Out-of-date kitchen gets a whole new makeover.
Style at Home contributing design editor Christine Hanlon partners with IKEA to turn up the heat on her vacation home’s dated kitchen.
Christine originally envisioned rustic open shelving in the kitchen of her century-old vacation home, but the wonky walls (an unfortunate feature of many a building of that age) were easier to disguise with closed upper IKEA cabinetry, which Christine stacked to take advantage of the space’s high ceiling. Open shelves tucked behind chic bold-patterned cafe? curtains below the counter, however, make it easy for her kids to help set the table and empty the dishwasher.
In order to achieve a cohesive look along the back wall, Christine had to sacrifice an original antique window sill to make room for a continuous countertop. But the effect of the seamless surface was worth it. “The view of the kitchen straight on from the dining room is one of my favourite things about the space,” she says. “I’m just so drawn to symmetry.”
Topped off with designer details like brass-hued hardware, a mix of patterns, smooth organic lines and vintage treasures, the new kitchen exudes Christine’s signature bespoke beauty with a dash of Nordic country flair.
A beautiful floral arrangement make for the perfect kitchen countertop accessory.
Christine strayed from her original vision, which featured dark cabinetry, and instead opted to apply a bold, almost-black hue on the walls. “I agonized over the decision,” she admits. “And I didn’t decide until the very last minute. I thought, I have to try it or I’ll never know.” So late one night, Christine slapped some dark paint on one wall, “to end the agony of whether or not it would work,” she says. “And the more paint I applied, the more I liked it.” The entire space, including the adjoining dining room, is now enveloped in the smoky shade to striking effect.
Christine had the sink smartly positioned in the centre of the island, so when she’s performing hosting duties, she can still chat with guests sitting at the dining table just beyond. And that’s not the island’s only benefit. Hidden within it are a fully integrated dishwasher, as well as a pullout waste-sorting system to make tidying up easy.
Since this created a kind of kitchen within a kitchen, the creative designer took advantage of the unique opportunity to use a complementary marble backsplash. The main area features a Moroccan-look flower in subtle silvery grey hues (“I fell in love with the pattern as soon as I saw it,” says Christine), while the nook boasts a brick-patterned backsplash in slightly deeper shades. “They’re the perfect coordinates.”
Tucked away from sightlines is a cozy chef’s corner with a sleek white cooktop, self-cleaning oven and plenty of counter and cabinet space – not to mention drawers perfectly sorted with IKEA’s Variera organizers. “I wanted this area to be its own private zone so when we host, none of the cooking mess would be visible to guests,” explains Christine.
It’s hard to believe that the dingy old kitchen from the ’70s could be transformed into the stunner it is today. As lovely and functional as the layout itself is, it’s the designer details – perfect pattern pairings, bold colour choices and doses of flourish – that make the beautifully bespoke space so successful.
How to: Prepare your home for winter
Five chairs on their last legs each get a chic style makeover.
Style at Home teamed up with upholstery house Switch Studio and spray painting shop Paint It Like New to breathe life into five outdated chairs that were standing on their last legs.
From funky to elegant, sexy to sweet, these thrones are nothing like what they used to be: outdated and drab. Check out these five chairs (some of which you probably have at home) Style at Home revamped with upholstery house Switch Studio and spray painting shop Paint It Like New.
After: Barrel chair
Layers of soft neutrals -- the ultimate in easy elegance -- highlight the graceful lines of this vintage beauty. A solid neutral taupe wool graces its front and back, while a subtle beige and cream ticking stripe linen marks the seat. For a streamlined, modern look, the original tufting detail was edited out.
Before: Louis-style chair
We decided this traditional Louis-style chair needed some modern sex appeal.
After: Louis-style chair
Feminine meets masculine in this sultry head-turner. While the main fabric is an über-femme hot pink velvet, the white faux leather racing stripe recalls a luxury sports car. Likewise, the ornately carved frame is coated in a handsome charcoal grey. The juxtaposition amounts to a look that's both fetching and fun.
CHAIR Louis-style, Take It Or Leave It.
FABRIC Cotton Charmed in Cactus Flower and faux leather Harley in Marshmallow, Kobe Interior Products.
CHAIR FRAME PAINT Peppercorn SW7674, Sherwin-Williams.
Before: Parlour chair
We love the low-slung, angled frame of this antique parlour chair so we updated its floral appeal.
After: Parlour chair
A large-scale multicoloured Designers Guild floral takes centre stage here. For an extra kick, the vivacious peony-patterned linen was paired with a bright teal frame and Beetlejuice-like black and white stripes. Bold on bold on bold, this regal antique's daring combination is true to fabric queen Tricia Guild's signature style.
FABRIC Designers Guild Pavonia linen Pandora, Primavera.
FABRIC Striped cotton Canopy in Black, Tonic Living.
CHAIR FRAME PAINT Really Teal SW6489, Sherwin-Williams.
Before: Chiavari-style chair
We love this classic Chiavari-style chair's detailed spindles and elegant curved wood legs so we added a fairy tale twist.
After: Chiavari-style chair
With a petite pattern and a colour name like Candyfloss, this cotton fabric is perfect for creating a little lady's perch, whether she's hosting a tea party or reading her favourite fairy tale. Swathed in the sweetest of pinks, the chair's spindles pop, while the lovely curve of the seat is accentuated by cream grosgrain ribbon overlaid with matching pink nailheads.
CHAIR Châtelet, Chatelet Home.
FABRIC Cotton Doodle in Candyfloss, Designer Fabrics.
RIBBON TRIM Cream silk grosgrain 50 000 in 2, Mokuba.
CHAIR FRAME PAINT Jaipur Pink SW6577, Sherwin-Williams.
Before: Vintage armchair
We love the combination of carved and turned details on the frame of this vintage furniture find so we updated its colour and fabric pattern.
After: Vintage armchair
A notice-me-red frame gives this old perch instant wow factor. The bold hue also highlights the chair's artisanal-look carvings, which could swing toward folksy but don't thanks to the trendy chevron upholstery. Though graphic, the linen's patterned upholstery appears subtle in this subdued white and grey colourway.
FABRIC Jonathan Adler linen Limitless in Smoke, Kravet Canada.
CHAIR FRAME PAINT Heartthrob SW6866, Sherwin-Williams.
Peonies wallpaper in Copper by Rifle Paper Co.
Wake up your space with one of these graphic and colourful wallcoverings.
Graphic and gripping, colourful and curious, bold and bright – these imaginative wallcoverings are no wallflowers, and they’re sure to energize any area of your home.
Few wallpaper designs are able to draw us into a world of whimsy quite like this quirky and colourful hot air balloon print. It’s the perfect fit for a bright modern nursery or an eclectic workspace. Schumacher Balloons wallpaper in Multi, through designers, Bilbrough & Co., $372 per single roll.
Inspired by the intricate shapes of crystals, this graphic wallpaper will literally have you peering at a room from an entirely new angle. Add to the unexpected look by opting for it in an emerald green hue. Cole & Son Curio Quartz wallpaper in Emerald Green, through designers, Kravet Canada, $234 per double roll.
Channel the tropics with this vibrant Osborne & Little wallpaper, which showcases flamingos peering through exotic flora. As far as we’re concerned, the flamingo trend is here to stay. Osborne & Little Matthew Williamson Cubana Flamingo Club W6800 wallpaper in 01, through designers, Primavera, $406 per double roll.
A true showpiece on its own, this bold patterned wallpaper draws from global influences. Featuring exotic flora and fauna, the print reflects a life well travelled. Thibaut Trade Routes Goa wallpaper in Blue, through designers, Kravet Canada, $128 per single roll.
Beloved stationary brand Rifle Paper Co. partnered with modern fabric company Hygge & West to bring forth beautifully designed wall coverings, such as this oh-so-dainty and delightful floral print. Peonies wallpaper in Copper, Rifle Paper Co., $190 US per double roll.
Portland-based interior designer Caitlin Wilson knows a thing or two about fashioning pretty and playful textiles. Take this delicate floral wallpaper for instance, which has a way of breathing new life into a space. Blooms Grande wallpaper in White, Caitlin Wilson, $178 US per double roll.
Add dimension and personality to your space with elegant wallpaper like this hand-screen printed option from designer Jill Malek. It will instantly lend your home a feminine glam feel. Peel wallpaper in Blush Gold, Jill Malek, $170 per single roll.
If there’s going to be an elephant in the room, it might as well be through this eclectic black and white wallpaper. While it may be tempting to apply the paper on multiple surfaces, we suggest starting small and using it to create an accent wall. Abnormals Anonymous Gossip wallpaper in Men in Black, NewWall, $95 per yard.