Provence Dining Room: The Look for Less

Check out these tips and tricks excerpted from the book Sensible Chic , and get a high-end look for less.


Regardless of the style of room you desire, there are tips and tricks the professionals use to get a high-end look for less. Here’s a sampling of the very best ideas you can use today.

  • When your space and/or budget do not lend themselves to custom built-in cabinetry, imitate the look with store-bought furniture painted to match the walls. For the Sensibly Chic room, Jen Jordan purchased an inexpensive sideboard and wine cabinet and painted them the same buttery yellow as the walls. This technique makes the pieces appear as though they had always been a part of the space.
  • To add display space to a room — without spending a lot for cabinetry — add shapely shelves, as the Sensible Chic team did. Use the shelves to showcase treasures or display items you use daily, positioning them so you can easily access them when needed.
  • Although Jen bought the country table new, if you’re handy, you can also cut corners by piecing together a separate tabletop and base. Salvage mismatched pieces such as wrought-iron scrollwork legs at flea markets and garage sales. If you can’t find a top, design your own surface from reclaimed lumber. Rather than buying new, look for an old table with a wood finish that looks worn and comfortable, not shiny and bright.
  • With its colors, motifs, and textures, fabric can have powerful impact — and evoke various moods and attitudes — in any space. To add a splash of cultural elegance to your dining room, purchase an embroidered silk for an Asian-style space or sturdy mudcloth for an African theme and re-cover the drop-in chair seats.
  • For a rustic European look, comb garage sales, estate sales, flea markets and antiques stores to accessorize inexpensively. For other looks — such as Japanese and Moroccan, whose beautiful objects tend to be valued treasures —seek out reproductions at local import stores.

Keep Reading

Next Up

A Formal Dining Room for Less

Achieve a polished look in your dining room while on a budget with these 4 simple tips.

Budget-Friendly Dining Room Updates From Expert Designers

We asked. They answered. Expert designers share what to buy if you only have $200.

A Luxurious Bedroom for Less

8 tips for making the most of your budget

$100 Half-Day Designs: Colonial Dining Room Makeover

Elegant window treatments, a newly painted chandelier and simple slipcovers transform the look of this colonial dining room.

Design Budgeting 101: Outdoor Rooms

Professional designers know how to stretch a buck. Joan Grabel and Katie Z. Leavy share some of their best ideas for decorating an outdoor space for less.

15 Ways to Dress Up Your Dining Room Walls

Not sure what to put on those blank walls? We've got 15 solutions.

12 Ways to Step Up Your Dining Room Decor for the Holidays

Because the decor should be just as fabulous as the food.

10 Stunning Dining Room Light Fixtures Under $500

Make your dining room shine without breaking the bank.

5 Fresh Dining Room Layout Ideas

Designers share five original ways to rethink the traditional dining room arrangement.

Solutions for Holiday Dining

Check out these tips for preparing a dining room for the holidays.


Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.