Blogging

Why Blogs Are Still Important in 2017

April 1, 2017

Why Blogs Are Still Important in 2017Hello everyone! I’m so happy it’s the weekend because on Monday, I’m driving to Milan for the Salone del Mobile and to attend other design-related events, cocktail parties, and installations. Not a bad job. This will be my first time visiting Italy so I’m very excited.

Before I hit the road though, I’ve been thinking a lot about blogging and the way content creators are reaching all of you, the loyal audience. I’ve been considering how we work with brands, what we do to get our work out there to expand, or at least become better at what we do. I’ve been thinking about whether blogs are still important.

Why Blogs Are Still Important in 2017 This post is sponsored by Squarespace

I’m asked frequently how I see the future of blogging and if having a blog is relevant with all of the micro blogging platforms and visual content creators out there using platforms like Instagram to grow their brand.

ARE BLOGS STILL IMPORTANT?

Yes.

Here’s why. Blogging has evolved but it has a future just as much as a website and email account both have a future, despite being around forever.

REMEMBER YOUR FIRST EMAIL ACCOUNT?

I created my first email account at Northeastern University in a lab there in 1995 during a marketing class. (Back when marketing classes didn’t even use words like Social Media because none of that existed.)

Do we still use and need email so many years later? Of course. As much? Well, maybe not as much because we can Whatsapp, Snapchat, SMS, or Tweet without sending an email, sure. But email is primarily how we conduct a bulk of our business, especially professionals who have more to say than what can fit into a text message.

That email account was my entry point to the world and I’ll never forget it. When I started blogging in 2006, it was my next big entry point into the online world. It was when I wasn’t just talking to people in email or on forums, but was opening myself up to everyone who potentially visited my site and read my words. It was both exhilarating and terrifying.

Blogging is NO different than having email or a website. It may not be the ONLY way that we can transfer our ideas and opinions to the world, but it’s still how we can present our work in the most personalized and creative way. And the best part is, it’s our own content and we run the show.

A car isn’t the only way we move from point to point. Neither is a train, a boat, bike, a plane or a skateboard. They are all ways to transport ourselves. We had to expect that communicating online would evolve, yet some things don’t need to be reinvented. Like a blog and back to my earlier example, let’s think about the car. It has, and still will continue, to evolve but it doesn’t need to be replaced with a totally new way to move around on land.

Blogs are the same. They are evolving and certainly becoming much more robust, beautiful, user-friendly and savvy but they do not need to be replaced by something totally new because blogs, as a communication channel, work.

YOUR BASE

To me, a blog is the foundation to everything else that you’re doing virtually. You can have Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. but your blog — well that’s YOUR base. Everything links from it. You can be found on search engines. You can use it to showcase your work, tell a story, share videos, podcasts and all sorts of media… It’s robust. You can be super creative with it, from how you format your posts to how you lay out your images, write, or design your blog in general.

Blogging combines your visual content with your voice. It’s where you can communicate with your readers for years and content is archived and can be found again (unlike Facebook content, where you have a great conversation going and a month later, can never find it again).

YOU CAN CREATE A SUBSCRIBER LIST

Also, people enjoy getting emails from brands and people whom they trust, and your blog is where you can still have a subscriber list. These mailing lists are so important because you can reach out personally to people who are asking you to. There are no strange algorithms where only a few people can see your content or worse, it shows up in the wrong order. When you send an email to your mailing list, it reaches your subscribers, period. That is invaluable. By the way, here is a great article sharing how to grow your mailing list that is just brilliant.

REVENUE SOURCE

A blog is also a great space to create content that you can sell. Whether it’s a sponsored or underwritten post, a sponsored video series, e-books you’ve created, other downloadable content for sale, products, services… It’s a terrific space to get it out there and to reach your readers. You can also have your blog link from your website where your portfolio or shop is. It’s better for a reader to get lost on your website than to get lost on Instagram or Facebook, because there, you just lose them to the millions of distractions in their feed.

Your blog is the best way to generate revenue YOUR WAY, because you have total control over how you will present it. You set all of the rules.

LONG FORM CONTENT

Blogs give us the ability to write long form content, like this piece, and I love it! Everything is so quick and fast-paced elsewhere, you don’t really read anymore as a result. We scan. I’ve noticed when I read less, I don’t write as well and I stop learning. Even how I speak changes. My sentences are choppy and short. I’m so busy swiping on my iPhone all day that I sometimes forget how to express myself verbally, how to present clearly how I feel.

Thing is, seeing and scanning content all day isn’t necessarily making us smarter, more emotionally intelligent or creating genuine intimacy or connection between people. Reading does that. Your blog is where you can educate, share, connect and produce more longer form content that reaches others in meaningful ways.

While a picture is said to be worth a thousand words, I can’t really say the content I see on largely visual social platforms of buddha bowls and cute shoes so moving emotionally as a thousand words might be. Let’s face it, a lot of the content we absorb in a day isn’t the stuff made of a thousand words.

Of course, you can find and follow the true photographers creating visual poetry out there and get enormously inspired. However, in all honesty, most of what I’m seeing in my various feeds contain a lot heavily edited glimpses into people’s lives and on sites like Facebook where photos and brief thoughts are posted together, they usually center on the negative – political views and all of the horrible things happening in the world from pollution to crime and racism, and it overwhelms me. I am unfriending or hiding feeds more and more than engaging in meaningful conversations.

I love Instagram and use it multiple times a day in addition to my blog, but “in addition to”. I want the best of both worlds, so I keep my blog while also focusing on my Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and my latest obsession, my LinkedIn account.

When it comes to longer form content, a lot of what is shared on sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Pinterest is linked back to the longer form content on a blog anyway (or a website). Have you noticed this? These sites are linked back somewhere and usually it’s to a website or blog. If you have a blog, you are part of that content still and that is GOOD.

TRUSTWORTHY CONTENT SOURCE

Now more than ever, people are looking for trusted new sources of information. Content providers, through their blogs, have the chance to really meet that need and deliver content in a truthful, trustworthy way that is also fun and can make an impact.

When it comes to a blog, since so many content creators are also using platforms where visual content is king, let’s make blogs the space where educational and inspirational content lives. The space that touches hearts and where hope and guidance can sit. Real discussions on blogs may not take place in the same way as they did before, but on a blog you are still the author. You can write what matters to you. Many people are dying to read something heartfelt from you, I’m sure.

The writers, educators and those looking to go deeper with their audience will stay on board with blogs. Those who want to work more visually, or only visually, will move on to the other platforms suitable to the type of content they want to build. Some use a car, others a bicycle, walk or skateboard to work. In the end, we use what suits us best. The beauty of the internet is that there is something for everyone.

I’m a writer at heart and so using my blog regularly is a form of exercise for me. It helps me to become better at expressing myself. My blog gives me freedom and space to be uniquely me. I can express myself openly and no one can remove a post or edit my work. While other platforms make me better at creating stronger visual content, and I love and use those platforms daily, blogging is THE space where a writer goes to write stuff. That’s ultimately why blogging works for me and will for many years to come. This is why I think blogging is still important: If what you have to say matters, so does your blog, use it and say those things.

What are your thoughts on my words above? I’d love to hear what you think below.

xo

Holly

This post was sponsored by Squarespace, a platform for building beautiful blogs and websites. You can try Squarespace free for 14 days! Subscribe today and use code DECOR8 for 10% off your first purchase.






Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

March 31, 2017

I find trends fascinating in the world of interiors because on one side, your home is a deeply personal space — yet on the other, the more you entertain at home or share your space with the photos you share online, your interest in trends is definitely sparked. Decor hunter gatherers, at our core, delight in freshening our nests on a regular basis and trends seem to be at the core of that. But why?

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

It is only human nature to want to impress (for lack of a better word) those who are looking in on your life. It sounds icky to say that, I know, but I’m comfortable with that because it’s part of our nature. It’s not bad or wrong to care about how others perceive us. It’s strange to wonder if how we (or our homes) look truly represent us because we want to send the right message out…

Today, our home is no longer reserved for the eyes of close friends and family – the entire internet can be involved if you choose. We DO care about our style because partly, it makes us HAPPY to share ourselves so openly, but we also care about what others think. There is nothing to be ashamed of here, this all begins in early childhood and continues on. It’s just life.

With that being said, we share our personal style on the streets every single day, yet those on the train have no clue how we live. We may wear Versace but have a one room apartment above a gas station with 5 roommates. Our entire paycheck may have gone on that dress (a month’s salary!).  This is perhaps not the best choice in spending a limited income but it does prove a point. You can’t judge a book by its cover. The way we dress is not an indication of how we live and how big our home is.

BUT.

When we are using the web to share our life – whether it is fashion or our homes, cooking or our children, people do see glimpses of how we live. Take Instagram for example. Most of my friends are sharing how they live whether they realize it not. A selfie shot in their bathroom gives you insight into how their home looks and how they decorate. You get a sense of how they live. Others are baking and share glimpses of their kitchen. Same thing. You can see how they live.

Of course, you have others like me who post their entire home on Instagram. With the opening of doors done so freely, and daily, it’s only natural that trends in decor and/or lifestyle are becoming more and more of a focus. We want to be part of a group. We want to find like-minded friends. We care about what others think — but is it entirely for our ego?

I don’t believe so. At the core, we simply want to find common ground and friendship and if it is through showing our black and white Berber carpet that is on trend and everyone cool seems to have one, then post the damn rug. Give yourself a break. You’re not being egocentric or materialistic. You are just trying to connect with others who share your style.

There are hashtags for people who decorate in that typical “Kinfolk magazine” style. You may know about those. What was once indie and unique, is mainstream and not unique anymore. Kinfolk is mainstream pop decorating. Large big box stores copy the Kinfolk slow movement style. Interior designers are copying it. What was once interesting is less so.

People get bored with what they see and wish to expand and find what is fresh. Trends help them to do this when they have a hard time expressing themselves naturally through their own personal style. They want to keep the conversation going online.

Stagnant decor and yesterday’s movements are not interesting, especially online where the speed of movements is sometimes baffling – one minute a trend is in and the next minute, totally stale. This saturation in content has created an insatiable craving to stay “fresh” and “relevant” online. No one wants to be seen as boring or dare I say, OLD. That is why they look to trends and even start movements of their own.

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

When I was at Ambiente, a massive consumer goods fair in Europe based in Frankfurt, I was hired to go check out what’s new and give my opinion on not only 2017 interiors trends but also on the fair in general. I also did some video work for them, you can see one of them HERE where I share the trends at the bottom of this post (I did another video here if you are curious to see me live in action). You can also read a blog post I wrote for them on their blog a few weeks ago about how I feel about trends – you may link to that here.

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

(Me with Ben Wilson, Industrial Designer from Braun by day and moderator on the weekends. We want our own design-focused internet show by the way, there we are shown above right, in our video for the fair)

Naturally, what I’ve said above is my opinion but it’s also what I believe to be the truth. In the end, let’s all be open to trends and let them inspire us. Look at what’s out there objectively and see what others are doing with these trends. What can you can do to mix them up with your own personal vision? If you want to share your trendy new shelf or chair online, do it because there is no shame in that, it’s fun and can connect you to others who also like similar things. It doesn’t make you vain or shallow. TREND is not a dirty word to me.

But on the other side, trends are not to be taken too seriously, either. Don’t deny yourself the things you love to be trendy or to fit in.

Look at what’s other there and see if any of these trends interest you and then, add your own twist. If you dislike something, don’t be afraid to voice it because I think the internet (especially blogs and Instagram) have become so fluffy and loaded with cheerful boastings of what! we! love! that we forget to talk about some of the things that we aren’t finding so interesting at the moment. Discussing trends that you don’t like can lead to movements and new trends, ones that don’t aren’t coming from large companies but from all of us who are out here experimenting with products each day.

So with that, I’m going to briefly highlight 4 key trends Ambiente shared in an exhibition space at their fair. They hired external agency bora.herke.palmisano to show these trends so guests could admire, walk through, photograph and be inspired by what they saw. Ready?

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

TREND 1: DELICATE STRUCTURES
This was my favorite of the four because I loved the clean and clear feeling – very delicate and feminine, tactile, soft colors and nature materials. Very sensual. The lamp shown above had a “shade” shown that was made with a 3D printer. I really can’t wait to see what we can do with these printers in the near future.

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

TREND 2 – HONEST MATERIALS
Form meets function. High-quality craftsmanship coupled with great design. Keeping traditions alive, just reinterpreting them. Products that are unobtrusive. Durable, beautiful, sensible, aesthetic. Cement, ceramic, leather, felt, steel.

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

Trend 3: JUMBLED PATTERNED
Child-like, whimsical, quirky, loads of pattern. Together, these objects didn’t work for me as shown. Separately, or grouped in a more minimalist environment, I can see them working beautifully. Jumbled pattern was my least favorite of these three trends. I like the use of neon yellow but only as a small accent, not as a wall color. I think patterns have to be balanced to work in a room. What I took away though from this installation was that less is more and you need only a few whimsical pieces to make your point.

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

4 Interiors Trends + Why We Follow Trends

Trend 4: NOTABLE SHAPES
Glamorous and clear with classic elements you can easily recognize. Strong silhouettes. Sculptural form, monolithic, structure, beauty, moody, upscale, desirable. Lots of metal and glass.

SO! Which trend collection from the four shown above, resonated the most with you and why?

On Monday, I am driving to Milan and will spend a week there working on assignment for Kvadrat and their brand, Kinnasand, and I was hired by Salone del Mobile so you can follow me @decor8 and @kinnasand all week next week to see what I’m finding at Milan – uncovering trends and beauty from all over the world of interiors. I can’t wait to show you. I also can’t wait to see if the trends shown above from the Ambiente in Germany will carry over into the Milan fairs and installations. I’ll definitely be on the look out for that.

xo

Holly

(Photography: Holly Becker, Morten Toni Vinther, Erik Schumacher Photography)






Tabletop

Broste Copenhagen Teams Up With GRØD

March 23, 2017

I’m been living in Germany now since August 2009 and I’m always interested in the lifestyle trends here – mostly interiors but also product packaging, food trends, cosmetics, fashion, beauty treatments… It’s all so fascinating to me. Lately, I’ve been wondering what the next big food trend will be. Maybe porridge? With food, it was cake pops and cupcakes… Then pulled pork and frozen yogurt… Now it’s all about the burger and food trucks. Honestly, most of the food trends are very boring to me because what happens in Germany with food today already happened a decade ago in North America – so it’s the least inspiring trend to follow. BUT I could get behind the porridge trend if it hits Germany because it’s big on Instagram for foodies and hey, it’s healthy and there are so many creative things you can do with it. With that in mind, do you know about GRØD? If not…

Broste Copenhagen Teams Up With GRØD

I’ve long been a fan of Broste Copenhagen so I’m happy to see beautiful food and ceramics combined in their latest styling though after reading their press release I realized this collection is more than what meets the eye. This is their GRØD collection. For those of you unfamiliar with GRØD, they have five restaurants in Denmark and everything for them revolves around the simple, typically Nordic, bowl of porridge. GRØD has spiced up this healthy and nutritious dish offering it in their restaurants in several tasty options on the menu.

Broste Copenhagen Teams Up With GRØD

In addition to porridge, their menu also consists of simple but refined dishes made with local ingredients which has made GRØD one of the most important and trendy restaurants in Copenhagen. Broste and GRØD have teamed up to create a small collection of earthenware that is traditional, minimalist and very Nordic.

Broste Copenhagen Teams Up With GRØD

When I see pieces like this, I just want to touch them and serve my own recipes out of them – they definitely have a sensual feeling to them and I just love the uneven edges of the bowls. Beautiful!

I’m packing now and getting ready to take the morning train to Paris. I’m excited because it will give me 6 hours to relax, read and write in my journal. Maybe I’ll do a little Instagramming too. Once in Paris, I’ll celebrate my book launch in French of Decorate For a Party from 7-9pm, so please RSVP if you would like to attend. Then on Saturday and Sunday I will roam the streets with my camera, so follow me on Instagram to see Paris through my eyes @decor8 for photos and IG Stories too.

Next week, I’ll be in Hamburg and then, the week after, in Milan for a week so you will have lots to see on my IG in the weeks to come.

Bye! xo, Holly






Round-ups

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

March 23, 2017

Let’s talk about pre-teen and teen room decorating for a moment because so many girls are out there who love to decorate their rooms but aren’t sure how to begin. I was once a teen obsessed with decorating my bedroom and today I meet lots of girls between 11-17 who ask me for tips and help with their rooms because they tag along with their mom to my book launch parties because they are curious. It’s the cutest thing that I’ve observed over the past year – more teens coming to my launch parties because they’re interested in decorating. No wonder Anthropologie is pulling back from the clothing space and moving more into the decorating world because the big trend in western society is definitely ALL ABOUT THE HOME right now. Fashion will always be important, but the home needs to look good too, right?

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

Even in Germany, a country where fashion was always first and few really cared about their home decor in comparison to Americans or Danes – it’s becoming very important in German society to have a very well-decorated home with all the latest pieces from trendy ceramic pieces to a great sofa. In fact, many Scandinavian brands are moving into Germany now which is having a huge influence on the market here and overall decor style. Creating a home that you love is where it’s at! Most of us start so young too. I was decorating before I was 10, in fact I remember having huge ideas for my room when I was 6. My opinions were so strong that my parents let me pick out my own bedroom furniture and didn’t force their ideas – what I wanted was what I got and fortunately for them, even at the ripe old age of 6 (!) I had good taste. :)

Let’s talk about teens and decorating. One thing I always tell young girls is to paint or wallpaper and go a little crazy if it fits their personality or to go glam or trendy if they prefer that route. Teenage girls love trends and glamour, they want to be grown up in one sense but totally girly in another.

I believe it’s one of those spaces where you can go bonkers because you are young and free. Do it. Plus, it’s a blank canvas and you are the artist so experiment and play. In fact, your bedroom as a teenager is the best canvas because in that space, you can learn what you like from color and texture to overall style. Though it will evolve over the years, it’s a great way to get started and to decorate.

To inspire you a little, let’s look at some patterned wallpaper from Esta Home. They make HUNDREDS of creative, quirky and colorful patterns that I think work great in teenage sleep spaces and even dorm rooms. Here are my 10 picks, some even a mom may want to put out in the dining or living room space (like my favorite – the white faux brick).

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

1// Polaroid cameras in shiny copper

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

2// Check pink peach

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

3// Hearts in vintage blue

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

4// White Brick (This also works for an adult space – I’d hang this in a second!)

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

5// Peach pink beads

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

6// Hearts in Beige

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

7// Polaroid photos in dark grey

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

8// Perfume bottles in shiny copper

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

9// Polaroid photos in white

10 Stylish Wallpapers For Teens

10// Girls in black and white

I wish we had these options for wallpaper when I was sweet 16. Go for it girls, you’re only a teenager once!

xo – Holly

(photos: esta home)

 






Tabletop

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

March 22, 2017

Hello everyone, it’s Anke and I’m here today to share my once-monthly column about tabletop styling and food. I’m German, yet our annual family summer vacations in Holland for the past thirty-seven years (I’m only 40!) shaped me and my sense of style. I love the the laid-back, relaxed and joyful lifestyle of the Dutch and whenever opportunity arises to visit Amsterdam I use it! For March, I’ve created an Amsterdam-inspired tabletop idea to inspire you for spring.

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

I just returned from the city of canals and bridges with my dear friend Dunja last month and though spring seemed far away at that time we still enjoyed strolling through the streets and tiny alleys for hours. The beautiful canal houses are one of the most typical symbols of the city, so I started to search the web for a DIY everyone can implement without spending much money to their tabletop to bring in a little Dutch charm.

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

I ended up finding a Dutch Canal House Luminaries DIY at Kate’s Creative Space. All you have to do is to print the templates and cut out the houses/ windows. Lucky for me, cutting out the small windows a little inaccurate gave my houses an even more charming look! Haha! Happy accidents are nice, aren’t they?

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

The perfectionists amongst you can also glue transparent paper behind the windows which looks wonderful when you are planning to illuminate them with candles in a jar. You can also use craft knife and self-healing mat.

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

There is no Dutch-themed table decoration without tulips, agree? In our local flower shops we are experiencing tulip high season right now and one can draw from the full range. I picked different shaped tulips in rich shades of pink and red and placed them in my vases from Lyngby Porcelæn.

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

Furthermore a little treat in the form of Chocolate and Beet Brownies with a cream cheese topping and cute canal house biscuits for ornament went on the table for my afternoon coffee gathering. You will find the brownie recipe at La Tartine Gourmande.

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

The pretty chocolate bars you see on one of my images are from PLUK Amsterdam, definitely one of the most popular locations for breakfast, lunch, coffee&cake and decoration shopping in Amsterdam currently! They also run an online shop in the meantime. Their chocolate, postcards and candles are the perfect souvenirs! The bars are the perfect hostess gift to your guests.

Dutch-Inspired Party Ideas with Chocolate Beet Brownies

Have a beautiful time welcoming spring… soak up sun, light and colors! I am looking forward to see you again with a new column posting in April everyone! Tot ziens & veel liefs!

(styling, text and photography: anke illner)






Decorating Tips

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

March 15, 2017

All I have been thinking about for the past several months now are kitchens and bathrooms! What is your current design obsession? I came across the Park Kitchen Nottingham by DeVOL today, so very English I think, and I simply MUST how you some of the details because it’s like one of those kitchens that you imagine having if you took a place in the country in addition to your city apartment. I decided to put together a little 8 step guide to creating a modern country kitchen like this one.

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

1. Lighting from a different era and style. I LOVE this. When I see a kitchen like this, I expect the typical overhead lighting that is generally used to complete the look – something country, for instance. This feels very modern, classy and definitely very early turn of the century. You’d imagine this in a sleek New York City penthouse in the 1930s for instance, not in an English country home. It’s a great contrast. The understated oragami-like pendant above the sink is also very unexpected in a country kitchen but it’s definitely working! It’s modern and the form is just lovely.

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

2. Naked windows. If you don’t worry about people looking in on you at night while washing dishes, keep the windows naked and fabric-free. If you must add a little something, opt for a barely there white shade that you can just roll down in the evening. Less is more, and if you want lots of light in your kitchen, naked windows are the way to go. I have white Plissé shades and will never go back to roman blinds or anything else in my kitchen. Plissé shades are amazing.

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

3. Retro minimalist touches. I love the retro touches – the radio on the countertop and the smeg – perfect. You don’t need to go for an American diner look or cheese it up when it comes to retro hints. Keep them very spare but there. This smeg is honestly gorgeous in the space.

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

4. Hardware that doesn’t look like a kitchen anymore. These handles look like something from your bedroom cupboard, right? They give this kitchen such a cozy and warm vibe, not clinical or typical kitchen with sleek this and sleek that. Warm brass hardware dresses the space up without making it glamourous. I also like these types of handles in a kitchen because of the way they age over time, brass is beautiful like that – such character.

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

5. Mix of work surfaces. I spot some hardwood on the island and marble on the countertops. This is a nice mix because if the island was also marble, the kitchen would look more sleek and modern. If the countertops had been all wood like the island, the gray cabinetry wouldn’t have stood out as crisp and fresh. This mix works. Plus, on a center island, a wooden prep space in a family kitchen is so nice because you can really roll out cookie dough and get to work!

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

6. Simple open shelving. I like how this shelf isn’t loaded with visual noise like product packaging and things to read. Instead, it’s simple and clear – glassware, ceramics, a few sprigs of flowers, a wooden cutting board. Sure, you can drink from the glasses and use the cutting board, but it’s more of a beautiful display area in my opinion. If you have enough storage below the countertops, who needs cabinetry on all of the walls in the kitchen?

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

7. Glass top dining table. In this room, I love the table the most not only because it looks vintage, but because it has a glass top which is not so common these days AND because I love how it reflects all of the natural light from the bright and sunny kitchen. Wood would have absorbed all of that light and the dining space wouldn’t be nearly as vibrant. Such a great trick when you have a large room and you need to balance the light and the window sources aren’t available to do it for you naturally – add glass and/or mirrored surfaces.

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

8. Nearby storage. I LOVE this massive cabinet in the dining room that joins the kitchen. Oh goodness, it makes me so happy. It’s very robust but also so simple looking that you barely notice it. But look at what it holds inside…

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

8 Design Tips For The Perfect Modern Country Kitchen

What a gorgeous space! This is a little fantasy of mine now for many years – a country home with a lovely kitchen in perhaps this gray, shaker style. This kitchen is by deVOL and is absolutely stunning and indeed fits my happy country life fantasy very well.

Photography: deVOL






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