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Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Posted by palimpsest (My Page) on
Thu, Nov 3, 11 at 11:23

There has been a trend toward more active granites, multiple finishes on cabinets, multiple countertop materials, backsplashes with accent rows and picture-like or medallion like "features" over sink or range, etc. Add to this recessed or close to ceiling lighting, mixed with pendants and a chandelier.

I think the combination of pattern and variety in kitchens is surpassing that of living rooms, where people still seem to be afraid of pattern, and to some extent color. But a living space, once decorated, has all the layers contents with the exception of magazines and some of the detritus of daily life perhaps.

In a kitchen however, I think these layers are composed as if the kitchen and the countertops are going to remain empty, and in most cases this isn't true. Start adding the countertop appliances, containers, canisters, food, lists and other objects of daily living and there is a lot of stuff piled onto or in front of these ornamental surfaces.

So I wonder, if on some level, we are headed into a phase of "aesthetic movement" -style layering: (and layering is something people seem to be really afraid of in other areas of home decor) Do you think we "see" or "not see" these two parts of the house differently?

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Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I am sorry but that picture is awful. Too much visual noise. The furniture in a serene setting could be pretty. The walls or window treatments would be fine if paired with calmer elements adjacent to them (but not near each other). This comes across as too cluttered and just too much.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Gah! I hope not.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

MY kitchen looks like that right now as I try to finish up all the little details: tools, paint cans, hardware- everywhere!

I have a mix of finishes, but all along the black and white spectrum, with a bit of color thrown in. My island and perimeter are different cabinet colors and countertop colors. My wall color is a bit bold by some standards and I have a few different types of tile as a backsplash. However, I think it reads as cool old house, rather than busy. I guess you could call it 'style layering'. I'm wondering though as I look at this photo if it is like, 'beauty is in the eye....' or perhaps in this instance, 'style' is in the eye of the beholder.

I would hope that once I'm done my kitchen will be a calming place in which to prepare wonderful food, not a busy place like the above photo.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Are you really seeing this? Maybe I'm biased by GW but I see the trend running in the other direction--fear-based design that confines itself to a "pop of color" or "letting your granite shine" with everything else in the room as bland as a dial tone.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I wanted to use a generic visual example rather than a specific kitchen, but sure, I guess that is what I am asking...are people willing to accept a lot more visual noise in the kitchen? My feeling is yes.


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RE: good point

hmmmmmm.... marcolo makes a good point too.....

I think we may be seeing both trends happening. I see way more bland IRL than multi styled. Maybe it is a TKO side effect from seeing too many great options on GW and wanting them all in the same kitchen. I could easily see myself falling into that trap because I worry about the greener grass sometimes, despite being fully satisfied with our choices. I wish I could have had multiples of backsplashes and counters. I even would like to put some wood cabs somewhere despite loving the white ones we got. I would not trade but would like to somehow have everything that catches my eye....
If I were filthy rich with more than one house and the money to fix them my way, I bet each kitchen and bathroom would be very different to satisfy all my whims.


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I am seeing both.

Marcolo, I think I am seeing both. There seems to be a split in either direction the most extreme poles being fear of committing to any particular statement vs. designing the kitchen as if no one or nothing will ever be in it--most of course being less extreme.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I say yes too. Things have been quiet, muted, understated, zen-like, clean lines, etc. for a long time and the pendulum will swing back. At least it seems to me that's how things work.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

The masses are still digesting Peacock.

The design cognoscenti are herding the other way, as they must to justify fees.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

There's a difference between the designer, style and stylized things - idealism - and reality. Perhaps this accounts for at least some of the divergence? So what's put out there as a model may not be what people actually build for themselves IRL.

That might account for the feeling that there's a certain "GW" kitchen, that White is King or the Only or whatever, while when someone periodically complains about the prevalence of seemingly ultra-posh kitchen makeovers, there's a cacophany of "I've got plywood; I've got rotten tiles, I've got hideous linoleum and I love it" and on and on.

This must also be the distance between what I think is called - what was that "aspirational", I think? In the marketing biz?

So ... I'm just trying this idea on for size, not wedded to it - but I wonder if everyone's lives are increasingly hectic and there's more of a push IRL for blandness and calm. While "aspirationally" (never thought I'd type such a word), there's the same-old imperative to sell, which means just throwing new, different stuff out there, always. Different just has to be the name of the game. You've got to move the hemline, regardless of what it was. Its absolute height isn't the point, the change is.

Thus, if it's true that IRL people are toning down the noise in their surrounds, perhaps the aspirational pictures almost by necessity have to be noisy, just because it's different. And perhaps because people are really, really stressed, they're really pushing back with calmness, for longer, so a more entrenched split results.

Dunno, I'm just procrastinating doing a zillion other things -- sort of "aspirational philosophy". I'm off to get something done now. No worries if you think this is just utter bs. ;)

Pal, BTW, that photo made me literally hiss in my breath. Oldhse - are you the gal with the chinzy stools? I just love that place. It's quirky and fun and pretty and relaxing in a way that this photo precisely is not. More is so much not better. That photo is just wacky. Looks like a movie set for the Addams Family -- which is to say, satire.

That said, I'm pretty sure I have that coffee table! It was Gram's....


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

palimpsest do you have any photos of an actual kitchen that describes what you are talking about, rather than that sitting room photo? I'd be interested in seeing photos of a bit more extreme kitchens as many of the ones I've seen have been understated. In my local area the kitchens I've seen in real estate listings have all been quite simple.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think people plan their kitchens without thinking about what will be sitting out on the counters. They don't plan on the visual noise, but when they start living in the kitchen, it ends up being noisy and they get used to it. Maybe we'd end up with quieter kitchens if KDs added toasters and coffee makers and dish towels to their drawings.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I see 2 schools of thought in many kitchens here. One is the " don't do too much because it is not good for resale". The other is " I am going to live here forever and I will do what I want".

There are sub categories also. I have seen a lot of posts, when a person is in the planning stage, that ask if they can have the granite that is so busy and then a focal point of the bs and then the floor and ooohh please can I also have these lights as a focal? This is a feature of what dianalo was saying. Folks see so many beautifully designed kitchens and they want a lot of things in their kitchen. As was pointed out though....we only have the one home so choices have to be made.

I do think as old house says , you can get away with more layering in the older home than you can in the newer one. But then it depends on the style of the newer home and what is going on in the other rooms.

I hate seeing any one room in a home that doesn't flow to the other rooms. But that is just me. I like interesting features and colors and texture...eclectic , gathered designing , if you will. But when all is said and done I want a cohesive look to the entire home...every single room. That most definitely includes the kitchen . It is part of the rest of the home and needs to speak to whatever color values and textures you are using throughout the home. c


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I envy the eye of the person who put the posted room together. Do I like it - I'm not sure, could I live in it - definitely not. But the scale of the patterns among the pieces is good, there is colour follow-through with the red in almost all of the elements in the room. I wish I had just a little bit of that visual talent.

I have been on the "bland - lack of colour - boring rooms" soapbox for quite some time. It happened in my own home and I never saw it coming. We did a whole house reno last year and I though I wanted calm, soothing colours with interest brought in through the use of textures. The shiny granite, copper backsplash, squamish rock fireplace etc. but turned out I was wrong. Now I'm working hard to bring back colour through the use of deliberate and permanent colour choices.

A bouquet of flowers does not count as colour, nor does a bowl of apples or a lime-green KA mixer. Rugs, curtains, furniture in something other than some tone of brown counts as colour. In hindsight I would have looked at more colourful granites. It's a process and a journey through the colour wheel but I will eventually get there.

The vast majority of kitchens, here or in magazines or IRl all lack colour. The form of some of them is interesting and there are some beautiful ones where people have taken the plunge into colour.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

The parlor in the picture is from and Aesthetic Movement period house museum I think.

Doing a really monochromatic, suppressed or fully neutral palette is actually complex and difficult, and it's generally not what people here do when they say "neutral" palette. Here, we end up with more of a combination of what I consider "non-correllated" neutrals, which have different undertones and it often ends up no so successful (Marcolo has discussed this), and then thats why people want to introduce a feature color somewhere which, imo, tends to make it even a bit less successful. The only truly monochromatic palettes I have done have taken hours and day and looking at literally thousands of samples of things to pull it together. And then it has a limited audience.

But mcmjilly put it a big more succinctly I think than I have in terms of the other trend. People plan their kitchens as if the counters will be empty, and them become slowly acclimated to the visual cacaphony as it builds.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think kitchens are trending more toward quiet subtle finishes. Recall the napa valley kitchen thread and how the theme-driven kitchens seem to have given way to serene, neutral spaces, whether traditional or modern or anything in between. I'll admit that I'm not usually at the forefront of trends, so perhaps things are moving that way (... again), but I sure hope not. I think kitchen spaces are best left neutral -- the real star of the kitchen should be the food produced in it, and it's hard to truly appreciate the hue of a great tomato based sauce if the walls are already popping their corks with vibrant reds. A plate or a 9x13" dish of food will never be able to complete with vast expanses of countertop materials or wall finishes in Picasso-esque hues...... But a white plate sitting on a black or grey countertop is a worthy stage for a whatever creation you might want to serve on it.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I totally disagree that a bouquet of flowers or bowl of fruit does not count as color. Why do you think they are always in photo shoots. White marble in particular is to freshproduce what black velvet is to carats.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Isn't that marble on the coffee table? A chandelier in the middle of the room? And isn't that mostly wood with a black accent piece? Take away the fabrics and I think that might be the beginnings of a GW kitchen :)


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Simple question...maybe. What is the age group that kitchen design marketing is aiming at?


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think failing to plan for reality is as much an issue with simple kitchens as it is with busy ones. I always wonder what the One True Kitchen looks like in action, for real, especially if people do the all-white version with marble countertops. Anything placed on those counters is going to command the main focus of attention. And I don't mean artful fresh fruit arrangements. I mean magazines, keys, bills, cereal boxes. People who own these kitchens subjectively don't focus on these things, but anyone walking into them will.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Perhaps you are on to a new trend.... I don't really know.
If kitchens have become "the new livingsroom,"
it would make sense for people to decorate them
in the more complex, layers, multiple finishes and fabrics
that one has traditionally seen in a living room.
TV designers like Genevieve Gorder certainly spend a lot of time
talking about making their kitchens "soulful"
and cramming them with decorative objects and do-dads.

If it is a new trendy, we don't seem to be seeing much of it on GW, do we?
In many GW kitchens I don't even see much fabric.
Two different finishes on the cabinets, or a chandelier over the kitchen table,
is about as "layered" as we seem to be getting with our kitchens.
Maybe our kitchens are very cluttered in real life;
but the basic design elements seem pretty streamlined
and minimal.

Or, perhaps I don't understand your question.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

No way !


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pal - you bring up a good point and one that I had forgotten my KD and I had discussed after the renos were finished.

"Doing a really monochromatic, suppressed or fully neutral palette is actually complex and difficult, and it's generally not what people here do when they say "neutral" palette." My KD is also an interior decorator and she did the entire colour scheme for the house. When I look at my kitchen I see nothing but browns (neutrals) when she looks at the kitchen she sees what you talked about in your post.
It really is a beautiful space, one that I could never have put together so perhaps I need to leave it alone and let the neutral palette speak for itself.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Rather than post specific kitchens (which could potentially be someone's dream kitchen, and then they would be offended), I will describe a process I see.

This is not even meant to build one cohesive color scheme, just the process of what I see happening, in real life, and in here to some extent.

Let's start:

I found this really awesome granite that is going to be the feature of my kitchen:

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Ah, but you know, it's an exotic granite, so it's really expensive, and I don't know if I would get tired of a whole kitchen done in this so I will only do it on the island, and the perimeter counters will be labrador antique:
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But you know, all the dark brown will be really dark with the cabinets I have chosen so maybe only the island will be stained, because I need to lighten up the kitchen. Oh, I am also using some glass doors on the upper to prevent the wall of wood:

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I picked this tile for the floor and I thought it was too boring so I thought I would do a hopscotch pattern to bring in some of the dark brown from the granite:
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And since it is ceramic, that will be hard on my knees so what do you think of rugs like this in front of the sink and range. Or maybe I will get those Gel Mats
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I have been thinking about the backsplash and I think that one tile is too plain so what if I did this? Just ignore the outlets, I didn't think about the pattern on the backsplash when I put in the outlets and switches.
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What if I did a feature over the stove:
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I also keep the coffee maker, the toaster, a countertop oven, a paper towel holder, four canisters, a knife block, a drying rack and a butcher block out on the counter. Everything else gets put away.

Now what should I put on the counters or on top of the cabinets to decorate that space?

Nobody thinks this is a fairly common example of the process?


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I agree with Marcolo...

"I always wonder what the One True Kitchen looks like in action, for real, especially if people do the all-white version with marble countertops. Anything placed on those counters is going to command the main focus of attention. And I don't mean artful fresh fruit arrangements. I mean magazines, keys, bills, cereal boxes."

So many people choose all neutrals and without careful planning for accessories, these kitchens seem like they might need a little more personality. Christopher Peacock kitchens are very pretty...but they are also quite generic. That type of kitchen is now everywhere in magazines and they all seem very similar.

The opposite seems to be what Palimpsest is talking about...so many patterns, so much 'personality' that it seems too busy to many. It can almost make you feel dizzy! I guess I feel more comfortable with some kind of middle ground.

My mom went through the 'all neutrals with one color for accent' phase and I don't miss it. She found colors again and her yellow and green living room/kitchen are cheerful and inviting. I like the 'lived in' look, which may not always look perfect, but it is cozy, comfortable and people know they're in your home...not a showroom.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Palimpset,
I understand what you are saying about an over saturated design process.
But do you think this is a new trend?
It seems to me that upper-middle class McMansion/Tuscan kitchens
have been decorated in this "trop" manner since the late 1990s,
maybe even since the Regan era.
For the past decade many kitchen design center aimed at a middle-class markets
have featured these kinds of kitchens.
If it is a trend, I'd say it is a "trend" that is over a decade old.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I see the point. But around here, I think the more common process is:

I love this granite.

I'll let the granite be the star. Here are my cabs:

I'm not doing the heavy line, though, too busy.

Which tile should I do?

This is the floor.

I think the grout here is way, way too busy:

I think these are stunning.

I think these are nice, too:

This was the KD at the showroom. I don't know why she was doing this.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

People have no restraint. Who are all these focal points FOR. Tone it all down.

The most important focal point is your dining companion and then maybe the food on your plate.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Oh sure, it's been in a certain market for a long time, but I think it has really filtered down all the way to the entry level market. At least that is what I am seeing in real estate. I am not saying it is a new trend, maybe trend was the wrong word, but I think this is an interesting contrast to the LR where all the furniture is plain, if not all a shade of beige and people are afraid to put two throw pillows of different pattern in the same room.


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RE:re Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Nonsense. No one does square tiles here. And a tile floor? The last I saw was in the gum wood kitchen, which is unquestionably unique and lovely.


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RE: the gray and pink granite

Marcolo,

But wouldn't you rather see that granite in the right All Gray kitchen than surrounded by all bland as you describe OR all layered like I am talking about? I am not disagreeing with you at all, I think these are two expressions or poles of a similar issue.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I just did a little research. I scrolled back and looked at ten recent finished kitchen posts. None of them look like either of your posts.

I didnt see any of the Bushesque "thousand focal points of light" kitchens. I didnt see any misguided neutral mashups either.

I saw baby Peacocks. White cabs, black counters, wood floors. And you know what they all look pretty darn good. Not cutting edge or avant gardenweb. But lovely. Elegant. In good taste I dare opine.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Yes, but could these 'baby peacocks' strut around with a few tail feathers? That would be a lovely accent...blues, turquoises, maybe a bit of green and purple? :)


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Yikes, I am guilty of almost everything mentioned in palimpsest's original post except can lights (never, ever), and I have all sorts of layering, stuff on the walls and a veritable cacophony going on in all my rooms, so I see kitchens and other living areas the same. We have a wide open floor plan, the downstairs is mostly one room, so our house should have some cohesion in style. I'm not saying it does, that's a matter of opinion, but it's probably a nice thing to strive for.

wizardnm, good question, probably 30-45? Or in the current economy are they trying to hook anyone they can?

sandyponder


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

The white kitchen is a GW phenomenon that outstrips real life in my location. I have seen exactly one White shaker inset door kitchen with black countertops, wood floors, subway backsplash and nickel fixtures (the current GW archetype, it seems) and I looked at dozens of houses in person and hundreds online in my recent search. That white kitchen I designed myself for a client a few years back.

I doubt there are more than a couple kitchens in here that fully conform to what either I or Marcolo are talking about, and that's one of the reasons I posted a Victorian LR instead of a kitchen, I am talking about thought processes. And I am not gonna go back and find a particular GW kitchen to illustrate my point either, even though they are out there. That would be kinda counterproductive, and not particularly polite, since its a matter of opinion anyway.


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Sandyponder

Sandyponder:

You were intentionally trying to achieve cacophony, and that is something completely different. That's like the "layered" threads posted by Chijim in the Decorating Forum.

I am not even saying that one versus the other is bad or good, but I do think there is a difference between what people look at and what they screen out, and I think many people screen out more in kitchens than in other rooms.

I don't understand the comment about the square tile...no one does square tile..where?


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RE: re Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Nor should you. But I think on the whole gw people get it right. Frankly moreso than I recalled.

Take a bow, everybody.

Lavender ... I saw lots of interesting details in each kitchen


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RE Again: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pal, that was in re Marcolos post.


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RE: I forgot

Sorry, I forgot that things can't be discussed in the theoretical or abstract without someone thinking it's about a specific GW kitchen.

Here is a link that might be useful: Carly


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this also

This also was not in response to a particular post.

I like to discuss things in the abstract, which includes more than GW, and more than a specific kitchen or two.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Actually, what I've seen in quite a few open houses especially when the kitchen was redone for resale (back when we were doing our main kitchen remodel and people were flipping houses) was a mish-mash of neutrals. Every surface was neutral but there really is no such thing as neutral so the didn't go together. One can make something really "muddy" with neutrals thrown together.

We have an active granite and I don't find that the appliances detract from it. In our case, we kept it simple highlighting the one material by using the granite for a full backsplash. Much of the backsplash is covered by coutnertop appliances, but plenty of the granite (really it is quartzite) is displayed on the island surface (and now on the fireplace surround in the family room). And we kept the lines of the cabinets simple (Shaker with one piece drawer fronts for the smaller drawers as traditional Shaker furniture uses). We find the result calm and peaceful like looking at the ocean, the movement of koi in our pond or flames of a campfire - there is activity there but something calming about it.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I don't think I was trying to achieve cacophony, I was just trying to make a fun, colorful and unfitted kitchen on a tight budget and it went all cacophonous on me, it took on a life of its own. Two paint colors on the hutch led to three, four, five, vintage stuff from the junque shops flew onto my walls and counters, cab hardware refused to be the same, Craig's list lighting got stuck to the ceiling, you get the picture. Soon my room may resemble the LR in the first post, but what the hell, at least it's me.

sandyponder


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pal,

Marcolo's post said "...around here, I think the more common process is".

So that was what made me scroll back to look at recent finished kitchens.

ps
I can't view your link on iPad.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

LOL. Yes, You're So Vain: Narcissism May Be On the Rise

Certainly we have both participated in threads that follow the processes we've illustrated to a T. The saddest, though, are the ones where the poster himself or herself recognizes that the kitchen did not come out looking so great--as a precise result of following one of these two processes.

I have absolutely seen the overlayered kitchen IRL even though it is far more rare on GW. A lot of flipped kitchens during the boom were the absolute worst. They wanted to be "wow!" and "modern!" to impress buyers, and so you ended up with four different kinds of focal-point tile in the same backsplash, with contrasting iridescent floor tile, and sparkly black and blue granite, and downtown-bar orange pendant lights, and a steel-and-glass hood, and if it fit, an island in some swoopy unnatural shape. It felt like somebody had stuffed a kitchen showroom into a Tommy gun and shot it at you.

Personally, I'm a fan of kitchens with lots of busy. They're more liveable and interesting to look at. But they have to be planned all together and of a single piece.

I use bathroom examples a lot. A lot of folks try to "tone down" their original '20s and '30s bathrooms by painting white or beige or something around their original jewel tone green or blue tiles. That is not the right aesthetic, and not how these deep tones were meant to be seen.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Well, let's take Marcolo's granite.

I think that this granite is already making an awfully large statement, right? So people back down with other finishes, think "Neutral" and for some reason that means to most people either white or beige, and I think beige is a peculiar, tricky color with pink, yellow, green, orange, purple undertones.

So let's rethink it...change "neutral" to "grounding color"

also, since the pink and grey granite speaks for itself, the rest of the kitchen in beige is not going to attract anyone looking for "neutral" anyway. (And MOST people are not going to say "the rest of the kitchen is neutral so lets move in and throw out $7000 worth of granite"). So don't go completely overboard with the neutral, there's no point.

So instead of Marco's granite with the ubiquitous beiges and white subway, why not this? (And I don't know that the colors are all correct, this is an illustration)
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Heck, why not even throw in some of this? (This is 1790s BTW, not 1950s)
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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Sandyponder,

I just have to say, I would never have used the word cacophony to describe your kitchen. I would have described it as having character. I love your kitchen and all its uniqueness. It's fun and refreshing and nothing like the original photo posted.

Your kitchen represents what I've been thinking as I've read through this post. Maybe people are just putting what they like in their kitchens.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?again

That's artful. For those who march to a different drummer.

It's not a good kitchen for showing off though. It is to impress yourself and not others. But a lot of reno is for the latter purpose.


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asdf

I couldn't do pink tile, personally. I survived two pink bathrooms by the time I was 18. Maybe this?

Hard to see on the monitor.

But I'm always amazed at the fact that I almost never see a project that follows this process unless a designer does it.

In fact I think the absolute worst piece of conventional wisdom on GW is to choose the backsplash last. Right. Just the way you put on a shirt, shoes, and jacket, and then walk out into the street half naked hoping you can find pants to match.

Certainly it makes sense to make the final choice of backsplash after everything else is in place and you can confirm how the paint, wood, lighting and such really turned out. But not to go into the project with any idea whatsoever of what you want for one of the most visible and permanent elements of pattern or color? Really?


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My original granite

And as a more approachable, wood toned example take the original granite I showed. Again, a pretty strong statement, so instead of layering on the beiges and the accents, why not keep is simple but full strength?
(Again some of the colors may be a bit off, this is thrown together)
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(Bamboo cabinet, backsplash, and Marmoleum floor)
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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I'm putting 4 by 4 square iridescent tiles in my backsplash. I love them.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think people are much more attracted to layered decorating than they realize. People want things to be interesting, they like texture and they want their stuff close by. So often, without planning, people get "visual noise."

And to be honest, I don't think it is as stressful as people fear. I remember reading an article about a women who had restored her victorian home and furnished it in full period style. She was a therapist and saw her patients in her parlor. She claimed that people were so relaxed in the setting that they really opened up, often running their hands over the velvets as they spoke. True? Who knows, but I often think of the article when I see clean, simplified rooms.

Love the pink and grey kitchen idea BTW.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

There is something phony about that OP picture, the chandelier looks fake like it's been photoshopped in. It might just be me, I'm very tired....


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

The remark about picking a bs early made me laugh. One of our earliest visions for our kitchen involved the bs and people in the various kitchen trades looked at us funny or came right out and said we were doing the shopping "wrong" bu having the bs in mind first. I thought it gave us a real direction and vibe to work from but we were corrected in some way by every person we discussed it with. After seeing so many people here pick everything else first and then struggle to pick a bs, I think our way could have made things easier for some.
In reality, I truly believe that one should pick the part of the kitchen that is most part of their vision first and work the rest around it. Some people have an idea of the cabs first and others may pick their counters before anything else. It all ties in and all needs to be picked, so any order is fine by me but I do think the specific paint color should usually wait. One can have a general color in mind, but until you have a counter or bs, it is best to not be too certain because the tones may not match up well.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Marcolo- I like that bathroom...great colors!


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think people may be feeling a bit braver in expressing themselves in the hub of the home these days. With all there is to look at visually online for inspiration and the many how to sites, well, I think people are seeing and learning what all there is out there and want to give it a try. The computer has made it all possible. Plus, unlike a living room where pieces can be swapped out or changed the kitchen is there for a long long time so you really have to like it. If it's a trend it's probably a trend here to stay. More and more people are bucking against so called expert ideas on what's "in" to create a place that they like. As for me I love a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Add a little old, a little new, a little layering and with a bit of quirk. To me this vid exactly explains what's already started.
http://youtu.be/sMZwZiU0kKs

Here is a link that might be useful: A little of this and that, old in the new


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

There is another way people "design": find the inspiration picture and try to copy it exactly. That doesn't really work for me because I can find hundreds of conflicting inspiration pictures and I can't copy them all! I finally realized that I just like a well-designed kitchen, not any particular countertop or cabinet color.

So how do suggest that regular people go about putting together a kitchen?

My thought was to pick out the countertop and backsplash together, then the cabinets, then the floor and lighting and hardware, then the paint color. Something like this (and these are not my choices):

I love this tile backsplash and think it would look fabulous with this caesarstone:


How about creamy perimeter cabinets and a gray island?

This faucet floats my boat:

A wood floor to warm it all up?

Now what to paint the walls?

At the end I would "layer" it all with at least a day's worth of dirty dishes that nobody could put in the dishwasher, an open loaf of bread, an open jar of peanut butter - well you get the idea.

Would a process like this work?


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I love the OP photo, at least visually -- if only my shins didn't ache in mental anticipation of barking their way through that forest of tea-tables.
--

In flipping through a recent 'show me your countertops' thread, 95% of which are some sort of granite, something did occur to me re. Pal's question. Don't you think that an era's favored building materials form, to a large extent, the boundaries around the possible? Just as the Victorian aesthete was driven by the rich colors of wood varnish, just so are today's kitchen designers limited by the color palates of the most common element: granite.

What results (I think) is a weird bifurcation, design-community-wise, between people who are trying to "match" rock with other materials and people who aren't.

Natural rock, for all its beauty, has subtle charms. Even the most daring of granites, the ones folks gasp at for their very audaciousness, are still pretty muted, palette-wise. Take van Gogh, often referred to as one of the most wildly "blingy" and colorful:

It's gorgeous, but using rock (and only a certain limited genre of rock) as a palette's foundation will give you a much more limited range than color choices based on, say, wildflowers. Or vegetables. Or petroleum distillates.
--

Or maybe it's not granite at all; maybe the impetus towards a bland universal, with its concordant fear of color, is truly related to the fear of sudden unemployment in this economy. To stand out is to put at risk the only equity you may have left. Dunno.

The Victorians feared the dawn of industrial mechanization for the same reason (will we all be replaced?), but instead of painting everything beige and sneaking the occasional yellow banana bunch onto the counter, they went for broke with the jewel toned velvet and 25 different cameo portraits of Aunt Milly. Go figure.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

In fact I think the absolute worst piece of conventional wisdom on GW is to choose the backsplash last. Right. Just the way you put on a shirt, shoes, and jacket, and then walk out into the street half naked hoping you can find pants to match.

I totally agree with marcolo here. We picked our backsplash first and coordinated cabinet colors and countertops around it. I didn't order anything until I had all our major materials lined up. I knew I wanted green cabinets, but if I had ordered the green cabinets just picking a shade I "loved" without having the tile in hand, I would have been running around like crazy after the cabinet install trying to find the exact right shade of tile. Which I probably wouldn't have found, so I might have defaulted to white or creamy subways out of desperation (not that there is anything wrong with white or creamy subways if you plan for them and want them, but I didn't). This is not to say that you need to pick your backsplash first like I did, but I think it's much easier to plan the whole look before ordering anything, and this way you can make sure you have something cohesive from the outset. And it may enable you to decide earlier on in the process whether you really want your granite to be the star rather than having it end up that way because you discover after the fact that nothing interesting really goes with it.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I'm not sure I agree about the necessity of choosing backsplash first (but I promise I'm not the tiniest bit offended at the suggestion!)

Is it because the backsplash is so visible? So are cabinets, and flooring. I wish I had had backsplash in mind earlier, but I know I didn't want to plan my kitchen around backsplash. My cabinets were always my base and most important element. That may be because there are so few backsplashes I really like - most are too flashy, too ornate or too ordinary for me. Very Goldilocks of me, I know.

Perhaps because I didn't have a clear vision in mind for my backsplash from the beginning, that explains why I still don't have one 18 months after finishing my kitchen. But as every day goes by, I'm happier not having one at all. But I still love my cabinets. And my birch floors. Oddly I'm almost indifferent to my counters now, but still think the stone is lovely.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

mpagmom,

I think the process can go in many different directions. Often, I think the stumbling point in your sequence is

"Now what to paint the walls" Why? Because a lot of people would look at your palette, which is quite nice, so far, imo, and label it "cold", or "blah" (another word I would like to disappear from the English language) and be tempted to warm it up with color.

There is actually a very limited palette that would look really good with your selections but it's not really limited by color, it's limited by saturation. A TINT of many colors would look nice with that, but I think a strong color, which would tempt many people would Kill it.
With a strong color that kitchen goes from Grace Kelly to Mamie van Doren in two minutes flat.


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Actually....

I picked a paint palette first which the most backwards way to do anything. I had a concept and I had to find things or have them made to match. Luckily, I was really anti ornamental backsplash at the time, so painted glass sufficed, and also luckily, I was able to find a Lutron outlet in a closely linked color for the outlet I couldn't hide.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Not "first." At the same time. Everything should be planned together. Sure, one element like the backsplash or the granite can be the key piece around which everything else is coordinated. But first plan out all the options, so you know whether it's even possible to find things that work with the first choice.

Speaking of "starting" with the backsplash, can someone tell me why absolutely no one on GW ever seems to start with something like this:

I can see why most people wouldn't. But no one?


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

We are lemmings easily manipulated by media. We tend to want what shelter mags tell us to want, either because we lack imagination or because what we really want is a trophy kitchen: guaranteed oohs and ahhs for the reveal.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Ah... Marcolo, I can tell you one BIG reason with your second example...$478 a square foot.

And this tile is so spectacular that *everything* would have to step up to the place. Say you won $20K of this tile to do a backsplash (and this would only be about 12 ft of counter run). I think you would still need a really good cabinet and counter to play along.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I know that, but really, not one single kitchen? We've seen some pretty big bucks projects in this forum over the years, and some of those people could absolutely have afforded this. Nobody used anything like it, though.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think 2 different things are at work here, and they're both because of the sluggy economy.

The drive to neutral and "classic" kitchens is obviously because people are more conscious of their investments and "neutral" = good investment (or perceived to be). A kitchen that's "timeless" won't have to be replaced in 10 years, right?

With a down economy, people want to be happy. It's proven that when times are bad, popular music gets peppier. I can see that having a similar effect in home decor for some people. You're facing a crappy world, you want things that make you happy in your home, gosh darn it!

So it would probably come down to your personality - whether you're a saver (and thus pick the most neutral, classic, timeless, forever pieces) or whether you're a more live in the moment kinda guy (and thus pick the kelly green backsplash and your grandma's antique china and the chef pig and the leopard print...)

That's what I'm seeing, anyway.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Let's play with Marcolo's backsplash.

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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Depending on the room, we could probably also get some wallpaper in there.

Wow. We should market this, like that "kitchen in a bag" woman.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I had gold wallpaper too :) (Phillip Jeffries) but I couldn't get the picture to upload.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

OK, I had to look up who Mamie van Doren is, and I assure you I would not go that way by picking a strong color for the walls. I would go more for the perfect shade of airy blue-gray-maybe-a-bit-of-green paint:


I'm still deciding on what my kitchen will look like (and I'm running out of time because they're pouring the foundation), but it will be cool, neutral, classic, and (many would say) blah. I'm not drawn to flashy red backsplashes, and I don't even let the warm or hot colors into my garden. My kitchen will be open to the great room and the dining room and I don't plan to redecorate when I get tired of whatever color scheme I have in my great room. Maybe I want this today (and I don't):

and this next year (and I won't):

I certainly don't want to have to replace the shiny magenta cabinets that I chose to perfectly match the boxes I always keep stacked in the great room.

I don't think most people are looking for trophy kitchens. They're looking for something they'll want to continue looking at for 20 years.

That said, I hope I don't choose a bunch of "neutrals" one by one and hope it all works out in the end.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I hope they don't go to this extreme. I think that the reason so many kitchens are neutral is because they are so costly to change and something so "extreme" can be tiring to look at in time.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I love that backsplash! Funny I have had this kitchen saved for a few years because I really liked the backsplash, not keen on the countertop though. This is very far from the kitchen I put in although I do have some orange and also some brass look counterstools.


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Why do people so easily 'tire of...'

But this begs the question, in general "Why the lack of commitment, the fickleness?" Sure, fashions or trends change, but is one's sense of Style so mutable?"

I find I am tired of the most non committal of the kitchens I see before they are even finished, but maybe that's boredom... I wonder if people wouldn't tire so much if they actually made a stronger choice to begin with.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pal, you've paired Marcolo's tile with all neutrals. Why not something like in the attached link (I've used jewelry because the stone combination is so classic, especially in Tibetan and Southwestern jewelry).

Here is a link that might be useful: What about this color combo?


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

"Sure, fashions or trends change, but is one's sense of Style so mutable?"

This reminds me of sitting outside at Panera Bread eating lunch last week and the table across from me was filled with 4 high school or early college aged girls who were all 4 wearing chestnut colored Uggs, and a brown Northface jacket. I didn't think much of it until a girl with her skinny jeans tucked into her cowboy boots walked past the 5 girl's table and they did the watch her out of the corner of their eye until she was past then give her the body check and laugh at her. I thought, "seriously?" And then I let it go, because they were afterall adolescents.

I guess this is a long way of saying that we non-adolescents should avoid the temptation to opt for the safe chestnut Uggs and Northface jacket of kitchens and step out and do the thing you really love, something personally satisfying and bold --even if it gets you laughed at by the table of lemmings. :-)


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Changing your mind about spouses every 7 years is fickle. Changing your mind about color schemes every 7 years is not. People a couple generations ago were very committed to their orange countertops (a strong choice), but that didn't keep them from tiring of them. And not as quickly as they should have.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

When I remodeled my kitchen, I tried to come up with a pleasing (but not too neutral) kitchen design. I'd intended to add some "layers" with accessories, but I find that I like the way the cabinets and floor and counters and walls and hardware go together, and it's tricky finding accesssories that don't look like clutter.

I think that if you are a cluttery person who is going to have a coffee maker and keys and a pile of mail and a children's art project sitting on your counter on the average day, then some of the more layered and noisy designs might be better for you. I think a kitchen with a bit of chaos looks OK with stuff strewn about. Some of the sleek zen-like kitchens look best with the counters completely clear and everything in its place.

So, maybe kitchens should be headed in a layered direction since most people have clutter in their lives.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I agree that there seems to be two strong trends emerging in the kitchen world. The "Ecclectic Overload" where everything tries too hard, and the "Faux-bic Zen" where fear of committing to color or pattern leads the whole room to disappear into it's navel.

The biggest mistake that most people make is listening to people who tell them to "choose what they love and you won't go wrong".

NOT so.

You can go SO wrong.

This was everything someone loved. I called it the "Anti-Peacock Kitchen". Yeah, I sold her the cabinets. That was it. She committed the rest of the sins herself. 8' ceilings, of course.

Espresso cabinets

Black Galaxy granite

Brazillian walnut floors

ORB bar pulls

Cobalt blue stacked glass backsplash

Chocolate brown paint (Yes with that same green undertone that clashed with the floors and cabinets.)

ORB chandy with cobalt glass shades

Cobalt blue ceiling. Not kidding. Could have worked. Didn't.

Yeah, blue and brown work together. And could have worked here. But not if they suck all of the available light out of the room and there's only the one chandy providing light to begin with because she didn't want a "Swiss cheese ceiling" of recessed lights. And not if the undertones of everything clashed. She "didn't know where she went wrong" because she LOVED everything she picked out.

Do you wanna hear about the red and black bathroom I sold that was based on a commercial carpet for the floor?

The worst mistake anyone can make is not getting (or listening to) professional help. From the beginning. Once you have made certain choices, there's no going back and changing them without a lot of money wasted.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I will give the red /blue combination a try.
Yes to the peer pressure thing.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Well, this is my backsplash inspiration...and I did pick it first, but I've always known I want painted white cabinets. I went through lots of possible countertop choices, but I really like blue, so this is the countertop...which goes great with the backsplash. Still trying to see if marble or wood/marble combo will work best on the island.

Since my kitchen will be open to the dining area and a small seating area...when you're sitting down, you'll see the backsplash much more than the countertops. Plus, I wanted something that I liked, not what appealed to everyone else, because it's my house :)

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

FWIW, I love that wallpaper pattern, Mpagmom posted, with the green background. That would be beautiful in a formal dining room, which I don't have...but almost wish I did...just for the wallpaper!

Also, depending on where you live, is resale even really an option? Are people 'upside down' in their homes and if so, might as well do what they want, not what a 'mystery buyer' might like. Just my two cents...


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

marcolo - I posted twice re: my backsplash but I never heard from you. I was looking forward to your opinion esp after you helped that one dude with his BS... please weigh in.. I am open to different options (just not $400/sqft)!

HN


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Are people actually saying they will tire more quickly of something interesting than of something boring? Do they prefer to reread tedious books or rewatch boring speeches on tape over and over, because True Blood or Lost are too "trendy?" Do people decide to listen exclusively to Muzak because Katie Perry and Adele will be "over" soon?

Seriously?

People today are pretty committed to white kitchens. And in some number of years, people will tire of those, too.

I love lwo's "Faux-bic zen." That's really what a lot of the unsuccessful neutrals are all about. Fear.


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adf

I can see this blue working with the Ann Sacks mosaic in red. Not sure how, yet.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

It's a matter of taste. What is interesting to some is boring to others. Some certainly prefer the symphony to Katy Perry. I would rather watch "Pride and Prejudice" than the lastest action/adventure flick. My tastes are quieter, and that will be reflected in my kitchen, even if some think it is boring. I'm not afraid of wild choices, they just aren't right for me.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Oh my, LWO. The cabinets are nice...

I bought a hanging chandelier with blue glass like that and had to return it. The light cast was downright creepy. And that was in a room with very high ceilings and very light paint color. What you're describing is wild.

OTOH, I think you need to qualify your statement that The worst mistake anyone can make is not getting (or listening to) professional help ... because I see the evidence of lots of people on here doing wonderful stuff with no professional help beyond the singing in their heart. And you've commented on it too, sometimes favorably, even! I agree this is definitely the biggest mistake some people can make but not all, always. Some people's hearts sing rather clearly and beautifully. (Moreover some designer's hearts seem cracked as well!).


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Over 50 years ago, the famous architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe said: "Less is more."

He's still right.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pal, re your post at 21:57, that looks like MY colors, except when the fabricator said that the slab of Sedna granite I decided upon had deadly flaws, I was so fed up I just got honed Olympian Danby istead. White. (I do not like the marble install at all and I think that honed marble doesn't mesh with my hopefully modern room.) I have red-brown intensely deeply stained cabs, natural maple floor, bright white walls. If I would paint a color other than bj super white, it'd be charcoal.

Bright white crisp cell shades framed by same cab wood and black granite sills. Lots of black, as the stainless appliances have lots of black and stainless.

I totally agree with your original premise re the layers, multiple focal points and resulting dissonance.

And I am a voice of one who says that glass cabinet fronts are visual clutter, as opposed to 'opening up the space'. I am so anti clutter, I'd rather see a wall of wood than a wall of jumble-clutter. When the eye floats over the glass cab, it's journey is interrupted by all the stuff it sees.

People and food are the focal points of kitchens but that's why I like modern ones.

It is difficult to narrow choices to one.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

This is mainly in relation to aesthetic choices, not layout ones. Layout is about function. This is about form.

People who have a good sense of color and scale and other design principals don't usually need a lot of help with their choices. One or two posts from them clarifies their instincts to themself, and they are confident in their choices. They need a sounding board, not true design help.

If someone has 20 posts about every single design choice, it's safe to say that they either lack good instincts or the confidence to listen to those instincts. That is the person that needs to seek professional design help. The biggest role that any designer undertakes is to narrow the focus and keep the choices from being overwhelming.

People labor under the delusion that hiring a designer is expensive and that the result won't be "theirs". The reality is, that with a good designer, you save money because your choices are "right" for your space. And they will be your choices. I don't make decisions for clients. I will strongly tell you if I think you are making a mistake, but cannot tie your hands and pocketbook and prevent you from buying that iridescent pink flamingo lamp if you really want to. That is what I mean by "listening to design advice". You can lead the equine to H2O, but you cannot make him imbibe the Kool-aid.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Sure changing your mind about a color scheme is not fickle, particularly, I'll buy that. But going totally non-committal with anything grouted in place, screwed to the wall, or stuck on top of the cabinets because you predict *even before you've ordered it* that you will possibly want to go in such a different direction in few years is fickle.

Pretty soon, houses will come with snap on trim and "wraps" like they put on buses because people will be so concerned that the exterior is "dated".

These are durable goods, interior architecture, not a pair of shoes. Sure you want staying power, but then don't make your selections like you would for a pair of shoes.

Marcolo, I do think people tire of the more interesting faster than they do the boring when it comes to design, perhaps it is over-stimulation or something like that.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

As a non-designer (with a completely stunted artistic sense), I find this conversation fascinating.

I know I am attracted to the clean and open feel and "neutral" colors precisely because there is so much *noise* in my daily life. Sensory overload.

That said, I abhor a colorless, personalityless vacuum sort of space, which is why the above marcolo post with turquoise and red is so exciting. And the recent post of the all-torquoise over the top NYC kitchen (the woman in the matching outrageous heels and dress) too.

So, I'm going to post again to ask for your H E L P in keeping me from going down the drab path and instead through the fabulous rabbithole!

-BT

The


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I like the turquoise and red post above, too, and the colors are very similar to my daughter's bedroom. I'll commit to those colors for bedspreads and paint, but not for cabinets and countertops. If we were better at painting or tiling or anything handy, I'd have a different opinion I'm sure.

Palimpsest, fantastic idea about the snap on trim for the house! I'll have to ask my builder to get me some.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Marcolo's turquoise dining room is exactly what I was thinking, although I was half joking when I posted that link (tweaking Palimpsest about pairing the tile with neutrals, given the theme of the thread). I like the turquoise and red together, but it is a color combination that could easily go wrong if the proportions and intensities were wrong. I like the mostly blue with a few pops of red. I don't think I would like the opposite as well, and I think more equal proportions would make me want to claw my eyes out. Maybe not.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Design by popularity poll---the least offensive choice---even in a forum as good as this one---is no substitute for a clear design vision guiding the process. It's an abdication of the intent of design which is about clarity of choices. And filling a room with hodge podge without a clear design vision behind it is design schizophrenia. Those are two mistakes that are easy to slip into if you are not very experienced, knowledgeable, and careful. "Serene Modern" done correctly isn't blah or boring. And "Layered Patterns" doesn't have to feel like a dissonant competition for center stage. Design is the difference.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Ladies please feel free to come and do that gold kitchen plan at my house : )))


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Marcolo, I do think people tire of the more interesting faster than they do the boring when it comes to design,

I don't think this is necessarily true with respect to fixed elements. The older the building, the more ornament, more or less, and people do love old buildings.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

There is not a single piece of aesthetic movement anything in that room. Sorry. I "majored" in aesthetic/eastlake design, and that room is null. Aesthetes adhered to Willaim Morris's maxim "Have nothing in your home you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful".
Casey


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Earlier in the thread there was some discussion about subjective perception and how the quotidian clutter can undermine kitchen decor.

As to the aesthetic damage that everyday living can inflict on a carefully composed neutral kitchen, I have a few strategies for that.

One, just like nutritionists would tell you, be careful when you shop. If you need to frequent a grocers, "stick to the perimeters". Crisp macintosh apples, a sheaf of kale, a basket of eggs (you can get those pretty pale green ones now) ... all great for you and your kitchen. A neon blue bag of double-stuffs? Pass.

Be careful where you shop, too. The artisinal baker's organic boules in paper bags will look great on your soapstone counter, especially when the loaf peaks out of the bag. You can just hear the price quoted in centimes! Best of all, join a CSA. Nothing will impress guests more then a muddy crate of root crops casually "left" on the counter.

Of course, you can go even further with this. Junk mail can add a pleasing je ne sais quoi if it's just brokerage statements, the berkeley wellness letter, and the New Yorker. Just edit, edit (and get a po box to hide things like the RH catalogues and joke AARP subscription.)

If company is coming, don't forget the kids. If they will be in the room, they need to be responsible. No tie dyes or logo wear. Almost all natural fibers in a solid color will work. There's no need to go crazy about it.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Has anybody heard of the concept of color fatigue?

I hired a color consultant to help with paint for almost every room in the house as I was floating around liking too many colors and not knowing how to narrow my choices and make them all go together. In discussing color, I mentioned the same thing a couple of you did about needing serene surroundings. My life has become stressful, busy, and chaotic. I've now come to see that I have some sensory issues when too much is going on visually. My brain NEEDS some place to rest or I get freaked out.

Also during this conversation, I mentioned that I used to have a house full of colors. The DR was pumpkin orange for several years, then deep olive. The office had been deep red for more than a decade. The master bedroom had been yellow. I did color. I'm over it, plus now I see I have the sensory issue.

Anyway....the consultant said I was color fatigued. She had been to a design workshop recently where she was introduced to the term. I've been meaning to do some research on the idea, but it resonated with me.

As an aside, I'm sure I'm creating one of those boring, neutral kitchens to which you refer. AND, I haven't chosen my tile yet. ;)


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

You're right Casey, the room is mislabeled. But that's not really the point of the discussion. Sorry, it's some kind of Victorian mash-up.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I notice there's always a moralistic tone to the defense of neutrals. People's lives are too busy, implying that colorful rooms are for bon-bon eaters and coupon clippers. Or serene, monochromatic rooms are the ones that are "timeless," shame on the Vatican, Notre Dame cathedral, and the Blue Room of the White House, which all looked tired and dated just a few years after they were built. OK, sure.


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Color Fatigue or just Visual Fatigue?

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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Am I moralistic for recognizing that a dark olive DR and LR and a red office are too much for me? Too dark? My sensory issues are moralistic? I've heard them called different things, but never moralistic.

One thing I didn't mention is how my DM's extreme hoarding affects my life. Her house is as bad as as the very worst houses you see on the hoarder shows. I grew up with too much "stuff". Stuff everywhere. Stuff so you couldn't walk through a room without navigating a treacherous narrow path through the garbage. Living that way affects the rest of your life. No wonder I like things simple and uncluttered. Does his make me moralistic? Ok then. I'm moralistic.


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Blue and Red combo

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Ignore the pink in the wallcovering, I tweaked the ground color and it made the arabesques, which matched the backsplash pink.
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Green and Red combination

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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Well, if i ever do another house, I am hiring Palimpsest. Or someone vetted by Pal.

The second kitchen i can actually see, probably because the distressed cabs and floors are familiar enough to make experimentation feel safe.

I wonder how much of this red dahlia Ann Sacks and all her saxonians will ever sell. It's like a couture house showing off crazy clothes and making all their revenue on sunglasses.

My fave tile, which if i recall is $1,000 a square foot, is their cloisonne... the vermicelli pattern in the softest of greens. Of course the individual tiles are like 2" sq if i recall, and I doubt people would use a solid wall. So if you pair it with a great field tile, it is less absurd then it sounds.

It did not fit my kitchen (or any?) at all, and I could not figure out how to use it in a bath either. But I think it is incredibly beautiful. I could not put it down when i saw it, and I felt like a seventh grader wanting to slide it into my pocket.

Here is a link that might be useful: I see your tile and raise you


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pal its funny how some of your color combos actually hurt my head lol. What I find interesting is what a few wrote above about their lives being hectic and wanting calm combinations. I'm the opposite and like little unexpected pops (yes I said it, POPs) because due to my aliments I'm often fatigued. I think this is also why I prefer mello yellow on my walls. Yellow helps me get going in the mornings. I guess maybe we can contribute some kitchen selections to ones life outside the kitchen and home. However, I'm seeing a little more of the baby boomers getting braver or at least wanting to but not sure how.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I think color fatigue is a valid phenomenon, but I think people relate color fatigue to saturation, and also mix up visual clutter and disturbance with color fatigue.

A true monomchromatic palette or simple dichromatic palette in saturated color can be *MUCH more restful than 20 different shades of beige and brown. I don't think a lot of people distinguish between the two situations and head for the 20 random shades of beige rather than three of french blue.

At the bottom of all this is that I l-o-o-v-e-s me a white kitchen. I may even be living in a museum white house next time around, dunno. Without understanding color you can't create a good white box, though, let alone a satisfying palette of all neutrals.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I would do the red dahlia in a flash.

Of your combinations pal, I like them all, but I might choose your 20:58 combo over the others. Or maybe I prefer 11:43. I'd do either if I could.

But my next kitchen will be in a small lakeside cottage, might not work there. And I can't afford the tile anyway. But I'm surprising loving the gold Karbon.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Palimpsest,
Is this a satisfying palette of neutrals? Better be because all of these rooms open up to each other in some way.

My DR is BM Indian River.

My FR open to kitchen is BM Nimbus.

My LR next to DR is BM Thunder.

And my kitchen looks like this.

Peninsula with Carrara

Sorry to have gotten OT.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I'm enjoying your foils to the red tiles. :)

In thinking about all the tension between lovers of neutral and lovers of visual pow, it occurs to me that a large component is expectation. What do you expect to see when you look at a room. Most people's foundational experience of a kitchen still harkens back to the kitchen was a simple, unadorned workroom, even if it's layered over with a clutter of tchotchkes, fluffy valences, and trendy wall paper. It's really very hard to evaluate living with something you haven't lived with if it's still within the spectrum of pleasing to look at. There are some designs, of course, which make you feel like your eyes are bleeding. Those probably never feel "normal". But you see things differently when your brain first has to sort through everything it's taking in than when most of the details are known items and in their correct places. It's the blow your mind syndrome, and can affect any of your senses (think totally new to you flavor, different music, touching one of those slime toys for the first time, smelling a new perfume). Now multiply that by the number of different items in a kitchen that doesn't even have anything in it yet.

As to the direction we're heading, I think it's one of those pendulum things. The whole folk music/guitar rock/glam rock continuum started as a rebellion against the overworked and overwrought big band sound. The new bands were a couple of guitars, a bass and a drum. Simple. Simple melodies, simple arrangements. After getting progressively fancier, it couldn't hold, and disco became popular in a vacuum. The punks tried to bring back a mannered simplicity, but the jump shift to rap, being more relevant and more different, won out, also with increasing layers and heavy production, where live performances often require playback tracks. The pendulum swings from easy and simple to complex and layered and back again. And all along the way there are other paths and other styles that buck the current trends.

Same with kitchens. I don't know that they'll ever go to Victorian mishmash, but just with some of the very popular decor now, we can see the pendulum starting to swing back. Example: Instead of loving the "clean" look of overhead cans, people are looking for the complex, non-kitcheny swagged chandeliers. Instead of the white on white kitchens, we're starting to see more with colored cabinets. Indeed, we are beginning to see the swing back to more decoration. What Palimpsest is seeing is more in the high design community (or maybe it's just East Coast) so ahead of the curve.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I love your kitchen. I was really having a hard time putting this together with olive, red, yellow.

You aren't off topic at all.


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Re RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Sorry for the confusion. My OLD DR and LR were deep olive. Old office was red. Old master was yellow. The colors above are the new ones. I'm hoping others think these neutrals go together as DH painted already. :)


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Palimpsest, I think you are exactly right about visual clutter. It's another form of noise, and I don't need any more noise. When I say I want a calm, quiet kitchen, I don't mean neutrals. Here are a couple that I like and they aren't a collection of beige:

Photobucket

Photobucket

I love a well-done white kitchen, too, but I don't want to live in one just yet.


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RE: shades of gray

Yes, I understood. I think all that variation could cause color fatigue. I meant I almost forgot this was your kitchen because it is so different from what you had before. Anyway, you are doing tight palette in the right way, imo, not random neutrals. But I thought I would play anyway:
Photobucket
Photobucket
Photobucket


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Wow. That Ann Sacks tile is truly insane.

In the right color it would really fit my fantasy chinoiserie kitchen.

And if you really need marble tiles, you use this:

I'm really getting to the point where I just can't keep pretending to keep my eyes open for yet another One True Kitchen. There are so many other directions possible.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Sorry, forgot this:


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

With the right budget, the same designer could probably do some repousse doors for you, like his buffet:
Photobucket


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I would love to use this tile combo somewhere one of these days. I have had this saved for a while and now I can not remember who or what it is.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Marcolo, those tiles are wonderful. True art! I like the fabric too. Have you ever gone on Ebay and looked at the Japanese fabric that is sold? I have this love for Asian design. The fabrics are often lengths from old kimonos or new 14" wide lengths.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Well, paint me firmly and squarely in the neutrals camp. My favorite kitchen hands down on this or most any other thread are the two "Plain and Simple" (I believe) uniformly grey-and-wood kitchens in Palimpsest's post with the timestamp Nov 4, 2011, 20:44.

Well, those and the tea room at the very top of this thread. That shot is arterial defibrillation on the cheap.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

enduring --- i found those tiles!! i want my props

i still love them --- i would use them if i could think of how. maybe i will make coaster from therm : )


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Mtntredux, at 18:37 Nov 4 ..... LOL, i think. Right ...

Pal, the blue kitchen at 20:44 Nov 4 is great. I think I would need to wear a bonnet in there, though. I like the openness of the island/table. That does mean foregoing power and water there, though, which might hinder some.
I am so tired of crown painted white to pop, this monochromatic scheme is a nice departure. Thanks for posting.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Hmm. My post disappeared. Anyway:

I wonder if this should become an ongoing feature. Pick something unusual to base a kitchen around, and then try to make it work in "mood boards."


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

That would be fun. Pick something, and make it work in different schemes.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I like that idea. It would help those of us design challenged learn something.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

a design challenge!


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

A challenge!

Marcolo or Pal, you go first. Maybe start a new thread for each new challenge? As long as we don't overdo it, the forum should respond well to it.

ps: Kitschykitch, you said the word "pop." Go sit in the corner.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Or, go ahead an overdo it! It's very entertaining!


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Yes, one thread for each concept. We shouldn't have more than one or two on the front page at any one time so it's not irritating.

What should we do first? Some thoughts:

- A transitional pseudo colonial kitchen. I suggest this partly because a lot of people live in transitional phony-colonie houses, but also because I'd like to see a kitchen with raised panels vs shakers and all of the woodwork and trim painted the same color as the walls--that's both very authentic and currently trendy. Also gives the option to use Delft tile in an interesting way.

- A Florida kitchen, or other warm-weather climate area that usually references Spanish cliches, but do it in a different way

Or just an object or really unusual tile or color that strikes someone's fancy.

Thoughts?


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Thank you, kitchenkrazed09, even tho it's not a typical kitchen, it works for us.

There's a lot to digest on this thread, thanks to all for the great contributions and observations.

circuspeanut, you posted a pic of possibly the only colorful granite I actually like, I saw a large slab at a stone yard once and while we didn't consider it for a counter, too much care and too spendy, I would love to have a piece mounted as wall art, maybe in a stairwell.

I love all the funky tiles posted, especially the red, orange and yellow one (first posting), it reminds me of nasturtiums, and I think you could build a great kitchen around that tile; reds, browns, yellows, oranges, creamy white, with a soupcon of a green on the spring/acid spectrum.

live wire oak, your point about people who need professional help vs. those who just need a push in the right direction is well taken and should be heeded. I see so many posts here of the former, yet is seen as heresy (by some) to suggest or use a professional ID or KD, I guess because many posters here have a strong bias against professional help.

A design challenge would be very instructional and just might inspire some folks to veer off the well trodden kitchen design path. And if overly sensitive types get their knickers in a knot, so be it.

sandyponder


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

WOW did this post go off topic. LOL

Yes I think the original poster was right Kitchens are headed in a crazy direction. Why??? Because everyone will follow the trend.

Granite is the trend. Most think they have not arrived unless they have a Granite counter in their kitchen remodel. Forget the warning that Granite emitted radon at levels that may be over those considered safe.. You say "But everybody has granite I have to have it in my kitchen to feel I have arrived to upper class or all my neighbors have granite counters." LOL

50s it was Harvest Gold.- Father Know Best

Pink and Baby Blue Tile in the Bathrooms.

It is all about trend and what your neighbor or what the market leads people to believe is the MUST HAVE kind of kitchen.

So.....If people see a picture of the original poster starts to pop up in everybody's neighborhood. The sheep will follow and the kitchens will be torn out and decorated as they feel will make them have the perfect new kitchen of today.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Mtnrdredux, Props are yours! those tiles are gorgeous!


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

I am a long-time lurker here. I'll be re-doing my 1960 and then remuddled kitchen fairly soon. I felt the need to chime in on the 'neutrals' sentiment. There seems to be a few strong opinions on the idea that if you choose 'neutrals' for your kitchen you are a boring lemming (eye roll). I am a scientist that spent many years of my life outdoors. Most of what humans see outdoors at eye level is very 'neutral' - mottled brown and gray tree trunks, brown soil, bright green or greenish yellow brown gray. Living in the forested eastern US you only really see "pops" of color naturally - thinking of red, a sprinkling of cardinal flower in the woods. The woods are vibrant in the fall yes, but only if you are laying on your back looking up or driving along a manmade highway through the mountains. For me, neutral colors are soothing and invigorating, and 'pops of color' make sense in the landscape. Big swaths of intense color like that red and black tile at eye level - it seems intuitive to me why most people aren't drawn to that as a permanent fixture in their house.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

marquest - just fyi all granite does not inherently emit radiation. (In fact most has trivial amounts (fortunately)). I mean this just as a point-of-order; no commentary on your comment.

This thread is way out of my league!


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Pardon me if I don't join the busman's holiday. :)


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Neutrals are fine. As long as they are correlated to each other (which they often aren't: people mix neutrals with different undertones indiscriminately). And because its "neutral" don't use it as an excuse to allow a lot of visual clutter because there is no "color".


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

Interesting observations, Jenny. I don't see nature colors as neutral -- but then I'm from the prairie where there's a lot of blue sky and golden (or green) fields.

Guess the colors of nature depend on what your "natural" surroundings are. Now living in the n.e. woodlands, the lack of light (and seeing with your "rods" vs. your "cones" probably contributes to the perception of being surrounded by neutrals. The woods have a lot of vibrant color going on in them, but without light that's not immediately visible.

IMO, what're viewed as neutrals on this forum are the black/gray and white/off-white-- I don't think of kitchens done in browns, grays, greens and golds (the colors you mentioned) as neutral. Maybe others would disagree.


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RE: Are kitchens headed in this direction?

"marquest - just fyi all granite does not inherently emit radiation. (In fact most has trivial amounts (fortunately)). "

Aliris you say "Most have trivial amounts" I guess my thought is trivial amounts is too much to submit a child to just to have what the Jones have or what is the flavor of the day.

We seem to think in trivial amounts of an avoidable poison is acceptable these days. I question the reason for this model of thinking.

I am just saying,,,,I just wish people would think health first. I do not want to be one of those people that try to tell everyone their choice should be what I think I just do not think everyone is aware of the trace amount of radiation in granite and what it can do over the long term.


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