Scope creep refers to continuous or uncontrolled growth in a project’s scope at any point after the project begins (see also: “domino effect” or If You Give A Mouse A Cookie).
I’m not an interior designer by training, but rather an intuitive one. I’m not always able to articulate the reasoning and science behind my decisions; sometimes I make the choices I make simply because I think they will look “good.” However, the one design principle I adhere to consistently is picking a focal point.
We remodeled the kitchen in our last home (you’d think I would’ve learned my lesson, no?) and had the focus be on the patterned tile floor. Having a bold print on the floor worked well in the last house, in which all of its surroundings were neutral. I love living amid the color and pattern and textures in this home, but it can get overwhelming very quickly without a grounding element. In this kitchen, the focal point will be the countertops, and the grounding element will be the floors.
When browsing flooring options, I didn’t know exactly what type of stone I was looking for, but I had two non-negotiables: it had to be neutral, and it couldn’t be boring. I met with the team of experts at The Tile Shop, and after talking about the project, they provided me with some samples to consider and take home. The tile looks so much different in person than it does online. Whenever possible, I highly recommend seeing samples of materials in person.
After living with the samples at home, walking on them, and seeing them in different lighting (I can’t stress this enough! Bring home samples!!), I ultimately selected Queen Beige marble for the remodel. Queen Beige is a natural stone, which isn’t always a choice for the faint of heart, but this is a situation where I went with my gut, and I couldn’t be happier. This stone has character and is something to be seen and felt up close. The Versailles patterning masks the unevenness in the floor, and the stone’s natural variances conceal any dog hair that accumulates.
These are a couple of the reasons I went with this tile:
Color – I love all the vibrant, rich colors of this home, but I miss how natural light radiated off the white walls in our old house. This home’s front entry is windowless, and the pairing of the dark wood floors and deep paint colors often created a dark and gloomy effect on cloudy days. The bright color of the Queen Beige stone significantly brightened up the front entry, without looking too stark, modern, or “new.”
Care – Yes, natural stone requires a certain level of upkeep and maintenance. Much like all of us, this stone will age over time. Natural stone isn’t for those who want a floor to look the same ten years after installation. This house has a ton of personality and character, knicks in the woodwork, odd angles, and switches that no longer work, and the Queen Beige fits right into the overall feeling of the house. Over the passage of time and thousands of footsteps, this floor will evolve, and I’m so excited to see how it changes. (Tip: if you do want to keep your natural stone tile in tip-top shape, it’s very important to seal it and continue to seal it as needed. Depending on use, sealing may be required every 1-5 years. Be sure to speak with the experts at The Tile Shop to learn more.)
Touch – We are a mostly shoes-off household, and the Queen Beige is incredibly soft underfoot. The cool, crisp feeling of natural stone in the hot summer is refreshing; in winter, not so much. Before we installed the Queen Beige, we decided to add heating under the floors. Natural stone is a great conductor of heat, and I’m very much looking forward to having toasty toes in the kitchen come winter.
As we’ve moved through the process of making updates, one of our overall goals has been to bring visual cohesion to the house. One of the areas where this sense of cohesion was most needed was in the entryway, since it acts as the adjoining space between three other rooms and a hallway. Extending the stone flooring all the way from the kitchen, through the foyer, and into the entryway has helped create a central pathway through the house while also allowing the living room and library to shine as their own spaces. Even though this decision extended the initial scope of the kitchen project, from what I’ve seen so far, I think it’s really going to be worth it. (To make the extension look seamless, we added a coordinating Queen Beige Honed Marble Curb.)
The original flooring was beautiful, and I fully recognize that some will disagree with my choice to remove it. Design, especially interior design, is a very personal decision, and at times we have to go with our gut. Would the space have looked good if we left the original wood flooring? Yes! Will it look great with the Queen Beige stone? Yes! I’m finding so much joy in embracing my style and not doing what I think I should do.
If I can impart any advice (aside from always getting samples!!!) to anyone contemplating or in the midst of their own remodeling process, it would be to go with your gut. Your home is yours to live in, and life’s too short not to love the space you’re in.
Editor’s Note: This post was sponsored by The Tile Shop. The compensation we receive in exchange for placement on Wit & Delight is used to purchase props, hire a photographer, write/edit the blog post, and support the larger team behind Wit & Delight.
While compensation was received in exchange for coverage, all thoughts and opinions are always my own. Sponsored posts like these allow us to continue to develop dynamic unsponsored content. Thank you for supporting our partners!
Kate is currently learning to play the Ukulele, much to the despair of her husband, kids, and dogs. Follow her on Instagram at @witanddelight_.
BY Kate Arends - August 10, 2021
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Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.
Wait, the focal point isn’t the ceiling!? I can’t imagine trying to compete with that – what an incredible detail to get to design around!
Good point!! Yes, in the foyer (shown in these photos), the focal point is most definitely the ceiling/skylights. In the kitchen proper, it will be the countertops.