My Silver & Gold Dining Room: It’s Beginning to Feel a Lot Like Christmas…

We keep hearing that dining rooms are “out,” and no one needs them any more. But I have to say one of the (totally frivolous) reasons I love mine is because it’s fun to decorate for the holidays.

It really starts to feel like Christmas when my daughter Lily helps me glitter up the room with silver and gold. We set the table and light the candles. Turn on the white tree so it blinks merrily at neighbors driving past our house on the street…

One of Lily’s friends was here for a sleepover recently, and when her mom stopped by the next morning to pick her up, she walked in, took a look at the dining room, and then opened her arms wide. “Ahhhh!” she sighed. “Your house just feels good.

That was one of the nicest compliments I’ve ever gotten. Despite the general disarray from having a bunch of 10-year old girls running around the house all night, she thought it felt good here. That’s what we all really want, right?

Back when I worked as a design assistant, I got to spend time in million-dollar mansions. And let me tell you, they didn’t all feel good. They looked fabulous by the time the designer I worked for was finished with them, but I was usually happy to go home to my humble one-bedroom townhouse with the sloping floors at the end of the day.

My house is not perfect or perfectly designed. I decorate on an IKEA and Target budget. I have a “House Projects” list as long as my arm. But it’s home, and there’s no place I’d rather be with my family, especially at this time of the year.

Wherever you’re spending the holidays, I hope they’re filled with love and cheer! I’m joining Nesting Place’s Christmas Tour of Homes today, so head over there to see how everyone else is decorating for the season!

 P.S. Want to see more of my rooms?

Visit “My House” Page.

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  1. Alie B says

    I love your decor and your sentiments. Home really is where the heart is…be it large or small. Merry Christmas to you and yours, Julia. Thank you for providing us all with this wonderful site. xo

  2. Toni says

    I love my dining room! We use it every day. Sometimes I just go sit at the table and read.

  3. Marta says

    Very pretty, Julia . . . you’ve done a beautiful job. It looks like it might be one of the first rooms you see when you walk in your house. I agree, it is important to keep it as a dining room. I love how you’ve mixed gold and silver. It will be a beautiful place to enjoy your holiday dinners.

  4. says

    your dining room is to die for!!!!! LOVE it all! that chest is amazing and love all the snowflake accents.

  5. Lily says

    Your dining room looks gorgeous. I love the color of your buffet and the mirror above it.

  6. Patty says

    Look at you matching the design on your dishes to your curtains! How cool is that!!

  7. says

    Julia, how wonderful to get that kind of compliment! i want my house to be a place that evokes exactly that sentiment. You show some beautiful places here, but my favorite posts are the ones that feature YOUR house, made pretty on an IKEA and Target budget but made beautiful with love.

    Your dining room does look awfully pretty all dressed in silver and gold. Festive yet elegant. I know you must love having Lily help you decorate!

  8. Susan says

    Good Morning, Julia.
    I just thought that I’d tell you how I start my day: 1) stagger to the coffee pot and get it going 2) Laptop on, check FB 3) Hooked On Houses!!! Yes, you are #3!!!
    I am always so disappointed when you don’t have a new post. (It’s OK, I get over it)
    Thanks for such an enjoyable way to start my day!

  9. says

    I love the silver and gold, especially with those beautiful curtains! It looks like you put them up especially for the holidays.

  10. Nicole says


    Amen to IKEA budgets! Truly a sweet post as usual about your precious home! I just love what you have put together (here, sunroom, everywhere…) and I heartily agree about decorating “outdated” dining rooms. I did the silver and gold theme last year (though not as well coordinated as yours) and really enjoyed it. The dining room is still the main stage for having all of my family around the table and enjoying each other and the food. Indeed these are some of my most cherished moments! (Ever the proud host am I when I glance at my loved ones faces while spying out of the corner of my eye some decor I assembled only weeks earlier on the mantel or table.) Susan echoed my sentiments exactly about this blog: I just love it!

  11. ShabbyChick says

    Simply and wonderfully magical. Ahhhhh. Love it! Merry Christmas and a most Blessed New Year, Julia! 😉

  12. ShabbyChick says

    P.S. Echoing Susan’s sentiments above you are #3 on my morning list, as well. 😉

  13. says

    This dining room is just the coolest. I like that it is big enough you can put a WHITE tree in it. YES I love your white tree (surprised? haha). Yes, like your reader above, I check you early in the morning too. Right now my hair is sopping wet and I should be blow drying and out the door to work. But look at me… lolly gagging around. Thanks for a pleasant diversion in this busy crazy season.

    • Sherry says

      I’m flipping over that gorgeous white tree too. It’s so fluffy & lucious, and a pretty, soft white – love it, and love the whole room. It’s just so warm & wonderful!

  14. Dean says

    Beautiful room! Your sentiments about working in multi-million dollar homes reminded me of part of a William Henry Channing quote: “…To seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion…” You can dress something up all you want, but it doesn’t mean it has heart. :-)

      • Dean says

        Here’s the whole quote:
        “To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion, to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly, to listen to stars and birds, to babes and sages, with open heart, to bear all cheerfully, to all bravely await occasions, hurry never. In a word, to let the spiritual unbidden and unconscious grow up through the common. This is to be my symphony.”
        -William Henry Channing

        Merry Merry Christmas!

  15. Lisa Smith says

    It’s just magical, Julia!!!!! I love every little touch. I especially love your sentiments. I think your beliefs are ONE of the reasons we all are so attracted to you and your wonderful site. You are a genuine and obviously thoughtful person whose kind heart comes through in each of her posts! I agree with these other comments and that your friend’s compliment is what we ALL strive for in our homes. We want people to “feel good”!
    P.S. I LOVE Target, Home Goods and flea markets!!! The treasure hunt is half the fun!

    • Gail Rubin says

      Isn’t that the truth. I always said the “hunt” is the fun part of decorating my home. Isn’t it the “BEST” feeling when you strike a “find”! That gives me such a high. I also love Home Goods and Target and Ikea.

  16. Aurie says

    Thanks for sharing Julia. It is always so beautiful, especially at Christmas. I look forward to your postings every day, but even more so during the holidays! Thanks for making me feel right at home :)

  17. says

    it’s lovely, Julia. And that sideboard? Is. Stunning. yep, it does feel good, I can tell just by looking!

  18. says

    Hi Julia
    She was right. Your house does feel good! I love the sparkle the gold and white gives your dining room.

  19. says

    What a gorgeous room and an even more gorgeous compliment to you and your home! Merry Christmas!

  20. Laura says

    Your dining room looks great! I love the blue buffet with the silver and gold.

  21. Nancy Wood says

    You have one of the prettiest rooms I’ve seen. Love the white tree with the silver and gold. I would feel very comfortable in your home. :)

  22. Julie B. [Holland] says

    Julia , Happy Holidays to you and your family, Im going to visit my daughter and her family back in Indiana for a couple weeks! Check back next year when I get back to my computer! Enjoy ! Leaving tomorrow ! Cant wait :)

  23. Heather says

    Love this room. I have that same exact sideboard from Arhaus Furniture. It’s great and really makes the room feel fun!

  24. Gail Rubin says

    Your house is so beautiful. I want to look at each picture and copy your ideas and use in my own house. Except I don’t celebrate Christmas, ( Chanukah for me). So I get my Christmas fix looking at your house. I love that you said you do it on an Ikea and Target budget. Me too!!!!!
    Keep sharing. I love your pics and your website

  25. E. george says

    Hi Julia how do I put this into words… We live oceans away yet I can feel the warmth of your lovely home and family. Your dinning room looks absolutely beautiful. Just in case it gets a bit busy I wanted to take the time to Wish you and your family A Joyous Noel and A Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year. Wishing you all Blessings of the season. Esther from Sydney.

  26. laney says

    ….those of us who have been reading your blog since its beginning know just what that mom means…we know your home must feel good…because your blog is a reflection of your home…and we always feel good when come through julia’s door…blessings laney

    • laney says

      ….forgot to tell you how beautiful every single thing is!…blessings laney

  27. Destiny says

    You and I share a love of trees, Julia. My holiday decorating is made up primarily of ornaments, beads and mercury, glass, twig, and twine trees. I just love them all!

    I also love that you said, “But it’s home, and there’s no place I’d rather be with my family, especially at this time of the year.” because that’s how I feel about my dear little house and family.

    Those of us who live in, dare I say, regular, normal, houses appreciate that you share yours with us throughout the year. It is beautiful, warm and welcoming and you have every right to be proud of it. While it may not be one of the outrageous dream houses you often feature that we all momentarily drool over, we know, and can see, that love lives there and love can’t be bought and strategically placed.

  28. Sam says

    lovely, I wish my mum decorated the house like this for Christmas!
    Always nice to see pics of your beautiful home. and you are right about the mansions! I like houses like yours waaay better than million dollar homes :)

  29. Renita says

    Your dining room is absolutely stunning! Elegant and warm. Wishing you and your family a very healthy and happy holiday season. Hope you enjoy wonderful meals and moments in your beautiful room!

  30. Screendoorgirl 3 says

    Yay! One of my favorite posts..I love dining rooms, and I love yours in gold and silver! Thanks for sharing it, Julia. Merry Christmas! Peace.. Jodi

  31. Nancy B says

    Julie, I tried to link to the White Christmas article but google indicated there was malware at the site. You might want to check this out.

    • says

      Hi, Nancy! I asked my tech person about it and she traced it to a rogue ad that was popping up for some people for Coin I blocked it and hopefully it won’t be back.

      Thanks for letting me know!

  32. says

    Hey Julia,

    There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having an IKEA and Target budget. Most leading decor magazines always feature elements from both stores in their shoots. I consider myself lucky to have an IKEA store 15 minutes away (in Israel). Unfortunately, Target is saved for my trips home to Indiana….

    Your home reflects your personality and that beats a lot of super fancy homes I view online!

    Love your style and blog!

  33. Stephanie says

    I love that room! Gold this time of year can be overkill if not handled properly – it can take a sharp left turn into tacky. However – your DR is just beautiful – warm and inviting.

    I have people compliment me on the “feel” of my house too – and my whole place is Ikea/target and tag sale stuff. There’s something about the love you have for your “things” and the care you take that must be felt by visitors.

  34. says

    I’m stopping by from the Nester’s 2012 Christmas Tour of Homes today. Your home is so comfortable and festive.
    I love the snowflakes on the white plates.
    Merry Christmas!

  35. Linda says

    What a beautiful dining room! Where did you get the rug – it’s very pretty :)

    • says

      Thanks, Linda! I found it on last year and couldn’t believe how well it went with my window treatments from West Elm. Great price, too. :-)