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The Collected Look in My Dining Room

Today I am so happy to announce that my pals Mary Ann (Classic Casual Home) and Annie (Most Lovely Things) are sharing photos of my home and garden on their blog.  I have never really done a home tour on my blog so this is something new for me.  They each will be sharing different parts of my home and garden so please stop and visit both of their blogs. If you have been reading my blog long or follow me on Instagram or Pinterest you know that I am a big fan of a collected look.  I thought I would talk to you today about how I achieve a collected look in my own home.

spanish colonial house and garden

 My husband and I have been collecting antiques since we were in college.  We have a mix of special pieces inherited from family, brand spanking new junk, and vintage and antique accessories, and fine art.  All of these things make up the story of who we are. We have lived in our Spanish Colonial Home for 30+ years.  Our style hasn’t changed much over the years. We still enjoy the hunt for an interesting piece. We have added a few modern pieces to the mix, but overall we prefer the old to the new. Let’s take a look at the collected look in my dining room. 


My dining room is a seldom seen room on my blog because it is so darn difficult to photograph.  It has been photographed a couple of times by professionals and those pictures even aren’t very good. I struggled and struggled to get decent photos for Annie and Mary Ann and finally gave up.

the collected look in my dining room

Steve built this table right after our son was born.  The base is an old quilting frame.  The top was fabricated from new wood but I banged it up, sanded areas for distress, and did a multi-coat finish that has held up all these years.  The rug is from Jaipur but no longer available.

dining room with antique blue painted cupboard cindy hattersley design

The chairs are custom made for Cindy Hattersley Design.  The monogramming was done by Trish of Cottage by Design.

monogrammed chair with roses

On the other side of the table is an old French window casing with shutters that we turned into a mirror.  Below it (unseen) is a smoke grained blue blanket chest that we purchased somewhere in California many years ago.  Sitting atop is a funky concrete deer, to the right, but unseen is a beautiful document box that we inherited from Steve’s parents.

the collected look in my dining room

The blue painted corner cupboard was purchased from Crawford’s Antiques before we built the house so we made sure the corner was big enough for it.  It was once built in (hence it has no back).  It had to be sliced by about 1/2 inch to get it in the room.  It was covered with a deep red paint then white.  We hand scraped it to reveal it’s original blue and salmon interior.

the collected look in my dining room

The cupboard is filled with pewter some fine old pieces, others not so fine. The doors are always closed so you can’t see what’s in it.  I should probably work on getting better pieces so we could open (or take off the doors) so you can see the beautiful butterfly shelves.

                           pewter collection

On the other end of the table is a Queen Anne blanket chest that we purchased on a New England trip over 30 years ago.  Above it hangs the first painting we purchased from Pat Huber and it is still a favorite.  The Santo is a reproduction I have had for years.  The bowl is an old French sink. I like mixing some modern elements so our house doesn’t look too museum-like.

vineyard painting, santo and bowl of fruit

In the other corner is another blanket chest that we have owned since our children were really small. Beside it sits one of a pair of Hitchcock chairs purchased at Center Street Antiques not that long ago.  We have way too many chairs and boxes in our house.  A weakness Steve and I both share.

the collected look in my dining room

Above it hangs another painting of an African woman, a gift from my dear friend (artist Pat Huber).  Below it sits a piece of pottery that one of my husbands’ employees brought back from Eastern Europe many years ago and vintage lawn bowling pins that I found at Round Top a few years ago.  I like combining unexpected objects to create interesting vignettes.

painting of African Woman


It certainly isn’t difficult to achieve a collected look in your home.  You don’t need to have all fine antiques (too museum-like), or only fine art. You just need to be patient.  Enjoy the hunt.  You can find things online on Etsy, One Kings Lane, Ebay and Ruby Lane. Shop antique, vintage and junk shops and Craigs List.  You never know what you might find. Mix it up with modern and trendy inexpensive pieces. When I get ready to redecorate I always “shop my home” first. You might enjoy my post The Collected Look and How to Get it if you would like to work on achieving a collected look in your own home.

If you love the collected look as much as we do please follow and use our hashtag #thecollectedlook.  We are each featuring one of our favorites on our Instagram feeds every week and once a month select a prize for one who follows #thecollectedlook.  That could be you!  So please follow all three of us anch #thecollectedlook to your pretty photos!

If you would like to see more of my home and garden, pop on over to Classic Casual Home, and Most Lovely Things to see more of my house and garden. 


Reader Interactions


  1. Karen Bunch says

    What a beautiful dining room. I’ve loved the chairs since I first saw them years ago on your blog.
    It’s so wonderful that you and your husband share the love of antiques. Your home is so lovely and warm.

  2. 1010ParkPlace says

    Your dining room is beautiful Cindy. My home is a collected look and similar in many ways to yours. My dining room needs a neutral colored rug but I’m not a fan of seagrass… stains don’t clean up well… as do rugs that aren’t 100% wool. I look online and then get disheartened and ignore it for awhile. xoxo, B

  3. Jane says

    I so get you on being able to get a good photo on a room. My home in Chicago is large but the rooms are smallish, very typical in this city. But I really think this post shows off your beautiful dining room in a wonderful way. I really love your table…the fact that your husband made it has a significance of it’s own. The blue cabinet is perfect and I also think taking the doors off would be pretty neat. I’m so partial to your pewter collection. A dear elderly friend of mine had an extensive collection that she loved and added to. She died a few years at the young age of eighty-three. Pewter always reminds me of that lovely lady.

    I think I have a collected look because I purge a lot of pieces that I made poor choices on in the first place. And I wait for sometimes months before I add a piece of furniture or art until it really speaks to me. I’m okay with blank space until then.

    Great post as always, Cindy!

    Jane x

  4. Gail Storti says

    Cindy, your home is just stunning. I can see all the love you’ve put into making your house a truly comfortable and inviting home. I’m so glad Mary Ann and Annie gave us a glimpse into your beautiful home and gorgeous garden.

  5. Maureen says

    Your home is absolutely beautiful! What color are the walls in your dining room?

  6. LA CONTESSA says

    Well, YOU Know I think we should TRADE HOUSES!
    YOU would be closer to SUMMER and I would have MORE SPACE!!!!!
    ALL THE PHOTOS ARE LOVELY and your dinning room is one of my favorite rooms!THOSE CHAIRS and I didn’t know YOU collected PEWTER!!!
    THE GARDEN with their VISTAS are SO inviting!THE WHOLE HOUSE IS REALLY!!!
    OLD WORLD CHARM cannot be BEAT!!!

    • Cindy Hattersley says

      Oh boy did the laundry ever need a facelift! Has it been that long since you have been here? You need to come visit!

    • Cindy Hattersley says

      Thank you so much! The ironing board is behind the long door in the laundry room as well. I so value your kind comments!

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