Dec 31, 2012


Hi Helen,
I hope you had a lovely Christmas.

Your kitchen is a nice open space with plenty of room for a family eating area. 
It looks like the cabinets are of good quality and the appliances look to be fairly new. 
It does need some color and a few cosmetic changes. 

#1 - Paint out the wood trim, white.
(I know you are planning this for later)


 #2 - Wall paint. Gray Owl or a deeper tone like Silver Fox (Benjamin Moore)

Gray Owl (Benjamin Moore)
Silver Fox (Benjamin Moore)
Both of these colors are the perfect neutrals to add the color you love - greens, corals, aquas, etc.

 You can also choose to use color on the walls with very pale grayed down blue or teal.  These colors also act as neutrals, and will be a good background for the greens, teals, corals, and other faded colors you love. 

Windchime - Benjamin Moore

Winchime, Benjamin Moore
Beach Glass, Benjamin Moore
Beach Glass, Benjamin Moore

or you could try a grayed down soft green, such as Creekside Green, (Benjamin Moore).

Creekside Green, Benjamin Moore

Aganthus Green

Aganthus Green, Benjamin Moore

Aganthus Green, Benjamin Moore

or Baby Turtle:
Baby Turtle, Benjamin Moore
 of these, Baby Turtle is the most neutral, but all of these colors would work well with your palette
Because these all share a common gray undertone, they all work nicely together - important in an open floor plan such as yours. 

#3 - Curtain Panels and Kitchen window Valance 

the larger window in the eating area should have panels, with the same rules as for the living area.  Because these areas are both visible  in the open plan of your home, they should be similar in style and color.

 At the window over the sink in the kitchen, a simple valance or roman shade would be my suggestion.

Priority Windows can make you a valance for a very decent price.  Their link is at the bottom of their photo.
Roman Shade
Priority Windows

#4 - Change out the chandelier

A chandelier is like jewelry in a room.  I love this one from Pottery Barn with just a touch of bling.  The current lighting is a little outdated, and not nearly pretty enough!
 If you don't like this one from Pottery Barn, I'm sure you will be able to find something in the wrought iron look locally.

 #5 - Change the rug

I probably should have had this at #1.  The rug is a very important element in this room.  It can be the inspiration for the rest of the colors you will ultimately choose to decorate with, and it should share colors from the other visible rooms.  I have included a few rugs from Pottery Barn, currently on sale, and it would be very helpful if you could let me know which of these Pottery Barn rugs you like.  I can then guide you to color choices for all of your rooms a little easier as it will give me some valuable insight.

This is one of those choices you should make first - as it will ultimately determine the wall, cabinet, fabric and accessory colors and choices.  Once you have selected your rugs, I can better determine the best choices for the other colors in the rooms.  I went to Pottery Barn and took these photos because I wanted to see the colors firsthand.  They are all gorgeous.

#6 - Remove the flourescent light box over the island and update the pendant lighting

I'm not sure of the purpose of the oak light box, as there are pendants hanging from it... but regardless of why - it should be removed.  It serves no purpose, is not beautiful, and does not add to the design (3 criteria I use often).  I hope I'm not offending anyone here, I'm assuming it was that way when you purchased the home.  It simply does not make sense to me.

I'm also not crazy about the pendants currently hanging there and I like ones with a definite metal tone to them.  The ones I have suggested here are available via mail order, but you may be able to find ones that are similar in your area.  I think 2 would suffice for an island that size, but 3 are okay and may be easier seeing the electrical is already in place.  I have collected a few I think will work nicely to both be useful, beautiful and add to the design.... :) 
Lighting Universe

Kaplan Mercury Glass Pendant

 #7 - Paint the cabinets
I know this is later on down the line, but having the plan helps....  

You can paint them all white, like this first photo  -
 or you can split it up a little - with white cabinets on top and a color on the bottom.
or go color all the way...

let me know what you prefer as far as cabinets go.

#8 - Paint the island
Painting the island a different tone helps break the space up.  It is totally up to you, but thought I'd add a photo or two to give you some options.
 or leave it wood toned...

#9 - Update countertop material
[I can't tell what the countertop material is, but it looks like it might be formica.]
and it would be very nice to have a solid hard surface such as granite, marble or cesarstone down the line.
We can discuss that when and if you are ready. 

#10 - Change Hardware/Fixtures

Once you have painted your cabinets (or even before) add new knobs and pulls.  

I can't see your sink faucet, so you will be the best judge of whether to update there.  I like the stainless steel look on faucets, but have also used oil rubbed bronze successfully with painted cabinets! 

#11.  Accessorize
This is the fun part.   You have great ironstone pitchers on the cut little cupboard, and good accessories there. 
This cute cupboard will stand out and be more of a feature with color on the wall.  You can add color in a kitchen with linens/towels, bowls of fruit, art on the walls, etc.   Definitely add color behind the glass doors of this little cupboard.

I would like to see something more substantial on the wall next to the cabinets over the little blue cupboard.  That space needs something bigger, like a large framed print,  or a grouping of framed prints.

I'm nearly finished with the dining room and will post separately.
Please ask questions and give input!  It helps me get to know you better!

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