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When it comes to kitchen trends, creating impact is always near the top of the list. Here’s a look at just a few kitchens impact that have come across my screen lately:

This kitchen has tremendous impact with its dramatic color scheme and metallic drawer fronts. | japanesetrash.com

Talk about impact. This kitchen has tremendous impact with its dramatic color scheme, wide plank flooring, focus wall with no upper cabinets, trio of hanging pendants and those amazing metallic drawer fronts.


A gorgeous sunken kitchen that makes a statement using all wooden finishes--including the ceiling. | japanesetrash.com

On the other end of the impact spectrum, we have this gorgeous sunken kitchen that makes a subtle–but clear–statement using all wooden finishes–including on the ceiling. One of my favorite touches here is the use of ottomans as low counter stools.


The framing of this kitchen feels like a stage opening, giving it a very theatrical effect. | japanesetrash.com

The way this black and white kitchen is set within a frame is very theatrical, giving the space a heightened and dramatic feeling. The high-gloss, GLAMasculine finishes add to that effect.


Minimal kitchen. With logs. Brilliant. | japanesetrash.com

Here the pendulum swings to the opposite side once again, with a starkly minimal kitchen where the impact and serene beauty comes from an under counter space filled with logs.


Impact in this kitchen is accomplished using layers. | japanesetrash.com

And here’s a kitchen that uses layering to create impact – layering of materials visually: wood/marble/cabinets/backsplash, and layering of color and texture. This kind of mixing makes magic when done as expertly as is shown here.

Ryann Ford is an interiors and architecture photographer who lives right here in Austin. Her work has graced the pages of The New York Times, Better Homes & Gardens, and Texas Monthly–just to name a few. She has a terrific eye and a wide-ranging portfolio. I’ve chosen just two of the projects she has worked on to show you, but there’s so much more to see at her website.

The first set of images come from a New York Times piece on a home designed and built by Austin architect, Burton Baldridge:

I'm digging the thin edge of the hot rolled steel counter against the rawness of the wood in that kitchen island. | japanesetrash.com

These are my favorite materials: concrete floors, steel and wood for the kitchen island, and plenty of glass.

This media loft is simple and just right. Loving all that light--plus the inset window that allows fresh air. | japanesetrash.com

The simplicity of this media loft really works for me. The flood of natural light is soooo nice, plus the added touch of an inset window to allow fresh air into the space.

This all works together so well--and is captured so beautifully by Ryann Ford's photography. | japanesetrash.com

More concrete, steel and wood–plus a nice fire, a bit of driftwood and a graphic print. Love this vibe.

The other project of Ryann Ford’s I’ve chosen are all photos of just one room in the home Roger + Chris used to own in Austin (you can see more of her shots of that house here):

The guest bedroom at Roger + Chris' former home in Austin, shot by Ryann Ford. | japanesetrash.com

Antlers, browns, textures, and a terrific paint job. | japanesetrash.com

Guest room detail-a cabinet of curiosities (with a Tivoli Model One thrown in). | japanesetrash.com

Everything about this room is remarkable–from the striking paint work to the use of textiles and accessories. And this space couldn’t be more different from the house at the start of this post, but both were captured masterfully by Ryann Ford.

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I’m that guy who can find inspiration for the home in just about anything, and today I’m looking at translating retail shelving solutions into home use. First off, these wood floating shelves caught my eye:

Wooden Floating Shelves | japanesetrash.com

I really like how they provide a clean, uninterrupted look. This image is so enticing, I began fantasizing about having a room-sized closet at home, just so I could create the same look. But a) I’m not that guy, and b) I don’t have the space, even if I were that guy! Since I think most of us would prefer a more practical use, I found a couple of examples to share. First, floating shelves in a living room–scaled appropriately for the space and very tastefully done:

A nice living room space with floating shelves flanking the doorway. | japanesetrash.com

The idea also looks great used in a contemporary kitchen:

Floating shelves in a contemporary kitchen. | japanesetrash.com

Next, my attention was grabbed by this shot of mixed shelving:

Mixed Shelving | japanesetrash.com

But really focused in on the Vipp shelf–those two metallic shelf sets bolted to the middle of the wall. Love the design, simplicity and versatility they show. Here’s a shot of a couple of them in a clean, contemporary bathroom:

Vipp shelf in a sleek, luxurious, and arty bathroom. | japanesetrash.com

And the Vipp shelf also works great in a kid’s room:

The Vipp shelf also works great in a kid's room. | japanesetrash.com

Finally, there’s the terrific look of industrial shelving made with pipe:

Industrial Shelving made with Pipe | japanesetrash.com

It’s a very popular look that has been translated into the home over and over in recent years:

An attractive and practical industrial pipe shelving unit. | japanesetrash.com

What are your thoughts on bringing retail shelving home? I’d love to find out how you’re already using it or how you plan to add it to your look.

Apologies up front for all the overly styled–or weirdly empty, catalog-y pictures you’re about to see. I’ve got sofa shopping on the brain–it’s time for us to get a new one and I’m looking everywhere online, including Four Hands Home, to see if I can find something that will do what we need (more on that later) and look like I want it to.

Some sofa shopping going on at my house; pardon the catalog photo. I do like this style, though. | japanesetrash.com

Here’s the deal. We use our sofa a LOT. We’re on it all the time, almost always with our dog(s) (plural in parenthesis because while we currently only have one, we normally have more than one dog at a time). We’re guys and we’re not small. So we have a lot of needs: we need space, we need durability, we need comfort. Oh, and our current sofa–a two-piece sectional; each piece is approximately the size of a twin bed (really)–has a wide, low, rigid back and arms (perfect for the dogs to jump up onto, so this is something we like) and huge, long overstuffed, loose back cushions (which we’re constantly fighting with because they quickly become dog beds and don’t retain their shape, which is something we hate).

So… the list of needs is:

  • spacious
  • durable
  • comfortable
  • sectional
  • low back and arms for jumping onto (for the dogs)
  • tight back & bench seat / no loose cushions (for the dads)

Seems like there should be one more thing. Oh yeah: it better look good, like this one from Restoration Hardware.

No matter where I look, I keep coming up with the same idea-this one. | japanesetrash.com

No matter where I look, one option seems to stand out. You’re seeing it in both of the images above, and I think it’s a good start but I’m not convinced this style will ultimately be the winner. See, the arms and back might be too high (we default to smaller dogs). Maybe the dog(s) can learn to stroll around to jump up.

Then, of course, there’s always the factor of price to consider. Maybe Roger + Chris will give me a deal on this:

A possible winner in my online sofa shopping search. Maybe in another fabric. Probably in another fabric. | japanesetrash.com

Maybe in another fabric. Probably in another fabric. I can kinda smell the cow dung from here.

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