Today’s post is graciously sponsored by my friends at Ace Hardware! They provided me with paint and compensation for this project, but as always, all words and thoughts are my own.
My dear friends, I have been dying to share this reveal with you! Over the last several weeks, I’ve hinted at a secret project, but I resolutely resisted spilling the beans as much as I possible could. As soon as I finished taking these pictures, I was itching to shout from the rooftops, because I am so thrilled with the way this little makeover turned out!
The Kitchen Before:
Right when we moved in, I gave you guys an empty house home tour and shared our nicely roomy but very builder-basic kitchen.
It was the poster child for 90’s kitchens: oak cabinets, beige laminate countertops with pink undertones, a white square tile backsplash, and white square floor tiles too.
Now, I’m not complaining at all, because as kitchens go, it’s completely functional and we absolutely love that it opens right into the living area and has a built-in window seat area. The open floor plan is such a nice change from our last home’s narrow, galley style kitchen that was sectioned off from the main living room.
So after we moved in, I just unpacked all our dishes and pots and pans, organized the cabinets, and decided to leave well enough alone until some future point where I might or might not get to renovate the space into the kitchen of my dreams.
This was my exact same strategy in our last house, but wouldn’t you know, that future date when the stars aligned and my budget magically expanded never came… I lived with bare drywall in our last kitchen for several years, because why fix it up only to have to redo it all later?
When we knew we would be putting the house on the market soon, I scrambled to finish the kitchen walls and choose a paint color that would complement the existing cabinets, countertops, and floors. And as soon as I finished, I wanted to just sit there banging my head on the freshly painted walls. Just a few coats of fresh soft gray-green paint had completely transformed the space.
Why in the world didn’t I do this sooner?! Why did I loathe my perfectly-functional kitchen for so long when just a few small tweaks could have helped me enjoy it so much more?
So you might be thinking that I would have learned my lesson this time around, but no – my eyes were still firmly fixed on some shiny marble Pinterest-perfect horizon with lots of dollar signs dancing above it.
But then my friends at Ace Hardware emailed me about a collaboration idea. Would I be interested in doing a project using one of the colors from the OPI Color Palette by Clark+Kensington?
You might remember this guest bedroom makeover I completed last year using colors from the OPI Color Palette – beautiful nail polish shades turned into paint colors – and I still had a few sample cans left over. On a whim, I grabbed my favorite, a soft peachy pink called “Mimosas for Mr. and Mrs.”
What if I tried it on the kitchen walls? Would that be totally strange? Does anyone actually paint their kitchen pink?
I grabbed a paint brush and swiped a few swatches on the walls – by the cabinets, near the window, next to the tile. Up against the cold white of the previous wall color, the peach was a seriously bold change, but over the next several weeks it slowly began to grow on me.
The warmth of the peach complemented the warm wood tones of the oak cabinets and seemed to neutralize the pinky beige countertops, helping them read as more “sand” and less “flesh”!
Having just arrived home from our trip to Austin that brought me so much renewed creative zest, I decided to just go with my gut instinct that told me this just might be the color to seriously help me love my kitchen now.
I decided to go with a flat enamel finish from Clark+Kensington. I love non-reflective, matte walls, but you also need some scrubbability in a kitchen. If you’ve never flung brownie batter in a 3′ radius before… you might be a better cook than me.
[I’ve already had the chance to put this paint’s washability to the test, thanks to an elderly cat who has apparently mastered the art of vertical vomiting… Some warm water and a sponge and my wall was brand new again.]
Once I decided to use Mimosas for Mr. and Mrs. on the walls, everything else just seemed to fall into place.
“Do you know who would have pink kitchen walls?” I asked myself. “The Royal Tenenbaums, that’s who.”
If you aren’t yet familiar with my obsession with the director Wes Anderson, this is the part where I explain to you how much I love his films. The Royal Tenenabaums being my favorite of the lot. It’s the tale of a wildly dysfunctional and disjointed family finding each other again… And it’s set inside and around the most amazing New York brownstone ever, featuring bold and striking decor choices, like the iconic red Scalamandre Zebras wallpaper.
As soon as I started asking myself, “WWWAD?” (What would Wes Anderson do?), everything else began to fall into place.
Bold patterned fabric choices, a retro black and white design for the backsplash (made with – wait for it – vinyl!), my DIY copper pipe geometric light fixture, the perfectly kitschy decorative accents… Happy, fearless, historical with a twist.
I have TONS of sources and related DIY tutorials to share with you soon, but for today, let’s just get to the good stuff! I know you’ve been patiently waiting for it, so without further ado, let me present to you my Wes Anderson-inspired wild and whimsical pink kitchen makeover!
The peachy-pink walls glow like the inside of a seashell when the afternoon lights hit them from the south and west windows and I am absolutely smitten! I decided to let the pink function as a neutral in this space and just continued to pile on colors and patterns with reckless abandon.
I can’t wait to share the details on the DIY backsplash with you – I finished it in one afternoon and… it’s a completely non-permanent change! UPDATE: GET THE TUTORIAL HERE!
This tiger-patterned fabric I used to create the Roman shade (it’s a DIY too – get the tutorial here!) reminded me of my favorite Scalamandre zebra print – as soon as I saw it, I knew I had to use it in the kitchen!
I made a few changes to my DIY icosahedron pendant light and hung it over the eating area.
Some recent thrifted treasures found a home inside the walls of the eating area’s window seat.
Looking into the living room from the kitchen – the green and the peach nod to the living room’s emerald green sofa and rust accents.
And now, the view into the kitchen from the living room looks a little something like this…
Can I interest you in a sprinkled donut, or some freshly squeezed lemonade? As I was setting this space up to photograph, I tried to tell a story about just how much sunshine and rainbows these simple DIY changes made in our home!
If there’s a color you’ve been dying to try out, or if you have a wild hair that something just might be fun in your home, I’m here to encourage you to go for it! Why not try something unexpected? Why not make a little change now instead of waiting for a dream budget later that may or may not materialize? Why not take your favorite color or your favorite movie and just run with it?
You might just be amazed at the results!
I know I’m head over heels for our kitchen now – mismatched black and white appliances and worn laminate countertops and all! Sure, someday I might be able to replace the counters or make a few changes, but for now I’m perfectly content to enjoy the space I have – living life and hosting friends. And isn’t that what it’s all about anyway?
P.S. Coming soon: all the DIY tutorials for the projects in this space as well as a post FULL of sources and ways you can add a little “Royal Tenenbaum” style to your home!
Ace Hardware provided me with the paint for this project and I was also compensated for this post. All opinions and positions expressed here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of Ace Hardware. You can read my full disclosure policy here.