Kitchen Decorating Ideas

Kitchen Decorating Ideas

Great, easy, and useful decorating ideas for the kitchen in the country Craftsman theme.

¶ Each room in the house has its distinct and separate function in the domestic economy. Therefore it should be remembered that before any room can attain its own distinctive individuality everything put into it must be there for some reason and must serve a definite purpose in the life that is to be lived and the work that is to be done in that room. Take for example the kitchen, where the food for the household must be prepared and where a large part of the work of the house must be done. This is the room where the housewife or the servant maid must be for the greater part of her time day after day, and the very first requisites are that it should be large enough for comfort, well ventilated and full of sunshine, and that the equipment for the work that is to be done should be ample, of good quality and, above all, intelligently selected. We all know the pleasure of working with good tools and in congenial surroundings no more things than are necessary should be tolerated in the kitchen and no fewer should be required.

Craftsman Style Kitchens
Craftsman Style Kitchens.
Corner of the kitchen showing built in cupboard and sink.

¶ We cannot imagine a more homelike room than the old New England kitchen, the special realm of the housewife and the living room of the whole family. Its spotless cleanliness and homely cheer are remembered as long as life lasts by men and women who have had the good fortune to associate such a room with their earliest recollections of home. No child ever lived who could resist the attraction of such a room, for a child has, in all its purity, the primitive instinct for living that ruled the simpler and more wholesome customs of other days. In these times of more elaborate surroundings the home life of the family is hidden behind a room screen and the tendency is to belittle that part of the household work by regarding it as a necessary evil. Even in a small house the tendency too often is to make the kitchen the dump heap of the whole household, a place in which to do what cooking and dishwashing must be done and to get out of as soon as possible. In such a house there is invariably a small, cheap and often stuffy dining room, as cramped and comfortless as the kitchen and yet regarded as an absolute necessity in the household economy. Such an arrangement is the result of sacrificing the old time comfort for a false idea of elegance and its natural consequence is the loss of both.

Craftsman Kitchen
Craftsman Kitchen.
Range set in a recess to be out of the way and work table placed just below a group of windows.

¶ In the farmhouse and the cottage of the workingman, where the domestic machinery is comparatively simple, cheerful and home like, the kitchen which is also the dining room of the family and one of its pleasantest gathering places should be restored to all its old time comfort and convenience. In planning such a house it should come in for the first thought instead of the last and its use as a dining room as well as a kitchen should be carefully considered. The hooded range should be so devised that all odors of cooking are carried off and the arrangement and ventilation should be such that this is one of the best aired and sunniest of all the rooms in the house.

¶ Where social relations and the demands of a more complex life make it impossible for the house mistress to do her own work and the kitchen is necessarily more separated from the rest of the household, it may easily be planned to meet the requirements of the case without losing any of its comfort, convenience, or suitability for the work that is to be done in it. Modern science has made the task very easy by the provision of electric lights, open plumbing, laundry conveniences, and hot and cold running water, so that the luxuries of the properly arranged modern kitchen would have been almost unbelievable a generation ago. Even if the kitchen is for the servant only, it should be a place in which she may take some personal pride. It is hardly going too far to say that the solution of the problem of the properly arranged kitchen would come near to being the solution also of the domestic problem.

Kitchen Floor Plan
Kitchen Floor Plan.
Floor Plan.

¶ The properly planned kitchen should be as open as possible to prevent the accumulation of dirt. Without the customary "glory holes" that sink and other closets often become, genuine cleanliness is much easier to preserve and the appearance of outside order is not at all lessened. In no part of the house does the good old saying, "a place for everything and everything in its place", apply with more force than in the kitchen. Ample cupboard space for all china should be provided near the sink to do away with unnecessary handling and the same cupboard, which should be an actual structural feature of the kitchen, should contain drawers for table linen, cutlery and smaller utensils, as well as a broad shelf which provides a convenient place for serving. The floor should be of cement and the same material may be used in tiled pattern for a high wainscot, giving a cleanly and pleasant effect.

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