I live in a fairly small house. It's just under 1400 sq ft and the living areas are all open. There isn't much wall space for decorating in the living room, dining room or kitchen even though the ceiling is vaulted. My biggest pain is the dining room. It's actually a dining area since it's open to the rest of the house. The light fixture is badly positioned and I like the table to be centered under the light. Doing so makes it feel cramped, and I need a solution. I also don't have room for the large china cabinet I have, so I'm looking for a smaller curio type cabinet.
I've thought about raising the light fixture a bit so I can move the table without the danger of us banging our heads on the globes every time we stand up. There is also a chest high bar between the kitchen and dining area as well as a large bank of cabinets on the other side of the table. I love the extra storage space and the counter top makes a nice buffet. It just doesn't leave many options for decorating or rearranging the furniture.
I've searched for small dining room decorating ideas, and the spaces some decoraters consider small is laughable. Most of the "small" spaces showcased are the size of my bedroom with lots of open wall space. I also cannot remodel every two years. Not helpful.
I don't live in a "rambling 19th century farmhouse with an unused room just off the kitchen that I can turn into a butler's pantry/breakfast nook." Really? Decorating magazines are so out of touch with real life! I want to live a life where unused rooms are available in bulk.
(I really want to provide you guys with pictures of my dining room, but I'm working on a quilt right now and the table is covered in fabric and sewing paraphernalia...)