Colorful Painted Dining Table Inspiration

I think I’ve just about decided to go with a colorfully painted dining table in my new dining room!

To be honest, I’m glad that my Plan A for my dining table didn’t really pan out because now that gives me the opportunity to do something really bold and different with the table that I probably wouldn’t have considered otherwise.  I mean, stained top and black base?  It’s a beautiful combo.  Classic, even.  But it’s a bit predictable, and that’s not exactly what I want for the first room that people see upon entering my house.

Painted Dining Table Ideas

I want bold, colorful, bright, fun, and a little bit daring.  (See?  This is what happens when I spend my days at the condo.)

And I just feel like that will start with a big, colorful painted dining table in a color that I’ll pull from the fabric that I’ve chosen.

Do you know how hard it is to find colorfully painted dining table inspiration?  With all of the painted furniture out there these days, it seems like there would be more.  Way more. 

But dining tables seem to be the one piece of paintable furniture with which most people play it safe and stick with neutrals.

If you get on Pinterest and search “painted dining table,” you’ll find a plethora of tables in white, black and gray.  And if people want to get really “daring” it seems that the go-to color is soft, barely-there robin’s egg blue.

There’s absolutely nothing at all wrong with those safe, neutral colors.  But when I see so many of them, it makes me wonder the same thing that I wonder every time I get on Pinterest and see the unbelievable number of kitchen makeovers that are all painted white.  Do the majority of people out there really and truly prefer those neutrals, or do they have them and live with them because they’re safe and they’re the “proper” colors for kitchens and dining tables?

Because let’s face it, a bold, bright, daring color on a dining table makes quite a statement in a room. It’s a surefire way to make your dining room personalized, unique, and the very opposite of boring and predictable.

So I’m going to go for it.  The other day, I was kind of joking when I said that I might paint the table a bold cranberry color, but now I’m seriously considering it.  Or at least, I’m considering a bold color.  Again, I’ll wait until my fabric sample arrives so I can choose a color that coordinates with it.

And I have a feeling that at least one or two of you should be joining me in this.  And again, that’s not because there’s anything wrong with neutrals.  Neutrals are great.  Every room needs neutrals to contrast with the bold and bright colors that are used.

But at least a couple of you should be joining me in this because a bold, bright painted table would be more “you,” and you’ve been living with a neutral table that you feel is boring simply because it’s the “proper” color for a dining table.

colorful dining tables - turquoise dining table by Amoroso Design via Houzz

Traditional Dining Room by San Francisco Interior Designers & Decorators Amoroso Design

Soooo…who’s ready to take a paint brush to a dining table now?  🙂

colorful dining tables - yellow dining table from Polhemus Savery DaSilva via Houzz

Beach Style Dining Room by Chatham Architects & Building Designers Polhemus Savery DaSilva

I’m getting really excited about the possibilities for my dining room.  I’m still leaning towards a warm color simply because I want to force myself to get out of my blue and green (and blue-green) comfort zone.

colorful dining tables - teal dining table from The Blue Moon Trading Company via Houzz

Beach Style Dining Room by Tampa Interior Designers & Decorators The Blue Moon Trading Company

Sometimes failed Plan A’s can be the best thing to happen for your rooms and your decorating plans.  And I have a feeling that my dining room will turn out to be way more “me” now that I’m forced to move on to Plan B, and now that I’m feeling way more daring.



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  1. I have already joined you! A couple years ago, my aunt gifted me with an old, rectangular, farmhouse-style dining table that I loved the shape of but hated the type/stain of the wood. I painted it a solid, bright yellow and loved it! It looks great in my white kitchen. Recently, my husband ruined my finish by setting a hot pot on it. Instead of touching up the paint, I sanded the top down and stained it a rich, dark walnut. Now, the top is stained wood, and the legs are yellow, much like your picture from West Furniture Reveal. I love it even more now!

    1. I want to paint my kitchen table but my concern was how to protect the top. After painting, should there be a coat of something like lacquer?

      1. Yes! I always use Polycrylic made by Minwax over stained or painted wood. I wouldn’t suggest polyurethane over light colors because it tends to yellow over time. You can also use finishing wax or Waterlox as well.

  2. I painted by dining room table mustard yellow and never looked back! I LOVE it!!! My living room and dining room are open to eachother and can be seen from our front door and I love walking into my home and seeing a big, happy, sunny room. It almost sets the mood and says “We have fun here”.

  3. These colorful tables really resonate with me, and would be just the thing in my “baptized in beige” home. Unfortunately, my current dining table is just two smaller tables sitting next to each other to accommodate our large family of 8. But when I get a “real” table… watch out!

  4. I am envisioning you leading a mob of people with paintbrushes and pails of colorful paint in a parade of beautiful tables on wheels (for parade purposes only)! I love the idea of color on tables!

  5. I can see you going for it Kristi… can’t wait to see the color you choose.. I’m thinking the same green as your cabinets would look nice since it will be adjoining the kitchen.. Good luck..!!

  6. We stained our dining table the most gorgeous saturated cobalt blue – it was certainly daring and we LOVE it – actually, we’d do it again in a heartbeat. Go bold or go home!

  7. Love Love Love the idea of the Cranberry table. I almost painted my table legs cranberry but couldnt find the exact shade that I loved. Also hubby wasnt to meen on the painting of furniture so I painted them black to ease him into painting our furniture.

  8. I love the yellow table and pink chairs! I love the lacquer look but am unsure how to achieve it (any ideas?). I’d need it to be durable and stand up to normal dinner use every night for a family of 5.

  9. I totally think you should go for a cranberry table! That would look fantastic with your green kitchen (which I think is absolutely beautiful).

  10. Oh my heart skipped a beat when I saw the shade of red whether it be raspberry, cranberry. It is a stunner. So yes! I am with you on the color. It is happy. Who doesn’t want to be happy? Now I am thinking about paint chips …

    1. I like the one with stainless or zinc covering the top, solves that problem and you still get beautiful color elsewhere. But that may be too casual for Kristi’s table.

  11. I would hesitate in this for the same reason that I avoid bold nail color: chips and scratches and worn spots. They really bother me. I don’t do distressed. This is a surface that sees a lot of traffic: groceries, homework, mail, projects and sometimes even dinner. I have a 127 pound piece of beveled glass on my 60″ circle table and I would suggest this to someone who paints the top surface a bold color.

  12. I’m one of those people who really does love a white kitchen 🙂 I like my pops of color in small doses. While I love seeing what you’re doing with your home, and how well it suits your personality, I couldn’t live with so much color. It would simply overwhelm me. I get sensory overload when I visit some museums and cannot handle going into Christmas-themed stores for more than half an hour. Too much color for too long gives me a headache (literally, not even kidding). But I truly do enjoy seeing how much you love color and how you’re using it to create a one-of-a-kind, perfect for Kristie home!

  13. I just can’t settle on a color for the round oak table in our kitchen! Bright yellow, cobalt blue, red? Maybe a satin nickel top? The kids have ruined the oak stain and I am ready to have fun. I can not wait to see what you do.

  14. I’ve been debating painting my kitchen table. I have a beautiful wood table in my dining room that I love, so I think 2 wood tables in adjoining rooms feels redundant. I’m just waiting for some fabric samples, too. But I’m pretty sure I’m going with a bright bold yellow. I’ll share the pics once I’m done!

  15. Love love love these ideas!!! I dont know which one is prettier….I love the first one maybe best of all….I cant wait to see what u talented thing you!!! lol

  16. Love your inspiration pics! I love the dark cranberry one and all the yellows, I love yellow in kitchen/dining rooms. I would love to update my 70’s era dining set but am not sure how to paint over the shiny faux wood, maybe I will keep an eye out at the thrift stores for something to experiment on! So excited to see what you come up with. BTW, how is the condo coming along-any closer to getting it on the market?

    1. The condo is coming along! I’m making progress, and it’s definitely closer to being ready to put on the market. Still lots of little (and a few not-so-little) things to do, but hopefully it won’t be too much longer. I’m getting tired of working over there, and very anxious to get back to the house!!

  17. I love the bright tables but I prefer a neutral because that way I don’t have to worry about it clashing with whatever linens, china, or flowers I might want to use and, more importantly, it doesn’t clash with the food. I do love how they look though, especially that first green one and the deep red one.

    1. Clashing with food…now I had never even thought of that! Definitely something to be considered, especially for people who entertain quite a bit. For a person like that who entertains a lot, but also wants color, green might be the best color since it’s “nature’s neutral” and complements most foods quite well.

      1. This is why the best restaurants use white dinnerware. A beautifully created dish gets lost on a busy plate. White is the best base for food.

  18. Personally, I thrive on neutrals. I have a very stressful, hectic job and soothing neutrals soothe my mood as soon as I walk in the door. So yes, some of us *do* actually prefer boring all white kitchens and neutral spaces. We find them to be classic, classy, elegant, and calming. Not that we find your taste to be the opposite, it’s all what makes you thrive and happy in your home.

    1. I wouldn’t say “some.” I would say “most.” I do think the majority of people are comforted by being surrounded by most neutrals with only a few colorful accents here and there. I think people like me, who thrive on color, are certainly the very small minority. 🙂 I could be wrong, but if the pictures of interiors on Pinterest and other decorating/design/DIY blogs are an indication, then I think neutrals are the clear favorites of most.

      1. I can’t say for sure, but I have 5 sisters, 1 sister in law, and about 4 really good friends and we all have homes with color. Reds, greens, blues, etc. My dining room is Eggplant! However, I still love my white kitchen and my all white bathrooms. I can paint the walls, change towels and accessories and give everything a whole new look. In the 25 years that we have lived in this house, my kids bathroom in the main hall upstairs has been light green with stenciling of purple, taupe walls with black and white border, and now it is a beautiful shade of blue, that I could not reproduce since it was a mix of a navy and white, with the most colorful shower curtain with flowers and birds, and blue and sunny yellow towels. When you have white, you can change a room in a day to a totally different look! That is why I will always have white toilets and tubs and tile. It is clean and bright and so versatile.

        1. I love green…all shades except lime or the bright neon greens…browns, gold browns, dark in cranberry or brownish burgandy..not the purplish variety..and lots of white…thats my color scheme…I like to feel as if im living in the forest or woods…and I have consistently used these colors since I had my first house…so I think that leans toward a neutral palette…with a touch of color..

  19. If going crazy bold is your thing then do it. However, not everyone is into that look. Some folks are more traditionalist, and while they love painted furniture, they love it the colors that they love. I plan to have a plank top cherry table in my new home (made from the leaves of my huge drop leaf table), the top will be stripped down to the natural cherry which is very light and then waxed or sealed to protect it. I do intend to have a painted base, maybe wood, maybe metal. I will use the solid cherry chairs that I now have in two different styles, but I will paint them in varying shades of the same color. Most likely it will be blues in three different hues. I don’t think this is out there and it will be something that I can live with for many years and know it will make me happy. Going crazy bright colors would get old for me. I like to see my wild pops of color in accessories that can be deleted when tiresome. Not so easy to do that with a dining table. I also don’t think that people who choose things like white kitchens do it because it is safe, or because they are boring. I have a white kitchen because I hate when a kitchen has so much wood tone that it ends up looking like a library. I want my fridge to be a fridge. I want to be able to find it in the dark, not wonder which tall wooden cabinet front is the fridge. I like appliances to look like appliances. Who ever came up with the idea of disguising them with cabinet fronts had to be a man. A kitchen is a kitchen, you get a stove, dw, sink, fridge etc. Only a man would be dumb enough to think hiding them would be cool.Blessings

  20. I’m totally with you! As soon as I move into my new house, I’ll paint my dining table red I think! Do you have any special tips? Sanding, paint, any sort of top coat???

    1. No tips so far. Painting dining tables that are used often is one of the hardest things (in my opinion) because every option seems to have its limitations. Oil based products are the hardest and most durable, but they also yellow with time making touch ups down the line almost impossible. Water based products are less durable. Latex paint never seems to dry hard enough, and always has that “tacky” feel to it.

      I really don’t now what direction I’ll go just yet. But I’ll share the process I decide on when I’m done! 🙂

    2. There is a great finished topcoat called General Finishes. You can find it on Amazon. It is great over painted surfaces, especially “chalk paint” if you don’t want to wax. You can get the look of shabby chic, without the pain and expense of finishing waxes.

  21. I think the only way I can get behind this is in an all white room. I think that the table can end up looking very country quickly. i’m really interested to see how you incorporate this into the dining room’s decor.

  22. For years I’ve played it safe with my furniture. Either white or black & cherry. And while I truly love the black furniture, I think when we move next year I will DEFINITELY be bringing some color into our furniture! Depending on whether our table ends up in the kitchen or living room will determine its color. BUT I am looking forward to bringing some bold flair to my style! 🙂

  23. I love, love, love that idea and am sorry i got rid of my whitewashed china cabinet and table without thinking I could paint it! I loved the lines in it, but it was so outdated I couldnt wait to get it out of my house. I DID replace it with a beautiful, but worn Grand Piano in my dining room….hmm…wonder how long it would take me to paint that? Anyone ever seen a cranberry or nay blue Grand Piano?

  24. If my dining table wasn’t covered in projects waiting for me, I would paint my table with you. I have a question: If you go bold on the dining room table, what are you going to do with the buffet? I have an even larger buffet that has a battered finish (it was an office credenza in its previous life) . I don’t want two bold pieces in the same room.

    1. I haven’t really decided yet, but I personally wouldn’t mind having them both painted in bold colors. It all depends on what other furniture, accessories, and fabrics go in there, though. I don’t want it looking like a circus, but if everything else is tame in comparison, then having two painted pieces in there wouldn’t look like too much, in my opinion. And also, my buffet is going in the entryway, while the table will be in the dining room. It’s basically all one big room, but they’ll be about ten feet apart with other things between them.

      1. Mine will be only about five feet apart. I’m not decorating around fabric, and I haven’t decided on a wall color, so the choices are unlimited!

  25. Oh, my, now are we excited! I can hear minds turning and going crazy from here! Love all those tables! Since you will be opening a door into the kitchen, now you can bring that kitchen into the new dining room. Love, love. Are you going to try to coordinate the new window fabric with the kitchen? Can’t wait to see the final outcome!!

    1. Yes, anything I use in the dining room will have to coordinate with my green kitchen. I need them to flow together if they’ll be open to each other. Those green cabinets are so bold and dominant that even with a small doorway, they’ll still take center stage, so everything will need to accent and complement them.

      1. What did I miss? How are the kitchen and ex living room going to flow together? I was away, I have been sick, but I thought I was caught up with everything! Clearly I missed something important???

        1. I’ll help you out, Mary Anne. At some point, Kristi will cut into the wall to the kitchen (through the wall that is mostly tiled) and make an entrance into the kitchen from the new dining room. Her bravery overwhelms me!!!

  26. Love a lot of these pics, but especially the one via This Full Life … The pedestal and the rich, deep whatever color that is! So, yes, possibly a new route for my dining table!

  27. Our dining table has a dark blue stained top with a white base. The great thing I have found about the stained and polyurethaned top is that it is not sticky like many painted pieces. I have a painted desktop (with latex paint though) and hate that my papers always adhere to it-especially in humid weather. Maybe with an oil based paint the stickiness issue will not be a problem though. I agree completely with you that bold and bright is perfect for your home!!! Can’t wait to see what you come up with.

  28. You have inspired me. I just bought an antique dining room table and I’m going to keep that wood look, but my father made a kitchen table for us when we got married 27 years ago and with kids and cats, it’s seen better days but I CAN’T get rid of it. Paint is sounding good! Not distressed or chalk paint. Bright, bold, in your face color. I do not like the trend with the white kitchens and beige everything else. That’s why I love your blog. Plus, you inspire me and tell me I can do things by myself!

  29. I have a set at home I want to paint, but I am stuck on colour. The mid century and wood, but has the odd wood grained painted finish on it. I would like a colour but have no idea what to do with it. There is a table, four chairs and buffet and hutch in my family room area. I feel stuck. I don’t think a safe colour is what I want!

  30. I Love the soft yellows, especially the one with the tin top. I can see that lasting a long time without getting bored of it.

  31. I am all for painting furniture. My hubby, not so much. We have a dining room and bedroom set that are over 30 years old that are oak and stained that ugly yellowish color. I am hoping to convince him to paint it all before we move in a couple of years.

  32. Dooooooo it! I can’t wait to see what you come up with!
    This came at the perfect time, as I’m getting ready to redo my 1990’s orange oak dining set. I do think I’ll stay neutral with the table by painting the base a weathered grey and staining the top but then going more bold with the chairs and painting them a deep teal to match the china cabinet I just painted.

  33. I love your table ideas! I love color but I choose to have a neutral table because I like to change my table linens and plates quite often. I think I would be limited if I chose a strong color for my table. Your inspiration pictures are great and I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

  34. I am a huge proponent of painted furniture. I have done several pieces for myself as well as for resale. If you want a durable, lacquered look, sand, prime and two coats of Dutchlac paint by Fine Paints of Europe. It’s expensive and oil based but worth it. I painted two chairs in my dining area two years ago a beautiful pale grey. No chips, no sign of yellowing. The color choices are limited, but perhaps the paint store can custom tint to match a sample.

  35. I particularly like the green tables in your examples (esp. the first pic) and – if I were you – would go that direction as that’s painted but still “tame” enough to tie in with your kitchen (and the fabric on the chairs might be lively enough). But who knows – you might be going for your raspberry table and it will be fantastic 🙂

    1. PS. and as for the idea of the colour clashing with the food served you can always use a neutral throw when entertaining and you want your guests to focus on the food, not the table….

  36. First of all I love white painted cabinets! I don’t think they are boring or predictable. I think clean and fresh is more apt and I enjoy pale colored walls with them but that’s me. To each their own! Secondly while I have a dinning table I have to deal with it also has a very formal side board with a marble top and paint just won’t look right. Believe me I have waffled back and forth on it for a few years now! I’m going to go with gel stain and a lacquer top coat. I’ve enjoyed it with a wood finish (dark maple) since 1987 and I think it will look amazing in my new rooms that I’ve just redone in shades of white. I’m a lot older than you though so maybe I now find white to be cleaner and more refreshing these days than I used to??

    BTW…how is the paleo diet going? I started Wheat Belly three months ago and I’m down 20# and off most of my meds including diabetes an heart meds. I feel GREAT! It’s so easy and I’m never hungry!!!

  37. I love the yellow table and pink chairs! Cranberry would be beautiful with your wood floors. Maybe you could put the tiniest bit of gold paint on some carved detail of the table legs to sort of repeat the gold on your gorgeous cabinets..?

  38. Yay for a colorful dining table! I loved the idea of a ‘berry’ color table. Can’t wait to see your color picks! 🙂

  39. I love and want them all! I have three dining tables in my garage to redo and I’m going bright on two of them. Love color to go with all my grey an grey beige walls!

  40. Last year I finally got around to doing something about my breakfast room furniture. I sanded off the cherry-stained table top to reveal a light colored wood, and painted the black legs orange. I love it! I’m not sure if I’d like it as much with the top painted. The table top goes nicely with my light-colored Thonet style bentwood chairs.

  41. It is refreshing to see a post about a failed diy and going to plan b. That is my usual experience with diy!

  42. While normally love everything that you do and I’m all for color, I thought the main reason for converting the living room to a dining room was to have a more formal space for hosting guests. I think a colored dining room table looks fun but not very formal…plus it seems that having a television in a fun room with a bright table wouldn’t be odd (meaning do you really need the two separate eating spaces). Whatever you decide, I’m sure it will be beautiful! You are an inspiration and I love your creativity!

  43. Looking at the pictures, the bright yellow, with pink chairs is my favorite.
    I have a painted dining table, navy blue…..which coordinates with many other touches in the room.
    Definitely not as bold as some of the examples shown, but I love it.
    Since I’m getting older & have fibromyalgia, I’m no longer able to do big painting jobs on my own.
    The gal who painted my kitchen/dining/great room did it for me. I asked her to take it home
    & spray it~~~~which she did. I love it.

  44. I have a number of painted pieces, some in very bright colours like coral on a side table. I put several coats of satin polyurathane over the paint, and have no stickiness or chipping…works fine for me.
    Also, when you want a “formal” look, all you need is a good tablecloth and there you are with another new look! I say go for it.

  45. About 12 years ago I painted our dining table green, like the green on top of a pool table. I love it and so does everyone else. Now that it is getting a bit rough around the edges I have decided to go with purple. I have not found the right shade yet, like you I am waiting to find the right fabric to cover the seats of the chairs that are used at the table. I really liked the bright yellow table with those pink chairs in the one picture–WOW! Oh, we host formal wine tasting dinners frequently land a bold colored table is just fine. It is all in how you present it.

  46. I’m all for painting the table but still think you should consider a neutral. White or black. You will still have lots of punches of color in the room with the chairs, art, window coverings, tablescape. I think the bright tables look fun but sort of country and more appropriate for the breakfast room. Not so much in a room where you were going for a more formal look. And I actually had the same idea about the food not coordinating against all that color. I have three sets of dishes. All in white. Food just looks more appealing when presented on a white background. As always I’m looking forward to seeing how you bring it all together.

  47. Inspiring kitchen tables, they really give more life. Now I’m really excited buying one or maybe refurbishing my old kitchen table. I could paint it or something.

  48. I am painting my table too! These pictures have inspired me so much and my table is all knicked up anyway. I was going to stain it when we finished the kitchen and just do colorful chairs but now I know I can do the whole set in any color I want! I was kind of depressed about the kitchen remodel due to all the neutrals and such but now I can add my personality in there to make it pop and give me a uniqueness without breaking my budget. Thanks Kristi!

  49. Are all of the tables pictured painted with chalk paint and sealed with poly? I love the one yellow with pink chairs and how it looks so glossy! Any paint/sealer suggestions, I’m new at this:)