I can’t think of one person who doesn’t have a clutter problem. And it usually starts just inside the door. It can be the back door, front door, side door – whichever door is most often used to enter the house. At our house, we usually enter through the mudroom door, which is off of the garage door, into the family room/kitchen combo. I can’t tell you how bad it got under my skin that, when my family came home, they would pile their JUNK on the kitchen island! Actually, I’m kind of getting angry about it again just writing this blog! Ha! Sooooo, when I wanted to use the island to prepare something or actually eat there, I had to move everyone’s “junk” to another spot, only to find the island piled up again within hours…..something like this:
Grrrrr! But in all fairness, there was just really nowhere else to put things down when you came in the door. And if you have kids in school, you know that they come home with lots of papers. And if they have extra-curricular activities like scouts or art class, this mean MORE papers. I felt like I was about to drown in papers! That island was always covered in PAPERS!!!! When the builder put this kitchen in, they/he/it really overlooked an opportunity to maximize the usefulness of this space. I’ve seen many a kitchen with a little built-in desk area using the same cabinetry as is in their kitchen, which would have been a great idea for this space. But maybe it just wasn’t in the budget. At any rate, when I first looked at this vacant house, I thought the wall next to the garage door was just wasted space. You can see part of the door to the mud room on the left side of the photograph below. See that empty wall space? Shouldn’t SOMETHING be there? It would be a great place for a china hutch, I thought. But with the formal dining room just around the corner, I decided that wouldn’t make much sense at all. Then, after living here a while, I decided what this space really needed was a “Command Central.” This is a space the whole family uses. We have a family "written" (my husband thinks this is ridiculous with all the technology we have in the house) calendar so that we all know who's doing what that day which is easily accessible as we're walking out the door. It's also where we charge our phones. The kids each have a drawer for school work. The dog and cats have a drawer for meds and treats, there's a drawer for construction paper and color books, which leaves a couple of miscellaneous drawers. By the way, the photo below was taken during a house hunting trip to Cincinnati, before our relocation here almost four years ago. The kitchen looks nothing like this now. The cabinets are the same unfortunately (not in the budget yet), but that’s about it.
Command Central first got it’s start as a baker’s rack – quick, easy solution that I got as sort of a package deal when I bought the table that I’m now using in my studio. I don’t really like backer’s racks in general though because everything is exposed and ends up looking junky and dusty. No offense to anyone that has one! That’s just me!!! Now, if you have a bunch of pies or cakes to load on that baker’s rack, that’s just fine with me. Actually, now that I think about it, the baker's rack that we had was really a wine rack. But we have our wine in another room so we didn't need to utilize it in that way. Plus, I would never leave my wine glasses hanging on that rack to get all dusty and dirty. Too many people have baker’s racks to hold their junk because they are inexpensive and easy to install. To me, most of the time, they just look…..junky. But at least the junk was off the island, right? Not really, but it was a start.
I did modify the top left corner of the painting a bit to bring some of the greenish color found in the countertops, cornice and the base of the island to this side of the room. And I already had the “K” too that was taking up space on a bookshelf because I could never decide where to hang it. I finally found the prefect place for my “K.” YAY!
I cleaned and oiled the dresser, sprayed the brass hardware to match the stainless steel in the room, and we lived with it like this for a while – although from the beginning I wanted to paint it a bright color. There is just so much wood in this room (kitchen cabinets, wood floor, wood doors and trim, and a huge 10 foot floor-to-ceiling wood fire place surround) that I thought a pop of color was needed. So one day I took a leap of faith. After all, what did I have to lose? $20?
I gave the dresser a good sanding and then decided to use glossy teal (looks like baby blue on my computer screen but it IS teal) spray paint to give it that modern look. I know a lot of people paint furniture, and everyone has their preferences. MY preference is usually spray. I think you get a more professional finish. I DO NOT like brush strokes and I find that when I use a roller, it leaves a bumpy finish which I don’t like either. And if you have a sprayer, you don’t even have to be limited to ONLY the colors available in spray paint cans. Now, I see updated, painted furniture in antique malls, etc. all the time that have visible brush strokes or a bumpy roller finish, and people still buy the stuff like crazy. It’s just not my preference. The bad part about spraying though is that I can’t do it inside my house, and the temperature has to be above 50 degrees in the garage to get a good smooth finish, so I’m limited as to when I can refinish furniture with spray paint.
Isn’t it cute? It would look great against an orange wall since they are complimentary colors. In this space though, there are a lot of orange tones in the wood so I think it’s the perfect color for this space.
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