Can I just say, Wow?
Like, really WOW!
Both Mary and I are overwhelmed with your kind words about Mary’s classic kitchen renovation in Bronxville, NY.
By the way, for those who aren’t so fond of subway tile or are just plain sick of it, how do you feel about it in this classic kitchen? My feeling is that in this 105-year-old home, it looks like it was always there. I guess context is important.
Although, I like subway tile in new homes too. I’m one of those people that when I like something, I usually like it forever.
Okay, I know that many of you are dying to know the sources of the items in this classic kitchen.
Well, tough noogies.
Haha, of course, I’m joking. But, what are noogies, anyway?
You don’t have to answer that. ;]
Of course, I’m going to give you the entire source list, thanks to Mary. (plus a few extra items)
And, I’m also going to give a bit more of the backstory.
You already know that it was essential to retain the vintage feeling and character of this 105-year-old home.
One way to do that is to NOT have everything match.
So, we didn’t.
Mary and I looked at several shades of green, but Calke Green stood out as the winner with the Raphael wallpaper.
Originally, Mary was thinking more of a chartreuse green to coordinate with the stools in her entry.
However, when Mary said that she wanted wallpaper, I immediately thought of the Sandberg Raphael wallpaper as I’ve been admiring it for years.
Logically, Mary went with the same Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls that she has in the dining and living room and trim in the entry. And, she decided to use the same classic gray that she has in the entry.
It looks very different in the much brighter kitchen, but different in an interesting way.
I went through some old emails from late last summer. In this one, Mary was trying to figure out what she wanted to do for the floor. She sent me some links to gray and dark slate colors, but I didn’t feel they were quite right.
Here’s what I said:
I think that a warm stone color will look great with the copper hood, as well. But, maybe look
at Pinterest for more ideas? Also, the English companies, Devol, Plain English Kitchen, and Neptune Kitchens have kitchens with beautiful stone floors.
I realize that you also have the Carrara marble island. However, I think it’ll work in a non-matchy sort of European Country Kitchen sort of way. Your floor is currently kind of that color, and it doesn’t bother me now.
Did I really say, “sort of European Country Kitchen sort of way?” Apparently, I did, haha, but after that, I looked for a stone that Mary could purchase online.
So, let’s begin with some inspiration for our classic kitchen from deVOL.
And, below is a travertine floor in a classic Versailles pattern that I found doing a Google search.
Mary got some samples and loved them, and that is what is in her classic kitchen!
Kesir Travertine Tile – Philadelphia Standard, Antique Pattern. It is brushed, chiseled, and partially filled. The online source is called Build Direct. I do not have an affiliate link for them; however, there is another beautiful travertine in the widget. To be clear, Build Direct is not the same company as Build.com.
In this classic kitchen, it was a no-brainer to do white subway tile.
Frankly, I’m not 100% sure of the timeline, but I think we were discussing this around the time I was in mortgage hell the entire month of October.
And, I was dreaming of my own kitchen and came across some gorgeous vignettes, either kitchens, bars, or pantries with mirrored backsplashes.
Like this beauty.
Oh, and if you want to see tons of inspiration and exquisite antique mirror ideas, please go here. They’re across the pond, too. Sigh…
And, I was mesmerized by this image of mirror and silver.
Yes, it’s contemporary but with an undeniable vintage feel. I thought the mirrored tile would be a fun accent. Plus, the reflective glass would bring in some welcome light and a touch of sparkle.
Well, it does. And, at night, it’s absolutely magical. During the day, you don’t notice it as much, but it does bring in more light.
So, Mary sent me the link for her mirrored tile, which is very subtly antiqued.
However, the photographer clearly worked very hard to make the product image look as ugly as possible. It doesn’t look in the slightest bit sparkly. No, they managed to make the mirrored tile look like it was dredged in a sewer, left to dry overnight, and then photographed the next day.
I had to remove it from the widget. Don’t believe me? Here is the link for the mirrored subway tile in the pantry so that you can see it for yourself.
However, it’s the same tile that’s in Mary’s pantry! As you can see, it IS sparkly. And, you can see me taking the pic on the far left side.
So, now we had the basics of Mary’s classic kitchen design.
Mary really wanted to do brass hardware but wasn’t sure if it was okay.
Well, I told her that I thought it would be. It went with our “theme” of if we love it, it goes. lol
But, I love unlacquered brass, and over time it’ll get a more tarnished patina. I don’t think one walks into the kitchen and thinks, “Oh my, look at all of the different metals.”
One thing that’s super important, no matter what, is to get samples of everything.
I guess that is pretty obvious, but photos can be misleading.
And, don’t be afraid to contact the manufacturer if you have questions. Mary did have some about the floor, and she said the folks at Build Direct were fantastic. Good to know!
However, when she found out that there would be a lengthy wait for the brass bin pulls from Rejuvenation (August 23, 2021, now), she got them and the knobs from another source. And, phew, she did check that they matched well with the Rejuvenation latches. Those are harder to find.
By the way, a while back, I did this pretty post that pairs cabinets, hardware, and lighting together in five kitchens!
It was a lot of work, but a good one.
Okay, it’s time for the classic kitchen widget.
I’ve added a few accessories, as well. Oh, no dishwasher, but it’s a Kitchenaid. You can see them here.
Please click on any image if you’d like to know more.
It’s the best way to link to products because there’s a visual, a caption, and a source.
(But, a little technical thing, for those with websites, is that there’s actually only one link on my site as the product links in the widget are hosted on a different server, not mine. Google’s not fond of seeing dozens of links all together in one blog post. He thinks it looks a little spammy. It’s best not to make Google angwy.)
By the way, if you have a website and want to hear about even far more critical things that people frequently don’t do right on their sites, please look into getting my blogging guide.
You might also enjoy this post about 12 awesome Farrow & Ball paint colors for the perfect English Kitchen.
Okay, that’s a wrap for this classic kitchen. I hope this list is helpful for some of you.
I know that some of you wanted to see the other side of the kitchen. Yes, the hutch is there. But, the rest isn’t camera-ready yet.
PPS: I’m very proud of you guys. I only needed to delete part of one comment that started in on what she didn’t like which was about three things. To be clear, I am not suggesting that you must stroke egos. Not at all! It’s totally fine if you think I or someone else sucks. Please just keep it to yourself.
This is why:
If you think that a reader or I have hideous taste or poor judgment, and feel like letting us know in the comments it ALWAYS creates a lynching-type atmosphere. Others invariably jump on the neggy bandwagon.
And, then, instead of getting my legs waxed, I’m forced to be tethered to my laptop anxiously, deleting inappropriate comments.
It’s human nature to want to be part of the pack. The problem is that pack is destructive.
Nothing is perfect. Anyone who’s ever renovated has wished that something or things had turned out differently. I say, let’s embrace the quirks, ignore the imperfections, and focus on the things that really matter in life.
People matter. Let’s strive to be kind to each other. That is all I am asking.
Thanks, so much! I love you all!