'F' for Furniture Dining Room

Black Spindle Back Windsor Chairs

I’ve been hankering for a change in the dining room lately.

I’m going to paint the wood trim white (it’s on my 30 Before Thirty list), and I’d like to paint the ceiling too. The wallpaper is staying (I’m going to have to be very careful when painting the trim), and so is the rug. Now, while I do love my vintage dining set, I have been pining for new chairs.

Wallpapered Dining Room

I like Eames shell chairs (especially with the dowel legs), but doesn’t everyone? And I already have two Eames chairs elsewhere in the house. I still have eight stackable plywood chairs in the basement, though we should probably just go ahead and sell them on Craigslist. And I could just change out the pink fabric on the chair seats for something else (faux-leather?). Or there are always the cute oval back dining chairs that I’ve long admired. But do you know what I’m really into lately? Black spindle back chairs. Like these…

  1. Family Chairs (available as a mixed set of four, or individually), MOMA

  2. Salt Chair, DWR

  3. Thatcher Side Chair, Room & Board

  4. OLLE Chair, IKEA

I can sell my current dining room set on Craigslist, and then use the money toward new furniture. I know the OLLE chairs are affordable, but the other chairs all have more graceful lines. OK, or I could just see how my vintage set (which I do not want to alter other than seat fabric) looks in the room once the trim has gone white.

What would you do?

You Might Also Like...


  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 2:42 pm

    You need 6 chairs think about the price.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 2:44 pm

    Have you considered painting the trim a charcoal gray instead of white? Then paint the back of the hutch an unexpected color, like turquoise or chartreuse. Then re-evaluate the chairs. I personally love those chairs more than any of the others you showed; the quality and style is better & more interesting than what you see in showrooms every day. Definately consider reupholstering the seats – find something that correlates to the wallpaper and that punch of color in the hutch to pull it down into the room. You’re not going safe anywhere else in the house; don’t do it in your dining room.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    Adding to the above; if you MUST replace any chairs; move two to another room and get two new ones for the end.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    I’m with the wait and see group. Once you paint you may have a different perspective.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    I really wouldn’t paint the trim – I lived in a vintage condo and stripped woodwork for months to get the wood back to the original finish – you are so lucky to have that.

    I do love the MOMA chairs.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    Maybe you could go for vintage spindle back chairs. They come up all the time in charity shops, excellent quality and really cheap. If they’re mismatched, all the better, especially if painted with a single distinctive unifying colour, like pink! And I’d say totally paint the trim.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    I vote go for NEW! The MOMA chairs are really cool too. What about a white table and black chairs…then add color with place mats and center pieces. White trim is a great addition…I know with these classic homes it’s hard to do (your heart says paint it!) but it really cleans it up and makes for nice decorating options too. Also not sure if you are big on SW paint…but they have an exterior paint that looks great on trim. It’s the “sherlastic” line. It goes on super smooth, only one coat and the white is a nice shade. Oh and if you are painting windows with this stuff it works great too! Just not sure if it comes in 1 gal or 5 gal buckets. Good luck and keep us posted!

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    Oh no! Seeing your wood trim 3 years ago is what kept me from painting mine. I have literally showed a picture of your trim and floors to my floor guy.
    I’m afraid if you paint, I’m going to have to paint too! Can’t wait to see how it turns out.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    Once you paint the trim in the room, I think you will like the table much more! Right now, it is a bit of oak overkill. But to give your current chairs a new twist, why not paint just the 3 inside spindles black and then change the seat fabric to some faux leather or something similar. Then, if you still don’t like the table you can sell it on craigslist.
    Before you do anything to the table, I would paint the trim. I think that table is going to POP as soon as all that trim is painted white!

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    I love the wallpaper, it will look wonderful and fresh with the white trim. I think I would paint the trim then try out the plywood chairs with the existing table and some punchy modern placemats ( like maybe square, lime green). Or keep the chairs and do the seats in something punchy and fun ( like marimekko?) Not a fan of the black spindle chairs myself. Can’t wait to see what you do:).

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    BTW, Interior Express http://www.interiorexpressoutlet.com in Bensenville has decent knock offs of the Eames shell chairs. -Ghost chairs, too.

    Just sayin’. :)

  • Reply
    Kari S.
    August 31, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    love chair number three!

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 6:41 pm

    Paint the trim and then see how you feel about the dining set.

  • Reply
    Liz H. N.
    August 31, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    Don’t sell the table and chairs….it is beautiful and classic!!

  • Reply
    amy goodhouse
    August 31, 2010 at 8:24 pm

    I agree with most of the other comments to paint the wood first, then make a decision. The white wood will give a drastic new look to the room (I like what you have but I’m definitely partial to painted white wood and can’t wait to see it!)

    I also recommend using primer first, you might even need a few coats. I primed and painted my old wood trim and I found a few spots where the wood color is leaking through (it took about 2 coats of primer and 3 coats of paint to even get that far)

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    Paint first, your set will look more striking without all the other wood distraction. I have seen the mismatched table and chair look and it has its place but not when you already have this lovely set. Your dining table and chairs look like a place where people would want to lounge & linger over dinner & coffee. Go for form & function and know that your guests will much prefer these chairs, recovered or not, for many years to come.

  • Reply
    Erin R.
    August 31, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    I agree that you should paint first and then see about switching out the fabric on the chairs and then evaluate. Your dining room set is gorgeous and while I love the spindle back chairs, I love the look that your current set has even more.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 10:29 pm

    I love the family chairs, now I’m thinking, how much could I possibly get for my chairs that I have now. Hmm, probably not enough.

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 11:04 pm

    I may be in the minority here but I would definitely not paint the trim! It looks like very nice trim and nice wood trim beats painted trim any day. Especially with kids! Painted trim gets dinged up so quickly and easily – no matter how good the paint job and how careful you are.

    For chairs I’d go for something not too fussy. I’d lean toward white – something more along the lines of the shell chairs. If you do paint the poor woodwork then I’d stick with the set you have.

    Or you could always leave it be. I totally understand the need for change but it really looks great the way it is! Try a new seat fabric first and maybe that alone will satisfy the need for change.

    Another idea – that ceiling would be awesome punched up in an bright turquoise or aqua. Wouldn’t work with your wallpaper but it’d look great next to the woodwork!

  • Reply
    August 31, 2010 at 11:06 pm

    MOMA chairs = SUPER pretty. However, I think your old dining suite is gorgie-oso!! I reckon you are just bored of it – which I get but – gorgeous, solid, quality dining suites are HARD TO FIND! Sit on the decision till you have painted the trim and what about some chartreuse vinyl on the chairs??

  • Reply
    Julie Anne
    September 1, 2010 at 1:19 am

    Please don’t paint the trim in the dining room…

    Paint the ceiling, switch out the furniture (although I would kill for that dining set), do other things to punch it up…but it is so rare to find craftsman woodwork in it’s intended natural laquered state, and your room is so beautiful with that hutch.

    Your dining room is my favorite room in your house, and your lovely taste, especially in your wall paper choice, really shows. I can’t imagine why you would want to change it so drastically when it’s only been decorated like that for a couple of years.

    Next thing, you are going to be changing up the reading nook, and then I am going to seriously cry.

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 1:35 am

    I haven’t read all the comments, so I might be re-stating here. I find spindle chairs to be incredibly uncomfortable. Also once the trim is white, I think you will really love the warmth that your beautiful dining set brings to the room. I would, however, totally recover the chairs and if you’re craving black, why not incorporate it in your fabric choice?

  • Reply
    Laurie G.
    September 1, 2010 at 2:29 am

    I love your chairs. I’d just switch up the fabric on the chair pads.

    • Reply
      September 1, 2010 at 6:46 am

      Me too.

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 10:17 am

    I would wait to see how the trim and the painted ceiling will be and then decide the other changes.

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 10:35 am

    My parents have a beautiful old wood table and modern chairs with a very simple, clean lines in black (similar to the Frankfurter chair) and it looks great, so I am particular to the concept of old wooden table and new black chairs. While the chairs you consider have a little bit more detail on the other hand your wood table has less details so I am sure your table and the new chairs would make a dreamy couple as well.
    And while I like Ikea I would go another route this time and invest in the chairs you really love. Your at a point in your life where you know what you want and have an idea how your life is going to be in the next few years so you can invest a little bit more in something you will keep for a long time.

  • Reply
    Making it Lovely | Transforming the so-so. » Blog Archive » Why I’m Painting the Wood Trim in My Home
    September 1, 2010 at 10:57 am

    […] Then there is the school of people that think it is a sin to paint wood. Take this comment from Jess on my last post: The natural wood trim is so fantastic and really adds to the value of the house. […]

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 11:53 am

    Check out the International Concepts Copenhegan chair for $99 on Walmart.com or csnstores.com. It is similar to the Thatcher but is unfinished–black stain you apply yourself is more durable than black paint. Target used to carry it too but they are only showing a prefinished version right now.

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 12:02 pm

    Amazon also has them for $89 with free shipping!

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    I just bought a black junior chair like these for my 3 year old daughter, from Ikea….so if you go for the chairs, Eleanor could have one in her size too!!

    • Reply
      Making it Lovely
      September 1, 2010 at 2:20 pm

      Aw, now I really want them so I can have a matching little chair!

  • Reply
    September 1, 2010 at 1:04 pm

    I say keep them and re-evaluate after paint! Probably just feels heavy in wood now but i think you’ll be happy after the painting is done! :-)

  • Reply
    September 2, 2010 at 11:59 am

    One of the reasons i love your dining room so much is because of the wood trim. It gives it a classic feel that is unmatched by paint

  • Reply
    September 2, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    def wait until you’ve painted, it might freshen up the whole room, furniture included :)

  • Reply
    A Merry Mishap
    September 2, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    I love the Olle chair from Ikea, I’ve thought about it for our own dining room.
    All the spindle chairs are great choices and that mixed 4 pack from Moma is a winner.

  • Reply
    Sage & Style
    September 3, 2010 at 8:48 am

    The black would look amazing with that wallpaper. I’m really into spindle chairs too … I love mixing them with other modern decor. Plus they’ll last a lifetime. My fave is #3.

  • Reply
    September 3, 2010 at 10:30 am

    As the mother of a toddler, I can safely say the best purchase I’ve ever made is my set of white Eames shell chairs (complete w/ dowel legs). After my son puts his spaghetti sauce covered hands on the chair, I can easily wipe them off and spray with 409 if needed. Pricey, but so worth it! Just saying :)

  • Reply
    September 3, 2010 at 11:59 am

    First time reading your blog, but you have the same opinions about painting wood as I do, if it makes you happy do it (plus I hate the grain of oak, when I painted my oak kitchen cabinets in my last house my dad warned me, “you know, people kill people like you for what you just did…” really…I’m still here. in fact my new kitchen has oak but stained very dark, and i wish everyday it were white like the last one. i know eventually i will paint and glaze it like the last one…) anyhow, as for your dining room, paint the trim *fab*, as for the dining room, i don’t think you will be happy with your set once that is complete, *sad* but you won’t. keep the table, put a nice white linen cover on it it’s beautiful, change the chair covers to some updated fabric, such as zebra stripes, scrolls, something traditional-modern, keep three in the house, use them as landing spots and chairs, by the front/back door, in front of your bed in lieu of a bench, by the stairs, etc) if it were me, I would stain them all a dark black and call it a day. I did that with an antique duncan fiffe (sp?) set I didn’t want to paint (because of the same issues). It is black but you can see all the variations of grain, best of both worlds and I changed the chair covers. It was more work, but worth the effect.

  • Reply
    Making it Lovely | Transforming the so-so. » Blog Archive » Let’s Hope
    September 14, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    […] it gorgeous? And see, I told you those Eames chairs with dowel legs get me every […]

  • Reply
    September 28, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    I have had wooden chairs at my dining table. I like to linger and talk and have my table be a place to be comfortable and sit a while. Now I have comfy chairs, and that actually happens now. Wood chairs hurt people’s tushies and made them beat retreat from my dining table.
    Something to consider… Function over form.

  • Reply
    October 16, 2010 at 9:31 am

    hi nicole, i don’t know where you are at with this project since the post was a while back but fyi i have the dwr salt chair and it is very uncomfortable. if you still like the stick back or windsor style i suggest looking about for antique ones since they last forever and are much more comfortable. good luck!

  • Reply
    Mademoiselle Chair by Tapiovaara Design | Making it Lovely
    December 8, 2010 at 9:06 am

    […] just solidified my love for modern windsor chairs. Covetable […]

  • Reply
    January 7, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    I’m a new reader and thoroughly enjoying myself today perusing through your blog. My West Elm catalog came last night and they have new spindle back chairs in black that are to die for. Had to share them with you in case you haven’t seen them yet.

    (And I apologize if you’ve already purchased some)

  • Reply
    July 19, 2011 at 10:36 am

    I think the combination of the white trim (assume you will also paint the built-in curio), the heavy oak table and the spindly-new black MOMA chairs (the ONLY choice here!) would be so fresh. You could do four and then maybe find two different ones for the ends of the table…maybe white, or keep two of your current oak and paint them white? And wood chairs are so practial with kids…mine are fabric covered and I have messy little boys! Whatever you do, I know I will love it and can’t wait to see it. Change is good, and so much cheaper than moving.

  • 1 2

    Leave a Reply