I'm sharing some of my own kitchen styling tips today and linking to some other talented design bloggers who are styling their kitchens too.
It's a fun way to keep your kitchen feeling new and fresh and just change things around in a room where you can't move the furniture to get a new look!
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Glass containers are versatile kitchen styling tools
I use these glass containers, from Container Store, in my kitchen and have used them in just about every photo shoot of a kitchen I’ve ever done.
They work with any style, the ingredients are really featured, and they don't compete with the backsplash, which is usually something I prefer the attention go to in any kitchen I design.
Depending on the style of the kitchen, I will put different ingredients inside. I like the pistachios and navy beans because they are light colored.
The browner beans, like pinto, bring in a natural textural look into a kitchen. White or brown rice works well too. I’ve used coffee beans, to create some contrast and add a dark element into the kitchen, or perhaps cookies and crackers.
If I want the space to come off as a cook’s kitchen, I’ll use flour and sugar, baker’s ingredients.
I always like to include a small scoop in the product. Even if I don’t use these products every day, I would like for it to look like I do! (Dreaming of getting back to my cooking days!)
Cutting boards add warmth and texture to kitchen styling
An all-white kitchen needs an element of wood to make it feel more approachable and inviting, in my opinion.
I have an antique bread board I found when I lived in Norway, propped up in my kitchen. It has the hand carved “Brød” in Norwegian. It makes this kitchen uniquely mine. :-)
Trays help corral kitchen items and keep things organized
I have a variety of trays, wood, melamine, wicker, etc. They help keep things neat and tidy on a countertop.
When I style for shoots, I often do a coffee set up on a tray. I like to use a wood tray with my white cups.
This coffee set up below, used a client's own vintage tray. This kitchen was mostly white with some touches of wood.
I really wanted to inject more wood tones into this kitchen and we did so with the interesting cabinet pulls, and then in styling, with the sugar bowl and a tray of oils, vinegars and herbs with some wood elements.
I used another vintage tray of this homeowner's, on the breakfast table.
Here's a cool tray for a farmhouse kitchen look.
In my own kitchen, I keep one beside my cooktop for utensils, oils, and seasonings we use all the time. It helps keep that stash from growing and gives a neater, more organized appearance.
Utensils in containers keep tools at the ready in a pretty way I don’t like a variety of kitchen tools crammed into containers by the cooktop. I usually do all wood or all stainless, maybe all white, grouped together.
I have a great collection of olive wood utensils that I keep pretty unused just for shoots. Invariably, they end up slipping into my own collection at home. :-)
Again, this is a good way to bring a wood element into an all white kitchen, or to add some bling, with stainless, to a kitchen that needs a bit of shine or reflection.
Small appliances kept to a minimum on the kitchen counters
Oh, that Insta-pot! A designer’s nightmare!
My husband loves this new appliance and of course, I’m so glad he is cooking these days that I will be happy cleaning it up and lugging it back to the pantry to go on the shelf in there.
I don’t like too many appliances on the kitchen counter, which is one of the big reasons I built my walk-in pantry. I wanted the lower shelves for that griddle, the food processor, the blender, crock pot, and now, that huge Instapot!
Styling to introduce color
Most of my clients don’t want colorful kitchens.
They are concerned about resale and want to stay neutral with their built-in finishes. However, that doesn’t mean they don’t love color or want to use it in their kitchen in some way.
My favorite cobalt/indigo blue color was the accent that I wanted to bring out in my neutral kitchen.
I love seeing a collection of plates on the wall in a kitchen, it really adds a personal touch to a room with mostly cabinets. My collection of the Delft blue KLM houses from my husband’s trips overseas on business, add a lot to my kitchen.
I've paired them with an African basket, some ceramics from a trip to Deruta, Italy, and some blue plates from Austria, purchased at the most charming store in Salzburg. I even have a blue plate from Norway with a ski scene. The color blue ties them all together and makes a significant color statement.
I always say, in a neutral environment, the color is what will stand out. I’ve had people tell me I had a blue kitchen, when really only these touches of blue were added in. With color used in this way, just a dab with do ya!
I painted that stool myself years ago and I still use it today, just for a perch at the end of my island. I handpainted the pattern in my Italian plates that I collected, from Deruta, Italy, on the top.
I had initally thought when I remodeled my kitchen I'd get a new stool, but I still think this works and use it every day. It adds more of my favorite blue into this space.
The extras that can add some style to a kitchen
Sometimes just having your tools, some cooking supplies and pretty ingredients displayed nicely isn't enough. Sometimes you want something more.
- Plates propped up on a plate stand
- Small vases for fresh flowers or herb sprigs
- A few plants
- A colorful stool
- Some cookbooks
- A collection of pitchers or olive jars
- A wine rack
You can see how these have been used in some kitchen styling below.
And if you want some links to shop some of the products you see here in my post, I’ve got that featured below too.