A Modern-day Salvage
To keep a modern-day kitchen from appearing too cookie cutter, it can pay to look to the past. "Antiques offer such one-of-a-kind beauty," says Fifi O'Neill, who wrote Romantic Prairie Style (Cico Books) and helped design the space shown here. Anchored by a stock island customized with oversize corbels, the room features almost entirely second-hand (or third- or fourth-hand) finds, from the freestanding pine dish cabinet to the painted breakfast stools. A soft palette of white, cream, and gold brings out the faded patina of these furnishings—and ties in the few new pieces, including bronze cabinet hardware and a home-center pendant lamp. Read on for more ways to mix off-the-shelf with salvage.
Victorian-Style Towel Bar
This former milking perch boasts a handsome painted patina. Spice up your kitchen's seating with similar models, found at online auctions. From about $20; green.ebay.com.
Lend drawers old-school appeal with classic zinc hardware coated with an oil-rubbed bronze finish. About $7; rockler.com.
Balancing the flash of the room's other overhead fixture, this simple lamp puts a sophisticated spin on task lighting. About $120; shadesoflight.com
Take a page from the homeowner and create a custom shelf by topping a pair of ornate cast-iron supports with a painted board. About $18; hoah.biz
Mimic the look of the homeowner's 120-year-old antique for a fraction of the cost with this equally glamorous fixture. About $350; homedecorators.com
With two drawers and three shelves, this walnut-stained hutch provides practical storage while letting you put treasured tableware on display. $280; target.com
Give a standard island architectural detail by installing one of these sculptural maple carvings on either side. $120; vandykes.com
A utility-sink-and-backsplash-in-one, this gently used earthenware workhorse is a budget-friendly alternative to buying new. $350; noreast1.com
Tumbled Marble Countertop
Rustic travertine tiles deliver unexpected heft to pale wood—and are tough enough to stand up to daily food prep. About $4 per square foot; lowes.com