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Black or White?

10.26.2009
I am on a mission to 100% complete the kitchen. Those pesky cabinets that are waiting on their glass fronts are almost on their last coat of paint and poly....a year later. Derek has been assigned the task of finding the best price on glass. The bar stools have also been decided on.

still no doors....

Next up-the drapes. This has been a difficult project from the beginning. The pink mini blinds were trashed the first week we moved in and the windows have been bare ever since. While I am sure the neighbors love the view of the kitchen, I think it is time to put up some window treatments.
Ahhhh the memories

I decided I wanted long panels in between each window (7 total) but on one long rod. The first issue was finding hardware to fit such a long window. Add two corners to that and this task took us awhile. We finally found wooden rods at Lowe's that we can cut as well as extend with screws and bonus-they have corner pieces.

a pic with almost all the windows

Now that we were successful in getting the hardware...onto the drapes! Remember how my goal was to get them done before summer to block the light and heat that bakes the kitchen during that season? Yeah, obviously my new goal is winter to block the drafty cold.

In my defense I started them. Remember again the two bolts of fabric sitting in the (old) craft room?

I spent an afternoon measuring, remeasuring and cutting all the black and lining fabric. I laid it all flat and was all ready to start sewing. Then I noticed something odd.....the black fabric was actually two different colors. After I stopped hyperventilating, I decided that maybe I was just being too picky and Derek would look at it and tell me that I was being stupid.

I was wrong. He agreed that the colors were very different and that hanging next to each other, they would look funny. We couldn't return the fabric because we bought it over a year ago and from a discount place that does not guarantee things like that.

I was so mad that I was going to spend more money on more fabric, that I just left it sitting there and did not think about it for a couple of months. Well now that I have cooled down and the drafts in the kitchen are there on cold nights. So I am ready to think about it again.

Now that I have to buy new fabric, I am second guessing black as a color choice. The first time I picked it the conversation went something like this-

J: do you like this for the kitchen....not sure about black, but it is heavy and only $6 a yard?
D: that's expensive...
J: actually for home decor fabric of this weight that is incredibly cheap
D: do they have enough?
J: there is two bolts..
D: get it then
J: really....you don't want to think about it? It's a big decision....
D: we are here, it is here and I don't want to have to come back again

The pluses of black is it is a dramatic color and I like how it balances the black cabinets on the other side of the kitchen. The minuses is that it will fade in the sunny windows and will show white dog fur.

Here is a "sample" (a piece of cotton that I bought to sew a dress from)

Disclaimer to make sure you do not think that I have lost my mind: a) the actual drapes will be lined b) they will go all the way to the floor and c) there will be a panel in between each window.

But what about white? (this sample is actually a sheet)
The pluses of white is that is airy in the kitchen. The minuses is that it will show dirt and dirty fingerprints when we have kids and it is a little more "beachy" than the rest of the kitchen.

Here are the two together for comparison-


If I could, I would take a wide angle shot with the cabinets on the other side but my camera does not have that capability. (believe me I tried and Derek was shooting me looks while he was cooking-for some reason he did not want to make this blog post). This is the best I have showing some cabinets and some windows. (note the white appliances will be gone as soon as we can afford new stainless).
Every person that has walked in the house over past week has been forced to go into the kitchen and give me their opinions. The results have been mixed. Personally I am leaning towards the black and of course Derek is leaning towards the white. Hence why they are still hanging there.

I also thought about other colors or prints. Gray is between the two but I don't have anything that long in that color to hang there. Also I don't want to do a loud or busy print because I want the backsplash to be the focal point.

Since I need 24 yards to make all the panels and since I have already spent money on fabric once, price is also a huge component of the decision.

Decisions decisions.

Now that I am in a better place about the old fabric I am starting to come up with creative ways to use it. Craft rooms drapes? Basement panels? Curtains for a stage that we could make for our future children? Dog beds?

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8 comments on "Black or White?"
  1. That is a tough call. I think the black makes the backsplash 'pop' a bit more, which is what you said you wanted to stand out the most. I like the white a lot, but it blends in more and is less of a statement. Definitely one or the other though - I don't think grey or a pattern would really work. GL deciding, I would have a hard time with this one!

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  2. How about a black and white vertical stripe...sort of a canvas fabric? In small panels, it wouldn't be so busy.
    We had panels like this (now replaced with Roman shades) in this house when we first moved here. We have really tall ceilings and windows, so ready-mades were not long enough. I added horizontal "bands" of print in the middle and at the bottom of each panel to make them long enough. You could have black with a white band or vice versa. Or you could sew contrasting strips on each long edge...again black stips on white or the other way around. I'll be interested to see what you decide!
    P.S. Candice Olson is my favorite too! Don't forget some sparkle or bling for the basement. Her trademark sconces are nice for that.
    P.P.S. Arthroscopic shoulder surgery November 30, so Jazzercise is out for now. How's the running coming? B.

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  3. I think they both look nice. But, personally, I'd pick white. I think the black is just to heavy. The while helps to lighten and lift the whole room and balance out the darkness of the black cabinets.
    Just my 2 cents.

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  4. I think the black takes your eye away from the view outside so I like the white. It blends in more and my eye is drawn the the greenery outside

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  5. I just looked through the before/ after of your kitchen and I love what you've done with it!

    For the curtains, I like the white. I think it would look nice if you used the black to add a stripe along the bottom. If you did this, most of the dirt you're worried about would land on the black portion.

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  6. I like both, but prefer the white. I think a slate blue would look pretty too. I also think adding some black detail to the white would be a nice touch and make it less monochramatic w/ the black cabinets.

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  7. Probably too late on this, but I like the white. I'm sure whatever you do will look great. Good luck!

    BTW- I just found your blog. I love your style and all your before & after pics. Just consider me a new stalker :)

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