(215) 794-1800 style@besusan.com

black-eyed-susan_dining-set_local-living-magazineOkay, so you have a perfectly good kitchen…layout works, and the cabinets are solid, but something needs a little lift! There are plenty of ideas that don’t involve a demo team or disrupting your life and home. Here are a few.

Color is one of my most transforming magic tricks. If you don’t feel like trying the new Radiant Orchid or my personal favorite, SW Yam on your walls and ceiling, you could get a pop of style with an oversized sculpture… try a lacquered orange 14″ apple. Oh. My.

Using my paint wand, transform the entire kitchen with painted cabinets. If you are ambitious and willing to do a little Internet study, you can tackle this yourself with success…or you can call me for a professional! I just finished a fabulous kitchen in Charleston, SC in three shades of gray… it’s a show-stopper!

While you are mulling over your new painted doors, consider new hardware. New jewelry always picks up my mood, and it can do wonders for your kitchen too… new hardware and wow light fixtures will put you on the road to style.

Why not remove the top doors of your cabinets for the look of more industrial open shelving? Paint the backs of the shelves with a pop of color… turquoise, chrome yellow, or porpoise. Add a colorful rug, and voila! Your room sings.

Your kitchen walls become the canvas for personality when you hang a favorite collection. A vintage tea towel becomes a focal point when hung under an old carved frame. This favorite collection of special sterling forks hung within the footprint of an ornate oval frame has always been a personal favorite for me. A modern kitchen gets instant character and smiles with style.

Hang a wild card light fixture, such as a turquoise papier Mâché chandelier or an unexpected purchase from the Paris Flea Market, dripping with crystals… my personal choice! It will travel with me to any kitchen. Wow.

Wallpaper is so unexpected in the kitchen and more durable than you think. Bold graphic pattern or tone on tone neutral… it could be the personality you need. Anaglypta paper on the ceiling is a great way to add instant age and architectural interest. It resembles old tin pressed tiles and can be found in a variety of patterns. Paint it in a metallic sheen or stunning satin hue. You’ll get a rave review.

Bring in a tall glass vase with oversized branches and blooms. Seasonal cuttings are always dripping with drama and you will find their fake cousins at my store for substituting when needed. Your friends won’t know the difference! Yellow, orange, white, lime… oh so Susan.

Several years ago, while designing a kitchen in Charlotte, NC, I substituted antique mirror for glass in an accent cabinet. It was the drama we needed and the wow factor of the mirror also eliminated the need for interest or neatness behind the glass. It’s an easy substitute and we even sell DIY kits for antiquing mirrors. You’ll love this easy transformation.

With a little imagination and energy from a few of my tips, you can wake up your kitchen with a new look, outside the box design and original style. Go for it.


by Susan Taylor, Local Living Magazine

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