by Arleen M. Kaptur
Kitchens have always been the heart of the home. Here meals are shared, children do homework or play games, and a rocker by a sunny window puts a crying baby to sleep. Kitchens are also perfect places to show off your life-long collections.
Rustic kitchens especially are treasure coves waiting to be discovered. They contain open shelves that can highlight that very special tea set from Aunt Martha. Their beamed ceilings can display cookware, baskets, and dried herbs. Even the wood finishes of most rustic homes adds a touch of reality and naturalness to whatever you decide to display. A simple bowl of fresh fruits or gourds lends appeal and color. While function and efficiency are mainstays, charm and character are just as important.
Here in this warm, inviting center of activity, the colors can be homespun or elegant. They can bring the Holidays right to your dinner table, or they can bring peace and serenity to a late evening meal. Quilts can be used as table covers and padded chairs add just the right touch for your woodland home. Children's drawings, or attempts at art work, a vase from your grandmother, or a stack of letters tied with a ribbon add a very special touch to any shelf or nook. Plants add healthy oxygen and color appeal.
Of course, personal taste is always the main consideration in choosing the accessories for your kitchen. Buffets and glass doors keep antique treasures safe from harm and dust. You can change the theme from apples one month to firecrackers and flags for the Fourth of July. Christmas, of course, is a decorator's delight. You can use whatever seasonal touches you desire, and if you are comfortable with it, then your room will carry this feeling for you.
Kitchens are always a pleasure to decorate, but rustic kitchens add delight to your pleasure. Whittled bears, painted fish, and proud deer standing on shelves or in alcoves add authenticity and a smile. Decorating with nature adds to the overall appeal and nature is always elegant.
Wood plays a very dramatic part in decorating a kitchen. Natural wood, stained or painted, can complement or contrast. Rough wooden beams or smooth tabletops give a feeling of contentment.
Enjoy your kitchen, decorate it with whatever you choose and know that it will always be in style. After all, a room where you spend a lot of good times should reflect you and your family.
©Arleen M. Kaptur 2002
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