A Dining Room Pick My Presto

Hey there- and welcome to another installment of Pick My Presto!

This week, I had some Photoshop fun with a photo of my friend Shaunna’s dining room.

She told me she wanted to add some wood planks to the room, and that she’d love it if the planks were varying widths.

That gave me an idea, but I told her to her to brace herself before I shared it with her, because it was a bit of a wacky one.

What about cladding it with some of that thin, 70’s lookin’ paneling they sell at home improvement stores?“, I (hesitantly) asked.

(Pardon the damsel in distress. Notice the thin 70’s paneling behind her.)

Before she could answer, I quickly added, “The “planks” on them are varied widths, and sure, it might not be the look you’re going for initially, but I’m telling ya, once that stuff is primed and painted, I think it could look pretty great…my Mom painted hers and it looks amazing…and it would probably  be the least expensive way to do it too ’cause it comes in big 4’x8′ sheets and they’re only like 20 bucks a sheet“. (That’s me, talking really really fast and so that Shaunna couldn’t answer.)

But I mean, come on, if it was painted, it could look like this, right?


And it would be an inexpensive way to clad just one wall, right?

Anywho, I think she’s going to least check it out…but I did send her this presto change-o drawing I put together, to help her visualize it a little better…

(Move your cursor back and forth on and off of the photo below to see the photo she sent me switch to my inspiration drawing)

(Note: My drawing is for inspirational purposes only, and the ideas shown in it are just that. Spontaneous, totally flexible, just-for-fun, ideas. And since this is a just-for-fun-photo-consultation, and not an actual-and-perfectly-to-scale-virtual-consultation, I have no idea if any of the furniture or accessories I used in the drawings would actually fit in the room. Boom.)

Here are the still images…

Shaunna’s dining room now

My presto change-o

I love the increased sense of height those floor-to-ceiling vertical lines add to the room!

I pretty much just wanted to show her what the paneled wall and the gallery lighting would look like, but I couldn’t help but sneak in some built-ins and a window seat while I was at it! And although the table and chairs probably aren’t anything like the table and chairs she’ll actually use, (I plucked those from PotteryBarn.com because they were positioned at the right angle for my drawing and pluckers can’t be choosers.) I did think it would be neat for her to see what using some kind of upholstered captains chairs would look like.

Can’t wait to see what her and her handy hubby come up with!

Wanna submit a photo for our Pick My Presto series?

Send an email to PickMyPresto [at] aol [dot] com titled, “PICK MY PRESTO- Living Room. (Replace the words Living Room with whatever type of room you’re actually submitting.) In the body of the email, include your name, your blog name (if you have one) your design likes & dislikes, and one photo of the space in question. (No links please.) It should be clear, and measure at least 400 pixels high x 600 pixels wide. (In other words: at least 4″high x 6″ wide) The bigger the better! Make sure it’s a photo you’re comfortable with us showing and writing about on our blog. Then, whenever I’m feelin’ the urge, I’ll randomly select someone’s email and have a little fun creating some traditional or cottage style presto change-o inspiration. Oh, and since I love surprises, I probably won’t email you to let you know I’ve “picked your presto” unless I have a specific question for ya about your space.


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  1. says

    Our basement is all painted paneling and I love it. It’s a basement so the ceiling is low, but the vertical panels make it feel higher. But don’t think you can only have white! When we moved it it was off white and it was fine, but I wanted a bigger color statement, so I painted it “Dolphin Gray” from Glidden which is a gray with purple undertones. It’s firmly in the purple family. It works so well. It was already painted in latex and we used latex satin and we’ve had no problems. We also inherited an aged drop ceiling. We can’t replace that right now, so we used a paint sprayer, took down the panels and painted them a creamy white and painted the metal grid. We did not prime. It looks fresh and clean. You don’t even notice it anymore.

  2. says

    OK, WOW!!! I’ve used Photoshop for years and sometimes do a little Phtotoshop magic with my own rooms to help me visualize changes, but I’m nowhere near this good! You’re awesome! And I can tell you have fun doing it!


  3. Sherri Langford-Farrell says

    Hi, Layla,
    Loved the redo. What colour white did your mom use on her paneling?

  4. Andrea says

    Layla! I was watching my recorded episode of The Nate Berkus Show today and Shaunna was on House Proud. She was giving a home tour of her house and she got to her dining room and I totally recognized your Pick My Presto! Thank you for sharing all your ideas and tricks. I just had to let you know how amazing you are!

  5. says

    LOVE this dining room. I realize you are a tad bit busy these days with your move but I was hoping that you might do a feature blog post on “cottage style” dining room tables. It’s such a big ticket price that you need to get it right the first time. This request is spurred by our own family needs, but if time allows I would LOVE to read a post all about dining rooms. Thanks in advance!!!! And FYI the link to the other “Pick your presto” dining room is broken.

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