Our kitchen diner mood board

I shared the exciting plans we have for our Kitchen Diner renovation at No. 42 a few weeks ago (read it here) and here's the next update on the project... 

I've decided the look and feel we want for inside our new Kitchen!

If you haven't read about "Choosing an architect + the plans for our house" catch up there first if you want to hear about the structural changes we're having done to the house later this year, or read about the whole project from the start here at our 1930s house renovation page. 

So, what will the inside look like when we're finished?

This is something that I felt was so important for me to clarify as early as possible to make the design (and eventually the build) as smooth as it can be.

My thoughts are this:

When working with an architect or designer and a team of builders, someone has to hold the vision. And in my opinion, that someone really should be you. It's your home, only you know what you love, make it your dream one.

Getting clear on what I wanted has been instrumental to communicating to our architect, builders and kitchen designers the materials we want, the layout we need, types of windows, doors, panelling, lighting options etc, all those decisions that will all play an important role in bringing the look together.

Why's it so important to have a mood board to hand?

Having all of this information ready means that when builders come to make the decision on which sliding door frames to get – they'll know to run the design options past me or choose something within the theme of the mood board I've created. 

So that's why before we ever instructed our architect, contractors and kitchen designers, I created this visual mood board to illustrate my vision for the final result in pictures.

Here it is...

Once the structural work is done, this is what I want our Kitchen Diner to feel like.

I know it won't replicate it because our light and layout will be so different. But it feels good to be clear on what I want from the feel of the space.

I want a shaker-style kitchen in either a stone wash or sage, a chrome double oven sat within the chimney breast, some feature tiles, I want our floors to be wooden, our lighting to be simple brass pendants, and wherever possible I'd love some gorgeous tongue and groove panelling (around the island perhaps?)

How did I design my own mood board? Some tips for creating yours...

My mood board took me about 10 minutes to knock up as I have such a clear vision for what I think will work for Neil and I's requirements, taste and budget. OK, maybe not the budget part. So let's forget about money for a sec, I'll update you on cash flow in another post very soon.

I actually use Google Slides to drag and drop images onto a blank slide to create the mood board, making sure to include a big picture of a space I love and smaller details of the design like colour schemes, textures and an accessory or two.

I try to make sure that the designs I put together have flexibility.

You will never see a product shot of something super expensive or hard to source in my mood boards as I feel like that limits me creatively. I get my heart set on something I can't have. 

How I plan my decoration projects

Decoration is often so overlooked and thrown together in a lightly considered and ad-hoc way, but in reality (particularly if you have a build coming up but also if you're doing a small revamp) it'll pay dividends to plan and track your decoration project as if you were tracking a project at work.

With every room I decorate in my house, I use various spreadsheets to track contractor information, quotes, decoration to-do lists, colour schemes, budgets and things I need to buy and sell to make the design come to life and I find that it keeps my budgets and timing all on track – along with my sanity. You can buy the house renovation costs spreadsheet we use in our shop.

I map out all the to-dos and deliveries on a calendar (preferably within 4 weeks but life can get in the way) and hey presto, the plan is formed.

The fun part of planning a decoration project – the accessorising!

I'm a long way off this stage as our build is delayed and won't start until May now, but still it is never too early to plan the accessories you'd like whilst you're waiting for quotes to come in. 

Anything you do (and buy) now will save you time later down the line. I just tend to make sure that whatever I buy is able to be stored safely, and is guaranteed to fit. 

Just a few products I am coveting at the moment... I have my eye on these for those final touches.


Anyway, I hope this has inspired you to organise your decoration project in a more simple, enjoyable way. More updates from my renovation at No. 42 coming soon! 

Thanks for reading :)

(UPDATE: Take a look at how it all turned out now that the kitchen renovation is finished!)

Don't go just yet! I would love to chat to you about the house and life projects you're working on at the moment :) If you're reading my blog, let's be proper friends... follow me on instagram (@fifimcgeee) and introduce yourself so I can follow you too. Happy decorating!