Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Formal Isn't My Normal

Last week I shared the new open shelves in my kitchen.  It was part of a greater project that included other changes in the Dining Room.  I promised to show pictures and lots of em!

As my taste has evolved and I continue to create a cozy home for my family, I've learned that I am just not the formal type.  I pull out the good china MAYBE once a year at Christmas when I entertain.  Other than that it just collects dust in a China Cabinet that is a little too formal for my taste.

I decided to de-formalize, beginning with the buffet, which got a make-over a couple months ago.

Here it is before:

And after a coat of A.S.C.P. in Old Ochre.  You can read about that transformation here.

Better, but it still had a long way to go.  After much agonizing, I decided that the china cabinet just wasn't my taste.  Its factory finish and big box production-line quality just don't flow with the rest of my home, which is basically an eclectic blend of antiques and vintage furnishings.  AND, I had the perfect piece to put in its place!  So I boxed up all of my good china and took the plunge.

A few years ago I scored this bakers rack on Craig and it is still one of my all-time favorite pieces of furniture.

It is rustic and sweet, and even though it is a factory piece, it has all the charm of an antique.  It sat in my kitchen until I started de-formalizing my Dining Room and realized it would be perfect in there.  At the same time I was contemplating open shelves in the kitchen and the only logical place to put them was on this wall with the bakers rack.

The puzzle pieces started to come together and I put my formal china cabinet on Craig's List.  But quickly realized that it wasn't going to budge.  With so many people getting away from "formal" these days, Craig has become absolutely saturated with fine dining sets.

So I got the idea to use the base of the cabinet for underneath of my open shelving.  I removed the doors and painted it white to match the existing cabinets in my kitchen.

 I think this new look makes the kitchen seem larger.

We put the hutch in storage for now until I decide what to do with it.  But I really don't think it will be making its way back into this house.

So here is the bakers rack in its new home in the dining room.

Looks like it was made for this room.

I also took the advice of some savvy bloggers and removed the two arm chairs.  They are in the basement and I will pull them out when needed, but there really was no sense in taking up so much room.  New slipcovers from Target.com add to the informal look.

Basket below the buffet is from Pottery Barn.  I added some stripes just for fun.

This is no room for a baby - formal or not!

The base of the centerpiece is from Clover Market, and I picked up the huge glass dome at a yard sale.  So fun to fill it for the changing seasons!

The last thing on the list is to paint the base of the table Old Ochre, but that will have to wait.

I will continue to swoon at pictures of formal dining rooms on Pinterest and will always drool over the gorgeous tablescapes in blogland.  But this gal has decided that formal is just not my normal.

Have a fabulicious day!

Linking to:  Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays


Cottage Dreaming said...

i love it!!!

Carrie said...

Your home looks so warm and welcoming!

Shenita @ Embellishments by SLR said...

Kim, I absolutely love your changes! Your dining room looks so cozy and welcoming...you did a fabulous job!

Ceekay-THINKIN of HOME/Doublewide Decor said...

Love the open shelves in the kitchen!

ℳartina @ Northern Nesting said...

Kim I LOVE the changes!! The bakers rack looks fabulous in your dining room!

Simply Domestic said...

I love what you've done! Your home is gorgeous!

Judy Bigg said...

Great new look for you. Looks great, enjoy.

Bonnie said...

You are very mature and discerning to decide what you like and have the courage and determination to do it. Now, I need to take a page out of your book.

I admire all you did.

chateau chic said...

You've been busy painting and rearranging, and it looks so lovely! You have definitely lightened up and de-formalized your dining room.
Mary Alice

Courtenay@Creek Line House said...

Oh, that buffet! I have a desk in that same big box manufacturer style that I've been wanting to do that too and I'm just so inspired right now! Just signed up to follow along with you on GFC. Would love it if you stopped by for a visit and followed along too if you like!

Sharing Shadymont said...

A.B.S.O.L.U.T.E.L.Y B.E.A.U.T.I.F.U.L!!!!!

Cecilia Bramhall said...

Love the changes! It looks so inviting and cozy.

AngelaECS at Number Fifty-Three said...

I love all the new touches you have added in. So cozy and interesting. I'm also doing my dining room over and am still deciding what to do with our giant hutch--we too put it on Craigslist only to discover there is really no market for it. I would love to paint it, but not sure that my husband is willing to go there just yet. I'm your newest follower and can't wait to explore your blog more!


Kathryn Ferguson Griffin said...

Really, just lovely! I love the look! Thank you for sharing. Visiting from Wow. Would love it if you would share this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. http://thededicatedhouse.blogspot.com/2012/08/make-it-pretty-monday-week-10.html Hope to see you at the bash! Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

Sherry said...

So much fun touring your kitchen and dining room! It looks so much lighter and brighter! A happy place to be :) Just beautiful!

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

It really looks lovely, Kim! I love seeing that buffet and shelf area you set up in your kitchen. I'm looking forward to seeing how you decorate it for the holidays. I'm sure that will be a lot of fun for you. I was feeling the same way about our dining room and if we hadn't moved when we did, I would have toned down the formal a bit {not too much since I knew we would be moving eventually anyway}. I think the idea of a formal dining room is always in peoples minds, but in reality we hardly used ours and it was used as a pass through room from the stairs to the kitchen and vice versa.

andrea@townandprairie said...

It's good to switch it up and you used what you had which is the best way to go! A little ingenuity goes a long way in a home. I like the added touched of white!

The Decorative Dreamer said...

OMG! I would have never suspected your white cabinet in the kitchen was your formal china cabinet. I knew (remembered) you had one and had wondered where it went after you moved the bakers rack in there. Wow! I am just totally blown away. What a wonderful transformation and brave woman you are. That is a change that took guts but looks so good! In case you didn't get this from the comment I left on your last post...I love it! Beautiful changes!

Jemsmom said...

Wow!!!! I am so proud of you for taking the plunge and goin for what is right for you. I love the informality of it and now more YOU! Awesome!

Between You and Me said...

I'm so glad you stopped by my blog...thank you!

It gave me a chance to pop over and see some of your blog.....I love what you've done to de-formalize your home...it looks beautiful. :)