Does your kitchen need a little oomph? Is your kitchen crying out for a breath of fresh air? If so, The Cozy Kitchen Ideas Series is for you! Over the next three weeks, I’ll share ideas that can help you liven up your busy kitchen. This series will show you that breathing new life into your kitchen doesn’t have to be hard or expensive. Read on to learn more.
A Few Notes about my Kitchen
My favorite room in the house is the kitchen. It’s a comfortable and inviting space where memories, private and public, linger. My husband and I have enjoyed dinner for two at the kitchen table while sharing intimate conversation. The girlies’ close friends have happily squeezed together at the kitchen table to enjoy celebratory slices of birthday cake. Extended family has gathered around the table, holding hands to pray, before enjoying a scrumptious holiday meal.
Our little kitchen is not one you’d find showcased in the pages of a home magazine. It doesn’t have high end finishes or gleaming stainless steel appliances. None of that matters to me because my kitchen is a space I truly love. Over the past several years, I have worked to create the warm, cozy, welcoming kitchen that is the hub of our home, a perfect gathering place for family and friends.
Before I share this week’s list of cozy kitchen ideas, let me make this disclaimer: I’m no designer, but my family is happy with the way our kitchen looks and functions. Our kitchen isn’t picture perfect 24 hours a day. Three busy children live here and throughout the day our homeschool materials often end up in the kitchen.
Okay…now onto Part One: The Basics.
Work with what you have. If you want to keep costs low, WORK WITH WHAT YOU HAVE. I don’t like the white appliances in my kitchen, but since they all work well, they’re not being replaced any time soon. I’d like a bit more space in my kitchen too, but we don’t have the money to knock down walls and add countertops. I’d prefer to have a gas stove like the one in our previous home, but adding a gas line is not a necessary expense, so I’ve learned to be content with the electric stove we already own.
Not having the ideal space or dream appliances did not hinder my design’s progress. I worked with what I had and have been happy with the results. As you spruce up, you’ll certainly want to pick up a few new items here and there, but work with what you have before buying something new.
Break the rules. Years ago, one of the elements of an attractive kitchen was a bare countertop. Naked countertops were supposed to make the kitchen feel larger, showcase glamorous stone finishes, and cut down on clutter. Today, countertop accessories add color, texture, warmth, functionality to the kitchen.
What’s on my countertops? Spinning spice racks, a Keurig coffeemaker, a wooden breadbox, porcelain storage containers, a Vitamix, and the vintage scale and fruit bowl I adore. As long as I don’t allow mail, books, keys, etc to clutter the countertop, I prefer keeping useful items within easy reach on the kitchen countertops.
Go slow. I didn’t go on a massive shopping spree and instantly find everything at once. First, it took a while for me to define my style. Once defined, it took at least a year for me to find pieces that fit. Goods from antique stores, yard sales, and home stores weren’t purchased on a regular basis because of my busy schedule, the need to stay within my weekly budget, and the difficulty in finding just the right piece.
Once I discovered pieces I loved, it took additional time for me to decide where to place each of them. And, as new pieces arrived, I often rearranged. (This by the way, puzzled and irritated my routine driven husband!) The point is, just go slow. Shopping and proper placement take time, but they have been some of the most fun components in creating the cozy kitchen I love so much.
I hope these three ideas are enough to get you started on your cozy kitchen redesign. Spend this week looking to see what you already have and considering what you want to display on your countertops. Don’t rush your design. Be sure to check back next Wednesday for Part Two of The Cozy Kitchen Ideas Series.
Photo courtesy of nuttakit/freedigitalphotos.net
© 2014, Andrea Thorpe. All rights reserved.