Design Solution

The Prettiest Baker’s Rack

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

I was going to title this post How We Plan to Survive Living Without a Kitchen For Three Months but instead I shortened it to what it really is, the prettiest baker’s rack ever. We are starting on the kitchen remodel in the Nevada house in a few weeks (more details on that soon) which includes a total floor to ceiling demo so I came up with a solution for where to store our plates, bowls, and glassware so when we’re staying there we can eat and drink even while we are kitchenless until December.

I bought this Ceylon Baker’s Rack from Ballard Designs when it popped up on sale over the summer for two reasons 1) It was love at first sight: whitewash finish and fretwork doors! 2) It’s a versatile piece that will work anywhere, think bar in a living room, stylish display in a home office, storage in a breakfast nook, etc.

We will have a functioning refrigerator for the fall but no working appliances so we will be eating a lot of cereal and sushi and takeout while in town and paying visits down the street to my Mom and Dad’s house for hot meals. Right now the baker’s rack sits in the breakfast nook and I had some fun styling it in the space.

whitewashed bakers rack

ceylon whitewashed bakers rack

 

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Kitchen Countertop Options: Pros + Cons

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

We’ve been doing a lot of research lately on countertops since the fixer we’re buying has 25 year old Formica tops in the kitchen which will need replaced – more details on the house coming soon! Seven years ago when we were choosing countertops for our own kitchen I exhausted myself researching all the choices that were on the market and finally settled on a marble countertop + wood on the island combo. I’ve never regretted it, I’ve loved those choices ever since. But seven years have passed and much has changed in the world of kitchen countertops.

We have other kinds of countertops in our home, white laminate in the laundry room, wood in the hall bathroom, and modern cultured marble in the master bathroom. All have performed well based on our expectations (images here). Innovation is inevitable, trends come and go, so the decision as to which countertop to choose in a kitchen remodel requires much consideration. Let’s start with a classic favorite.

Marble

Marble will never go out of style so for the price you pay, you do get the “timeless” label with the investment. Always elegant, it complements both Old World and modern kitchens equally; for bakers it’s a favorite, no surface is better for pies and pastries.

marble kitchen countertops

better homes & gardens

Properly sealed marble cleans up easily with a mild cleanser and cloth. Marble can stain so it must be sealed, and since it’s softer than granite, it can chip easily (we’ve suffered several small chips around our kitchen sink).

emprador marble kitchen countertops

christopher gaona

Any acidic food like citrus can etch the surface or leave white stains. There are two varieties of gray and white Italian marble that are similar in appearance, both milky white with gray veining, and they are Carrara and Calacatta. Carrara has more delicate, lighter veining; Calacatta is a rarer, pricier stone and has bolder more defined strokes, yet both are a desirable luxury stone. Calacatta Gold and Crema Marfil marbles have brown or gold veins and offer homeowners warmer tones. Prices vary between $40 and $250 per square foot based on the type of marble chosen.

 

Wood

Wood countertops are having a moment in the spotlight right now with butcher block being so affordable from sources like IKEA and many bloggers installing natural and stained versions in their kitchens. Wood countertops are higher maintenance than stone, they require sealing with various natural products like beeswax or mineral oil, or waterproof varnishes like Waterlox.

bhg wood kitchen island countertop

better homes & gardens

Wood countertops cannot withstand heat which requires the consistent use of hot pads or trivets. Water spills or rings can leave permanent marks if moisture is left too long, but they have classic appeal and add a warmth that no other countertop can compete with, especially in traditional, craftsman, or cottage style homes.

 

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