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Maria’s Kitchen Breakfast Nook: Before & After

By 08/13/2011January 28th, 201729 Comments

Photos by Maria Killam
I think everyone should have a whimsical pair of salt & paper shakers like this on their kitchen table. It’s like an accessory and totally appropriate in a kitchen. I bought my sister owls for her new kitchen.
I found this carved English pine table on Craigslist for $150. I didn’t negotiate. It’s been sitting in my house unpainted for months. Finally two weekends ago we had a break in the weather and I cracked open the paint cans out in the carport.

I painted the base BM 2145-70 Cotton Balls and the Table BM 2168-20 Pumpkin Cream along with the corner shelf (from Ikea long ago). After I bought the table I saw this picture again of a dining room Tobi Fairley designed and I was so happy that my table happened to be so similar and I loved the idea of wheels on the bottom. Alas, they made the table too high so off they came last night.
Interior Design by Tobi Fairley

This was what my old pedestal table looked like (above). It was bright orange and I have had it for about 15 years. It was always the perfect size for every space I lived in. I’m currently trying to sell it (skirt, glass and all) on Craiglist for $100 – no takers yet).
And I have always had it skirted with a square black tablecloth on top of the skirted one and a piece of glass. And I was sick and tired of looking at it.
This is the stunning fixture before
And this is the one that hangs there now. I have also had this little chandelier for years.
The sunburst mirror I bought from Homesense and this is what it looked like before I painted it (below). Today I painted it Cotton Balls – can you see the current white I used before is too white? And frankly I used latex at the time so it wasn’t quite covered yet either.
This week I am getting my PEACH (ugh) kitchen cabinets painted. And the walls which are just a cream right now. To replace the verticals (which should only ever be seen in commercial buildings) I am thinking of using this off-white fabric from Maxwell with taupe colour polka dots (they look faded here but they are not).
The lino floor (I’m renting so it’s staying) is peach and taupe which is why I painted the table orange. Its still in the same family as the peach. Had I chosen an entirely unrelated colour to the floor it would not have looked as good because there are already 4-5 different shades of taupe/peach in the floor so to paint the table green or blue or something is like adding a 6th colour that doesn’t relate to the room.
Ever since I wrote this post on faux flowers and found this image, I have been in love with the orange table and the white Eames armchairs with the wire bases.

Here it is again! More pictures to follow when I get the kitchen painted!
Have a great weekend!
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  • pve design says:

    I hope you find a rug like the one in the image….with the orange table!

  • Jennifer Duchene says:

    Maria what a joyful update. I love white furniture and I adore your sense of style. Fabulous update. It is always a pleasure to paint up old things to get more dash.

    Jennifer Duchene
    The Home Makeover Mixtress blending lifestyle, laughter and Chic Cocoons™

  • camdesign says:

    Loving the shape of the legs on your new table, sad the wheels had to come off (I would keep them just in case you change the chairs to ones with a higher seat height) Super redo, amazing what a can of paint can do…

  • Anonymous says:

    Spot on, as usual 🙂 Yummy pumpkin orange looks good enough to eat, too. Is that the paint color beneath the image of the adorable "fish," too?

    Your starburst mirror reminds me of a paint chip color wheel. Must have paint on the brain?


  • Angie@Echoes of Laughter says:

    I love it Maria! Your new look is fabulous! Love the look of the modern chairs with the round table…do die for! Have a wonderful weekend! Angie xo

  • Rhonda says:

    @Anonymous, ouch! That wasn't very nice! Constructive criticism can be useful and appreciated, but there is no need to be nasty. Especially hiding behind the moniker of 'anonymous'. If you don't like Maria's style and taste, then don't read her blog.

  • Kristie at The says:

    Love the new look in your breakfast area! Fun chairs – great juxtaposition with the antique pedestal table. Hope you're having a great weekend 🙂


  • camdesign says:

    I'm with Rhonda above, ouch to Anonymous… don't hide behind anonymous ! I hate that about blogging comments !
    Maria is a great designer bar none…

  • Edins House says:

    Fresh, fun and inviting Maria! I'm crazy about that table (I want one like that too – envious that you found it on Craig's List for $150!!) and the Eames-like chairs add a terrific whimiscal touch. Looking forward to seeing the space once it's painted! I agree with one comment above: a colourful rug (like your inspiration photo) would be a great addition!

  • Stacy Naquin says:

    the flooring is really great for linoleum, but you could totally paint them for a fab pattern! what about a "striped" tone on tone, or a square that keeps getting bigger and alternating tone on tone colors…see my post under the "showhomes" category for a fab linoleum that was painted!!!

  • Karena says:

    Maria, your kitchen is looking great! I agree with Patricia and can picture a similar or unique rug under the table!!

    The Anonymous poster needs to be deleted. They can send you a direct message is so mean spirited and inclined, or come out in the open!
    There are thousands of blogs this anon designer can read.


    Art by Karena

  • Danielle says:

    Beatifull! Also just read your post on your living room drapes. I'm a visual artist and I love yellow and pink too!
    Affordable,original fine art that would look great in your home!

  • NewLightRedesign says:

    The space looks great maria! I love what you did with the table and the first thing I thought when I saw the painted mirror is that it looks like paint stirring appropriate and fabulous!!

  • Mary says:

    Your table turned out so pretty. I love it with the chairs. It makes me wish I could afford new chairs for my pedestal table.

    I had no idea that bloggers could receive such nasty comments! I guess he/she never learned that if you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all.

    Don't worry Maria. Your fans WAY outnumber your haters.

  • NayNay says:

    Maria, I admire that you allow open comments here and I'm sure you expect silly non-constructive hateful ones like the one from anon. I love your photos and I'm envious you have such an ability to put things together! I always look forward to your posts in my mailbox!

  • Barbara Bussey {The Treasured Home} says:

    Anonymous must have had a hard time getting into her size 14 jeans this morning. Poor thing. Yes, on the rug!

  • Naturally Carol says:

    Hi know what makes a great designer? That people like the work and if you're commercial..want to pay for your advice and design! You are successful in both fields. I love your eclectic taste in this room and with what you have planned. It will be fresh and easy to wake up to with a bit of zing.

  • Donna says:

    What a simply scrumptious room Maria! And I'm totally impressed with your great table. It looks perfect with the new paint job. I'm inspired!

    The salt and pepper shakers are super fun too! Love them!


  • Donna says:

    Wow Maria..I happened to see the comment from Anonymous. I could hardly believe it! If they are so 'expert' why do they not give their criticism politely with links to other suggestions or whatever…and all privately so we don't have to read it.

    It's too bad when people have to be ugly just for the sake of being ugly. I've heard that some people just go around saying ugly things on blogs for the 'fun' of it. I can't believe this person was 'for real'.

    I got something even worse last year but at least the person actually left a blog link where I could see who they were and respond. That's the only respectable thing to do. There's nothing respectable about Anonymous.. It's just venom.

    Really sad for them..

    We love your blog..and your style!

  • funcolors says:

    Anonymous Aug 13, 2011 1:43:00 PM is a poopyhead and needs to find some extra curricular activities besides being a poopyhead. Or at least find a more creative way to be provocative on another person's blog. Because I found their opinions and observations pedestrian and boring. Really wasn't worth my taking time to notice or comment on, Anonymous Aug 13, 2011 1:43:00 PM's comment, but typing "poopyhead" makes me laugh. And it wasn't hard to come up with something more interesting than what the anon in question had to say. i.e. poopyhead.

    It was fun.

    I like your space, MK. It is lovely.

  • Gild and Grace says:

    Looks fantastic Maria! great work 🙂 Abbey x

  • Michelle Lee says:

    so inspirational 🙂

  • Susan Windsor Jones says:

    Hello Maria,
    I'm so flattered you found a picture of my house to be inspiring.
    The picture of my orange table and Eames chairs was taken by a talented photographer named Landon Collis. It was taken in 2009 for a local Kansas City magazine (
    Country Living was here a couple of weeks ago so some new pictures may appear there soon.
    Let me know if you have any questions about the picture…
    Susan Windsor Jones

  • Coley says:

    I love the updates you have done! And I am so impressed by your DIY skills 🙂

  • Maria Killam says:

    HI Susan,
    Wow that's cool that you would even know your image is here on my site! I love your space, it's much more glamorous than my breakfast nook setting but I love the look now a million times better than the old one I had!
    Thanks for commenting!

  • Luciane at says:


    I really love your transformation. You know what? This is inspiring me to find a good table for and do the same. I want a round table and I really like your idea of painting it. It makes more personal.

    Have a blessed week.


    Luciane at

  • Luciane at says:


    I really love your transformation. You know what? This is inspiring me to find a good table for and do the same. I want a round table and I really like your idea of painting it. It makes more personal.

    Have a blessed week.


    Luciane at

  • katiedid says:

    I do love the photo with the orange table and see where you are going with the chairs. I agree with a few of the others….LOVE the idea of a rug that can bring the colors together and perhaps hide the floor that you cannot change. I also love the idea of a bright color for the table that relates to the area rug. Fun project, and we designers are never quite "finished" when working on our own houses are we? I am always using my own home as a experimental lab. 🙂

  • Rosa @ Flutter Flutter says:

    Wow Maria, that table is exactly what I've been searching Craigslist for! I'll keep on impatiently waiting… 😉

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