Good Questions: Ideas to Disguise Decorative Column?

Julienne sent us a good question: We're getting ready to close on our first place, a lovely rehabbed flat in an old building with fantastic views of the west side of Chicago. We love almost everything about the place, but the kitchen has this weird white (non-original) column that I dislike immensely. It doesn't appear to be load-bearing, but it may contain wiring. I'm brainstorming ways of making it less of an eyesore.
The idea I'm stuck on for the moment is painting it black or charcoal so it will blend in more with the black granite countertops and take on a more industrial look...

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I was also thinking about having it covered in ductwork to echo the ductwork above. Does that sound good?

We plan on painting the woodwork (it's not vintage and not particularly great quality) and the walls shades of warm white or green-white with either a sharper green accent wall or a forest mural at the end of the room. Our art and furnishings are eclectic, but mostly midcentury Danish and contemporary, lots of wood tones and shades of red, green, orange, and turquoise. I think if we neutralize the space the industrial ductwork becomes more of a feature and the whole space becomes a backdrop for the city views and the furnishings within. Right now it's kind of blah. A forest mural would be a nice reminder of our southern Indiana routes.

Any thoughts on the column, and/or a paint scheme for the rest of the room is welcome! Thanks....

Please share your ideas and suggestions withJulienne to the comments below.

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Janel Laban is the Executive Editor of Apartment Therapy and has been working here, at the dreamiest of dream jobs, since March 2006.