I’m quite open about my love of cookbooks. In fact, when we recently renovated our house, I was very concerned with finding a spot in our kitchen for those books. Having them on a shelf in a room far away from the kitchen was just not working for me. Now, they’re easily accessible to me when I need them.
I’ve been MIA for a while and I’m sorry, but I promise I’m back and I’m going to be expanding the content on this site to include things like our renovation and styling.
Our old kitchen looked like this:
The challenges with this space were numerous. In particular, the space available to prep meals was very limited. Add to that, food storage was definitely lacking. The kitchen was quite dark, reflective of the time in which it was installed, but we wanted to brighten our whole house. When we began, the only thing we knew for sure was that we didn’t want anyone to walk in and immediately identify that our renovation took place in 2017/18. We wanted to combine timeless features with a few trendy styling options.
In the end, we did not keep our kitchen in the same place in our new layout. Where before it was a galley type kitchen in the southwest corner of our house, we moved it to the northwest corner and took down all the walls. Our old kitchen became the new laundry room and the rest of the main floor, with the exception of the powder room (ha!) made open-concept.
When establishing our design for the new kitchen, we wanted it to be both in close proximity to the living room and arranged in such a way so that the person cooking when company was over was not excluded from the conversation. We (read: I) really wanted to expand the amount of space available to prep food. Other considerations included:
- Proximity of the dishwasher to cupboards for cookware/dishes
- Proximity of prep area to garbage & sink
- Pantry space
Another element in the design that I was very concerned with was island seating. We wanted a large kitchen island and the ability for us to comfortably eat there when it was just the two of us and we didn’t need the dining room table. Typically, islands situate seating along the same side and across from the prep area. I didn’t like the prospect of my meal being in front of me and having to always turn my head to converse. Weird, maybe?! Instead, I wanted our seating to have a corner of the island, to eliminate the constant turning to speak. I also wanted chairs with backs for our island seating. I’m too old to sit on stools and I wanted anyone who sat there to feel like there was no rush to move away from the seating. I found our chairs at Wayfair.
We also purchased a larger stove and range hood for it and wanted them to be the focal point of the area. We added four floating shelves to accentuate the space. Because of this, there was minimal space available for upper cabinets, so we only have one and it is on a different wall from the stove. With the exception of some hidden storage below the island, we included only drawers. Our kitchen island colour was “hale navy” from Benjamin Moore, while the other cabinets are the kitchen company’s crisp white.
For our backsplash, we used a marble subway tile. We purchased these tiles a few years ago, when we thought that we were going to only renovate our bathroom and not completely change the entire house. To decorate the floating shelves, I mostly used items that were already in our possession. Some different textures and colours to show off the items.
When styling the kitchen, we went with gold hardware, pot-filler and faucet. Of all the gadgets in the kitchen, I love our Delta faucet in champagne bronze. Ours has the “touch” option where, when your hands are dirty, you can touch your arm or the back of your hand anywhere on the faucet to turn it on. It is SO convenient. If you’re in the market and willing to spend a little more on a faucet, I absolutely recommend this product. You can find it at any home renovation store, but click HERE for a link for a quick look.
Of course, the cookbooks took pride of place.