A peek at our little Paris kitchen

A few people have asked me for photos of my flat and of the kitchen. Though we moved into our new place exactly two years ago (!), I’ve never gotten round to taking photos. We now live in Belleville, a vibrant, multicultural part of Paris. We lived for years on one of the big boulevards of Paris, but after recent tumultuous events, I felt we had seen enough action and it was worth living somewhere a bit quieter. I also really, really missed having even just a little outdoor space, so a terrace/patio was really important. We did want to stay relatively central. The good news is that Paris has a lot of different types of apartments, so after a bit of searching I found a really, really run down place with lots of potential.

It was quite an undertaking, and I am still working on it — but slowly our little flat is coming together! I am a bit of a tinkerer and it takes me a long time to make up my mind on what I want and what works for us (you can imagine how mad I made my undertaker!).

Here are a few photos of the little kitchen! I am quite messy and have accepted myself as being messy, so it was important for me to be able to hide stuff. I wanted the kitchen to be open plan so that we could chat while we cook, but not so open plan that I would be able to see the mess in the kitchen while we eat. So I installed a high bar instead of a counter. Another reason for a high bar counter is that I love, love, love sitting at a counter in a Parisian café, so I wanted to have that feeling at home too.

I also fell in love with the red and black tiles from a lovely café called Loustic, whom a friend of mine phoned up (I was feeling shy) and who gave us the details. I’m so happy to have them in our little kitchen.

This all could not have been done this without Esther’s help! Esther is not only a perfect friend who knows me so well that she knows what I need in my kitchen, but she is also a brillant architect. She gave me some of the best advice. She is the one who suggested I save a bit of money with an Ikea kitchen, but customise it with colourful handles and wooden open shelving.


PS. I apologize for the quality of the photos! I find it really hard to take good photos inside. I also got massive help from my friend @laralovesparis who was responsible for the styling and correct placements placement of flowers etc.!


Comments (28)

Courtney in Australia
March 5, 2019

It looks SO good!! I love it so much. I feel like it is the prefect kitchen for you!!!

March 5, 2019

It certainly is 😉

gillian porter
March 5, 2019

It’s a really beautiful little kitchen – inspiring to those of us fellow-small-kitchen readers! I love the high counter over a worktop on the other side – I might just have to pinch that idea!! Show us more of your flat as you progress! I’m like you – it takes me AGES to decide what I want – I think this is one of the downsides of Instagram and Pinterest – it can be over-stimulating sometimes!!

March 5, 2019

What a gorgeous kitchen! Thank you for sharing. And the photos are great!

March 5, 2019

Such a lovely home, Emilie 🙂 xx

March 5, 2019

What a beautiful kitchen and flat Emilie! Thanks so much for sharing it with us!

March 5, 2019

🥰 i love that you say you’ve accepted yourself as messy I also am messy!!! Love your flat.

March 5, 2019

You have such a lovely home! So bright and happy, I love the high counter, such a lovely idea x

March 5, 2019

Your kitchen is all kinds of gorgeous Emilie. I love it – the cupboards, the floor tiles, the stools, everything. It’s great to have an architect as a friend. I also love the little glimpse of the rest of your home. That picture of your daughter is really cool.

March 5, 2019

magnifique ! j’aime beaucoup la cuisine 🙂 et lololol “entrepreneur” comme travailleur à la maison, c’est “contractor”, “undertaker” est la personne qui organise les funérailles…j’imagine une morte qui n’aime ni son cercueil, ni le maquillage, ni la robe…hehehe

March 6, 2019


Esther in Amsterdam
March 5, 2019

Love your kitchen, love you!! xxx

March 6, 2019

Love you too. Could not have renovated this flat without you!

March 5, 2019

I love your apartment! It is so joyful. I’d only love to see more photos 😉

kathy waugh
March 6, 2019

SUCH charm and personality. I love it! I did the EXACT same thing years ago – IKEA, open shelves, nice pulls on the cabinets. May I ask if you started with unfinished butcher block and then stained it? (If so, what stain did you use?) I love your counter’s warmth and “age.”

March 6, 2019

I just use oil, no stain!

March 6, 2019

Love it! Makes me want to see the rest of your house now. 🙂 (social media makes us SO CURIOUS, it’s kind of embarrassing). BTW: Your dinner table, is that the one that’s peeking through in the last pic?

March 6, 2019

Yes it is – it is actually a beer garden table which I got at one of my favorite shops in Paris http://latresorerie.fr

March 6, 2019

Thank you for sharing this part of your home with us – I love the simplicity and calmness of it.

March 6, 2019

So lovely! I have one question – is it hard for you to keep the white cabinets clean? We are looking at the same cabinets from IKEA, but I’m worried they will constantly be dirty. I’m curious about your experience. Thanks!

March 7, 2019

I love your kitchen (I want those floor tiles!)…and your bit of outdoor space…just lovely!

March 9, 2019

Oh Emilie! I love it so much. Where did you get your open wood shelves? Also, this might sound strange but do you like living in Paris or do you miss London? I love visiting Paris but think it might be a challenge to live there full-time.

Emilie in Paris
March 11, 2019

The shelves were the left over bit of wood from the counter top. The shelf beside the window is a String Shelf. I do actually enjoy living in Paris. It has it challenges but does not everywhere? I do still get a thrill when I look up and realize what a beautiful city I live in. It is also so international that everyone can find a place!

Whitney Olson
March 12, 2019

This might seem a silly question, I have a question about your SIMPLE cookbook. Does your book only have metric measurements? I know there is a US version with imperial measurements, but I want the cute book with the lemon on the front.

Emilie in Paris
March 13, 2019

Ha, not silly at all. I just checked, it only has metric measurements!

April 29, 2019

I absolutely love your kitchen! I just bought my own flat, and although it has a different layout, my new kitchen will be inspired by yours. May I ask what kind of wood your worktop is and how you clean/maintain it?

September 24, 2020

Hi! I stumbled across your kitchen on Pinterest, very cute! I was just wondering if you also got your countertop from IKEA. I’m looking to redo a corner kitchen as well and I’m nervous about putting two countertops together to make the corner. They say in the instructions to caulk the seam joining them—did you do that? How is it holding up? Does it look weird?


Manon from Holland
March 11, 2022

I found your kitchen at Pinterest! Really like it! Especially the bar. I’m currently designing our new kitchen: Can you please tell me the height of your kitchen, the height of your bar and the height of your barstools? Hope to hear from you soon.

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