Dec 6, 2011


current photos

Inspiration Photo:
I this this style is a natural for your house and the floor plan is very similar
I would recommend closed cabinets and I would keep the mantle and the top of the cabinets one straight line across.  This is a more contemporary look, but very warm and classic.  I don't think you would get tired of it very soon.  We need to get rid of the low contrast faux finished woodwork you currently have in this room and the heavy feeling furniture and lighten it up.  A stacked cultured stone fireplace with your flat screen tv hung there (with the electrical and wiring hidden behind) would make it feel larger.  I like the draperies on decorative rods and think that would also work in this room.  You don't have windows on either side of your fireplace, but mirrors hung there would give off some reflected light and mimic the windows.
Here is an example of the mantle and top of cabinets being the same height.  I would like to see the stacked stone go all the way to the ceiling, raising the eye and the ceiling height.  Don't forget to add the finishing touch of crown and base mouldings.

I love grays for wall color because they are a perfect backdrop for nearly every other color.  Revere Pewter is a warm gray and would look beautiful with the stone and woodwork. 

Here are a couple of ways to frame out a flat screen to disguise it a little so it isn't such an eyesore
current photo:
If you discover that this is NOT a load bearing wall, I would remove it and open the family room up to the kitchen area, leaving the bar area where the sink is and adding granite.  Which takes us into your kitchen:

current photos:
The reason you are tired of your kitchen is it lacks contrast.  The walls and the cabinets are the same tones, the counter top is light, and you could use a backsplash to add another texture and make things more interesting above the range.  
It is the contrasts that make a design interesting.

I would recommend adding granite counter tops to update your kitchen.
with everything else along the same tones, your black appliances really stand out - not the kind of contrast I was thinking of.  We don't necessarily want them to be the focal point of the room. 

Inspiration photo:
This is the perfect example of the kitchen opened up so that it flows into the family room.  By pulling some of the kitchen elements into the family room, or visa versa, it will look cohesive and blend together well.  I would have the same flooring throughout if you can manage it.  You can have carpet bound into a large rug (use factory seconds for this) and save a bundle for the family room.  The granite in this room has the same tones as the stacked stone fireplace.  The cabinet colors should be the same as well.  And I would paint your cabinets black so that your appliances which you mentioned would not be changed, will blend in more.

A simple subway tile backsplash, classic and timeless, is all that is needed to finish the walls.

I love this clean-lined kitchen.  Nice soft gray walls and plenty of contrasts here.  Try to picture it reversed, with dark cabinets top and bottom and maybe a white island.

I was thinking that it wouldn't be too hard to move your washer/dryer into the garage area, right behind where they are now, and have a proper mud room off the kitchen.

I love the blackboard paint on the inside of the pantry doors.  Another fun do-it-yourself idea.

All black cabinets can work if there is enough light in the room, so make sure you add some can lighting

another black and white kitchen - picture it with black appliances and hardwood flooring.

But, I think this is one of the best looks for you.  With a few elements from the other photos, black cabinets, white island, granite.

current photo:
 You have room to build a window seat into the bay window area and use that for bench seating at the table.  Remove the valances and put panels on the outside and shades on the windows.  Put nice fat mouldings around the windows and add crown and base mouldings.  Paint your kitchen chairs black until you can replace the set for something a little more clean lined.  Remove the wallpaper and lighten your walls as suggested previously.
In the window near your sink we can do a roman shade valance.
Its a lot to digest, so take some time and look it over and let me know your thoughts.


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