217 Comments

  1. Garden, Home and Party
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:33 am

    This, without a doubt, describes me and half the world when it comes to seeing something beautiful and being convinced it will change our lives, violins will play, birds will sing and we’ll be happier than we ever have been! The trouble is, you’ve shared some of the best kitchens known to pinterest…this only makes me want it more! Since my daughter-in-law’s grandpa was the person that invented Formica, I’m pretty sure I can get a deal on it.
    I can’t wait for you to share your kitchen, or is it one of these images and this was the tease?
    Karen

    Reply

  2. Gerry
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:39 am

    All I have to say is I love you! This post is so spot on! I have oak cabinets and laminate countertops and I’m not planning on changing either one. I absolutely love white kitchens and would love to have one someday but, for the time being, the kitchen I have fits the style of my house. It’s functional and warm and I love to cook in it. It certainly isn’t trendy but neither am I. So glad you spoke up about this, I feel so much better.

    Reply

  3. Amy
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:48 am

    I honesty don’t hate Formica, I have granite in my bathroom and with my hard water it looks terrible and is a maintanice nightmare. Look alike Formica in my kitchen would be good enough for me.

    Reply

  4. Laurie
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:48 am

    My grandparents decorated their home and left it for 50 years. It was always beautiful. I think their celedon green cabinets would be hot again today.

    Someone suckered us into thinking we had to always have our homes “up to date” when we don’t even really know what that means!

    That said, I get sucked in with everyone else and have my house all torn apart right now to “update.” *sigh*

    Reply

  5. Lynne Rutter | the Ornamentalist
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:49 am

    I had a formica counter and it held up great for 20 years. Then I threw a recycled slab of carrera right over the top of it (I love salvage yards) and a stainless steel sink dropped neatly into the hole that was already cut. I have 10 feet of counter and that is the kitchen. It’s FINE. In a 820 square foot Victorian cottage I figure the giant kitchen every tells me I have to have is a ridiculous concept already. In a European home my 10 foot counter would be considered huge! In an historic home running water is already an upgrade. And you can throw that immense master bedroom and bathroom suite on that pile of advertising BS as well. Some McMansion developer came up with that idea and it spread like a childhood illness and now we all have to be inoculated against it.

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  6. Di
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:55 am

    Not only is it the internet turning us into redo wannabes but do you watch HGTV? “We want granite or marble, stainless steel appliances…”. The only people who truly love SS are those that have housekeepers who clean off every fingerprint 20 seconds after it appears. And marble? That is only in design spec kitchens where no one cooks. Ever see a red wine stain on marble? It is near impossible to remove and only makes you want to drink more wine so you can numb yourself.
    PLEASE show us a fantastic redo on a budget and create the NEXT TREND while you are at it!

    Reply

    • Beth King
      May 28, 2014 @ 12:42 pm

      I agree with your opinion on SS. Therefore, I just added “housekeeper” to my wish list for my future East Hampton beach dream house. Black marble, too, since I like red wine. My dream house is becoming a reality by the minute!

      Reply

  7. Laura
    May 28, 2014 @ 11:55 am

    Honey, That faucet is UGLY.

    Reply

    • Jackie
      January 16, 2015 @ 7:29 pm

      I’m so glad that someone else thinks that faucet sucks !

      Reply

  8. Beth King
    May 28, 2014 @ 12:22 pm

    There is only one kitchen I want. It’s the kitchen that I use as the standard by which I judge all other kitchens. The kitchen in the movie “Something’s Gotta Give.” I want that whole “fake” house (it’s a set, not a real house). In the movie it’s an East Hampton beach house owned by the main character. Apparently, lots of other people wanted that kitchen too after seeing the movie. Do a Goggle search on it and you’ll see. Architectural Digest even did an article on it: http://www.architecturaldigest.com/ad/set-design/2007/somethings-gotta-give-film-sets-article I want that exact house. In East Hampton. On the beach. Maybe when I finally have it I will drop in on Ina Garten (The Barefoot Contessa) from time to time so she can make lunch for me, and we’ll swap kitchen design ideas. Hey…a girl can dream.

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  9. Pattie C
    May 28, 2014 @ 12:28 pm

    You are so right about the trend. Some of these kitchens are just too white. And you are also right about the faucet, and I didn’t even know that was a thing but it does explain why I bought a $600 faucet for my kitchen. I do love the crap out of it though, and I did get my friend’s employee discount, I’m not a complete moron.
    PS Trust me, if you buy a touch faucet you will be spoiled for life.

    Reply

    • Beth King
      May 28, 2014 @ 12:36 pm

      I just added a touch faucet to my above wish-list for my future East Hampton beach house.

      Reply

  10. applehillcottage
    May 28, 2014 @ 12:38 pm

    What you said! YES!
    Yes, I’m shouting. The budget for our kitchen was $10,ooo. And we kept under it, but it wasn’t easy. We upcycled, re-used, bought secondhand, and that is still too much money. And the house we are selling has oak cabinets and formica. Will it sell? That’s the big question….

    Reply

  11. PJ
    May 28, 2014 @ 12:46 pm

    Haven’t you heard? The new name for Formica is laminate. Or maybe that’s the old name. If they hadn’t discontinued the color of Formica that we used 30 years ago, we would have gone for it again – – rebels that we are. We had to settle for granite which is, of course, passe at this moment.

    Reply

  12. Deborah Wilkins
    May 28, 2014 @ 12:46 pm

    Victoria:

    I say that white kitchens never go out of style! I have had white kitchens for a very long time and will continue to have white kitchens because they are practical. There! I said it. White kitchens are practical!

    Now, let’s move on to Jon Hamm! If you have not seen Million Dollar Arm – you simply must! There is a seat in a movie theater reserved just for you – somewhere close to your home. Forget white kitchens, forget old houses, forget renovations. Jon Hamm! Million Dollar Arm. Now go………

    Deborah

    Reply

    • Zippy
      May 28, 2014 @ 11:06 pm

      I have to agree with you on the white cabinets. I’ve seen many natural woods cycle through the trends while white ones never went out of style. I hope I don’t get a shoe thrown at me, but I also like the stainless steel. If you’re as old as me you remember having one of your harvest gold or avocado green appliances kick the bucket and having no options but to be mismatched, replace them all, or find a good car bodyshop to try and match the puky color on your nice new unblemished appliance. Thank God it isn’t that difficult to bring in another stainless appliance and have it look as if it belongs there. Even if it’s from a different company it will match.

      Reply

      • Katie C.
        May 29, 2014 @ 8:52 am

        I had the avocado green appliances -ugh! I really do not like that color. The colors back then in the 70s were avocado green, harvest gold and burnt sienna (probably the least offensive of the three). When I replaced the appliances, half of which were dying or dead, and the cabinets, I used laminate for the counters because it’s what I could afford at the time. The next owner replaced the white two year old (!) appliances with stainless steel and replaced the counters with granite. You can’t please everyone so please yourself and your band account.

        Reply

        • Phoebe3
          October 12, 2014 @ 9:08 am

          I STILL have an avocado green washing machine (circa 1973). It runs, but beats the crap out of your clothes. For a while, it had a broken belt and I had to take the front off and make it shift gears by levering the motor with a stick.

          Yes, that’s right, I had a stick-shift washing machine.

          Reply

  13. Dawn
    May 28, 2014 @ 12:55 pm

    I love your blog apart from today when I suffered immediate snowblindness as I scrolled down through the pictures but your comments were ‘spot on’ as well as funny. Your writing touches my feminine heart in so many places but especially this last one. We had a flood in our house a few years ago which necessitated a new kitchen and basement afterwards (what a shame!) or I still would have my eighties kitchen which I admit, I would have grumbled about. At the same time I would have tried to be content with it knowing that what matters is the family dynamic and not the house trappings. Advertising has a lot to answer for and I am glad that
    you are swimming upstream against its pressure on your blog. I do like to see beautiful surroundings created on a shoestring budget so shall endorse anything you show in that vein.
    It would be a relief to many of us to know that we don’t have to feel lesser mortals because
    we don’t have the wherewithal to keep up with the latest in house fashion.

    Reply

  14. Vicki
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:33 pm

    I’m sure your mined marble counters will be both signature and bespoke. The white, white, white perfect kitchens remind me of the quest for white, white, white perfect teeth. Just calm down, people.

    Reply

  15. judy
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:41 pm

    Oh-I forgot to say in my comment of blather that I would trade any three of the “KITCHENS” and the faucet for half your wit and writing ability. The most I ever recall paying for a book is $36.00-so if you ever decide to put one of those PayPal click thingy’s on your web site I intend to click on that amount and it doesn’t begin to equal the laughs and entertainment you have provided me. Thanks

    Reply

  16. Rosemary
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:47 pm

    Once again, you made me laugh out loud! I re did (sp?) my kitchen 6 years ago and to this day I still love it just as much and I feel lucky to have it. It is not white (cherry cabinets), only a small island with granite the rest with Corian (soapstone color) (or grey is what I call it) & lots and lots of storage. Thanks Victoria!

    Reply

  17. Alanna
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:50 pm

    You, This Post… and your 80’s Formica/oak/and probably fluorescent lighting are fantastic! We’re buying a house built in ’86 and the kitchen is OAK and FORMICA with a touch of renter-occupied overly ambitious and nauseating aquamarine/tourmaline/teal paint… there’s a half wall with a railing, a ceiling fan with 3 globes, and fluorescent over the sink lighting… which i believe was installed to help hide the Hamburger Helper/ Sloppy Joe stains on your “had it since the 80’s” Tupperware… anyways… i love your blog and i’m following!

    Reply

  18. Catt
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:50 pm

    Bless you.

    Reply

  19. Catt
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:54 pm

    Just looked at link to faucet. Nice of them to mark it down 7% because that’s a deal breaker for me. Looks like we’ll be able to bathe in the kitchen sink, while sipping champagne and eating caviar.

    Reply

    • Cheapdiva
      May 29, 2014 @ 8:36 am

      Ah, but they ship that 36 pound faucet for FREE – how very generous!! Of course, the damn thing “on sale” is $2,500!!!! For a FAUCET! Get real!

      Reply

  20. Maureen S. Donahue
    May 28, 2014 @ 1:55 pm

    Victoria, you are SUCH a great writer! I enjoy all of your posts. Thanks so much for spreading your humor.

    Reply

  21. Adrienne in Atlanta
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:02 pm

    Hear hear!

    Reply

  22. Andrea
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:06 pm

    What a great “contentment” nerve you have hit! Love the post and the comments! I have had the granite counters with requisite wood block touches here and there, white farmhouse everything…and loved it! Then, down-sized to sturdy honey-oak cabs and purposefully kept them to live within limitations and see what I could do. Created a lovely kitchen with black iron bin pulls on lowers, restaurant shelf all around underneath the uppers, neutral small tile backsplash, display of only white ironstone on open shelving. Even kept the black appliances until they live out their days. Always have sprays of leafy branches and herbs from the yard and love the natural palette of green with brown, black, and white, AND the satisfaction of living abundantly on less.

    Reply

  23. aimee
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:09 pm

    …nuf said. you said it all.
    100% agree.
    my life is so so so so so sad….
    but….
    somehow I can get up everyday and somehow smile as I was dishes in my porceline sink and plastic faucet. :o)

    Reply

  24. Melissa
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:13 pm

    I was right there withya…until I saw the St Charles of NY kitchen-my heart be still I want that sink, and counter and cabinets and…

    ps I didn’t know they made $2400 faucets

    Reply

  25. Lorie Shaffer
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:32 pm

    I Love white marble and put it in my kitchen when I finally could afford to redo it. (many many years of pulling out the refrigerator to get to the cupboard that held the good dishes, only counter top was a 24″ square table that I pulled out of my Grandmother’s potting shed and laid a piece of butcher block on) What I want to say about marble counters and wood floors is “Let It Live” seal it and let it live. How do you think all that beautiful old marble got that patina? Why do so many people think everything needs to be and stay perfect? My mantra “Let It Live”!

    Reply

  26. Gail D.
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:32 pm

    What I don’t get is all the gray we’re seeing in decorating these days. I keep thinking it’s trendy and going to go out of style any minute and yet it is still out there! It’s so cold and dirty looking, like dust is everywhere. And all of these women putting in gray grout, etc., are going to be stuck with huge headache when the trend is over and they’re stuck!

    Reply

  27. MissFifi
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:37 pm

    Hear hear! Honestly, I never feel guilty about my kitchen because it came with the house we could afford. One day we will spruce her up, but for now, she is white, I HATE WHITE, but she is functional and I have a wonderful view of my pretty backyard.
    We covet. All of us. But the reality is, those above kitchens have staff and are not really “lived in”. They are lonely spaces at times who don’t know what it is like to have sauce spilled on their expensive imported marble or to have people laughing as someone spills some wine. It does not get to “live” as other kitchens get to live and that is okay. Also, my brother works or an interior designer who, ahem, works on very very pricey homes. He has seen five year old and younger kitchens get ripped out so someone can have their “vision”. Freakin’ shame.

    Now, that faucet….

    Reply

  28. jamie
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:38 pm

    i think that as long as you do something as durable and timeless as the antique home you are living in, to replace atrocities of the more recent past, you are doing something important and worthwhile. in fact, as an antique home owner, it is something of a moral imperative that you do not give in to trends, but give the home a kitchen that truly suits it and has the potential to withstand another century of use, standing up to both the physical wear-and-tear and to the stylistic test of time (its style should age in tandem with the house itself). i think this means durability is a priority above fanciness, but since your home is victorian, you can rightfully pull off an appropriate degree of fanciness!

    just remember a lot of those photos you’re drooling over, you haven’t touched or used, and could very easily be shoddily constructed. i’ve seen a LOT of this fake-fancy in newer construction, especially homes of the super wealthy, where it’s all a facade: no beautifully grained solid wood, no exquisite joinery, a bunch of cheap modern hardware made of steel and coated with very fake looking “patinas” (even if they look real, they’ll scratch off & look terrible in short order). in a lot of the photos you see can’t tell you this, but trust me, it’s more common than not. you’re best off spending a limited budget getting quality materials (even if that means somewhat less ornate cornices than you originally pictured, or saving room for them and installing them later from a separate budget) b/c they’ll age gracefully. but you obviously already know this. and hardware/plumbing fixtures, look for antiques. they cost the same as high end new stuff (or less) but they’re of significantly higher quality, and you won’t look like you picked your home out of a magazine (you’ll create a far more dignified look).

    and now for a PSA: if you can at all afford to do away with formica (or any other particle board furnishings), anyone, anywhere, you must do away with it. it is neither timeless nor durable. it is a toxic abomination filled with one type of toxins when new (formaldehyde & other adhesives & solvents) and full of others (mold & mildew & miscellaneous odors) later on.

    Reply

  29. Morgan
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:47 pm

    I love our kitchen, faux oak, warped formica and all. It’s roomy and practical, with a great view, and I cook as well here as anywhere. Admittedly, I also love love LOVE these high end luxury all white spa like retreats, very pretty. For the price of one though, if we had the funds, I’d opt instead for a heated lap pool in a sunroom with automatic shades built into the windows. As for that faucet, I replaced the crappy one here with a gorgeous Moen for $300, and have a lifetime replacement guarantee.

    Reply

  30. Robin
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:56 pm

    We shall follow you like lemmings, Victoria! Of course we wouldn’t expect you on the front lines of the battle against spectacular kitchen tyranny. We would, however, appreciate an advance screening of your Italian Marble DIY…

    Reply

  31. Sue
    May 28, 2014 @ 2:56 pm

    Precisely what my brain thinks every day. The internet is making me want to paint everything white in my whole house, it is madness! One thing no one is talking about is how hard white is to keep clean. Our Moen bathroom faucet is leaking and we need to replace the cartridge. I called Moen yesterday and they’re going to send us out new cartridges for free and we don’t even have our receipt or warranty! Gotta like that for customer service for a change.

    Reply

  32. Andrea
    May 28, 2014 @ 3:23 pm

    I pinned these kitchens. Ah the irony of irony. And to further depress you, I have a new, massive, white, luxury kitchen. And yes. I am still pinning. Apparently we need to get back to mud huts and sustenance farming before the madness of materialism overtakes us.

    Reply

  33. Lynne Hoover
    May 28, 2014 @ 3:49 pm

    Agreed. My friend has a cottagey-looking kitchen that has probably been there since they put in running water, and it NEVER goes out of style.

    Reply

  34. Marisa Franca @ All Our Way
    May 28, 2014 @ 4:35 pm

    Okay! Who the heck is Christopher Peacock and why should I care what he decorates? He’s probably never cooked in a kitchen because if you’re cookin a kitchen does not look like that. AND now that I’m on a roll, I cook — a lot — I don’t want a football field for a kitchen. When I need something I want it close by, I want the sink close by, I want the refrigerator close by, I want the stove close by plus all my utensils, and last but not least I don’t want to travel a mile to go to the bathroom because I’ll be sipping my water. Rather than a fancy schmancy kitchen I want a fantastic stove and fridge. I want a deep sink so I can wash my stock pots. I want cutting boards that don’t scoot on me I want a place where I can relax and work and not worry if I’m going to mess up the “decor”. Christopher Peacock — your last name describes the kitchen style 🙂

    Reply

  35. Valerie
    May 28, 2014 @ 5:43 pm

    Remember country kitchens? I still have mine. Formica? Mine is pink. Yes, pink. And oak cabinets from the eighties? Well…mine are from 1993 when we built our house. We also have our original, builders-grade linoleum that ties it all together: the pink countertops and the former country blue carpet, which we (thank heavens) actually did replace many years ago.

    Our home is steeped in nineties charm, but its ours. We picked everything in it when we had it built. We had the wallpaper in the kitchen installed – which, believe it or not, I still like it – and we just barely missed the garden window phase. But we debated it. I remember.

    While our stuff is outdated, we are still surrounded by things we love. Old crocks, vintage signs from the local dairy that bring back memories of our favorite mint chip ice cream, crockery bowls, mis-matched pieces of dishware from my grandma, the cake stand my parents received as a wedding gift, and even some great things that we’ve made ourselves.

    We would love to update, but in the meantime, we embrace this home and the memories it holds. Our kids grew up here. In less than three years we will be mortgage-free. Maybe then we’ll finally be able to start crossing things off of our Pinterest board of “unextreme home makeovers.”

    I applaud you for the “be thankful for what you have” reminder. It hits home for me.

    Reply

    • Bonnie
      June 4, 2014 @ 9:44 am

      I love that you focused on the fact that you are surrounded by the things that you love in the kitchen. Those are the things that we add to the decor that represent US in our own homes. Those are the things that people have conversations about as nostalgia and history are passed along. Those are the things that say we are living as ourselves in this crazy world that thinks everyone has to be the same. Well said!

      Reply

  36. Darling Lily
    May 28, 2014 @ 6:05 pm

    I, for one, will be glad to see many currant trends die, starting with the d*mned white subway tiles, which look as though they belong in public restrooms or other places where unsanitary things take place.

    Stainless steel appliances can go along with the subway tiles; the combination is very cold to me and again reminds me of places that need to be easily cleaned….morgues, for instance, or locker rooms. All that’s missing is the drainhole in the middle of the floor so the place can be hosed down, ugh.

    White marble just adds to the funereal effect to me, reminding me cemeteries in New Orleans.

    We have dark cherry cabinets and green granite countertops, equally dated but much less sterile.

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  37. Zippy
    May 28, 2014 @ 6:17 pm

    “I will be sure to annotate the pictures for Pinterest with captions that are overlaid with squiggles and dots and three different fonts. (So that it will appeal to both four year olds, and women who are shopping for kitchen counters.)”

    Thanks for making me spit out my aspartame-filled Diet Coke! Still laughing! Honestly if I see one more picture of someone’s family meal on the themed porch sporting little chalkboard markers for every dish, I think I will quit the internet. Do they really think their family/guests don’t know those are frickin’ deviled eggs?

    Reply

  38. Jamie
    May 28, 2014 @ 6:21 pm

    My question is how many of those luxury kitchen owners actually use them? I think they are probably too busy working so they can pay the mortgage on the stove…. let alone the cabinetry. Or… they hire someone to cook there…. lucky person.
    I, like others here, would be happy with a kitchen that met the needs of my family. And pretty wouldnt hurt.

    Reply

  39. Melissa
    May 28, 2014 @ 6:23 pm

    wholly fuck balls…..$2400 for a faucet??? OMG

    I did, however, just get the most amazing craiglist find (at least, in my part of the world, ie- California- where we don’t have amazing old stuff like you do on the East Coast and our craigslist is filled with the aformentioned 80’s cabinets) for my upcoming kitchen remodel- the Kohler Harborview sink, complete with the legs and all the chrome piping and faucets, for only $700

    http://www.us.kohler.com/us/Harborview%22-top-mount-or-wall-mount-utility-sink-with-2-faucet-holes-on-left-and-right-backwalls/productDetail/Utility-Sinks/421485.htm

    Reply

  40. Kelly
    May 28, 2014 @ 7:27 pm

    Good thoughts Victoria – as usual! I often think that what is trendy right now is what looks good on a computer screen. Look at your background, google’s background, all the other blogs that are white (and gray) with bits of color thrown in…….. and then look at the kitchens. Hmmm……..

    Reply

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