Rather than follow trends, this year it’s time to design a dining room that fits your preferences and lifestyle

dining Art Board
Rather than follow trends, this year it’s time to design a dining room that fits your preferences and lifestyle

The dining room is one of the most important parts of the home, as it’s where family and friends gather for meals and celebrations. This year, keeping things comfortable, rustic, and natural is the way to go, so think casual elegant when designing your dining room.



Elaine Lu, co-founder and managing director of award- winning Hong Kong inter-disciplinary interior design practice Lim + Lu, advises using a reclaimed wood dining table with sleek contemporary dining chairs to create a contrast between raw and refined. Alternatively, you can opt for banquette seats instead of dining chairs to create a lounge-like dining space.

To create an informal dining room where people can relax when not eating, use banquette seats as these can be more effective than chairs when it comes to creating a cozier and more laid-back vibe,” she says, adding that a beautiful statement chandelier or pendants above the dining table are a great way to add a sense of drama to the space.

According to Johnny Li, principal and managing director of AB Concept, it’s important to think not just about trends, but also about one’s personal lifestyle and aesthetic preferences when designing a dining room.“As one of the most important social spaces in a residence, the dining room should evoke a memorable experience for both the owner and their guests,” says Li, who encourages his clients to think about a look and layout that makes them feel at ease. It's important that the dining room reflects the owner’s personality and way of life. Remember, there are no strict rules. Add elements that you genuinely love and remove anything that no longer resonates with you.

Your dining room should reflect your personal tastes and preferences. Incorporate art, fabrics, and materials that make you feel comfortable and inspired. The space will naturally evolve as you live in it.


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Terracotta, green, and blue accents are showing up in many dining rooms right now. “You can incorporate terracotta with wall paint or pottery, vases or serving dishes to create a warm, rustic look. Green can be introduced with potted plants or rugs and blue accents can be incorporated with throw pillows, dining chair upholstery or dinnerware,” Lu says.

Saori Ishii, founder of Singapore studio Sollys Design, says that Japandi-style light-coloured oak wood paired with washi shade pendant lamps are great if you want to create a serene, Zen-like atmosphere in your dining room.

Use terracotta or blue as accent colours – in boucle chair upholstery fabric for example to complement the lighter earthy shades of the oak wood,” she says.

Li says he has seen a rise in the use of earthy shades in the dining room. After spending so much time indoors because of COVID, people are craving nature, so earth tones are being used a lot more. Earthy colours are also great for dining rooms because they harmonise with most design schemes and allow for greater flexibility and coherence, he says.

When using earthy neutral colours, Li suggests contrasting an earthy colour scheme with antique pieces, artworks, or lamps with bolder, more eye-catching colours. Lu says that wood, rattan, concrete and bronze are timeless ways to add texture to your dining room. You can introduce these to your dining room in the form of bronze or rattan lighting, or wood or concrete dining tables.


Dinning Room

When choosing furniture, think about the floor area and how many people typically use the space. According to Lu, as people return to having large gatherings, long wooden tables are a great way to create a fun and communal vibe.

Long, wooden tables work beautifully with vintage dining chairs. Tables and chairs with curved edges can help soften the space and create a more organic feel. People are also paying more attention to sustainability, so furniture made of bamboo, reclaimed wood, recycled materials, and locally sourced materials are also becoming more popular,” says Lu, who personally loves including antique bronze fixtures, whether its tapware, hardware or lighting in dining rooms. "Don’t over-furnish," is Li's advice. He believes it’s better to give a dining area more breathing space than to overwhelm it with excessive furniture, which can result in a cluttered look. "Fixtures and accessories play a vital role in completing the overall visual experience, but each piece you select should do the space justice. Ensure that all accessories and décor included in the dining room be showcased appropriately rather than be relegated to inconspicuous corners," he says.

According to him, the smaller items such as tableware or lighting should serve to complement the overall design concept. Don’t rush when choosing the smaller pieces. Over time, you can curate a diverse collection of fixtures and accessories, incorporating various styles such as antique, Victorian, modern, and different colours too. This allows you to let your dining room evolve to adapt to your personality and unique way of dining and entertaining” he says.

  • Make sure the accent pieces that you use are cohesive. For example, if you choose bronze as the accent metal, use the same coloured bronze for tapware, hardware, and lighting too.

  • Ishii’s advice is to make sure the furniture you purchase is suitable for the size of your dining room and that the height of the table is ideal for the people using it.

  • Hafi Hakim, director at Singapore interior design firm Thexton Smith Interiors, says that white tablecloths are a great inclusion, and can also help hide any blemishes on an old or scratched tabletop.


Ranked the No.1 home appliance by Japanese families in recent years, the Circulight Swing has a new concept of combining wind and light. It offers the choice of seven colour temperatures with 10 levels of dimming options, perfect for reading, exercising or relaxing at home. The appliance, equipped with a powerful Japanese silent DC motor, offers 16 levels of wind speed settings.

Its patented “swing” technology allows users to set the fan at a designated direction or 360-degree rotations in two different slope angles. By setting the air-con at a higher temperature, it can reduce energy up to 50%. Circulight Swing can efficiently push the cool air around the house with a super low consumption of energy. This not only speeds up the cooling sensation on our skins, but also effectively eliminates any hot spots at home. It comes with a handheld remote control while being compatible with the likes of Aqara Hubvia Apple HomeKit, and Hey Google.


The Diamond collection is defined by the notion of “Foreverness,” withstanding the test of time like the durability of Laminam surfaces; and the feeling of being “special”, invoking intimate moments in the spaces where people spend their precious time. Combining skill sets and artistic research, the timeless Diamond series is easy to blend into design styles of all kinds.


The CAMEO table by Calligaris achieves an artful blend of metal and ceramic. A central column made from coated metal supports the oval top available in a host of marbles. The absence of edges lends a touch of softness to a dining room.

Expert Advice
Johnny Li
AB Concept


• Plan your lighting, as this plays a significant role in evoking emotions. Mixing vintage lights with modern furniture pieces can create a striking contrast, while mirrors can be used decoratively or architecturally to enhance light and shadow.
• Choose a centrepiece that you love and build the design around it. This centrepiece can be an artwork or a mid-century antique dining table. Let that item be the visual focal point and let the rest of the design flow intuitively from this.

Saori Ishii
Sollys Design

Dinning Room

• When choosing furniture such as tables and chairs be sure that they are of a suitable size for your dining room and of the right height for those who use the space.
• Blue, terracotta and oak are colours that were in trend at the Milan furniture fair this year, so you might want to try incorporating these colours into your kitchen décor.

Johnny Shum
Make It Works

Johnny Shum

• The dining area is a great opportunity to enhance the overall design of your home with functionality and beauty. We recommend having full-height storage units located next to a stylish free-standing dining table, with the center part of the cabinet left open for teapots and glasses. Adding either direct or indirect lighting inside the cabinet can create a beautiful backdrop for the area.

• To further enhance the dining area, consider incorporating pendant lights above the table. This will not only provide functional lighting for meal times, but also add a touch of elegance and sophistication to the space.

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