How do I love thee, Cameron Diaz's kitchen? Let me count the ways. I love thee to the depth and breadth and height of thy emerald green cabinetry, thy clean lines and gilded edges, thy glamour and thy brassiness, thy cozy cocooniness, thy futuristic lighting juxtaposed with thy traditional woodwork and the graininess of thy wood...
I happened upon Cameron Diaz's kitchen, as I'm sure many of you did, in the October 2013 issue of Elle Decor. I remember flipping through the issue, turning the page to the above image and letting out a gasp of great joy. If I could have purred, I would have.
"This," I said to myself, "is a kitchen."
The story featured all of Cameron Diaz's incredible Manhattan apartment, designed by the incredible Kelly Wearstler. I wanted to climb through the magazine pages and into Cameron Diaz's apartment and live in all of its rooms, but this kitchen in particular... this kitchen... was something to behold. I wanted to pad barefoot around its wood floors, lounge on its countertop, leaning against its grainy emerald cabinetry, and savor a cup of coffee. I wanted to wash vegetables in its sink (and imagine that it had a disposal, because in my dreams, New York sinks have disposals). I wanted to have friends over and dribble lemon juice and leave red wine rings on the unlacquered brass countertops and marvel at how I didn't care that it was staining, that I was adding to its character, its patina, or as Cameron Diaz put it, "its soul"... I wanted to see how the kitchen would sparkle and glow if I turned that overhead light fixture on. Of course, in this fantasy, Cameron Diaz was also my best friend and participated in all the aforementioned activities with me. For example, we would turn the overhead light on and off and she would make this face:
Let's look at the kitchen from another angle so we can see how it looks from other parts of the apartment:
I've given it a year now. I've looked at literally thousands of kitchens. I've veered off into different directions -- a white kitchen! a grey kitchen! black! navy! natural wood! -- but always it comes back to this one. The best part? Matt loves it too. Throughout the past year, as I've shown Matt my various ideas for how we might one day renovate our dated galley kitchen -- the white, the grey, the black, the navy, etc. -- he always says, "That's nice, but what about that green one?"
And so I said, "You're right! What about that green one?" And the more I had the green in my head, the more I found inspiration everywhere I looked...
Our lamps in our entryway for example....
And these images from Anthropologie's October 2014 issues, which I ripped out and taped to our cabinets....
And this kitchen by Bailey and Pete McCarthy (Bailey a decorator and writer of fab blog Peppermint Bliss) featured in Southern Living:
And this kitchen designed by interior designer J. Randall Powers (it's his own home) and featured in Architectural Digest:
And so, with all of that inspiration, the question becomes, how to adjust Cameron Diaz's ultra high-end Kelly Wearstler designed kitchen to a non-celebrity's budget and a family friendly design... and make it our own?
1) Keep all of the fabulous green cabinetry and brass hardware. Maybe even a brass sink.
2) Eliminate the unlacquered brass countertops, but keep the backsplash. As much as I love the countertops and I'd love to feel completely at ease with the stains I would inevitably create, I know that I would stress about the fine line between "giving the kitchen soul" and "completely destroying the counters"... and I would manage to completely destroy the counters.
3) Instead use perhaps a clean, white, easy-to-clean countertop (quartz?). Something durable, low maintenance and impossible to ruin.
4) Lighten the floors to a simple, easy, dark brown wood to flow with the rest of our apartment.
5) Five, plop one of our flame-colored Le Creuset pots into the image because we insisted upon getting the one so big that it won't fit in any cabinets and it now sits permanently on our range.
6) Try to imagine it all in a galley style instead of this nice little jewel box.
The result is something like the below image.
We've also toyed around with the same concept but with subway tile with dark grout instead of the brass backsplash, but that does seem to eliminate some of the warmth that is so key to this look.
What do you think? What kitchens make you swoon??
I am a designer and financial professional with a background in comparative literature, business and design. I live in New York with my overworked lawyer husband and sweet, art-and-design-loving toddler son and spend much of my free time dreaming about how to enhance the aesthetics of our little world. I am endlessly inspired and always in search of something new. This is a blog about my search, my inspiration and things I just really, really like or want.
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