The Kitchen | Plans, in Progress

The words “in progress” are key for this post.  I won’t rattle on a disclaimer, but this is the kitchen raw and ready for the details.  The sparse kitchen actually is pretty soulless at this point.  But, I’m working on it; and–while feeling vulnerable–I’d love to share where we’re

I haven’t touched these shelves since we unpacked over a year ago.  I do know the bunny stays.  He holds our tea.

When we bought the house, the kitchen was tired and needed a refresh.  I was excited about having a kitchen to design from scratch–but overwhelmed.  While I looked at hundreds of gorgeous kitchens, none felt like us.  White and grey are classic beauties, but neither color seemed right for our family. Then I saw this kitchen by stylist Emma Persson Lagerberg  Those mint green cabinets heavily influenced me toward a mint paint decision.

Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 4.29.11 PM

I also keep going back to that dark green chair and mint cabinet combo…  As for the cabinet shape, I fell hard for these Workstead cabinets.

www.workstead.comI couldn’t get them out of my mind and ended up modifying the design for our own kitchen.

www.tphblog.comI love how the cabinets turned out and the putty-minty green color, which I mixed myself out of frustration.  The white quartz countertops make me happy.  We all love the roominess of the space as it is the place where we mill about the most–no more tripping over each other!  And, because the human collisions drive me bananas, we have two locations for trash and two sinks, LOVE the two sinks!  And we have a hot water dispenser that I use more often than I thought I would–adore it!  I also love, love our giant chalkboard, which also doubles as a secret door for a storage cabinet for entertaining ware and gift wrap.

I’m not so thrilled with the backsplash–it was a compromise with my husband who didn’t like my first pick.  But it’s not horrible, it’s just not thrilling…like a backsplash should be, right?

.  I’m also not as satisfied as I thought I would be with the vintage light installed over the island.  The color just isn’t right and the space needs that one big moment that the right chandy could provide.  I didn’t buy the light for this house, for the last one actually, and I just figured it would be nice to use it here.www.tphblog.comDid you see this island lighting in the November 2014 Elle Decor?

IMG_0437Photo: Simon Upton Design: Achille Salvagni

I know, RIGHT?  If there were a race on how fast one calls her welder, I’d win.  He said, “bring it on.”  And, I shall.  So Chris is working with us on how we will wire this cage system up.  The easiest and probably cheapest way to do this, would be to just put a cage around the existing light, paint them up the same, and call it a day.  But I want to be more deliberate with it–at least I say that until the estimate comes in!

And because all the kitchen elements are so big, stout, and boxy right now, I am leaning toward a design that is more open like this:

www.tphblog.comColor and finish of it?  Not sure yet.

The other part of the kitchen causing me grief is the dining area, opposite of the island.  I have spent months looking at fabric for the windows, as I really thought all along that I would do drapes on this wall.  But nothing was exciting me–I can’t tell you how many renderings I made of different fabric/chair combinations.  But the table, by Grey Furniture, we all love!  And, I love our new (comfy!) aluminum chairs that finally arrived…but what color to paint them?

www.tphblog.comWhen I think about how I want this space to look, I keep going back to this image–a Notting Hill dining space by Staffan Tollgard.

I’ve done soul-searching (as one does when considering kitchen finishes) and have analyzed every bit of this photo and every internal reaction I have to it, for clues.  It’s the simplicity in form and color, the color blocking, the artful sophistication, the texture, the symmetry, the classical trim vs modern lines.  And, I love that eggplant-y color on the chairs.  So, I’m moving forward without drapes, add picture trim that will help temper the contemporary flavor of the kitchen, add some statement sconces (we need more mood lighting anyways for quesadilla night), and go subtle-bold (it’s true) with the chair color.  receipts018

Pay no mind to the painted chair.  Sometimes a girl has a can of red paint open and desperation on her hands.  Same goes for the gray-painted chair on the other

My husband says I’ve spent probably a total of 150 hours thinking about that window wall.  And, he is right, I’m sure.  But I’m feeling good about this clean direction.  Above all, this highly-sensitive, slightly OCD mother wants a clean, calm kitchen as a backdrop for the inevitable chaos of life, so I think streamlining it as much as possible will help me reach that goal.  Not a lot of different colors, not a lot of things on the walls (we have the pretty woods outside to look at), not a lot of different finishes…let’s just say it’s therapy by way of a kitchen.

Have you checked out the house tour I’m doing on Instagram this week?  Just a peek at progress we’re making over here at TPH.


  1. Well, I love it and in spite of the *in progress* designation, I think it looks just gorgeous. The cabinets really set the tone and the entire space is beautiful. And the chalkboard/hidden door definitely keeps things fun! (I’d love to have one–we do not have a spare wall here for chalk, alas!) I love the bunny nook (for lack of a better term). And that fridge-in-disguise!!

    I don’t think you need any disclaimers, ever. I think you have a skilled and creative eye and lots of talent. (And I am sort of the Julia Child mindset anyhow–she said something along the lines of “don’t ever apologize for your cooking.” I don’t, and I don’t apologize for my house, either!) I think everything you do is uniquely beautiful, and that you should pat yourself on the back for all the beauty and inspiration you are gifting to your family. Beauty and art should be everyday, and they are in your home!

  2. You mention that your backsplash was a compromise with your husband, if it was up to you what would you have done on the backsplash?

  3. Aymee says:

    I might have missed cabinet hardware mention. If not, where did you get yours? They’re gorg!

  4. So beautiful! So fun to see before I actually come visit. It’s like reading the book before going to movie….if that movie was an Oscar winning box office smash created and directed by Ms. Angela B…:)

  5. Melanie says:

    My 8-year-old daughter (an aspiring artist) came by while I was reading this post so I was telling her about what an awesome artist you are and we had fun looking at this post together! When we have time we’re going to go through your archives for more inspiration. 🙂 Thanks for the kitchen tour; I’ve SO looked forward to seeing your house! It’s beautiful.

  6. Hudson says:

    Thank you for this kitchen post! I think that you have done some incredible things so far. I am 100% behind you on the light fixture change. For the dining room, I really love the “no drapes” idea. I think if they aren’t necessary, why take up the extra space? Sconce and extra architectural detail is a much better use of the wall space. I think that eggplant could be cool on those chairs. I really enjoy your posts–thanks for the time and thought that’s put into them!

  7. Oh my goodness, I can relate to so much of the ‘process’ thinking you’ve articulated here!! I’m not very good at sharing the twists and turns and analyzing and reasonings that go into design decisions, but I’m trying to get better. You’ve inspired me. AND, so many beautiful inspiration images here! Just wow! I actually love your kitchen the way it is (the cabinets!!), but of course am excited to see what’s next. Thanks for the great update! xo

  8. Oh, I love your sketch for the window wall! Those sconces are amazing! Cleaner and somewhat unexpected.

  9. really love the color of your cabinets…it’s a color i think i could look at every day and never grow tired of! i have a quick question about the layout…i have a client that is thinking of putting her fridge on the side of her kitchen like yours is…do you like the way that works? it makes a big work triangle, but maybe that’s fine? any thoughts?

  10. Hi, I am loving your style! Gwen (themakerista) recommended you as a new blog to read and I am soooo glad she did!! Can’t wait to follow along on your projects. Cheers! xoxo Kristin

  11. How can you tell us about a secret door and not show us? 🙂 That eggplant color with the minty cabinets would be perfecto!

  12. Erica says:

    Loved this kitchen tour! And really enjoyed getting a glimpse into your design process. Good stuff! Can’t wait to see more of your beautiful home!!

  13. Karen Howes says:

    Oh. Egplant and mint, what a combination. And for the light fitting, if it were mine I’d go something brassy or rose-goldy or even timber-y to tie in with the handles on your cabinets. But of course it’s easy for me to make those decisions when I won’t be living with it every day!

  14. Christy says:

    Everything looks fab Angela! You are doing such an awesome job! I can totally relate with the over-thinking things. It takes me FOREVER to decide on a fabric, pillow, curtains, etc… I’ve been wanting to change up my bedding for at least 2 years, but I can’t make a decision on what to get – as I like too many different things…ugh! I am especially loving the color of your cabs & floors! gorgeous! Would you mind sharing your wall color? I’m trying to find a nice warm white for my living room – gracias!

  15. Alison says:

    Your cabinets are gorgeous!!

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  21. Donna says:

    HI- I am wondering who makes the cabinet hardware?

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