How To Make Friends With Your Kitchen

Not every woman comes with a built in domestic side, and I for one am not a domestic diva by any stretch of the imagination.  But there was a time in my life when I embraced my kitchen, and learned to love its functionality.  There were a few hitches that I had to overcome, but after adding some cheerful details, I was drawn to the space much easier.

Most of you don’t know my story about why I left my big beautiful home behind, and I won’t go into the massive details about our Leap of Faith & 5 year Hiatus.  But this is the place where I fondly remember intimate dinner soirees, big Tiki pool parties, candle-light wine tasting and family Thanksgiving gatherings.  I love talking about “home” – that home… It’s where comfort lived.  This photo was taken when white appliances were not faux pas, and the “Tuscan” feel was in style.  But it was my cheerful, happy room, and I only loved it after I found the small items that made it mine.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to brighten up your kitchen.  A can of paint, a few plants, and some fresh fruit is where I got started.

Choosing A Color
Find a paint color that contrasts well with the adjoining space, but a slightly different shade.  Here, I found a soft yellow that was in the same color palette and married well with the sandy tones of the great room.  I chose yellow because it just made me happy to be in it, and picked up the soft light filtering in from the patio.

Out With The Old

If it no longer serves you, get rid of it!  Have you seen the number of bread-makers, George Foreman grills, and all of those other “As seen on TV” products which  have made their way to the local thrift stores?  I happen to love and use a few of them, but a lot of those mistakes were gladly accepted at my favorite charity.

Make Room For Diversity

 Although I wanted to add my own feminine touches to the space, I also wanted to make sure my husband felt comfortable to use it himself, (and he happens to be a fantastic cook).  So I made sure there was plenty of space for his frosty mugs and hoagie serving during the games 😉
Add Personal Touches
This is what sealed the deal for me.  When I had finally begun to pay attention to the things around me, I saw a pattern of items I really didn’t want.  Just because it’s a kitchen doesn’t mean it has to house everything kitchen related.  Look around the space and see if there are some family mementos that can be hung on the wall, or a collection that can be displayed on a shelf.

Set Some Rules
Unless you live alone, chances are you have lots of hands mixing and moving things around the kitchen.  I had to make sure my friends and family knew what was off limits, (to me, there is nothing worse than having the Mother-in-law bull-doze my space and take over my domain).  Sponges can be identified by cutting a corner off for certain uses (I learned this trick when one guest always used the wrong sponge for wiping down the counters – ewww!)  Labels go where I want things returned – families can be trained by good labeling systems.  Give the kids their own kitchen time but let them know where you want to keep things.  They don’t know unless you tell them…

Have you made friends with your kitchen?  What are some of your favorite details, or what do you plan on adding to make it yours?

 

 

Renee Weatherford

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