Applied Design: Adding Charming Details

The Room of the Week wasn’t designed over several years, but was probably completed over several months as part of the Cottage Living Idea House in 2008.  Which means that everything is brand-new.  However, this kitchen is full of charming details that make it feel like it’s been thoughtfully designed and updated over several years.historic details copy1.Coffered Ceiling
Adding custom millwork to a new house is a great way to make it look like it’s been there for a while.  This particular kitchen looks great with the coffered ceiling.  I love that the square-shaped ceiling is repeated in the squares on the ceiling.

2. Schoolhouse Lighting
The beautiful white glass light fixtures are reproductions of vintage ones.  I love that the designer mixed things up and used several versions.  And their larger size works perfectly with the large millwork, but because they are white they also blend in with the ceiling.  These charming fixtures sure add a lot of charm to this new kitchen.

3. Milk Glass Collection
This displayed collection of milk glass is such a great way to add character to a kitchen.  This particular collection was probably not collected over time, but it still softens the room in a simple way.

4. Open Pantry
Open pantries are definitely not a trend in kitchen design.  They could be hard to keep tidy and looking pretty, but I love that in this case it adds a lot of color and fun.  And, it reminds me slightly of an old-fashioned general store.

5. Vintage-Looking Tile
I think the tile is one of the best design elements in the whole room.  The tile ties the kitchen to the Spanish Revival style of the house, and it makes the house look older.  The matte texture and deep colors of the tile make it look aged, and perfect for this house.  If they were shiny white, they would scream NEW NEW NEW.

6. Matte Paint Color
The deep green color on the lower cabinets would look much different if it was glossy instead of matte.  The matte texture helps the cabinets look custom.

7. Custom Details
The little cutouts on the island in the kitchen mirror the shape of the tiles on the backsplash.  Small details like that help the kitchen look like it was planned over time.

8. Textured Flooring
Even though this flooring is brand new the rough texture on it helps to make it look older and aged.

If you’re looking for a way to add vintage charm to your own home, try a schoolhouse light fixture. They are fairly inexpensive, come in any metallic finish you desire, and look good with just about any style (especially in a kitchen).  Here are a few favorites.

school house light copySOURCES: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9

Do you prefer shiny and new? Or do you like a little older character? A mix?

500-daisy-upholstery-nails-brass-furniture-studs-tacks-[2]-436-p copy

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