little white beach bungalow: part deux


Welcome to another peek of our Connecticut beach bungalow.  As I mentioned in my last blog post, the previous owners of our home had done extensive renovations, nowhere more apparent than in the kitchen. Would I have done a few things differently?  Perhaps…

Before:  The kitchen on the day of the Open House…
Moving day…

But nothing that I can’t live with for now or maybe for a very long time.  They really did a beautiful job!  While the island provides much needed storage, I would have liked a stand alone piece, perhaps something vintage. I also would have done a different floor. The gray modern tile strikes me as cold and not in keeping with the rest of this charming vintage home.  Wood would have been my first choice but may have been impossible to match with the dining room and living room floors.  I think I would have painted it!  Anywho, other than that, the kitchen is pretty and functional and I have my first farmhouse sink!  I also changed out the window treatments and added woven shades to bring in some texture and warmth.

Processed with Snapseed.
New shades, rug, and a few accessories and the kitchen was done.
Processed with Snapseed.
I always have a chalkboard in our kitchens. Looking through to the living room and the front entry…

Just off the kitchen is a small butler’s pantry and powder room. The powder room is too small for a decent photo, however it’s simple, clean and new.  The previous owners stored their dog’s crate behind the fabric curtain as seen in the first photo.   I added a vintage stool from Green Peak Elements and a cool metal crate from Terrain to store extra wine bottles.  This now doubles as both a single breakfast seat overlooking the soon to be renovated backyard, and a bar to store glasses and liquor bottles.

Processed with Snapseed.
A peek at our Butler’s Pantry/bar with metal crate from Terrain

When I was in Vermont visiting my parents, I went to one of our favorite antique malls located in Chester, Stone House Antique Center .  My mom and I never fail to find furniture and accessories there.  I had coveted a folk art whale on my last visit, and when I saw it was still there, I took it as a sign that it should come home with me.  I hung it above my painting of the Nantucket Whaler…how perfect!

Processed with Snapseed.
Folk art whale and step stool from Stone House Antique Center…

Just off the living room and the kitchen is the dining room with sliding glass doors to the backyard and a lot of natural light from the large windows.  Before, it was a perfectly nice room and painted a soothing blue.  Everyone, including my husband was horrified that I wanted to paint it white. In fact, I painted the entire first floor my go to White Dove by Benjamin Moore!   This is a small house and with every room painted a different color (all pretty colors by the way), it just didn’t flow. I wanted it to be fresh, bright and with a casual coastal vibe…a bit less traditional.  Apparently a bit of my California design sense followed me back to the East Coast!

Before: The dining room was pretty, but a bit traditional for my taste

I was also determined to improve or tear out the long window seat everyone loved but me.  I appreciated the extra storage in the cabinets, but found a long “church pew” like seat next to the dining room table a bit odd.

Processed with Snapseed.
Before:  The church pew…

Mind you, I have nothing against church pews, I just didn’t want one in our dining room.  I would have rather had a long buffet or something more useful.  My husband won that battle.  But, I had the church pew like “arms” cut down, removed the cushion, and now use it to display some pretty vintage items, like my antique chest that holds all my candles.

Processed with Snapseed.

There was also a built-in corner cupboard that seemed overly ornate for this bungalow. I just didn’t like it.  I think part of it was the dark color of the interior which just made it stand out too much…and not in a good way.

Before: The dark cupboard

After I found the perfect blue to paint our porch ceiling (Benjamin Moore Woodlawn Blue), I loved it so much, I had the interior of the cabinet painted the same and lo and behold, with some simple accessories it’s now one of my favorite things in the dining room!

Processed with Snapseed.
After:  A lighter paint color and simple accessories completely transform the corner cupboard

Our long French farm table fit perfectly with it’s six metal chairs.  I added a Pottery Barn jute rug   for a more casual beachy feel. Last, but certainly not least, I turned my attention to the lighting.  I knew with our long narrow table, that I wanted to do two pendant lights instead of one central chandelier.  Again, I turned to Brad Andres at Green Peak Elements who was so helpful in determining the size of the vintage fixtures and how much chain for our low ceiling.

Before: Figuring our placement of the pendant lights with painter’s tape and paper plates…
Processed with Snapseed.
Pendant lights from Green Peak Elements

Two simple sconces from School House Electric, some Belgian linen drapes (which still need to be hemmed) from RH and hardware from West Elm and this little dining room is a laid back gathering place to share food and conversation with friends and family.

Processed with Snapseed.
After: Our casual dining room
First floor floorplan

In next week’s post, we will head upstairs!

11 thoughts on “little white beach bungalow: part deux

  1. Love love all the new touches! I so agree with you…white is the only colour…my go-to being BM Chantilly Lace! Congrats on another very sweet beach place!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It looks lovely, Elizabeth. I love your thoughtful choices and how you make it all look so easy. I wish I could make decisions as easily as you! Everything looks fantastic. P.S. What’s the over/under on how long before you rip out the kitchen floor? heehee 🙂 I love it, but then I like a little modern (and I don’t have to experience a tile floor on a cold Connecticut winter morning. 🙂 xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Karen for your lovely comments. I also love mixing a little modern with rustic or vintage. It’s not even that I’m totally against tile in a kitchen although I prefer wood for its warmth and comfort. I think it’s that the gray is such a cool gray it looks cold. The kitchen just felt chilly and I prefer a warmer space. As for when, if I were to live there full time, the tile would probably be gone by now! 😉 But I spend most of my time in Santa Barbara so they are probably there to stay. Never say never!


  3. You’ve made great changes in such a short time, Elizabeth! I particularly love the Cali vibe you brought back East and the ¨less is more¨ approach to a more traditional interior. Big thumbs up 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Eva. It was a whirlwind of activity for a few days. I think I’m still recovering! That said, I’m really happy with the way it turned out. My husband who spends more time on the East Coast than I do, thanks me every time we talk so it’s a win in my book! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Little White Beach Bungalow: second story – edb designs

  5. I would love to know what shades these are ? I have found Smith and Noble but not sure which style or color you have, they are lovely. Thanks


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s