I love a beautiful kitchen and have designed many different styles over the years. I always style and prop my finished kitchens for my clients, and I do it for a very good reason as I want them to see how it functions as well as looks good.
Functionality is as important as a beautiful room. Without great function, the kitchen -- above all rooms in the house -- is a waste of square footage. My general rule of thumb is never decorate your surfaces with items that are not utilitarian or useful in the kitchen. They have no place.
Decorate with fruit in lovely bowls and focus on bringing some naturally organic color with a variety of apples or pears. Fill a lovely glass vessel with gorgeous lemons or limes. Utensils and lovely pottery can be showcased on a fabulous pot rack and open shelving.
Be judicious in your decorating because any extraneous fluff is just another surface that needs regular cleaning. Make the space function accordingly.
Never light a candle that does not relate to the wondrous scent of food. Instead, choose one with a cinnamon scent or, better yet, simmer cloves and cinnamon on the stovetop. Otherwise, nothing smells better than a well prepared meal.
I do like art on the walls as a nod to beauty and a way to carry a collection throughout the house. I do admit to having a television, a large one, in my kitchen and it’s practically the only way I get to enjoy it. I find that it’s extremely inspirational to turn on a Food Network cooking show and then get busy.
As a mom of school-age kids, dinner preparation can be a bore. But, just when I’m feeling like I need to jazz it up a bit, I turn on the Contessa or Giada, and I have all the motivation I need to whip up a nutritious meal.
So, the TV is a must-have basic for me. Take inventory of your kitchen and see if everything in there is something that you can use in the preparation of food.