Create your own home restaurant

Quarantine has changed the way we work, relax, socialise and even eat. Now that we’re not able to frequent our favourite restaurants and cafes, many have turned to cooking to fill the void. Spending quality time cooking and eating with your family and loved ones is a great way to pass the time. So why not make it special, with a few simple steps you can create your own home restaurant experience. Shop everything you need to get creative with your dining room decor at The Paint Shed today.

The internet is packed full of amazing recipes to help you recreate your favourite restaurant orders at home. In lieu of eating out, famous food chains like McDonalds, Pret A Manger and Wagamama have even published their secret recipes to help spark creative cooking at home. Having these famous dishes and treats to hand goes a long way towards feeling normal, but what remains missing is the atmosphere and ambiance of a restaurant setting. Luckily with a few tips and tricks you can replicate that restaurant magic in the comfort of your own home.  

Pick a theme

For many of us a dinner reservation creates a  wonderful sense of occasion, but with the advancements of modern kitchen appliances and contemporary decor there’s no reason you can’t host a successful restaurant experience without leaving the house. Bringing the outside in is all about setting the scene. When decorating your space there is no need to go over the top, a few adjustments should be enough to echo the ambience of your favourite restaurant. The first thing to decide is your theme. What kind of dining experience are you aiming for? Relaxed, cosy cafe, Italian bistro, rustic? Matching your aesthetic to your meal of choice can be a wonderful way to create a rounded experience. Think of the decor from restaurants of said theme and see what you have to hand to transform your dining space.

Decorate

If themed decor isn’t your thing you can always pick an occasion. If you have a family birthday, celebration or even date night coming up use that as your inspiration. Use lighting, pillows, plants and cutlery to set the mood. The goal is to create a sense of comfort, intimacy and in some cases romance. It doesn't have to be perfect so long as it feels special. Many contemporary restaurants opt for mismatched chairs and  quirky plates to add interest, so don’t be afraid to mix it up.

Use colour

If your dining room strays a little on the safe side, adding a touch of colour can provide warmth and sophistication. For a laidback, contemporary look try greys, neutrals and whites or a quirky cafe is more your thing, bright and pastel colours can work wonders.  Experiment with how you want to use colour, whether through painted walls, furniture, art or accessories. For paint; two tone designs and feature walls are a great option for nailing a fashionable flair while patterned wallpaper speaks to a cosy but kitsch vibe. If you’re not ready to commit to painting, play around with colour in the form of a gallery wall, a checkered table cloth or even a vase of flowers.

Set a menu

The meal itself can be anything you want, from comfort food to a Michelin-star quality meal, it is your restaurant after all! Just have fun with it, experiment with different themes, recipes and courses. If you need inspiration for ‘themed cooking’ Glasgow based Six By Nico are a great example of a restaurant who regularly change up their menu according to a set theme. If you are cooking for your family, designing your own menu cards can also be a fun touch. Lean into the host/hostess role for a truly special dining experience.

Dress up

To simulate a real life restaurant experience why not ask attendees to dress for the occasion. This can be according to the theme or it can be used as an excuse for them to pull out their Sunday best. Looking at the part will help your home restaurant feel the part. If you want to go all out you could even add a drink menu (cocktails/mocktails) and an after dinner game.  Just don’t forget to ask for a tip for all your hard work!

Creating occasions out of the everyday is a great way to keep quarantine interesting. So until life goes back to normal, why not make every meal an experience by redesigning your dining room. Once the table is set you can sit back and enjoy your very own restaurant experience.

For more paint tutorials and recommendations look to our tips and advice blog.