Interior Design: Create A Japanese Inspired Dining Room

Ideas for creating a dining room with Japanese design elements.

Dining at a low table seated on a pillow is more than a statement in frugality. It is also the epitome of Japanese dining room design. Here are some ideas you can use to create a Japanese inspired dining room in your home.

Wall treatments: Wall colors for your Japanese inspired dining room should be chosen from the traditional Japanese color palette of black, red, cream, and white. Gold is also a popular color in Japanese design. Chances are you will want to save black for the fabric and furniture, so you should consider painting the room, or at least the room above the chair rail, a vibrant red. Paint below the chair rail white. For an extra touch, add an inspirational Japanese saying to the wall written in Japanese characters using black or gold paint.

Artwork: Hang a traditional Kimono on the wall or perhaps Japanese swords. You can also use painted fans and large landscapes reminiscent of toile are also good choices.

Fabric Patterns: There are several traditional Japanese patterns from which to choose. Embroidery, metallic weave, brocade, and Kasuri are just a few. Within these styles, you will find flowers, patchwork designs, and many other brightly colored patterns.

Window treatments: Mimic the look of *shoji screens in your windows by using rice paper window shades, under very simple black and gold fabric covered cornice boards.

Furniture: In a traditional Japanese home, you do not sit on chairs, instead the floor is made of *tatami mats. For easterners who want to follow this tradition, but need a bit more comfort, you can sit on pillows around a low table. Although you will not need a special *kotatsu table to keep you warm, you can adapt the style of the low table by having legs shortened on a traditional table, or using a very large coffee table. You can also choose to purchase a Hibachi table, which has both cooking and eating areas and is a modern day version of the kotatsu. If you want a western styled table in your Japanese inspired dining room, look for a simple table with clean lined furniture made of glass, Teakwood or lacquer finish. If you decide you must have chairs, try to use simple chairs with clean lines, covered in a traditional Japanese color or a Japanese patterned fabric.

Tableware: To complete your look, you must have Japanese table wear on your table and shelves. Handle-less teacups and kettles, *sake sets, and gently curved square plates are available in glass, ceramic and wood. Many are also hand painted.


* Kasuri: fabric woven from threads especially dyed to create the pattern displayed on the finished piece. This requires the weaver to plan where the dyed threads will fall on the weave in advance.

* Kimono: Traditional silk costume Japanese costume

* Kotatsu: a low heated table traditionally used for warmth

* Saki: and alcoholic beverage made from fermented rice

* Shoji Screen: sliding, paper covered screen doors also called fusuma

* Tatami: soft woven mats that cover the floors in Japanese homes

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