I have committed a major blog fail!!!! The main thing you should do when being a blogger is….actually blog! Keep you lovely readers up to date, informed and excited about interiors! But then I went and got a new job! Very exciting news as its at a kitchen designers, who quite frankly, design DREAM kitchens! I absolutely love it, but it has meant that my little blog and my Scout Styling work was slightly put on the back burner for a while. I have been doing their social media, marketing and events, along with learning lots about kitchen design. It is fun, but very hard to fully commit to two social media accounts and websites! I am lucky though, as it will allow me to keep up to date with the latest interiors news, products, materials and trends, and also still allow me to work on my Scout Styling ‘room in a box’ designs.
Seeing as I am now learning about kitchen design, I thought I would write a piece about Kitchens, and more specifically, how to make your kitchen more sociable. Gone are the days when the kitchen was just a place to cook dinner, a small room at the back of the house purely for the preparation of food, cut off from the rest of the home and the family. Now, our kitchens are sociable spaces, the hub of the home, and quite often, the main entertaining and living space.
The trend for open plan living is definitely not slowing down and is set to grow in 2017 as more and more people are choosing not to move, but to stay put and extend their homes to create large open plan kitchen and living spaces, with bi-fold doors, roof lanterns and kitchen islands being the most popular alterations. The idea of zoning your areas, for cooking, dining and living is increasing in popularity; so rather than one large open space, more families are realising that having separate areas to allow you to escape the mess and noise is a good idea!
A large island. A kitchen island is perfect for creating unity, while also allowing you to zone your areas. In a large, open plan room, it divides the preparing and cooking area from the dining and living area, but it also brings people around it to eat, read, chat and have a cup of coffee. Add lots of storage, some statement stools and a large pendant light, and you’ve created a real focal point for the room.
Bi-fold doors. ‘Bringing the outside in’ is another growing trend, as people create extensions that have whole walls made of glass and allow you to fling open the bi-fold doors, and have unspoiled views and access to the garden, almost as one continuous space. This is great for creating social unity as it allows you to interact with family or guests in the garden whilst you are in the kitchen without any division.
Sofas. If you have the space, a sofa or pair of sofas opposite each other, is a great addition to a kitchen. It allows a cosy, snug area for people to relax in whist someone is cooking, or to retire to with a glass of wine after a meal. If you choose a bright colour or a chesterfield, then you are also creating a focal point and much needed interest to a neutral colour scheme. A comfy place to sit will always bring people into the kitchen.
Music. Music will always bring people together and it one of the best ways to add life and atmosphere to a room. You could create a small music corner with an old record player and comfy old armchair where people can sit and thumb through your record collection, or you could install the latest state of the art wireless sound system, either way, its a great way to make a sociable space. At a party, music will always allow people to congregate in the kitchen and family will have fun Saturday afternoon dancing in the kitchen; we can often be found circling the table doing embarrassing moves to the Kinks!
Outside Styling. Seeing as the sunshine seems to have arrived, it is a great excuse to take the kitchen outside and create a comfy, stylish outdoor dining area. Throw a rug down, take some large cushions out, maybe even a small sofa, light some candles and style your outside space as you would your indoor space. Hang some festoon lighting and colourful pom poms in the trees and invite everyone round to enjoy the warm evenings.
This image by Lisa Dawson Styling is a gorgeous and fun way to do outdoor socialising and entertaining, and if you don’t already follow her Instagram, take a look as its packed full of great inspiration and her blog is always a great read!
I’m thinking of running a competition in the next few weeks to win one of my Scout Styling room designs in a box, so will keep you all updated on that soon!