Kitchen Ideas

We're moving slowly with the kitchen. I think that anything of this magnitued I think moves slowly at first because once you start you really can't stop. We're pretty set on white cabinetry, we've picked out our appliances [I really have to show you those soon] and we think we're going with a wood floor to maintain the flow of the rest of the house. One thing we need to figure out is the backsplash. So I'm going to reveal one of the considerations we have, and that is glass subway tiles. And some inspirational pictures to show you why we like the idea...
Image via Better Homes and Gardens

February 2012 issue of Kitchen and Bath Ideas via Visual Comfort Blog

Barbara Waltman Design
I especially love the one above by Barbara Waltman Design. Isn't it divine? It shows a white kitchen but with a splash of subtle colour. Sometimes colour needn't be strong of powerful to make a statement.Anyhow, our mind isn't made up - so blogging about our ideas helps us figure out what to do. What do you think of glass subway tile? Like? No?

Warehouse Kitchen Part 2

It’s that run down warehouse thing again!  Interestingly in this image the bridged breakfast bar at the end of the island runs right though from the social side of the island into the functional zone allowing it to double up as a preparation area!

Back to work - Custom Rubber Stamp Sale

I decided last night that it was time to reopen my shop. It's a little hard to do so, but necessary to keep myself occupied. Since I closed my shop in the middle of our popular stamp sale I have lauched it again, and it ends next week. Save 20% on the wood handle stamps when you enter STAMPSALE into the promo code. Also, thanks for the lovely comments on the painting yesterday. I've gotten a number of lovely e-mails requesting commisions which has made my year. Many have encouraged me to sell some paintings, perhaps something I will contemplate over the next few months. Anyhow, sorry for the advertising of my shop. But this is what I'm doing today - working - so, well - fitting that today's post be about it. xo Lindsay

Stamp Sale at The Penny Paper Co. Enter STAMPSALE to save.

Terminator Kitchen

Stainless steel is an alloy, a combination of metals that become fused together when exposed to high temperature.  The functional elements of this super hot design are so seamlessly integrated into the work surface and their fusion may well have taken place while the metal was in a liquid state.  But just as the T-1000 terminator was made from liquid metal this design shows some similar weaknesses!

Is it possible that this shining example if precision engineering has forgotten its functional obligations and that functionality has been compromised in order to achieve artistic perfection? 

The cooking and cleaning zones are the most dynamic functional elements of any kitchen but here we see that an important storage area has been replaced with fresh air with the user being required to travel away from this island hot zone to gather the non-consumable items needed for cooking.  And although not visible in the image is it possible that an exposed sink and waste system could compromise the free floating appearance of this design?

A kitchen is a diverse product which is influenced not only by its primary functional obligations but also the complexity of the human spirit.  Designs like this one look beyond the norm and allows kitchen design to rub shoulders with art and fashion.

Life is about compromise and personal love so why not express these sentiments in the next kitchen you own.

DIY Abstract Art

I've been slowly adding elements to our living room to make it complete. One of the big puzzle pieces that the room has been missing has been art. We had a stumbling block - The art I did like was out of our price I decided to make my own.

I purchased a canvas in December, and it has since sat in the basement waiting for me to work on it. Although I've done abstract before (Perhaps not on purpose), doing it at such a huge scale like this [40" x 40"] proved to be intimidating. Fast forward to an evening last week and I felt a sudden need to paint. I had already primed the canvas black a few weeks earlier, so all I needed was the willpower to put that first brush stroke to the canvas. So when out of the blue I felt the need to paint - I did. And I'm happy to say, I love it!

Although this canvas could hang without framing, I'm going to get it framed. [pending costs] Right now it sits on the console, and is bringing beautiful colour to our room. I adore it. To read some tips of what helped me create the art, read more. :)

Read more »

Artists Kitchen Canvas

This is the latest flamboyant kitchen contribution from Karim Rashid who literally treats kitchen frontals like an artist’s canvas!

In this design paints have been replaced with high pressure laminates and aluminium legs create a supporting frame for the free floating artwork.  This type of design may be overpowering if used on an entire kitchen but would work brilliantly as a colour accent to a more simplified and subdued kitchen palette.

Kitchen Garden

There is a little bit of everything in this design; seamless architectural integration, soothing holistic elements and an empathetic unity between interior and exterior design.

Coloured light is a powerful medium with the ability to sooth the soul, providing warmth to any design.  The reflective stainless steel overhang and white surfaces on the island allow the light to move around the room and provide a prelude to the fantastic exterior backdrop.  

The integration with the garden area is seamless and the breakfast bar acts as a visual runway leading onto an external garden path.   The sight lines are connected and so too is the carefully thought out lighting.

The Mogul loves this one!

Project Spotlight - Fresh and Casual Bedroom

At this point, my house is in a bit of a stand still. Little by little, I am tackling small jobs but nothing major to report. Having said that, I have been working on other Interior Design projects with clients and  I thought I'd share these with you, my readers. I have created a new section called, Project Spotlight, to feature projects from designers or readers, in the hopes to continually inspire you! If you have a project that you would like to see featured on The Reno Projects, please feel free to email me at

This next project was done by yours truly at kmsalter design. My client  wanted to surprise her daughter while away on vacation. The task was to decorate her bedroom within a week. I felt like I was on a reality tv show trying to get this done, on time and on budget! (Isn't that what they always say?) The structure of the project; no major construction, keep ceiling and ceiling fan as is, and the rest I had free reign. On a tight budget, I think I pulled it off quite well.

Before - Cluttered and Disorganized

Before - Tween room of chaos

Fresh Paint. New Bedding, lighting and some accent

Added storage helps organize personal belongings.

I reclaimed a few key images from her existing photo wall
and highlighted them above the bed with simple frames.
This also creates an illusion of a higher headboard.

This room displays how a bit of time, effort and money can go a long way. The prep work and painting of the walls, paneling and trim were the most time consuming jobs of the whole project.  Pulling together a few pieces of furniture to coincide with her existing pieces kept the budget modest and allowed the room to still feel like hers. 

Luckily, my client and her daughter were both delighted when they returned home to find this lovely surprise! I don't know if I will ever have the chance to pull off a surprise like this again! Has anyone else experience a decorating surprise?

TV Room

Our house when we purchased it

Now, with new windows
It's done! The last windows of our house have been replaced. We have zero windows left to do. We had Fieldstone Windows come in and do these and I love, love the look of them. However, we're now debating what to do for window coverings (I'll post about that tomorrow) Anyhow, I've been meaning to show the "before" and "now" shot. xo Linds

chalkboard boxes

I meant to post this for Valentine's Day. It is a bit of a recycled project from before but with a fun little spin - I bought a few dollar store boxes, stained them and painted the tops in chalkboard paint.The ways that you could use this project are endless. I especially think they are sweet as place cards at a dinner table. For adults, put a little after dinner mint inside or for childrens seating cards, place fun little things inside of the box to keep them occupied during dinner. Anyhow, it is such a simple and sweet project. xo Linds

Dining Room Tables - Dining In With Style

I have realized my dining room table is too small; too small to host a dinner party I am planning for this weekend. I am contemplating a new dining table but am severely limited by my small room. Although I have limitations, I don't want to compromise style and function. Things I am considering for a new table are durability, size, shape and colour. Like most houses these days, mine does not have room for a kitchen and dining room table. Instead I have space for one eating table which enhances the need for functionality.  WIll the table offer extra seating for more guests? Will it be a classic design that will stand the test of time? The table needs to address these concerns as well as creates a space that is less formal than a usual dining room but as stylish.







Perhaps one of these will inspire....which one do you prefer?

Warehouse Kitchen

Every picture should have a frame, an edge that can intensify the visual experience and draw the eye of the viewer.  That is why every contemporary kitchen manufacturer worth their salt owns a rundown warehouse!

Here though the purchase of an expensive docklands warehouse was not necessary as this design has all the presence needed to stop you in your tracks!  Smooth curves, multiple textures and an industrial overtone help to make this design different. 

However with so much space available in the warehouse, a warehouse with one previous and not so careful owner, it must be asked why the consumables area was not orientated a little differently to prevent the other functional zones becoming a functional obstruction.  It is also a shame that the plinth doesn’t follow the contour of the cabinetry!

With that said this is still an exceptional design!

The kitchen is a functional mannequin

The kitchen is a functional mannequin which can be tailored and dressed to suit the individual style preferences of each and every client. 
Although the appreciation of aesthetics may appear shallow to many kitchen design purists it is an element of the design that has far reaching implications.  The chosen aesthetics help to define the social and artistic affiliations of the user and whether we like or not the kitchen you own will outwardly proclaim something about you.  
Functional design perfection will achieve a quiet contentment within the user but so too can individually styled aesthetics, delivering a holistic element to the design which can last as long as the personally tailored functionality.
This functional human barometer will quietly display an empathetic understanding of those souls who occupy the space around it, as over time many personal items will become integrated into the original design, making it unique and personal.  But why not start as you mean to go on?
Everyone wants a designer kitchen; the very description implies that the product has been specially commissioned for the user; so why not get involved in the personalisation of your new kitchen in the early stages.  Italian company Effequattro offer a unique glass painted door which allows the ultimate in personal self expressionism.  The company have embraced technology and you can actually upload personal images right onto your new kitchen.  Check out the link below and have a little fun.
It is important to remember though that fashion is a shifting tide and so too are human relationships so if you want to get style longevity out of your design you will need to consider your images carefully!
Check out the fridge in images 1 and 4!  Looks like a lost extra, excluded from the main stage!

snapshop from the weekend

Aubrey stayed home from work this week, and weekend to give me some help at home. Having him here meant I could just sneak away to the bedroom and lie down, when I just needed quiet. I love the cocoon of my bedroom. My quilt from my grandmother seems to follow me around the house when I need warmth or comfort - this weekend no exception. The above picture I snapped right before watching some HGTV on Saturday.

Some exciting things are in the works over here. Some news on appliances, rumblings of some filming with a TV show, some painting projects, kitchen details and more. All little excitements that make for nice distractions. Anyhow, more inspiration and blog posts will surely start to flow soon. I'm not feeling all that creative, so I'm keeping my shop closed for another week.  But right now I'm wrapped up in my quilt and I'm going to go watch Downton Abbey with Aubrey. :)  xo Linds

Ps., Thank you for all of your lovely support last week. I can't begin to tell you how much it meant reading each and every note you sent. xo

Freshen Up Your Front Door

Last weekend I spent most of my time with a paint brush in hand. I decided it was time to get back into the reno project after a 6 week hiatus. I tackled the front foyer and stairs and I admit, by Sunday, I was proud of the work I accomplished, especially because I gave up snowboarding for the weekend to work on my house. One of the most exciting tasks was painting the back of my front door, and finally adding some colour to my space! I painted it navy blue (to no surprise after last week's post), which I will happily show off in a future post once the hall is completely finished. Are you looking for a change, some colour or a new palette for your house then why not start with the front door? Truly, adding the blue made SUCH a difference and now I am jazzed to infuse colour into the rest of my place.

Need some inspiration? No problem....







As I am sure you noticed, most of these doors are paired with neutral walls, which is something to consider. The door should act as a piece of art in the space and not compete with it's surroundings. If your front foyer is drab and needs a pick-me-up, perhaps a fresh colour on the door will do the trick! What colour is your favourite? Mine is, well, blue!

Pocket Door Kitchen

For years the kitchen has been planning its escape from the architectural incarceration that has restricted its natural development and resulted in years of solitary confinement.
It seems ironic that only when the kitchen is beginning to influence its architectural sentinels and is being placed centre stage within the home, the very designers that set this jailbird free are trying to call time on its short lived parole. 
It is interesting to see that this hybrid and on trend kitchen design introduces a transforming boundary between kitchen and the user; a pocket door prison guard that has the ability to send this kitchen down!
Is it possible that the best and most progressive transforming and shape shifting concepts are retracting the kitchen from the open plan environment, diluting its influence and throwing away the key for another 25 years!? 
The boundaries may be different but the restrictions are the same!

Valentine's Day Design Tribute

In my family, we were always taught the importance of celebrating "the day", like someone's actual birthday or an event. Even though there may be a birthday party planned for you that following weekend, a special recognition, gift or anything on "the day" is a must! So why should Valentine's Day be much different? Yes, it is a commercial holiday and sets people up to feel bad about themselves (if you so choose to fall into that). And yes, it is silly to just focus on a day for love. However, it's not going anywhere, so as far as I am concerned, "the day" should be recognized one way or another. Love doesn't have to be about a romantic relationship but any relationship where love is shared. Mothers. Fathers. Sisters. Brothers. Girlfriends. Boyfriends. In light of Valentine's Day and the love I have for all of you for your support on my blog and design quest, here are some Valentine's Day inspired designs that I hope bring a little more love into your heart!




Anything special on for your Valentine's Day?