After purchasing the house and finding my design inspiration, I was over the moon to get to completely demo the kitchen and make it my own. But where does one begin when she is (almost) starting from scratch with a room? A piece of advice that I truly believe in is to begin at the bottom. You may have a piece of furniture that you’re working around, or an idea that you absolutely have to incorporate, but I honestly believe in an ideal situation, you start with the floors…literally, “from the ground up.”
When we moved into our house one of the first things I noticed was the hardwoods. Like any person with eyes, I love hardwoods. They are so versatile. They are at home in lofts and farmhouses, massive villas and tiny apartments. Though many will disagree, I love hardwoods in a kitchen (water damage, I scoff at you! ) If we were going to rip out the floor in our kitchen, hardwoods would be the obvious choice for a replacement, right?! But to employ my 7-year-old’s current favorite phrase, here’s the thing: I didn’t like these hardwoods. This is clearly on the list of first-world problems, maybe even akin to that time Kanye said, “Fur pillows are actually hard to sleep on.” Now that I’ve acknowledged that, I’ll move on.
The house was full of these beautiful, newish engineered hardwoods that I did not love and would not have chosen if I had my druthers (someone from the south, please speak up and tell me what “druthers” are. I have no idea and yet insist on ignorantly using this phrase.) I had a choice to make. I could put more of a thing I did not love in just because I am a person who thinks you should put hardwoods in the kitchen, or I could break my own design rule and go a completely different route. The magical thing was that in breaking one of my own rules I was actually obeying the ancient design law that supercedes all other design laws. It is the following: “When you have the choice, choose the things you love.”
One of my favorite things about Jessica Helgerson’s kitchen design was those beautiful black and white encaustic tiles she used. I decided that for my kitchen, the floor would be black and white. Funky black and white tiles were popping up everywhere, so I figured finding the ones I loved wouldn’t be too daunting. Here are just a few of the photos that guided my search… Which is your favorite?