Design Board: Vicki’s Kitchen

Vicki contacted me asking for help with the kitchen in her rental apartment. She had a few key requests for the space:
1. Storage.
2. A distraction from the floor, back splash and dark wood cabinets.
3. A dining space.

The kitchen came with mustard appliances, which I used as a jumping off point. To complement the mustard, I chose to add grey and aqua along with a healthy dose of white to balance the dark cabinets that Vicki wasn’t fond of. Here is the result:

One of my favorite elements is the side board:

{Cucina Side Board – Crate & Barrel}

It would help with the storage issue, but it would be a budget buster at $1099, if it was still available. Sadly, it’s not, but it could serve as inspiration for a thrift find makeover. Failing that, Ana White has a design for a build-it-yourself apothecary cabinet that could also work if Vicki was feeling especially handy – see the plans here.

A bookshelf painted aqua with some white bins would add even more storage. This one is fold-able, making it ideal for renters who move frequently:

{Folding/Stacking Bookcase in Pool Blue – Home Decorators – $99}

Another key piece is this painting:

{Geode by Michelle Armas, acrylic on canvas – Anthropologie – $900}

Again, this could serve as inspiration for a DIY project, and is the perfect way to tie the color scheme together.

Vicki already had several options for dining tables, from one left in the apartment by her landlord to a folding set she already owned. I’d suggest painting one of them white and pairing it with some plush dining chairs. You know I’m a sucker for nail head trim, so I love these beauties:

{Safavieh Becca Side Chair Dark Charcoal – Target – $149.99}

Now to address the biggest issues with the space – the cabinets, back splash and flooring.

I’d leave the cabinets as-is, but replace the hardware. I didn’t include hardware in the design board, but something vintage-esque would work:

{Lindsdal Handle – Ikea – $6.99/2 pack}

There are, in fact, options for the back splash and the floor, even in a rental. Peel and stick vinyl tile would go a long way in updating the space. It’s super easy to install and can be removed if the landlord doesn’t want it to stay…although I can’t imagine why you’d chose dated 70s vinyl over something so much prettier:

{CeraRoma 16″x16″ Vinyl Tile in Limestone White – Armstrong}

And I’m almost tempted to go out and buy myself some of this gorgeous peel and stick white mosaic tile for the back splash in our rental. It promises to withstand heat from stove tops and can be removed without damaging the walls when you move out…

{Smart Tiles White Infinity Mosaic Peel and Stick Tile – Home Depot – $10.99 each (9.75″x10.5″)}

Accessories would bring much needed color into this kitchen – mustard yellow to echo the appliances combined with aqua and white to keep balance (I’d actually add a heavier dose of aqua than I’ve shown here, but these pieces are a good starting point):

{Clockwise from top left:
Utensil jar, Chalkboard Spice Jar, Verdant Canister and
Farmer’s Market Basket all from Anthropologie;
Le Creuset Stock Pot in Dijon – Amazon – $53.70;
Crazy Weave Glasses – Pier 1 Imports – $6 each}

I’d love to see this Dwell Studio fabric used as a roman blind for the window:

{Dwell Studio Boteh Jade – – $18.98/yard}

I’d finish the space with a large drum pendant – something along the lines of this (which could be DIYed using this $60 plain plug-in pendant from CB2 – perfect for a rental)…

{Jamie Young Lighting Pendant Drum Extra Large – $345 – Layla Grace}

…and use a couple of bronze-edged mirrors to reflect more light into the space and tie in the dark cabinets. I love this pricey octagonal mirror but a similar look could be achieved with some Rub & Buff in Spanish Copper and a couple of much cheaper mirrors from Home Goods, Ikea or Target.

{Bronze Octagonal Mirror – Zinc Door – $488}

Finally, one more look at the full picture:

Full Source List:
Wall Cabinet – Home Depot
Pendant lamp – Jamie Young at Layla Grace
Aqua & mustard fabric – Boteh Jade by Dwell Studio at
Trellis fabric – Tingara Aqua by Magnolia at
Back splash – Home Depot
Painting – Michelle Armas at Anthropologie
Mirror – Zinc Door
Utensil jar, spice jar, canister, ceramic crate – Anthropologie
Glasses – Pier 1 Imports
Stock pot – Le Creuset
Side board – Crate & Barrel (no longer available)
Dining chairs – Target
Table – Crate and Barrel
Floor tile – Armstrong
Book shelf – Home Decorators

Thank you, Vicki, for letting me give you some ideas for your kitchen!


1 Comment

  1. April 9, 2012 / 2:30 am

    hi! I love your blog! I really the way you did this post! I think you would like my blog, too! in particular (i have two blogs, MindBodyBeauty.blogspot is my usual/beauty blog but I do some stuff like this on the first one I mentioned- happy easter too!