Local designer Lee Robinson can help create a home or room from the foundation up or do a fast, fly-by consult where he speed-styles your living spaces. Here, just in time for Derby entertaining and décor tweaks, some of his luxe dining room renos.

There is no right or wrong way to design a dining room,” says Lee Robinson, chief executive office of Lee W. Robinson Design. “I design rooms for clients’ lifestyles. When I come in for a consult, I look at the space, take inventory of their pieces and come up with a vision. If we have to work with their grandmother’s table, then I  work with it. But it’s all about balance. I can bring in modern elements and make it theirs.”

Those modern elements don’t have to be new pieces of furniture. “Sometimes it’s a glamorous new light fixture instead of the original crysal chandelier,” says Robinson. Often, he can pull strings and have walls freshy papered, windows re-dressed and light fixtures switched out for something more fabulous in time for pre-Derby drinks or an impending graduation party,

On these pages, inspiration and advice.


If you still have sheers and heavy layered treatments, consider getting rid of them.  Swags, balloon valances, ruffled valances all block light and shorten windows.  Removing them will make your ceilings higher and your room brighter.  Bringing in floor-length panels in unfussy fabrics can create a fabulous focal point.


“Dining sets can look dated,” says Lee. “Bringing in upholstered chairs with graceful lines can add a touch of modern glamour.” Seating doesn’t have to be limited to chairs around the table. “If you have the square footage, I love the idea of adding chairs or benches for conversation,” says Lee. “A dining room should be an elegant hub for entertaining. People who don’t use their dining rooms just haven’t decorated them to fit their lives.”


Busy patterns can date a room and draw the focus downward. Bringing in a soft neutral floor covering will enlarge and update.

Posted on 2018-04-06 by Christine Fellingham