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Nadia Watts in her dining room. Photo by Emily Minton Redfield

The Best Classic Dining Room

A daring palette and mix of styles bring energy to interior designer Nadia Watt's favorite space.

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Interior designer Nadia Watts followed one familiar but tricky rule when putting together her deliciously bold dining room: Surround yourself with things you love. Driven by a self-described eclectic style, Watts started with dark walls (Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore)—a practical and versatile base for brighter, more energetic tones and patterns, like the pink and purple hues of the rug and chair upholstery. “Navy makes the room a lot more intimate,” she says. “It’s such a good classic.”

Watts layered in a thoughtful combination of accents she found at local antiques shops and galleries: an ornate gilded mirror, terra-cotta horse figurines, and glazed ginger jars. Whimsical contemporary artwork pops behind the rustic antique chandelier, giving the room a nuanced character. “Adding different textures and materials brings warmth and interest to the space,” Watts says. “I wanted to have fun with the room and not take it too seriously.” And that just might be the best design rule of all.

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