Renovation Inspiration & Ideas from Martha's Kitchens

Last week, a cabinet door on our kitchen island fell off its hinge, nearly hitting our dog as it careened sideways toward the floor. Thus, we finally had to admit that we really need to redo our kitchen. The door could be re-hinged (we've already done it to a few others), but it's just indicative of bigger problems we've been ignoring. Over the weekend, I started searching for ideas and realized that Martha Stewart's own kitchens would probably be a good place to start. Lo and behold . . . they are indeed.

Her kitchens are work spaces first and foremost and she's always done an amazing job of using every square inch for storage — not surprising, considering how much kitchen and entertaining gear she owns. Most of us can only dream of an entire drawer of pastry bags and tips. She also cleverly uses serene colors and edited collections to create airy, streamlined spaces, even when there's hanging pot racks paired with shelves and shelves of visible dishes. Overall, her kitchens show that attention to detail can make a huge difference between creating a good-looking kitchen and creating a kitchen that looks good while being truly functional.

1. Her NYC galley kitchen is one of the few without open shelving. Instead, floor-to-ceiling enclosed cabinets provide plenty of storage and a sleek look, while ensuring that guests who crowd in won't knock things off shelves. It's a great example of editing your tastes to the space you actually have.

2. Very smart, very organized open shelving under the island in her kitchen in Bedford. This seems perfect for roomies who like to cook together, since everyone can easily reach what they need.

3. I have an affinity for (and collection of) white dishes, so I think her kitchen at Skylands in Maine is pretty perfect. It's also deceptive &mdash while it looks minimalistic because of the color palette, there are a ton of dishes, plus canisters full of kitchen utensils, bowls of onions and garlic, and floor baskets for storage.

4. The clean lines of this apron sink are enhanced by the spare window treatment at her home in Bedford.

5. The copper file-cabinet style pulls from a late-1990s renovation of Turkey Hill compliment the copper pots hanging above — a small, cool detail. Plus, once again, the island clearly holds an impressive amount of stuff.

See the full slideshow at Martha Stewart.

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Kathleen is a freelance editor who lives in Chicago. She loves eclectic rooms, traveling with her family, and feeding anyone who steps foot in her house. She theoretically hates clutter, but can’t stop buying books and craft supplies.