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A Thanksgiving Dining Room Makeover

By: Jessica Dodell-Feder and Styled by: Elizabeth Demos
Just in time for a crowd of 20, HGTV Magazine helped new homeowners in Wilmington, DE turn this cheerless space around.
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Photo: David A. Land. From: HGTV Magazine.

The Homeowners

When Kelli and Andy Wilke moved with their three kids from a small cabin in Jackson Hole, WY, to a four-bedroom Colonial in Wilmington, DE, they were thrilled to have more space, including a formal dining room, which they’d never had before.

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Photo: Kelli Wilke. From: HGTV Magazine.

Bare Space

Although Kelli loved the room’s size, she just wasn’t sure where to begin. She set out a few basics—a small table, a wood hutch, and some leftover chairs—but as November approached, she started to stress. “We wanted to host Thanksgiving, but our table could barely seat five, let alone 20!”

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Photo: David A. Land. From: HGTV Magazine.

Thanksgiving-Ready Dining Room

So we answered her SOS and set about making the once bare room holiday-ready. It took smart storage pieces and a fresh color palette of gray, gold, and green (plus a bigger table, of course!), but the end result “couldn’t be prettier,” says Kelli. “I want to eat here every night, not just holidays!”

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Photo: David A. Land. From: HGTV Magazine.


For buffet-style dinners, a sideboard is a must. This one is from an estate sale and was originally stained wood. We spruced it up with two coats of tropical green paint (Talipot Palm by Sherwin-Williams), then spray-painted the wood legs Gold by Valspar. The brass pulls and latches are all original—they just needed a good polishing.

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