I hesitate to do this, but I went down a rabbit hole.
We rent. Sometimes I get tired of it. Sometimes I'd like to knock down a wall, remodel the kitchen, or at least paint.
Sometimes I like looking a real estate listings in random towns. Towns where I know no one and have no plans of ever living. Yesterday I was looking at a tiny little town in Kansas. Please don't ask why. I'll sound like an idiot trying to give you a reason when I don't really have one.
But I found a cute little place. Something my family could actually afford and it would hold us and our stuff nicely. It's a regular 1960s ranch, the type I gravitate toward.
I was looking through the pictures (there were over 40! Good job, listing agent!) and fell hard for this kitchen.
Again, I hesitate to say that, because compared to some of the amazing kitchens we've all drooled over on other blogs and in Better Homes and Gardens and on Pinterest, normal kitchens are so dark and dated and small... At least in houses I live in, and in those I can afford.
But there was this!
Not high end, not white, not granite or anything fancy. Just.... normal. But better. The wood is pretty, not orangey-oak. And so much work space!
I started daydreaming of what I would do with that kitchen. I though immediately of Thrifty Decor Chick's wood cabinets with a white beadboard backsplash.
Adding beadboard or beadboard wallpaper would help brighten up the kitchen, as would painting all of those brown walls a pretty gray, like Benjamin Moore's Wickham Gray.
Next I would address the one big blank wall where there is now some art. I'd love to add some shelves and a rolling cart that could double as an island. I would keep baking supplies here, then roll my cart over to where I wanted to work on making bread or cookies. I could leave it in the middle of the kitchen as an island, or tuck it out of the way under the shelves. I think only one would fit in this particular kitchen, though I love what they did at Cozy Cottage Cute! The carts and the shelves are from IKEA.
I might prefer the look of wood and white shelves like this cute display at Rooms For Rent. I would use two instead of three so the cart could fit underneath.
It's hard to tell from the picture how wide the eat-in kitchen space is. I would love to have a farm style table built for me, and I like the idea of benches that tuck under it. I would like to have two contrasting chairs at the ends, either tolix metal chairs, or something upholstered. This beautiful table is from Hometalk but based off of Ana White's plans.
To give the dining area more interest, I'd like to continue the beadboard around behind the table, capped with a shelf like this one. (I found this image on Pinterest which linked it to this post at The Frugal Homemaker from 2011! But it's a link to the House of Smiths where Shelly linked it to something Layla from The Lettered Cottage was working on, but I don't think it was in Keven & Layla's home, so I didn't chase that rabbit any longer.) I would put my chalkboard menu, artwork by the kids, seasonal banners and things on the shelf and enjoy the white with gray above instead of the dark brown wall. Can you picture it?
To add more color to my kitchen, I would use my blue Ball jars. I have a set I use for drinking glasses, and I'd keep an eye out for more ways to add some turquoise, like these adorable cafe curtains!
Or a soap dispenser!
I also like the look of this rug to add more color, either a small one in front of the sink, or a large on under the table, though with little kids I like to be able to sweep.
So no, it's not the perfect kitchen, but I think I could be perfectly happy with it. What about you? What do you look for in a normal kitchen? How would you add color and personality to this space?