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Style Notes – Eclectic Tom Howley Kitchen Design

With a keen eye for interior design, it’s to no surprise these stylish homeowners chose our distinctive Kavanagh collection to work harmoniously with the extensions’ bold architectural features.

The expansive room fills with natural light from floor-to-ceiling windows, which frame stunning garden views. The light brightens every corner of the eclectic family kitchen design, full of innovative solutions and thoughtful details, bringing beauty to everyday moments.

Dark Green Family Kitchen

The kitchen is laid out with the main run of cabinetry behind the island, flanked by state-of-the-art appliances. The impressive island is positioned so that the cook can gaze through the vast sliding doors onto the picturesque garden while also interacting with family and friends sat at the dining table. A bespoke bifold pantry was built to maximise storage, helping to achieve an overall clutter-free aesthetic. Its grand proportions and positioning help define the dining zone and successfully link the two areas.

Dark Green Family Kitchen

The kitchen is at the heart of this newly renovated family home, so while functionality was key, that didn’t mean it had to compromise on style.

We caught up with Sarah, our talented stylist, to find out how she worked with this inspiring space, as well as sharing some fool-proof tips to help you unleash your creativity in the kitchen.

Style Tip No.1: Kitchen Styling with Practicality in Mind

A practical family kitchen ideally needs work surfaces to be kept as clear as possible for food preparation and effective cleaning. Sweeps of uncluttered tops create clean lines and a more spacious flowing feel to the whole kitchen. Practical necessities are better kept hidden away in functional cupboards, like the bifold pantry in this space. All the food, crockery, glasses etc., that are needed are conveniently together in one place, making breakfast preparation easier than having to move between a mix of spaces across the kitchen.

By keeping worktops and tables free of clutter, there will be room to inject individual style into the kitchen – for example, a group of vases with garden branches and flowers bringing the outside in. A beautiful statement bowl can work well, such as the large cactus bowl brought back from Italy. You can also display items with a special sentimental association, like the vintage yellow ceramic chicken pot, bringing back happy memories and adding personality to the space.

Dark Green Family Kitchen

Style Tip No. 2: Curating an Eclectic Space

Select a few key pieces that sit well together, allowing each to be appreciated for its design. The vintage Ercol dining chairs in this kitchen are echoed in the choice of contemporary bar stools. The curated collections of prints and artworks all have family connections but also add personality and colour. Grouped together, they have more impact than scattered along a wall.

Dark Green Family Kitchen

Colour is always an essential factor in creating a harmonious eclectic space. Here the deep rich greens of the Avocado finish and lush plants are complemented by the beautiful tropical Matthew Williamson cushions, which also introduce the brighter colour pops of yellow and red that are picked up throughout. Textural variations are also important in unifying a scheme. From the natural linen Swyft sofa and the embroidered collage cushions mixed with pleated velvets to the lush tropical leaves of the plants and the warmth of natural woods.

Dark Green Family Kitchen

Style Tip No. 3: Decorating with Houseplants

Plants add a natural calming effect in a space, bringing the outside in, especially here, as the garden lies just beyond the large slide back patio doors. Always consider the lighting requirements of plants as some love direct sunlight, others burn. Here the trailing ivy above the breakfast cupboard thrives in its position near the roof lights, cascading down the side of the cabinet freely. Blank corners of the space can accommodate some large scale plants in attractive textural planters. Flowers in LSA International vases add to the tropical feel and bring in pops of intense contrasting colour. Always remember your plants are living things that need feeding and watering too!

Dark Green Family Kitchen

Style Tip No. 4: Rules for Mixing Old & New Furniture

There are no rules exactly for mixing old and new, just what looks right from a scale, colour and textural perspective. Sometimes if furniture styles are too diverse, the harmony can be lost. For example, industrial metal decor may not sit well with delicate carved ethnic pieces. Upcycling can be a great way of using old furniture that needs a more contemporary edge – repaint a sideboard and add funky handles that change the look altogether.

Style Tip No. 5: Using Colour to Enhance Your Space

Don’t be afraid to use large areas of colour in your kitchen. Move away from multiple shades and focus on one key colour to give consistency and amplify the design. Think about what look you want to go for. Do you want to create a dark cosy sanctuary or a kitchen with calming qualities using gentle, refreshing shades? A great partner to a neutral palette, our dark green paint colour, Avocado, works exceptionally well in the kitchen, where its organic nature brings a feeling of health, harmony and energy, perfect for a busy multifunctional space.

Dark Green Family Kitchen

Pantry Styling

A bespoke pantry is an intelligent and beautiful way to keep your kitchen clutter-free. Even though these shelves are behind closed doors most of the time, it doesn’t mean they can’t look impressive. Read Sarah’s top tips for styling a kitchen pantry below.

  1. Try to have a unifying theme that works with the rest of the kitchen.
  2. Larger items at the base of the pantry, like appliances, give the display a base to work up from. Textural handmade chopping boards in different shapes also look fantastic as a group and add height to the bottom layers.
  3. Here attractively packaged foods were chosen, but in reality, your preferred cereals or teas, for example, may be too vivid. Streamline storage by swapping out bulky boxes for uniform clear containers.
  4. Hide less appealing necessities behind more attractive items.
  5. Group or stack practical items in categories to give your pantry a lived-in yet curated look.
  6. When grouping related items together, I like to layer them from tall at the back to small at the front, enabling easy viewing & selection but also more balanced visual appeal.
  7. Use odd numbers of items, so in stacks of bowls, use 3’s, 5’s.
  8. Consider interesting crockery, mugs etc., to sit together and pick up some of the other accent colours in the kitchen, like the mustard & greens used here.
  9. Use a mix of glassware to add reflective light surfaces.
  10. Remember to always stand back to judge the balance of the display.

You can dive into the story, process and design details of this eclectic family kitchen in our previous blog post

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