How To Make Your Kitchen Pretty AND Practical
So here’s the thing, you’ve worked SO hard to have a beautiful kitchen. You saved for years, you spent months designing it and you washed up your plated in the bathtub for 2 weeks whilst your old kitchen was being removed and your new kitchen was being fitted. It was HARD, but your kitchen looks marvellous and you love it! Fast forward two weeks and your appliances are on the worktop (because putting a toaster away every morning is not the life you want!) and quite frankly, you’re kitchen no longer looks like the show home you dreamed of. So today, my friends, I’m going to share a few of my personal tips and tricks on how to make your beautiful kitchen, stay beautiful, EVEN IF YOU USE IT!!! Also, if you want to see what our kitchen used to look like… see this post with kitchen before & after shots!
Toss, Use or Donate Unwanted Food
Remember that time you went into the supermarket and you were tempted by the BOGOF offer rather than buying your ‘tried and true’? Only to find you prefer your regular version and the ‘free one’ is still sat in the cupboard? Well my friends, it’s time to really cull your kitchen shelves. Toss any out of date food, donate anything you know you won’t use and actually eat the thing you’ve been planning to eat. You’d be shocked at how much is in your cupboards that has been sat there for years. Know exactly what you have and make sure you use it. Once your cupboard is filled with food you like and will use, you’ll be shocked at how much extra space you have. Use this space to store anything you only use once in a while! Simple right?!! Oh and whilst you are in the mood, donate any miss-matching cups, glasses, crockery etc that you never use. Why store it if you never use it? Someone else might need it and a charity shop can make a few quid selling it on!
Buy The Appliances You LOVE…
This is a BIG one for me, there is NO faster way to ruin a beautiful kitchen than shoving a 10 year old jam-stained Tesco toaster on your counter-top. I know it reminds you of your student days, but quite frankly, it’s time to leave the past in the past. Give it a clean and donate it to a charity shop. Then buy the toaster of your dreams! For me, it was this silver and copper Dualit beauty (we also have the matching kettle!). Admittedly, it was expensive, but damn, I LOVE it and I love the way it looks in my kitchen and I love using it every day! The same goes with your coffee maker, food processor and whatever else you use, consider the design and not just the function and upgrade what you can, as soon as you can afford it. And if you are still in the designing stage, then think about the appliances now rather than later and factor these items into your budget. Sure I would have loved to have bought a £10 toaster from a supermarket, but truthfully, it would have been an eyesore in the kitchen and I didn’t work my face off to buy my dream kitchen and then ruin it at the 11th hour with a crumby (literally!) toaster. Also, this is your excuse to BUY THE KITCHENAID YOU’VE BEEN DREAMING OF! It’s beautiful and functional! Same goes for your coffee maker, spend a little more and thank yourself for years! We LOVE our Nespresso machine.
Consider The Colour Scheme of EVERYTHING In The Kitchen
I know I’m going to sound super extra here, but when you designed the kitchen you had a colour scheme right?! Ok, so now it’s time to continue those colours into EVERYTHING on show in the kitchen. I’m talking about your appliances, cookery books, hand soap, bowls on the open shelves… you name it, if it can be seen, you need to consider it. This might mean putting your hand soap in a fancy dispenser, or hiding away your trays, or maybe even buying a new chopping board or two. Whatever it is, consider if it should REALLY be on show and where possible, treat yourself to a prettier version which looks good. You might find all you need is a new soap dispenser, chopping board and utensil pot to make a world of difference. And honestly, as wasteful as it might sound, it’s a tiny amount of money compared to what you spent creating your kitchen, so just a little extra investment will make you feel SO much happier. Also don’t forget to clean up any unwanted items and donate them to your local charity shop. One womans’ trash and all that!
Arrange Your Cookery Books
Now admittedly, I only have one cookery book! It’s true! I promise! I actually have fashion books on my kitchen shelves! I get most of my recipes online! But if you actually have cookery books, good for you! Now think about how they look, are they miss-matching and stained?! One option is to clear out the ones you don’t use and store them away, and just have a really considered shelf of neatly displayed cookery books. Another option is to arrange them in colour order to make a really pretty rainbow effect. If you have a muted kitchen you might find the colours stand out too much, so you could always display them with the spines facing out, OR you could cover the books in brown paper (or any coloured paper) and use a Dymo label maker to tell you what each book is. It will give you a more cohesive look to your bookshelf and also give it more of a home-made feel too, perfect if you have more of a French farmhouse kitchen vibe.
Apply The ‘Vintage Rule’
This is something that comes naturally to me, but there is a rule of thumb that at least one item in every room should be vintage, to give your home more of a beautiful, lived-in feel. This isn’t hard for me, as I have so much vintage I LOVE hunting for second hand treasures, but if you are a little out of your comfort zone with vintage and thrift shopping, try it with your kitchen scales. I have these dreamy vintage scales which we use every day and they are not only beautiful, but also really practical. Our kitchen table and chairs are also vintage, but scales are one of the easiest ways to add some vintage to your kitchen and make something that could be ugly, pretty!
Hunt Down The PERFECT Storage
I don’t know about you guys, but I like to have things out to keep close to hand, so we have some cute storage contains around to keep things like tea bags, coffee pods etc. It took me a while to find the perfect ones, but I love these matte black ones with simple wood tops and subtle gold plates on the front. These ones are by Typhoon which are really affordable, but look brilliant. I know it sounds extra, but these little touches make all the difference! I’m also a big fan of Le Creuset utensil pots too.
Create Your Dream Shelfie
So, these shelves could fit a lot more plates and bowls on if I wanted to, but instead I’ve chose to store my crockery in the cupboard and display beautiful objects on my open shelves instead. Sure I use the colander, bowls and teapot, but everything else is purely decorative and I’M FINE WITH THAT! Again, these beautifully styled shelves make me happy and I’d rather have these shelves looking lovely than have them stuffed full of extra plates or miss-matching mugs which rarely get used. Plus, even when the kitchen is a mess, it feels nice to have one corner always looking lovely!
…And there we have it, my guide to having a pretty AND practical kitchen. I hope it’s of help! Also this post contains affiliate links and a few press samples from previous projects. If you have any questions, please do let me know!