Ah, yes, decorating above the cabinets. I went a little nuts with that for a while.
A long while.
Here’s a before picture of my current kitchen:
I know it’s hard to make out, so I’ll paint you a visual picture: lots of baskets, lots of fake greenery, a bird house, a bird cage, and not one – but two – tiered plate stands. All creatively styled in a big, long line.
Looking at it now gives me that fingernails on a chalkboard feeling. That would be a decorative chalkboard placed above the cabinets, no doubt.
When we remodeled our kitchen, I wanted a better solution for that space above the cabinets. Something clean and uncluttered.
My first thought was to have another half row of cabinets built, so the cabinets would extend all the way to the ceiling. This kitchen definitely could have accommodated taller cabinets. And I pictured them all with glass fronts.
But our budget had something to say about that idea. Specifically, it said: “No. Not happening.”
My next thought was to use crown molding to help visually fill in the space. And while we did use crown molding, and I really like the finished look it gives the kitchen, I didn’t pick molding nearly tall enough to make a difference in that space above the cabinets. (I blame this on severe remodeling decision-making fatigue.)
So when all the dust had (literally) settled, I still had a space up above the cabinets. And it wasn’t looking clean and uncluttered to me; it was looking bare.
Around that time we went to the fundraising auction at our kids’ high school, and I came home with a lantern that I paid way too much for. (I’d had a few glasses of wine and, hey, it was a good cause.) While deciding where to put it, I tried it out above the cabinets.
I liked it.
So I started shopping the house for some more things that might look good up there and – after a lot of hopping onto and off of the countertops trying different things – I stumbled onto a combination I liked: something white + something rustic + something architectural.
I ended up with two small groupings that included one of each of those things and then I stuck another basket (hard to see in this pic) in the corner for good measure.
It’s been a year now and I still really like this combination. It feels simple and organic to me. It feels like it adds to the space instead of detracting from it.
Oh, and rustic and architectural? Those things don’t show dust. Which is a good thing, because I don’t mind hopping on and off the counters to decorate, but to dust? Ha!
Sometimes I think I should add a bit more to each grouping, to extend them a bit horizontally, but so far I’ve left them alone. I’m erring on the side of less, at least for now.
What are your thoughts on that space above the cabinets?
Have you found a combination of things you like up there or do you like having it bare? And if you have cabinets that go all the way the ceiling, feel free to break my heart with that bit of info too.