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Home design inspiration: Bringing nature and sky into the kitchen

A corner of a Newton kitchen gets a cheerful makeover.

Joyelle West

Ana Bonilla’s clients, a couple with two pre-teen boys, had renovated their 19th-century Auburndale Colonial six years ago, but had never added finishing touches. “The kitchen felt cold,” says Bonilla, principal of Boston-based AnaVera Design. “They wanted to bring in some color and whimsy.” A favorite wallpaper and floral window treatments satisfied the wife’s eclectic taste as well as and the husband’s preppy leanings. To address the family’s request for more seating, Bonilla designed a comfortable, clean-lined corner banquette complete with cushions upholstered in durable, easy-to-clean fabrics. “Before, the nook just had a brown table with four chairs,” Bonilla says. “Now it’s warm, functional, and reflects their personalities.”

1 The homeowners’ red wooden chairs were the starting point for color palette. “The kitchen cabinets are cherry and there’s a vintage Moroccan rug with a lot of red in the entry,” Bonilla says, “so including red on this side of the room too made sense.”


2 The back cushion covers are made from a stain-resistant Crypton fabric that can be removed and machine washed. Since the walls aren’t well insulated they insulated the back of the bench, which helps keep the kitchen toasty in winter. There are electrical outlets under the bench for laptops and chargers.

3 The pedestal table, an inexpensive online find, lets people slide on and off the banquette with ease. The family-friendly faux leather seat cushions help, too.

4 The wife, who loves nature, first spotted the Daydream wallpaper from Hygge & West at a friend’s house. “This paper is very sunny and brings the outdoors in,” Bonilla says. The pattern’s swirling clouds cued them to paint the ceiling pale blue.

5 Bonilla retained the kitchen’s existing drum pendant light. Bonilla says, “It’s functional and simple, which keeps the focus on the wallpaper and shades.”

6 Custom roman shades in a cheerful cotton print, Frida by Clarke & Clarke, add another nature-inspired element and tie together the colors in the room and adjacent areas. “The client thought the pattern might be too busy,” Bonilla says, “but once we held it up she loved the look.”


Marni Elyse Katz is a contributing editor to the Globe Magazine. Follow her on Instagram @StyleCarrot. Send comments to magazine@globe.com.