Let's face it: we all find ourselves (in one time of our lives, or another) daydreaming of a prefect fitted kitchen. Wait a moment - we should not generalize like this, right?
Some of you might shake their heads at me an say they'd never ever gave a single thought to what their kitchen might be, some might go as far as admitting that the kitchen (and all the going-ons inside it) are bunch of strange occurrences to them, and some might just be not interested in design and decorating altogether.
But, comes a time in everybody's life when one must make an omelette. :)
Back when I was a kid, I got an amazing little kitchen kit, made out of plastic. Then I got a little metal range, and I 'd spent hours and hours playing cooking.. but it was not a complete game until I realized that you need a proper ambient for the cooking to happen (just like grownups have). I set my own little place (in the back shed, without anyone noticing): I carried package boxes to be my pretend kitchen elements, and I user log as a sturdy table (much later I've learned that the best chefs use large logs as their meat-cutting boards!).
I admit even this: I used to invite my family members to little lunch.. and then they found out where my dad's paint went missing (well, you can't just use a box, your kitchen must be properly painted!) :)
I started dreaming of design pretty early. Some of you move in the kitchen designed by it's owner, and you are a "tenant", hence: design is something you are not allowed to change. I know women who live with mother-in-laws and share the kitchen - meaning: they don't get to chose the color of the wall-tiles or move a single element.
But we can all dream, right?
In my life, I've been to a lot of kitchens. Mainly because, over here, kitchen IS the heart of the home, and most of the times you'll find it merged with the dining room - so the view of the elements could not be awoided.
Most of the folks I've visited do the simple plan: place a dining table smack in the middle of the floor; and leave the elements to hug the walls. Job done. :) It's a simple and useful solution to those who can not afford a "food preparation zone"; they prepare their food at the same table where they serve it. Then again, I know folks who built a home from "ground zero" so their kitchen is picture-perfect.. but not used because a picturesque perfection is not always something that suits our daily needs.
When I started all the business of "house renovation" I've had years and years of "gazing at magazine" experience. One can not gain much knowledge by looking at pictures, but you can at least get the sense of what goes well together and what you should look out for. So, I think that this booklet is a good learning point.
There's a trend in planning: making a "mood board". Idea is that you make a board, place it on the wall that you look at a lot and pin whatever inspires you in your plans: magazine clippings, color patterns, products information.. and whenever you look at it, it should inspire you. If you feel like changing something, you remove what you no longer "feel" and pin something new.
It, however, does not really have to be a board, hanging. I had a binder. and in it I'd place everything that made me feel good about my future home. From furniture advertisements, appliance information, color schemes, old magazine clippings (like this booklet).. over to texts on cleaning tile floors.
At one stage, I have realized that my original dream was "not floating". What does that mean?! To be honest, some dreams sink down once you put them in perspective. In one of my dreams, the kitchen had a counter, like the one above. Once I've started drawing a design, the counter was not longer an option - it could not be fitted.
A true heart of our kitchen is the stove. Right next to it, as important as your stove is the sink. Many neglect that fact; the truth is that it's where we get our cleanliness. Sure, you can turn on the dishwasher, but you still have to wash the veggies you get from your Farmer's Market before doing any cooking - you can't do that in the dishwasher (please, don't even try it!) :)
At some point in time, I had an idea of having the dining area organized as the picture above is showing. I've changed my mind, and opted for a regular table (not smack in the middle of the room) because I've watched the habits and movement of those who come and stay in the kitchen.. and realized there would be zero approach to the corner-seat (our folks don't like corner benches), and therefore the entire setting would be useless.
You may seen my kitchen on my Sunday post or on my Instagram account, and have surely noticed a miss-match. A fashionable movement these days is exactly the same as in these images a "continuous installation" or: all elements under one counter. (Made out of marble? Yes, quote much so.)
Here's one thing I needed to be careful. Just like others, I too like to get dreamy and think of a lovely spaces, corner-elements.. NO! One thing I knew I will not have in my kitchen is a corner (I have a thing with corners - I don't like them and no lazy-susan could change that). Before ordering anything, I counted my belongings, I calculated what I will need in the kitchen, how much space and what kind of space it required. Then I hunted for cabinets.
I will dedicate an entire post to them. Otherwise, we will get all tangled up.
Few weeks back, I've asked the world what to do with garbage. Since I'm not much of a garbage-maker, I never needed a disposer. Simple way of "disposing" your garbage is by using of a can. The question was: where to place it. Let us be honest: even though we all make it, no one wants to flaunt it, right? Well, unless you've went all "posh" and bought one of those brass-looking decorative cans.
The rest of the world likes to hide the can.
Under the sink.
And that is the option I've chosen for my kitchen, too. I've tried the method, and it's fine. I keep the regular trash can with a swinging lid. When I need it, I take it out (peel potatoes, grab the wrappings, gather bread crumbs) and place my ..ehmm.. garbage in it. Then I put it back in its place.
Oh, one thing: I don't buy garbage-bags. Due to the fact that over here we still use plastic grocery bags, I simply line my trash can with a regular grocery bag. Money saved. :)
When it comes to organizing, I'm not a genius. I have learned from YouTube. Yes, I have. No shame in watching how others maximize and utilize their kitchen spaces.
For instance, I have bought a deep cabinet, and I fitted it with 3 long and narrow plastic flower pots. You have read it correctly: flower pots (no holes were drilled in them). The reason is: they are as useful as any plastic box, but they are more sturdy, more decorative and (in our country) cost lot less than any other container.
So, I went a little bit kitchen-frantic. I'll stop here, and leave you to contemplate about it. Maybe some of you who never dreamed about is - give it second thought.
Back to the beginning of this story:
No one should leave this page
without at least learning how to make
a simple & filling dish like an omelette. :)
What are your first kitchen steps?
Do you dream of a kitchen - or did your dream come true? What's your kitchen like?
Got any "cooking for one" recipes to share?