DECORATING TRICKS FOR YOUR KITCHEN – BY ELLIN CURLEY

I’ve been obsessing over the news for what feels like forever. I needed a break. So I decided to step away from my iPhone and do something that made me feel happy and safe. I walked around my house. I took in all the little things about it and in it that I love.

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I particularly love my kitchen. I redecorated it from top to bottom two years ago, along with the adjoining sun porch. It came out exactly as I had hoped – bright, cheerful, fun and totally me.

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My first goal was to create a colorful environment. All of the walls in my house had been shades of white or beige for the past twenty years. So I went a little crazy. I love color. Happy colors make me happy. I dress in them and wanted to live in them as well, particularly shades of aqua and turquoise. So the walls in the kitchen and eating area are a pale mint green and the walls in the sunroom are light turquoise. Most of the accessories in both rooms are shades of blue and green.

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For some colorful drama, I trimmed the moulding around the numerous windows in the sun room in turquoise darker than the walls. The effect is stunning!

I also added an aqua Corian counter to the kitchen island. And a colorful mosaic tile pattern on the back-splash behind the stove.

My second goal was to create warmth and personality by using accessories. Everywhere you look there is something pretty and interesting to look at. Because it’s a kitchen, and because I wanted to save money, I used everyday items as a major part of the decor. Items like plates and bowls, glasses and cups, trays, etc. So in my glass cabinets, I displayed these decorative touches to add pops of color in and amongst my everyday dishes and glasses.

I have two small bookcases in the kitchen as well. I used these shelves to create artistic ‘vignettes’ using similar items plus some vases and paperweights.

I love to use colorful, patterned plates, trays and bowls as decor on the walls and on other flat surfaces in the kitchen as well. I have a charming set of ceramic plates in different sizes, shaped like fish and glazed in beautiful tones of blue. They are dispersed throughout the sunroom and kitchen, on walls, in cabinets and standing on the shelf above the kitchen cabinets.Sun room curley house

I get a lot of pleasure looking at the pretty things in my home. I also remember how and where I got them and what they mean to me. Hopefully you can take some of these ideas and use them to give your kitchen a little extra pizzazz, or at least something new to look at.

20 thoughts on “DECORATING TRICKS FOR YOUR KITCHEN – BY ELLIN CURLEY

  1. It does look a cheerful area. I too love having pretty things around me and I like to look at them and think about how I came by them. I think it is rather sad that so many people now seem to have featureless rooms because they see anything that is not functional as clutter. Great idea to use thing you use every day as part of your decor.

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    • I also find that lots of people are afraid of color. Everything is bland – beiges and whites with a few accents of color here and there. You’re right about people being afraid of clutter. I see far fewer accessories in people’s homes these days as well. You spend so much time in your kitchen, that is the one room that should have the most character but it usually has the least.

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      • So true, I know that neutrals have their place but so many modern homes seem to be nothing but beige , black, white and grey. I would feel depressed if I had to live in home like that.

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        • I wound up with mostly neutral walls because we have so much art and other things on the walls, it was the only way to not wind up with a total riot of colors. I love color, but with this much other stuff, it’s a bit much.

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          • I inherited neutral walls and don’t really mind them as I have pictures too but one day had planned to change some rooms to pale blues or greens. Now I’m planning to move the repainting will be all neutrals but no greys.

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  2. Your kitchen area is beautiful, Ellin. I loved seeing that you also have a copy of “The Silver Palate’ cookbook. Mine has so much use, the binding came unglued and it is rubber banded together!

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    • Thank you for your compliment! I love having cookbooks in the kitchen because it makes the room feel homey and lived in. Not just a functional equipment area.

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    • You spend the most time in your kitchen area so it should make you happy! And that means comfortable and convenient as well as pretty to look at. Thanks!

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    • Thank you so much! I was very worried when I first decided to put so much color into my kitchen. But even men love it, and men rarely comment on the decor!

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    • Thanks! Once I committed to doing a bold color scheme, I had to do it all over. So everything does flow from one are to the next. I even used the same or similar plates and accessories to tie the parts of the area together. It feels wonderful when you’re in the rooms. The area seems much bigger and airier because the whole, large area is decorated as a single unit.

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        • Thank you! It is a dream kitchen to work in. I can actually take credit for that because I designed the kitchen area myself with the help of my ex husband, my architect and my decorator. It was difficult to create a good work space because there are only two half walls in the kitchen area. The rest of the kitchen opens onto the eating area and the sun room. The odd shaped island is a big part of the functionality of the work area.

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    • Thank you. The sun room actually gets direct sun only in the early morning and late afternoon. It is not southern facing so it is not bathed in sun most of the day. It just feels like you’re in the sun when you’re in the light and airy room.

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