Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Summer kitchen..pantry..laundry and such...

I have vivid memories from my childhood of accompanying my mother to visit her friends for afternoon coffee or Mom always worked, so to spend time with her at home was a treat...I rembember an "annex" at the back of the house where she came to gather, exchange stories and spend precious time with her friends. This space was always entered through the back of the house and usually had a table, covered in a bright vinyl tablecloth and a farm house sink, which depending on the time of year, held garden produce and local a young child I loved the atmosphere that was created!

I wanted to duplicate that atmosphere somewhere in my house....the laundry room was a possibility. The true definition of a summer kitchen is a place away from the main house, where cooking took place to keep the house cool. Large farms in the South had summer kitchens for extra activities, such as canning or even washing up, extra food was stored here as well.

My Mom always cooked in her basement kitchen in the summer, it was cooler and more conducive to handling larger amounts of food preparation...making strawberry jam in the early summer and then putting up produce from her bountiful garden, and then tomatoes in early fall.

My laundry room, in the above photos, is my variation of the summer kitchen of my childhood...a place where the laundry is done, my extra dishes are stored, and messy pots and pans can be stowed away, till they are ready to wash up, when entertaining in my open concept kitchen upstairs...

The chicken wire inserts were the alternative to closed cabinet fronts...and the porcelain clock face knobs, a nod to time ticking away!

....and a floor to ceiling open plate rack for extra platters and trays...

I love the look of bead board, and added it here, and as a backsplash behind the counters...

A large stainless sink was a must..... well as large, deep drawers for extra dishes.

....and let's not forget the laundry....a gentle out of sight, out of mind reminder!!

There is ample counter space for folding laundry, which was created by hiding the washer and dryer behind bi-fold doors...

This is far from the summer kitchen of my childhood...but the similarities are still is located down the stairs from my back door, it will be used for extra food prep and cleaning up, preserving our bountiful Niagara fruit into jams, and holding surplus kitchen tools and dishes...and of course doing the laundry....while I recall the memories from my Mother's summer kitchen....N.xo


  1. Absolutely beautiful, just as I knew it would be. And just think not a doggie footprint in sight.
    Take care my dear...
    Susan x

  2. Love, love, love - everything about it. Nella, this looks beautiful and not to mention how incredibly useful. Chicken wire, bead board and great collections of pretty dishes bring the ambiance, while the secret doors hide the laundry days work horses.
    The wreath adorning the piglet is sweet.

  3. Nella, Your laundry room is beautiful, and so are your childhood memories. You have so many gorgeous pieces, it would be a shame to hide them behind cabinet doors. I love being organized as well, and you are VERY organized!
    XOXO Mary

  4. What an amazing space and love how you have the china so beautifully arranged. I can almost see your afternoon - what wonderful memories!!

  5. Love the way you've hidden the laundry ;) Nella, everything is so pretty and I'm taking notes as we start our project. .. so much beauty here and your china collection is gorgeous. Memories are so important and I'm glad you've created that feeling:):)

  6. Absolutely stunning "poetry", as this gorgeous space evokes a much broader chain of thought, Nella. If my KITCHEN looked as good as your laundry room, I'd be one giddy girl! But I do love my kitchen, and have plans to brighten it up this summer to give it this open and airy look you have.

    There are certain elements of my house that take me back to my childhood; the plaster walls with bumpy texture, and how the sunshine comes into the rooms, the arched doorways and glass door knobs - they all remind me of HER.

    This is just a gorgeous post, and HAVE FUN!!!!!!!! Anita

  7. Such a beautiful and useful space. There are many inspirations here for me as I update my laundry room/pantry. Thank you.

  8. This is gorgeous, Nella. I loved hearing the stories of your childhood and what inspired you when creating this space. So many lovely details ~ everything is perfection!

  9. Nella your laundry room is lovely. I wish mine were a tenth that pretty or convenient. You inspire me! Those blue dishes are heavenly by the way! Just gorgeous!

  10. Sorry it took me so long to comment on this, I must have passed out a few days ago when I first saw it and just woke up! Are you kidding me? This is your laundry room. ONly one person can stand in my laundry room at a time. OMgoshhhhhhhhhhhhhh! I'm so wanting to move in and put a cot in that amazing laundry room. Love it! Love your images about your mom.

  11. Wow..your laundry room is so gorgeous...I love the red transferware against the white cabinetry..and also love the red washer/dryer tucked behind the doors...Such a wonderful room and glad you have such beautiful memories of your mom's summer great that she inspired you!..Facebooking this!!!

  12. Love the way your sink is laid out. The cabinets covering is such a great Idea..
    Home made jam Yummmmy.

  13. Completely beautiful and wonderfully practical, I can see how this could easily become a favorite space. I love the story that accompanies this room-- just perfect.

    I have 2 questions: 1. What is the cabinet paint color. It's so soft & pretty. And 2. Are your blue & white dishes antiques or are they available for purchase somewhere? I have my eye out for some beautiful blue and white pieces.

    Thanks so much for sharing!



Thank you for visiting my blog..... I love to hear from you and appreciate every comment received! N.xo