Launching my latest feature – Style Surgery

We have been inundated with requests for help on rooms across the globe for my newest feature on the blog entitled Style Surgery. Thank you guys,  regrettably we can only work on one a week but if you want something speedier and more in depth there is always our E-Decorating Service! To kick start this feature meet Kylie she lives (in Australia) in an ex corner store built in the 1920’s. This is what she emailed:

“We have replaced the bench tops and tiled with white subway tiles (which we are planning to continue up the wall) but this little intervention has done nothing (or nearly nothing) to improve things (a bit like plastering really cheap concealor all over a pimple!) The major problem is the cabinetry. It is Tasmanian Oak and has to stay (apart from the fact that we really can’t afford a new kitchen, it is just too good to demolish and add to landfill – it would’ve cost a bomb in its day and it doesn’t feel right to us to rip it out and replace it with cabinetry of inferior quality for which we would still have to shell out big bucks)Painting is the obvious choice, but choosing a colour is the big dilemma. My heart is saying paint them a dark charcoal-ish colour, but my head is saying play it safe and paint them white. BUT,  everywhere I look I see white kitchens similar to the style of ours and I think blah/boring – they look just the same as they started out, but white. And what’s the point of that? The dark kitchens I see are much more modern than ours, so I’m wondering if dark cabinetry would look good on an 80’s number or just silly and try-hard..and whether I’ll regret going over to the dark side. (I’m not frightened of dark colours – we have a dark grey and almost black exterior, and a lovely dark blackish brown grown-ups t.v. room which I love)”.

p1-3 new

Here are my tips below the game changer being to replace the cupboard doors on the wall hung units, elongating them to look more bespoke. Then I’ve suggested replacing the hardware, painting out the kitchen and adding some open shelving.

p3-1Some product ideas below:



16 thoughts on “Launching my latest feature – Style Surgery

  1. HI Abi,
    Love your advice, very useful and I would love to see the end result… Marble counter tops with dark kitchen cabinets, my idea of kitchen heaven! Good luck Kylie, and much appreciated if you post the ‘after’ pics on the forum…
    In the meantime, finding a spot in my house for your style surgery… how super duper and fabulous it would be to have your take on it!

  2. Great advice Abigail, as always. I am have introduced table lamps into my kitchen recently and love that it gives a quirky but cosy feel. Creating a little tray of kitchen goodness like a tea station or coffee station always adds a lived in feeling of warmth too.

  3. Thanks Abi, you have given me some great inspiration, my kitchen is quite opposite, and very white, stone benches and modern, also Australian. I want to “vintage, rough it up a bit” add some timber and darkness. Love the idea of extending top cupboard doors. A quick one- does dark cupboard doors on bottom look ok with white on top? Thanks Karen
    [ps have never followed a blog consistently before- you have me hooked]

    • If you can I would personally tie in the bottom with the top no matter what the hue otherwise you will be drawing quite alot of attention to the them which you never really want to do. Its the cool stuff that wants attention x

  4. Pingback: Abigailさんの、インテリア手術室(?) | 海外インテリアブログ紹介

  5. Fabulous advice! Changing the wall cabinets will make a huge difference. Can’t wait to see Kylie’s kitchen when she’s done. x

  6. Dear Abigail, as I known Kylie since this year she is so exited about what you did to her. She dreams of such a kitchen since years…
    Hope you find the time to imprive my bathroom or our hallway too…
    Great work and many greetings, Ria

  7. Elongating the upper cabinetry doors is genius. I really like the idea of the open shelving either side of the window too, I think it will add a bit of drama to a bland space. If I know Kylie, she is going to run with these ideas and make it superb. I do so admire her for keeping the quality cabinetry and working with it.

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