Four years ago we remodeled our kitchen, which significantly improved the layout but it was PP (pre-pinterest), and I do have a few regrets. Mostly I wish that I had added more color, so I’m setting about doing that these days.
One of the best things about the remodel was that we added a breakfast nook. I love nooks, but I couldn’t have anticipated just how much time we would spend in ours. Breakfast nook is really a misnomer; it’s more like the breakfast-snack-lunch-catch-up-on-email-while-Opal-naps-snack-dinner-Chester’s-work-space-after-Opal-goes-to-bed nook.
With all the time we spend in the spot, you’d think I would have focused my decorating energy here, but no. Here’s what it looks like now:
I’ve really set myself up for success here. I could just clean up and wow you with the big reveal. Clean I shall, but I’m also going to make some decorating changes. Here’s a little inspiration for where I hope we end up:
I love the textile mix here, by Amber Lewis. It’s too pink for my house, and I or somebody in my family would surely end up trepanned by that light fixture, but you get the idea.
Here’s another version from Amber Lewis’s home tour:
Again, it’s a little too pink, but I love the rug and the bench seat cushion and pillows. I’ve fully embraced the sheepskin thing, but not on dining chairs. Food and fluffy don’t mix, at least not in my house.
I love everything about this. The lamp, the chairs, the rug. Obviously it’s an expansive space, but I think I can scale the design down and achieve something similar. And here’s one more:
See any common denominators? White+wood+kilim is apparently what I’m after.
So here’s the plan:
Step 1: Add a rug under the table to break up the brown. I’ve been scouring ebay for the perfect kilim, and there are a lot of very affordable options out there. The difficulty is that the kitchen/nook/dining/living spaces are all one room, so the color scheme can’t stray too much.
Step 2: Paint the walls white. This has been on the agenda for a long time. How do you paint with a toddler around? Stay up all night? The bench and desk area match our kitchen cabinets and the wood is beautiful, but honestly I’d like to paint them white too. Chester doesn’t like the idea, and since he expresses zero opinions about my interior design decisions, I feel like I should defer to him (just this once). Our contractor made the table, and it’s solid and beautiful, and I want to leave it as is (by the way, if you live in the Anchorage area and need a great contractor send me an email. He’s the BEST, and Chester and I both kind of want him to be our life coach. One day during the kitchen remodel Chester said to me, “I wonder what his view is on caffeine.”).
Step 3: Make cushions for the bench seats. Currently only one of the benches has a cushion. I made that with ikat fabric that Chester brought home from his travels. I love the fabric, but I never finished making the second cushion and now I’m ready for a change. Wolsey spends a lot of time here, and he might be a little upset about a new cushion, but having lived outside for at least two Alaska winters (before he came to live with us) taught him a thing or two about resilience and I think he’ll be okay. I’m debating about printing fabric myself, or maybe using ticking. It has to be durable, washable, and something I don’t care too much about.
Step 4: This one is a big maybe, but I’m toying with the idea of trying to make a new light fixture. The current fixture is fine, just kind of blah. In the summer when it’s light until 11:00 p.m. we don’t turn on the lights at all, but in the winter they are on pretty much all the time. I love the look of bentwood pendant lights like this:
This pendant is from West Elm, which is a nice fallback. But I worry that this design leaves too much bare bulb exposed, so I’m going to try to cook up my own design and DIY it.
So that’s the plan. Whatever the results, I’ll share them with you here, hopefully in the not too distant future! Any thoughts or ideas on my design plan? We always love to hear your suggestions, so please comment away!