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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Making the Kitchen, the Heart of the House

I REALLY love to cook, and for me one of the best things about cooking is the gathering together of friends and sharing the experience. The image above is one of the favorite kitchens I have ever designed. The owner was a retired chef and he would through the most terrific parties, where he would invite tons of friends over and we would all sit around the island (it sat 12) and he would cook and talk, and we would all eat and drink, it really was a magical place. Now, not all of us have a place where we can sit 12 people and cook at the same time, but I think there are some lessons that can be learned none the less. Here are some of my thoughts on how you might go about making the Kitchen feel more like the heart of the home:

  • Start with the backgrounds, paint the kitchen a warm, inviting color. Try to stay away from colors that are too cool, like blues and use earth tones, it will give the room an inviting feeling that will encourage people to linger.

  • It doesn't matter if its a modern or traditional Kitchen, the idea about colors apply to both.

  • Make a spot to sit for your visitors, it doesn't matter if its a chair or a stool, just make sure that they can sit comfortably and not feel that they are constantly in your way. So maybe put them on the other side of the island , but just be sure you can go from refrigerator, to sink to stove without asking them to move.

  • I am not a big fan of TV's in the Kitchen. They generate a huge amount of noise in an already hectic spot, at most some background music would be nice.

  • Try keeping either fresh flowers or living herbs in the Kitchen, its amazing what a difference this small gesture will do. Its a way of showing people that you care about the details.


The Peak of Chic said...

That truly is a beautiful kitchen Mark! So cozy but sophisticated too (and sometimes that can be a difficult mix to achieve, but you did it!)

Sonciary Honnoll said...

Beautiful! It gets me thinking about how I can make my kitchen more inviting! Thanks!

Ann said...

I couldn't agree more about seating for the visitors - unless you are going to put them to work.

susan said...

It's a wonderful kitchen, Mark, but I must admit I couldn't LIVE without my recessed 36" tv yacking in the background!

kitchen cabinets said...

Pay attention to lighting too. Especially dimmable lights in the kitchen. They can create some great moods...