Tips of the Trade: Kitchen Styling - Juniper Home

Tips of the Trade: Kitchen Styling


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A big kitchen with a lot of counter space can present a styling challenge. Too many things and the space will look cluttered quickly, but not enough accessories in a big space looks sparse and unfinished. It’s a fine line! 

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For the most part, I like countertops to be pretty clear but I think it’s fun to add color and layers to open shelving. We had some extra quartzite from the counters in my parents kitchen and decided to use it for the open shelves in the dead space above the sink. When it was time to get my parent’s more settled in their new kitchen, I brought up a ton of accessories to play with and we also used a lot of family heirlooms that my mom has had for years.

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Sometimes an empty shelf can feel like the most daunting thing. Where to start with the styling?? I have listed out the most basic of steps below, but I will say that one helpful tip is to know your shelf height before you start collecting styling items. You obviously don’t want items that are too tall to fit, but also be careful to not have too many too-small accessories. Sure, you can stack items to create height, but you want there to be several hero pieces that fill at least 2/3 of the height of your shelves. Paying attention to scale this way helps keep the shelves from getting too busy.

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Big, white dishes are the perfect foundation pieces for kitchen shelf styling. I like a few oversized platters (these are from Target and Homegoods), a cake plate or two and a stack of mixing bowls.

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After the big white pieces, I like to add in a few colorful, larger items, like a ginger jar, a flow blue platter and this special Lynne Millar painting I had framed in a pretty burlwood.

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The next step is to fill in the layers with neutral pieces in interesting shapes. This helps things to not get too crazy with color. I added a vintage fluted bowl and a stack of my great grandmother’s off-white wedding china here.

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Then we added a few smaller items – like marble candle holders and pink tapers, a little blue and white sugar bowl, and a pair of silver salt and pepper shakers. And we added the counter top accessories too. Bread boards are always a great idea (and look so pretty against stone counters) and a little bit of greenery is perfect for every room, including kitchens and bathrooms.

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The best part of all is everything can be changed around easily! One of my favorite post-Sunday-dinner-clean-up activities is a good kitchen styling session! :) Here are some of my go-to pieces:

Mercer PlatterBone China Platter

Mixing Bowl,  CB2 Basket Bowl, Marble Cake Stands

Blue Tea Container, Jade Beater Bowl, Lynne Millar- Yellow Rose 1

Marble Salt and Pepper, Salt Cellar, Wood Candlesticks

Heritage Bread Board,  Iona Cheese Boards

Linen Market Dishtowels, Morandi Pitcher

What am I missing in this list? Do you have a favorite oversized white platter or bread board source?

What did you think?
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21 thoughts on “Tips of the Trade: Kitchen Styling

  1. Love it! So helpful! We bought white subway tiles to put in a backsplash at my parents' place and my dad is hesitating to put them up because he realized the white grout behind the oven will probably become discolored over time from oil/etc. Have you ever had or heard of clients having problems with this? Is there a special sealant that can be used? Thanks!

  2. What color grout did you use from Floor and Decor? I just purchased the exact tiles for my back-splash and have someone coming Saturday to install. I will need to choose the grout which can be a daunting task with all the color choices and how it can change the appearance/coloring of your tile. Thanks in advance!! I love this design!

  3. Ask your parents if they need a roommate, because I'd love to cook in this kitchen every day for the rest of my life! Perfection. And you covered all of my favorite kitchen accessories. Wood, greenery and heirlooms perfectly placed. I know they are thrilled with the outcome.

  4. I love to find odds and ends at my local flea market and antique store, but I also swoon over all of Anthologie's kitchen accessories. You do a great job kitchen styling — I am planning a deep clean/restyle tomorrow afternoon!

  5. Great post, and I love the way you styled the space! Styling is one of my favorite parts of decorating — it's the vignettes that thrill me. :-)

  6. Question about securing everything. Do you have any tips on how to ensure the large platters propped against the wall dont slump down and take everything with them?

  7. Is your kitchen missing out with ice maker. Get yourself a portable ice maker that you can carry it with you while you are out. You can get instant ice in 10 mins – best for immediate parties. You can get a good quality information about the ice maker at
    The best part is you can review quite a good list of ice makers that come in your pocket.

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