| | | |

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room

Turning a dining room into a playroom for my friend makes me a firm believer in making your home work for your family. The  dining room, which was used maybe twice a year, is now a room this family can use and enjoy every day.

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Eek! Y’all!!

That’s how I feel about this fun project I’m revealing today. Seriously, Eeeeeek!

When I think about sharing this project, my heart just wants to burst with pride and excitement. And sometimes heart-bursting feelings are hard to put into words, but here goes!

I set out to makeover a neighbor’s home with this project, so let’s dive in.

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

My “neighbor” is my friend Emily. And while she’s not a direct next-door neighbor, she does live close by. She has been wanting to turn her formal dining room into a play room for several years now. Their house is great, but they really wanted a designated area just for their kids’ toys. All the while they had a formal dining room and living room at the front of their home that were rarely used. All of that square footage was going to waste!

I’m a firm believer in making your home work for your family. So if that means changing up rooms to make them functional for you, then I say go for it!

When you first walk into her home you enter the formal living area and then just past that is the formal dining room. She wanted to remove the formal living area and make it the dining room/living room and make the old dining room the play room.

You followin’ me? Lot’s of switching up going on!

Previously, the play “room” was a little nook off of their family room. It was pretty small and the toys spilled out into the family room, creating chaos. Don’t judge Emily’s housekeeping skills by these pics. I snapped these as she was in the middle of sorting and moving the toys. 🙂 {She’s a great housekeeper, by the way.}

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

One side bonus of moving the play room  is that Emily had a chance to go through all of the toys and books and took a bunch to Goodwill just in time for Christmas. Woop! I need to do that in my own house!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

See what I mean? It was just too small to hold all of their play things. So, let’s dive right into the good stuff – the after pictures!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Ta-da!! Her dream was to make the playroom fun and kid-friendly, all the while keeping in line with the decor of her home. Especially since it would be seen when you walked in the front door!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Now, you’re probably thinking … who would want to be able to see their kids’ playroom from the front door? Well, Emily had the great idea to build these huge sliding barn doors so that you can close off the playroom. Genius! {Full Barn Door tutorial HERE.}

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Emily had always wanted to try a gray pint color in her house, but didn’t know if it would work with all of her browns and reds. I assured her that this color would look lovely and so we painted the walls with Clark+Kensington’s Baby Elephant. We love this color!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

And we {as in she} added two stripes of Clark+Kensington Mocha Icing. I think combining the gray with the beige really makes the color work with brown and gives it a fun and playful look without being juvenile. It’s gorgeous, don’t you agree?

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

We used this art as a jumping off point for the paint colors and room decor. I love how it mixes the grays and browns, blues and reds.

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Ace provided us with some fun locker baskets and galvanized pails for extra storage. I’m going to need to get some of locker baskets for my home. So cute and functional!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

We forgot to add little labels on the front of the baskets, so I did these in the editing process. So fun!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

I love how Emily used some of the scrap wood from the barn doors and Mod Podged {is that a verb?} some adorable photos of her kids to the boards, creating a “canvas” look. How precious are her kids?

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Their train table was just like all of the train tables you see out there with the faux stream and woods scenes painted on them. Emily used Krylon Chalkboard paint to paint it black. And now the kids can draw all over it with chalk! They love it!!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

I took the liberty of showing off extra angles around Emily’s new dining space because she’s just such a great decorator. She loves to create a beautiful home and to host others in it. Thankfully, now she’ll be able to have people over and she can shut off the kids’ play room. Or the kids can hang out in there while Mama entertains. 🙂

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

The barn doors were a fun project to build together. I loaded up all of my tools in the back of my van and took them to her house. And we spent a couple of hours here and there building them together while our kids were in preschool. Actually, there’s no day of the week when all of our three kids {my one and her two} were in preschool, so we always had at least one kid with us.

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

You better believe we were giddy with excitement and so proud of ourselves when these doors when in place. Just two mommies building barn doors. 🙂 And we installed them ourselves. I wish someone had a video of that process – it was a hoot!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Ace provided the hardware for the barn doors. You can buy most of these parts online, but I wanted to go into the store and make sure I was getting exactly what I needed. They do sell a lot of casters online, which we used on the bottom of the doors. {Full Barn Door Tutorial HERE.}

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com
Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Emily texted me a couple of days after we completed the project and said it’s literally changing their lives – having all the toys corralled in one room. I believe it! Now to figure out where I can add a play room in my house. Ha!!

Formal Dining Room to Functional Play Room | TheTurquoiseHome.com

Is there a room in your house that you need to change in order to make your home more functional?

Mine is changing my guest bedroom into a dedicated office that can still function as a guest bedroom the three times out of the year when someone comes to visit. I hope to make that transition in 2014!

Similar Posts

33 Comments

  1. Pingback: Work It Wednesday No. 24 | The Turquoise Home
  2. I do home daycare. I live in Illinois. I would like someone to come and help me setup my dining room and living room into s playroom/preschool room, or just my dining room living room. Any suggestions of who might do that?

  3. What paint did you use on the train table? Is that one of the white with green top train tables?? I’m trying to find something to do with mine.

    1. Hi Heather, this was at a friend’s house and she doesn’t know or have the table anymore. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more help! xo, Laura

  4. Pingback: Wasted Space to Avoid in Your Dream Home - Stoney Built for Life
  5. What an amazing transformation! I keep telling my husband that we need to change our formal living room into a play area and so we can reclaim our office. You did an awesome job with this project. Thanks so much for sharing at the PInworthy Projects Party.

  6. Pingback: Creative Inspirations Linky Party Features
  7. Such a beautiful, creative space! I like the ideas of the chalkboard, the hanging clothespins, and the metal buckets for storage. We’ll soon have an extra room that may be half classroom, half play area and I think these ideas will really help me organize my son’s things!

  8. I LOVE barn doors in the home! You did a fantastic job with transforming this space. Nice work! And, congrats on being on the inaugural ACE Hardware bloggers panel — that’s awesome! I just discovered your blog, but will be back! 🙂

  9. This is fantastic! So much inspiration for my new basement playroom, which is scheduled to be finished in the next couple of weeks. I LOVE the barn doors, the stripes and especially the chalkboard painted train table! Thanks for another great post!

  10. What a fantastic transformation! We use our formal dining room as our office, it just works better for us. Who says they have to be used for what the builders think it is built for?! Lol!
    KC

  11. Laura, this turned out great! LOVE the stripes, and I actually used Baby Elephant in my laundry room. It’s a great color!

    1. We loooved the color. And I even searched for Baby Elephant before we used it and saw your laundry room. Helped to make the decision!! 🙂

  12. I can’t believe you made those doors! The transformation of the room itself is amazing!! You did an incredible job, Laura!!
    Hugs,
    Jamie

  13. Pingback: DIY Simple Sliding Barn Doors
  14. This is wonderful! I absolutely love the stripes on the wall, and the grey with the light beige; these look so beautiful together! Great job!

  15. Fab transformation, Laura!! The walls are my favorite!! And those barn doors! I also really like the black and white photos… they are the perfect contrast to the painted stripes! Great job, Lauren! I am inspired!!

  16. Wow – what a fabulous space and makeover Laura. It is so important to make your home work for your family, even if it is unconventional! Love the striped walls and the barn doors are A-Mazing! Wow! Oh, I said that:)

    1. I do have a formal dining room, but I use it as my crafting space. But I’m *this* close to turning it into a play room. 🙂

  17. Wow! l can not wait to see the tutorial on the barn doors. Do you think the doors would work on carpet? Really great makeover:)

  18. Holy cow, that is one awesome transitioning and makeover of a room!! You guys did a fabulous job! Love the barn doors and striped wall!

  19. Those doors are amazing! I can only imagine the two of you building and installing. Wishing I was your neighbor! The playroom is the perfect kid space without looking kiddish. Love Love Love!

  20. Oh my word, Laura. You need your own TV show, I do believe. The transformation in this space is astronomical! And I think I’m most in awe of those amazing barn doors. The fact that you two installed them yourselves makes me love ’em even more! So looking forward to that tutorial.

    And the playroom looks like such a nurturing and inspirational space! (I love the chalkboard rules…the tin containers…the beige and gray striped walls!) There was clearly just so much attention to detail – – I’m so impressed! Also, it makes me want to get my rear in gear with our master bedroom makeover! Gotta not only make it purdy, but functional, too! Thanks for the inspiration, girlfriend.

    1. Thank you, Lauren. You’re too sweet! 🙂 And I’ll leave the TV show business to Candace, I think. I’d be terrible on TV. Ha!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.