We’re all about experimenting with styling in the kitchen and creating little moments that catch the eye.

Although we love the typical styling vignettes and pieces you might find in a kitchen: see oversized branches, a crock with wooden kitchen tools, pretty displayed cutting boards; lately, we’re favoring the unexpected.

As designs increasingly become open-concept, with the kitchen at the epicenter, each space flows into each other and needs to work together to tell a cohesive story. In our opinion, the “rules” of kitchen styling are a thing of the past, and incorporating elements to soften its look and feel doesn’t have to involve a complete remodel.

Here are a few unexpected kitchen styling tricks to try in your own space:

No. 1: Lamps in the kitchen 

Big or small, lamps can go a long way in creating a cozy and ambient feeling in your kitchen space. Since lamps are unexpected in a kitchen setting, we like to lean into it and use a unique shape or size to bring a playful feeling to the look.

If you have minimal counter space, a small round lamp base can look great when stacked on a few books for added height. Placing other “kitchen-like” items like cookbooks or a utensil crock can help round it out and pull everything together.