Comments : 32

Hi friends, hope this finds you settling into the new year.  New series alert!  This is a post I have been thinking of doing for a while. I have had the good fortune to build three homes and must say, I thoroughly enjoyed each and every one. It is an amazing experience to dream something  up and watch it come to life. Yes, it’s a lot of work and almost always ends up being more expensive than you might have initially planned. But worth it? Absolutely. Though I vowed that I will never build again, I am not going to say never. If the right situation presented itself, I could see possibly taking on one more house build.

Sometimes I like to fantasize about creating spaces or rooms that I would love to have, with just me and my needs in mind. If I was designing a home, strictly  for my needs with not as much regard to resale or what might be “in vogue”, it could easily be a house I could live in for the rest of my life. In other words, maybe even dong things a little unconventionally because it would suit day to day living. An example would be, I know some will forego a formal living room or dining room (or both) recognizing its a lot of wasted space for a room used twice a year, I can’t even rebuke that.

So, I thought designing a virtual dream house would make for a fun post.  Today starts the new series entitled “Designing a dream house”, where we can each chime in with our own ideas. Each post,  I will talk about a specific space/room with my ideas on the subject at hand and then you will have the chance to give your own. Sound like a plan? Let’s jump right in and talk kitchens.

I do love a white kitchen. I have one in PB and it’s always so fresh and crisp feeling, I love how light and airy it is and if I were to build a new kitchen, white it would be. I love subway tiles because I think they are classically beautiful and stand the test of time. Whether marble or porcelain, its a classic look.

I also wouldn’t have to even think about the countertops because Calcutta Gold marble is my favorite and what I have used the last three kitchens I have done. When people ask about them being fragile, my first reference is immediately to Europe. Have you visited the countless monuments, castles and churches that have marble from hundreds of years ago? The Spanish Steps that millions of shoes have walked on? Been to almost every restaurant, bakery and bistro? Case in point:)

Which brings me to our first room in this new dream house, the kitchen, the hub of the home. In this new dream kitchen I would have an entire wall of open shelving. On that shelving would be my many many dishes, glasses, serving pieces, I would have a place for every single item. It would literally be a very long wall of open shelving. Let me demonstrate exactly what this new kitchen would look like……..


Open shelving it would be. Love the accessibility, and by being open I would imagine it would force me to keep things in order. I would still do some closed cabinets but the big long wall would be all open shelving, almost boutique like.


Windows and light, are SO important to me. I like everything light, airy and sun filled. No dark spaces for me. I have really grown to like the look of some of the metal windows, I think it works beautifully in certain spaces. How great is all this light and these huge windows? Imagine cooking during a snowstorm:)

I have always loved the look of glass doors on a refrigerator and the possibilities are limitless over at True Residential you can add colors and various hardware options, love this look! It has a very interesting, customized vintage-y look.

Flooring- I love my floors in my NY home, they are reclaimed thick limestone pavers and it’s a great look with so many styles. The problem is here are several floorings I really love so I would be hard pressed to choose. I also love a beautiful limed oak herringbone floor (below)

I think the painted cement floors are really neat too, they have a wonderful vintage vibe which I really like and love that there are so many fabulous blue options!

Then there is what I have now fabulous reclaimed limestone, love it and would repeat it…its so beautiful (my floors are from Paris Ceramics who specializes in reclaimed flooring)

In this new experimental kitchen I might just go for an unlacquered brass hardware/faucet. I have always liked the look and with the whites and blues, it’s a winning combination

Really like brass hardware in a kitchen especially when used against a very light cabinet.


On the subject of ranges, I love a European range…they are such amazing pieces to anchor a kitchen with their glossy painted finishes in all kinds of yummy colors. That said I need to be fully honest by saying, the best cooking range has to be my Wolf in Palmetto Bluff, it is fabulous!

This is the range I have in my house now (but mine is black) It is from Ilve and this is the majestic range, quite a beauty!

These below are from La Cornue-

A smaller Ilve-

How gorgeous is this color from La Cornue! Just like a Robin’s egg:)

I am all about clever kitchen storage. To be honest, not something I thought much about in my NY kitchen but more so in the PB kitchen. These ideas however are brilliant and something to take note of for anyone building/redoing a kitchen! So many good ideas here-

In this dream house I might have a dog (or two) and would love to have any one of these fabulous ideas for a beloved pet, convenient, pretty and practical. So smart! Then I saw the unit with the bulletin board and thought that was so smart as I have always wanted a bulletin board in my kitchen, this is so practical!

Lighting, even if you hate high hats, it is still the best task lighting but now they make them much smaller and even square! I would have those and some kind of beautiful pendant over the island. I love my belljars, it’s such a classic look and goes both ways, traditional or modern and with any color!

A very close contender would be these from Visual Comfort that I used in PB…hey, at least I am consistent with my choices:)

Then I came across this picture which really exemplifies the kind of look I am after.  Tall ceilings, airy, flooded with  light, lots of windows, open shelves, checks almost all the boxes! I would change the lighting and some of the styling on the shelves but this is pretty close to the kitchen I am envisioning. This looks like a happy kitchen and what a fun space to cook in/entertain in!


Well, wasn’t that fun! I love dreaming and coming up with new ideas. The only scary part about this is when we are done “designing” all the rooms, I may find myself wanting to build a new house, lol. I have an appreciation when done right, for many styles of kitchens and that is what makes this exercise a lot of fun, getting to imagine doing something totally different.

I cannot wait to hear your ideas about what you would do in your own dream house kitchen. If there were no parameters, what would be on your must do list for your dream kitchen? Any of my ideas resonate with you? I cannot wait to hear all about your perfect dream kitchen!  Thanks for stopping in, wishing everyone a fabulous day. Until next time………

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So many beautiful ideas,,, The one thing I have always wanted is a big farm table right in the middle of the kitchen… maybe not for a city residence but definitely for a vacation home

I would have a fireplace and seating area ( fir eating, reading, etc)with lots of windows there.

Just pinned so many of your ideas! I’m definitely with you on the range and the one in robin’s egg blue made my heart flutter! Lighting and windows are a must. I can never seem to have enough light in my current kitchen. Also loved your storage ideas – we are currently looking for a new home and when I renovate the kitchen, I will most definitely be looking into clearing the counter tops for a cleaner look. With the exception of some elegant Enchanted Home items of course! ❤️ Thank you this was fun!

Love all your ideas & dreams! I am gathering pictures & ideas now, to remodel my kitchen later this year! It will be white & blue!! What color paint is your favorite for cabinets?

Thanks Tina for these kitchen ideas. I would design a light kitchen with lots of windows and glass doors on the tall cabinets.

While I love your ideas, I am at the stage in life where I’m looking more at ways that don’t cause as much work. I love the bell jar lights and have had them in the past, but cleaning them is a pain (and I don’t have a cleaning service). Open shelving is great, but I would want only a small area of that. I’d actually love a full wall of built-in shelving with glass doors. The fridge you chose is beautiful and I have thought of getting that kind, but, again, I’d have to work harder at keeping everything inside looking perfect. Love the stoves you’ve chosen. I’ve never had a white kitchen and would love to have one with warm elements. My one must-have is a view from the sink. Facing a wall would not be an option.

Excellent post with wonderful ideas. I would love to have what they are calling entertainment closets, all your bits and pieces from candlesticks to linens in one place. Thinking a la what Bunny Williams has.

Well Happy 2020!!!! Not only do I love, love, love seeing a new post of anything from you, but now you have a new one that excites me even more!!! I have built 4 houses myself over time. but there is nothing I love more than to imagine another new one, with all the pictures available now. I am THRILLED with your new post!!!! Just saying…..

Oh, Tina, I had all my kitchen ideas successfully shoved in the attic of my mind, and you’ve gone and opened the attic door! I’m seriously ready to call the contractor. Wanted: one cook’s kitchen that works great and looks great, not just a showcase kitchen, and you have assembled the best ideas.
Yes to white cabinetry. Why fight success. when Wolf is the best range I have ever cooked on.
However beautiful stone floors may be, wood is more forgiving for old legs. . I’ve tried both.
Love the beams, love the black windows, Yes to marble. It is not difficult to manage and takes on a beautiful patina as it ages. Tall pantry cabinets need roll out shelves. Spices and oils need to be in pull out cabinets at eye level. I’m not getting down on my belly to read labels or get a head rush bending over to operate a microwave in a drawer.
The only place we part ways is open shelving. I have plenty of open shelves now, and would revert to glass doors except for cookbooks, special display items, a few serving pieces. Everything gets dusty. The top soup bowl will be filthy. The Pilsner glasses neatly arranged like little inverted cadets on the top shelf are dusty. You couldn’t hand one to a guest. I’m a neatnik and all stays nicely arranged, but even a little layer of dust for me defeats the purpose. Thank you for a great post and pictures. I have saved a few to my kitchen folder which is now on active status. Looking forward to future posts. Thank you.

Ok this is my fave post! I only wish it were longer! Can you do a Plan B? Different kinds of homes? Mountain, beach, city townhouse… I am actually building a dream kitchen of sorts as we are downsizing fm a huge lake house to building a large waterfront condo. I am most excited about my new walk-in pantry which will have black trimmed glass barn doors! I want to see the interior gorgeousness from my work island! It will be the best room in the house! I adore pantries (maybe an idea for dream house series!) so am super excited. Also getting a Miele built-in coffee maker! I agree with the commenters about the fireplace and Bunny Williams room!

What fun it is to dream and fantasize! You take it to a new level. The only thing I would not do is have hard floors, tile, cement, etc. We put in vinyl wood floors throughout our renovated house and I’ve always been happy and relieved that we made that decision. We had porcelain tile floors throughout our last house and while they were gorgeous, it was hard and cold on the feet. I also developed planters fasciitis for a while and hard surfaces on the feet can be excruciating. In any case, your ideas are great and your idea of all that beautiful open shelving took away my breath!!! So gorgeous.

We recently finished a new construction home and after designing our kitchen and living in it for a year the only thing I might change is adding the dedicated multi-shelf cabinet to store appliances (mixer, food processer, blender etc). Wavered over including a few open shelves but do not regret not adding any. One area often overlooked are pantries–if that is designed correctly you often don’t need many of the other “specialty cabinets.” Fun post and beautiful ideas!

What a great post! Personally, I think “pretty” is easier to achieve that “working hard” and I want the latter because I really love to cook. That means really good appliances, though not necessarily top of the line. Right now I have a gas cooktop and electric wall oven and I think it’s the best of all worlds. I love the glass-door refrigerators but — eek! — would I have to style those shelves too? Lighting is very important to me — ceiling lights, pendants over the island, and under-cabinet lighting. I would love a walk-in pantry, black metal windows and maybe a cozy seating area for the cook to peruse cookbooks, read the paper, visit with a friend or make kitchen “guests” more comfortable.

Think twice about all the open shelving—a dusting nightmare. I would not want to have to wash everything off before using it—and the shelves themselves will need to be dusted every week. Also think about trying to reach everything. Spices under the cooktop are not a good idea—they are going to be subjected to heat which will degrade them. The bell jars are beautiful and I like them, but I think about having to clean the glass regularly, especially in the kitchen. I have had to pay someone from a lighting company to come to my house and clean my huge chandeliers because my ceilings are 12’ and the chandeliers in my living and dining rooms are very big and my foyer and upstairs hallway ones are large. I am going to build The Cedar River Farmhouse by Southern Living (with some changes), designed by my favorite architect, and going to use the black metal windows. I think about designing a house based on aging in place, so the house is convenient for you as you age and not just pretty—I believe both can be accomplished. Planning for no less than 36” wide doorways everywhere, grab bars in showers, showers you can walk or roll into, designing a kitchen where most used items are easily accessible, etc

I love the look of glazed cabinets (even though that trend is way out of date). I also like old brick floors and prefer granite countertops for durability and beauty. I wouldn’t want the open shelving or see-through fridge, but I’d definitely add more organizational components to my dream kitchen.

Love these ideas, I am about to embark on a renovation of a 1860, Greek Revival. Love your inspections posts!

Oh, the wheels are turning in my head as it is time for a kitchen re-do in my house! I love the thought of a brass faucet at the sink???

I never stop dreaming up beautiful house plans and always include a fireplace with room to have two chairs and a small table by it in the kitchen, marble counters, reclaimed limestone heated floors, white cabinets, my large Wolf range, large windows that come down to the top of the counters(I love washing windows to make them sparkle) very large refrigerator and freezer, ice maker included and a beautiful garden outside to dream over while cooking.

I have always loved and swooned over your Enchanted Home kitchen! I am hopeless when it comes to paint colors and love your cabinet color! Can you share it? Thanks so much!!!

Thank you, thank you, bless you for this new “Design a Room” series you are just starting. It’s just exactly what I’ve been hoping for and being from you, will make it all the better!…Eagerly awaiting every single room!

1. Glass enclosed shelves, instead of open. [dust issues]
2. Fireplace
3. Big table instead of island – seating 12-16
4. Movable island for food prep that will slide back into cabinets after use.
5. Window seats some where in the kitchen
6. Seating area for upholstered items: chair, ottoman, side table, chaise lounge, small sofa etc.
7. Table lamps, chandelier lighting

If I could redo some things in the house we built it would be a larger pantry and different color cabinets and granite. I love a big laundry room off the kitchen. It’s almost like a second kitchen as it has granite over the washer and dryer, kitchen type stainless steel sink and beautiful cabinets, a chandelier, hardwood floors, a desk and all the appliances I don’t want sitting out in the kitchen are sitting out in there. My preference is no clutter on the counters or in view, so open shelving would not work for me. Also, I noticed progressing through life, I don’t use all the appliances, bowls and special serving pieces as I once did. I used to have a nice big gas range but hated cleaning it and since I’m no gourmand it was kind of overkill for us. No one could get the built-in smooth glass cooktop away from me now! So easy to clean, love it. I like the lantern light fixtures in the kitchen especially the Mykonos by Lumens in gold and yes to those steel windows❤️.

Would you mind sharing the manufacturer of the beautiful bell jar pendants over the kitchen island of your New York home?
Thank you

Beautiful ideas. Nice post and pictures are also amazing.
Marble exporters in India

Love your vision of a big, airy, white kitchen. But NO open shelves used for storage and no see-through refrigerators! Think of all the work of having to keep up with washing all the dishes stored on those shelves. And having to make sure the items in the refrigerator LOOKED GOOD all the time would drive me nuts! Why make extra work for yourself?

Would love to see designing a kitchen with. Ageing in place design. Cork floors
Higher islands, lower cabinets, much higher appliances at least 1 foot off the floor.

I love the last kitchen and would also Change the lighting and staging. I also would not want any kitchen without a walk in pantry.

Can you please tell me the name of the reclaimed limestone tile from Paris Ceramics? It’s stunning!

My husband and I are remodeling our home built in 1900. We are using your kitchen (I believe it’s your kitchen in NY) as our inspiration to complete our dream kitchen. We have had pics saved of your kitchen from other places on the internet and I am absolutely thrilled I found your blog and it contains amazing photos and even more angles than we had as it will help us capture the details. I just wanted you to know you were our inspiration and I hope it brought a smile to your face.

I have always admired your NY kitchen. Have you considered making the upper cabinets to the left and right of your sink open shelving? And painting your island light blue? Then you would have 2 changes on your dream kitchen list! 🙂 Thanks for the fun blog.

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