Nancy Mitchell

As a Senior Writer at Apartment Therapy, Nancy splits her time among looking at beautiful pictures, writing about design, and photographing stylish apartments in and around NYC. It’s not a bad gig.
The Big Problem with Farmhouse Sinks (That No One Tells You About)
If you're going to install a farmhouse sink, make sure you're in it for the long haul.
May 17, 2024
This 4-Ingredient Strawberry Margarita Comes in a Pitcher. Could It Be Any Better? No.
I love throwing parties. I hate how much work it is to throw a party. So over the years I’ve picked up a few shortcuts to make the job a little easier. My favorite of which is: pitcher drinksfridgeYou only need four ingredients: frozen limeade concentrate, fresh strawberries, basil leaves, and tequila. I’ve made lots of pitcher drink recipes over the years, but one of the simplest, and one of the best loved, is my strawberry basil margaritas.
Jun 18, 2023
10 Easy Sangrias for Fall
Here are a few sangrias that are perfect for autumn, from Thanksgiving to Christmas, and everything in between.
May 25, 2023
Why Do People in the South Call Lunch “Dinner” and Dinner “Supper”?
Do these words have different meanings to you? Or are they one and the same?
Feb 14, 2023
Before and After: This Breakfast Nook Gets a Charming Upgrade for $350
The secret weapon? Picture molding.
Jan 15, 2023
Why We Love Drawers Better than Cabinets in the Kitchen
Drawers, not doors!
Oct 18, 2022
5 Reasons This Kitchen Cabinet Color Will Be Trendy for a Long Time
Our sister site, Apartment Therapy, has written before about kitchens with green cabinets, and blue cabinets, and black cabinets — and those are all lovely, but this post is dedicated to a particular favorite of mine: gray cabinets. Whether you’re looking for a pearl gray or a seal gray or a dark almost-charcoal gray, this color has a timeless allure, and suits practically any space. Here are five reasons why this hue is here to stay.
Oct 14, 2022
Friday Cocktail Recipe: The Summer Sage
You got the kids back to school. You survived the 105 degree late-August heat. And now — it’s time for a drink. This cocktail, with red plums, sage, and rye whiskey, is like a grown-up whiskey sour. Rye whiskey, a cousin to Tennessee whiskey (aka Jack Daniels) and bourbon, is a sort of forgotten American classic. Whiskey made from a rye mash has been around for hundreds of years — George Washington used to distill it at Mount Vernon.
May 17, 2022
15 Clever Things Your Dream Kitchen Would Have
Do you have frequent, wild fantasies about redoing your kitchen? Welcome to the club! Here are 15 clever details you’ll probably want to add to your wish list — in a perfect, budget-less world. While totally necessary, cutting boards are often some of the most difficult tools to store. What if you could steal this idea from Residence Magazine (via Nordicspace) and have special slots under your countertop for them to slide into? Right?
May 5, 2022
This Rum Punch Is Just What You Need for a Holiday Season at Home
This holiday season, time with other people feels more precious than ever — even if it’s the same crew you’ve been hanging out with all year. Whether you’re gathering a few friends safely outside or just want to celebrate with your household (Happy Tuesday!), we could all use an extra-special break from the everyday. Like, maybe, a relaxed hangout at home with the perfect cocktail delivered to your door?
Dec 15, 2020
11 Super-Smart IKEA Storage and Decorating Hacks for Your Kitchen
We love a good IKEA hack, particularly in the kitchen, where a little change can make a big difference to the look and feel of the space. From island storage to glamorous pot rails, here are 11 of our favorite projects. You might never have guessed that this fancy kitchen cart came from IKEA. Meg from Oliver and Rust gave the $60 BEKVAM kitchen cart a makeover, inspired by the look of a Williams Sonoma one she loved but couldn’t afford.
Jul 17, 2020
Tired of White Subway Tile? You’ll Love This Moody Backsplash Trend.
I’m very into tile. I have favorite kinds of tile. I watch tile trends. I have joked about starting a blog all about tile (it’s not really a joke, though). You may think of tile as a dull subject, but that’s where you’d be wrong. There’s always something new in the tile world, some new shape or texture or color or configuration. Lately, I am very into the look of matte black tile paired with black grout.
Jul 17, 2020
A Very Merry Cocktail Recipe: The Spiced Pear Margarita
Nothing brings people together quite like a good cocktail. This holiday season, whether you’re spending time with family, or gathering with old friends to reflect on the past year, mix up something special, like this Spiced Pear Margarita.Typically one thinks of margaritas as a drinking-on-the-beach kind of cocktail; this one gets seasonally appropriate with pear and a medley of spices.
Jan 29, 2020
8 Smart Ways to Deal with Those Awkward Kitchen Cabinet Soffits
Kitchen Design
Mind the gap!
Aug 15, 2019
Seven Days, Seven Hot Toddies: Part 1
When the temperature dips, there’s nothing like a hot toddy to lift your spirits and warm your insides. Some people even believe them to have medicinal properties. This week, I embarked on something I’m calling the Toddy Project — a different hot toddy a day, every day for a week. Let’s see how I got on. Can’t get enough hot toddies? Check out Part 2 and Part 3 for even more delicious hot drinks.
Jun 5, 2019
Winter Gift Recipe: Apple Spice Bourbon Infusion
Go ahead…start a new holiday tradition with this subtly sweet spiced bourbon.It’s cold. And when I think of a liquor that will warm you up, I think bourbon. (Although maybe that’s just because I love bourbon so much.) Add spices and apple and you’ve got a delicious little concoction that is perfect for wintry weather…and perfect for everyone on your list.I can’t think of enough good things to say about this drink. In fact, I am enjoying one as we speak.
Jun 5, 2019
Bar Basics: 12 Bottles Any Bar Should Have
The new year is a time of new beginnings. This year, resolve to start your bar out right with these 12 essentials. I can’t guarantee that you’ll be able to make every drink you come across – but you’ll definitely be off to a good start.Read on for the list, the best brands to buy (even on a budget!), and cocktails you can make with your sweet new stash.1. GinLots of people think they don’t like gin. Once upon a time, I was one of them.
Jun 5, 2019
3 “Dated” Design Trends We Aren’t Ready to Quit Just Yet
Fashion is fickle, and sometimes something that’s super-popular one year is “out” (or just a little overplayed) the next. Like you, I am thoroughly sick of faux taxidermy. But there are a few other design trends that other folks may be weary of that I still think are pretty great. We get it: these chairs, designed in 1948 by Charles and Ray Eames, are everywhere.
Jun 4, 2019
Fall Fig Cocktail: The Fig Old-Fashioned
Here’s a delicious variation on an old favorite, made with fresh figs, bourbon, maple syrup and…balsamic vinegar? Yes, you read that right. The old-fashioned, traditionally made with bourbon, sugar, bitters, and orange, is almost as old as the cocktail itself. Its simplicity invites endless variation, so when I set out to create a cocktail with figs and bourbon, of course the idea doing a sort of autumnal old-fashioned popped into my head.
May 2, 2019
Halloween Pitcher Cocktail: El Diablo
Here’s a pitcher-sized version of a classic cocktail that’s sure to be a big hit at your Halloween party (or any other party, for that matter). The El Diablo cocktail first appeared in Trader Vic’s Book of Food and Drink as early as 1946. The original recipe called for tequila (white, or silver), creme de cassis, lime juice, and ginger ale (which at the time would have been much more similar to the spicier ginger beer of today). What, you may ask, is creme de cassis?
May 2, 2019
How to Drink Scotch: 4 Mixed Drinks to Ease You In
I love scotch. I like to think this has to do with my Scottish ancestry. My senses thrill to the aroma of peaty bogs and highland breezes. When sipping a complex, peaty scotch, I feel fully and deeply alive.But straight scotch is not for everyone. (“Tastes great, except for the smoke flavor”, one friend said.) It can be a bit brash, especially if you’re not in the habit of sipping hard liquor.
May 2, 2019
Cocktail Recipe: The Original Hurricane
A Hurricane is a bit like a Long Island Iced Tea — you can order one almost anywhere, but you never know quite what you’re going to get. This year, for Mardi Gras, do yourself a favor and sample the original (and, in my opinion, best) version of this classic New Orleans cocktail. A true hurricane does not contain grenadine, pineapple juice, or vodka. It is not made from a mix. It is not served in a giant plastic cup.
May 2, 2019
Downton Abbey Cocktails: Edith
Continuing our series of Downton Abbey cocktails, here’s a drink inspired by Edith Crawley, the beleaguered middle sister.Edith is a little hard to pin down. In the first season, she alternates between pitiable (being in love with all her sister’s boyfriends) and despicable (writing the letter to the Turkish embassy that kicked off all those scandalous rumors). But in Season 2 Edith started to come into her own.
May 2, 2019
Downton Abbey Cocktails: Mary
Today, our series of Downton Abbey cocktails concludes with a drink inspired by the Crawley sister you love, or hate, or maybe love to hate – Lady Mary.I’ll confess I don’t find Lady Mary to be particularly likable. Fellowes tries hard to give us reasons to sympathize with her, but to me, she just seems – mean.
May 2, 2019
4 Ways to Sweeten Up Your Whiskey Sour
Adding a little sweetness to mellow the burn of the liquor is part of the plan for almost all cocktails – in fact, the earliest cocktails were just liquor, sugar, water, and a dash or two of bitters. These days, simple syrup (a 1 to 1 mix of water and sugar) is the most commonly called-for sweetener in cocktails, but we’ve got a lot of different choices at our disposal – like honey and agave nectar – all of which can subtly alter the character of a drink.
May 2, 2019
Forgotten Gin Cocktails: The Gin Sour, The Fitzgerald, The Aviation & The Casino
Some of the tastiest cocktails (think the martini, the Manhattan, the margarita) are also the simplest. At a time when it’s not unusual to walk into a cocktail bar and see drinks with seven or eight ingredients on the menu, it can be refreshing to look back to the simpler drinks of a bygone era. Here are four cocktails, all variations on the humble gin sour, that thrilled pre-Prohibition drinkers with their simple elegance. First up: the gin sour.
May 2, 2019
Forgotten Gin Cocktails: The Gimlet, The Bennet, The Stay Up Late & The Debutante
Last week we looked at four classic gin cocktails, all variations on the gin sour, which contains gin, lemon, and sugar. Swap the lemon for lime and you have a gimlet – delicious on its own, and as a jumping-off point for even more classic drinks. Combine all ingredients in a shaker over ice; shake and strain into a cocktail glass. Add bitters to a gin sour and you have a Fitzgerald; add bitters to a gimlet and you have a Bennet.
May 2, 2019
The Best $150 I Ever Spent on My Teeny-Tiny Kitchen
When I started my hunt for the perfect tiny New York apartment, I knew that it would probably come with a tiny kitchen, too. I got lucky: My kitchen actually has a full-sized fridge, and it even has an oven. (Yes, there are people in New York who are paying lots and lots of money to rent apartments with no oven.) And while my kitchen is small — it only has two-and-a-half feet of counter space — I saw others that were even smaller.
May 1, 2019
This Dated Builder-Basic Kitchen Got Smart (and Easy) Updates
Here’s a thing that’s bound to happen when you’re house shopping: You see a place where the previous owner has replaced the kitchen (or bathroom), ostensibly as a selling point, but the new space already looks incredibly dated. It’s especially frustrating if you really like the place otherwise, because then you find yourself in the position of either living with a kitchen that you really don’t like, or ripping out one that’s brand-new.
May 1, 2019
10 Amazingly Beautiful Kitchens You Won’t Believe Are IKEA
These envelope-pushing styles and configurations might have you reconsidering your next kitchen remodel.
May 1, 2019
A Few Little Changes Made a Big Difference in This Tiny Kitchen
Earlier this week, we wrote about a perfectly serviceable kitchen that got a few tweaks to become totally wow-worthy. (See: A Perfectly Fine Kitchen Gets Unbelievably Better Thanks to a Bit of Paint.) And here’s another one! Instead of starting totally from scratch, homeowners Lindsay and Matt used a minimal budget to make just a few small changes to their Brooklyn kitchen, creating a fresh, modern space without much hassle.
May 1, 2019
5 “Tired” Decor Trends I’m Still Not Over
In my years of writing about design, I’ve seen a lot of trends come and go. Some things, like bold chevrons and mason jar mania, I don’t miss at all. But there are some trends that I confess, I still hold onto, even if others find them outdated or overplayed. After all, home decor is about finding what YOU love, right? Here are five really old trends that I’m still not tired of. What do you think? Do you still love these looks?
May 1, 2019
A Tiny Galley Kitchen Gets Brightened Up — And a Ton More Storage
The “before” kitchen in this Upper West Side two-bedroom wasn’t in terrible condition, but it was plagued by a few issues common to small kitchens: teeny-tiny appliances, and a serious lack of cabinet and counter space. The dark finishes and awkward, chopped-up blocks of cabinets made the small space seem even smaller. The owners, a newly married couple, envisioned a lighter, more streamlined kitchen that would bring a fresh new look to the public spaces of their apartment.
May 1, 2019
15 Online Sources for Inexpensive Art for Your Kitchen and Dining Room
I wish I had the kind of disposable income that allowed me to walk into my favorite galleries and buy the work that I love right off the walls, but let’s be real — that’s just not gonna happen anytime soon. So instead I will rely on the next best (read: affordable) thing: the internet. Buying art online has really improved in recent years.
May 1, 2019
This $13 Gadget Saves a Ton of Counter Space in My Small Kitchen
When your kitchen is as small as mine, every bit of countertop space counts. You want to have as few things occupying those precious few square feet (inches?) as possible, to maximize the space for actual food prep. Allow me to introduce you to one of my favorite space-saving kitchen solutions: the cabinet-mounted paper towel holder.
May 1, 2019
The Appliance Mistakes That Will Make Your Home Harder to Sell
Unless you’re planning on staying in your house forever, chances are good that, when planning home improvements, you have at least one eye on resale value. Today we’re tackling a tricky question: Can new appliances increase the value of your home? As most appliances don’t come cheap, is it worth the expensive upgrade? Turns out, the answer is: it depends. For the most part, expecting a significant return on appliances is a risky proposition.
Apr 30, 2019