Part of the fun of building our house is being able to choose every single detail. But, that also can be overwhelming when you have the option to pick anything you want (within reason and budget of course). It’s not like moving into a house and saying, “oh well I can keep the floors because they are solid wood and the color is okay”. But if you have no floors and you need to choose them, your possibilities and color options are endless. If you have a designer, they can provide you with options for finishings within your budget. But, we definitely don’t have a budget for a designer. And I believe I can do it myself not only to save money, but because I’m really good at shopping! And, I want to make sure I get to choose exactly what I want. But, even if you want to do something it doesn’t mean it’s not overwhelming!
So, one of the things I’ve been doing lately to help myself figure out our design is look at inspiration. Instagram helps a lot for this and so does Pinterest. Because we’re going with a pretty large open floor plan, the kitchen is really going to be the center of our home. And, rightfully so! And choosing the kitchen cabinet colors and hardware is going to largely affect the rest of the house and something I need to keep in mind. So today I’m sharing how to make a mood board so you can visualize your new home.
You should definitely get samples of anything you’re thinking of choosing before you decide. A lot of places will give you free samples or samples for a small fee. Seeing it online is so different from seeing it in person. I thought I had found the tile for our shower, but when the sample showed up it was way more blue than green (see left). I’m so glad I looked at that first! As you can see here, the colors of this tile are very different. And online, they looked identical in color! I like the more green colored one from Home Depot for our shower floor, find here.
One of my favorite things has been looking at kitchen cabinets. This was also one of the most stressful things for me because I could envision my finished kitchen in my mind, but I had no idea where to start. I even reached out to a cabinet guy in town because I thought looking at them in person would be best. I talked to him on the phone and never heard from him again… (insert eye roll emoji). Setbacks of living in a small town, haha. So I had to go online for cabinets. It worried me at first a little, but I’m a pretty confident online shopper so I got going. When I found Cliqstudios, I was in heaven. Not only did they send free samples, they have in-house designers that will help you with your entire kitchen! I no longer felt any stress about upper cabinets, drawers, my island… I felt it was doable and not only that, but it was going to be fun! The samples below are from Cliqstudios, as they were my favorite samples I got on the internet. From the left, I have Linen, Harbor, Urban Stone and White. The best way to decide anything is over cake, so…
I knew that we’d be going with a white subway tile backsplash, and a decorative backsplash tile over the stove only. I had a hard time finding a decorative tile I wanted for over the stove. I looked at a lot of tiles and finally found the one below at Cement Tile Shop. I loved that it brings in a little blue, but is mostly white and neutrals.
So, I put together our “mini kitchen” with my favorite floor, kitchen cabinets (I actually am going with Linen and not white!), tile, and hardware. This is how to make a mood board! Grab all the samples and put them together on a neutral background so you can see how they all look together. And then I set this “mini kitchen” on top of our bar in our current kitchen so I could walk by it and look at it every single day. Because if it is my real kitchen that’s what I’ll be doing. I wanted to make sure I liked the things I chose and it’s been on our bar for over a month now, and I still love it.
The hardware and countertop sample I got from Home Depot, and the floors are waterproof laminate flooring. We decided to do laminate flooring because we live in a very dry climate and I’ve heard and seen solid wood floors splitting. I didn’t want to have to repair them anytime soon or have little gaps in between our floors. Also, laminate flooring is waterproof and obviously we’ll be walking inside the house with snow boots on very frequently. What many people don’t know is laminate flooring is also more eco friendly because it’s a floating floor. This means no glues or adhesives are used during installation.
Looking at your mood boards daily will help you a lot. You might see something you love initially, but if you put it together and then you look at it every day you’ll get sick of it. You don’t want to feel that way about anything in your own home. So, looking at your inspiration photos or your own mini mood board is crucial before making decisions. At least I can say I’ve chosen my kitchen cabinets from Cliqstudios, my black hardware, white quartz countertops, my tiles and my flooring. It’s starting to come together in my mind. Stay tuned for some more design posts, I’ll be sharing detailed designs of my kitchen, laundry room and mud room soon!