before & After: A Dining Room Transformation

Contributing Editor Frances Schultz redid her dining room - and shares tips on how she did it - for an unbelievable transformation.

BEFORE: The dining room had yellow paint and nice architectural details.

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AFTER: The finished space works as both a dining room and a sort of library room. "Even if dinning rooms are seldom used, they're so lovely to have. Yet the single-purpose, formal dining room doesn't suit the way so many of us actually live," says Schultz.

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1. Add Wainscoting
Wainscoting gives a small room presence. Different treatments above and below a chair rail add another layer of interest and texture to the room.

See more: See France's Bedroom Makeover

2. Play with Scale
Don't be afraid of using big pieces in small rooms; they enhance the sense of spaciousness and scale. Big mirrors are especially effective.

3. Use Multiples
Hang art (like my botanical prints) floor to ceiling, whether wall space is limited (like mine) or not.

4. Work with the Space
Who says the table has to be smack in the middle of the room? Just make sure the overall furniture arrangement is balanced. Trust your eye.

What room do you want to makeover?

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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.