Kitchens

Updating the Look of the Kitchen

With quick advancements in design technique homeowners often find themselves looking for inexpensive but dramatically noticeable options for updating the look of the kitchen. Hundreds of design and decorating options for the kitchen hit the market each year, and on average stay a favorable trend for around five years. The quicker you get your updates done, the longer you will have to enjoy a modern day space

No matter what your budget, there are plenty of choices and quick do-it-yourself projects. Taking care of minor updates in the kitchen on your own can save well over half of what it would cost to hire a professional to do the job. With the proper education and research updating the look of the kitchen can be both successful and enjoyable.

Before beginning any updates in your home it is crucial that you break down the key elements of the room. In a kitchen this includes the walls, the flooring, the countertops and backsplash, the appliances, the cabinets, the hardware, and the lighting. From these you must choose your priorities according to budget. Once you have decided which of these things will give you the most dramatic updated look, you can begin.

The Walls

Color and texture are key in today’s modern design. Faux finishes, faux texturing, and bold color are what bring a kitchen from the past to today. Don’t be afraid to really let your own personal style shine with vivid color and over-the-top styling. Neutral colors and muted designs are a thing of the past as many have turned to letting their home reflect their individuality. This gives you great opportunity to share an interesting kitchen with friends and family. Take advantage of it!

While patterned and colorful wallpaper is out, wallpaper still has a role in the modern day home. Many types of wallpaper are being used for texturing and can be painted to add color. This is a cost effective solution that takes the pain out of texturing walls which can be messy and often ends up looking nothing like you intended.

The Flooring

It is clear that time has shown wood flooring can be the best investment a homeowner could make in every room of their home. Popular a hundred years ago, and still admired today, wood flooring has absolutely proven itself in regards to quality and cost. Lay it now and you can instantly scratch this element off your list of updates for many years to come.

Fresh ideas for modern decorating include laying the wood flooring at a diagonal or creating shape within the space. There is many ways to do this with the most trendy being creating a border around the room, and then laying the floor traditionally (vertically or horizontally) inside of the border. This can create design, add interest, and make your kitchen feel larger by defining the space with lines that the eye will first follow all the way around the room.

The Countertops and Backsplash

Techniques and product for countertops and backsplashes have gone through major changes in the last ten years. Once believed to be the cheapest and best available choice, laminate is no longer the most cost effective and functionally acceptable material. Today you can use many great materials that come to you at low cost including natural stone, man-made stone, concrete, tile, stainless steel, and even some special made woods.

Considering the modern day world, at the moment an incredible countertop and backsplash option is concrete and stainless steel. Low maintenance concrete countertops, and essentially no maintenance stainless steel backsplash put these materials at the top of many kitchen update lists. If concerned about the industrial look of these materials, you will be happy to hear that the color choices of both concrete and stainless steel have come leaps and bounds in recent years meaning you have endless options to get the exact color and look you desire.

The Cabinets

To make your kitchen update the most dramatic you should focus much of your attention on the cabinets. Being the foundation and most noticeable element in the kitchen, this is where you have the greatest opportunity to update the look of the kitchen. Paint and stain are primarily your options, but this does not narrow down your design choices by any means. Literally hundreds of colors in both stain and paint leave you with the potential to do essentially anything you choose.

To give the cabinets a modern day feel try using several tones of the same color. This will create dimension and more interest. Darker on the top cabinets and lighter on the bottom create a cozier feel. Lighter on top cabinets and darker on bottom create the feeling of a larger and tidier space.

The Hardware

Finishing the look of your kitchen will be in the details, and hardware is certainly the most important of them all. To fully take advantage of this design element consider a total hardware overhaul; drawer pulls, cabinet door handles, and don’t forget the hinges. Coordinating these to match will give your kitchen a pulled together and finished look.

As for color choices and current trends, they are endless. Bronze, silver, black, white, and more are available to compliment any style. When choosing one the most important rule to consider is maintaining flow by at least staying in the same color family. Varying the style of hardware is fine as long as the colors match to create a finished result.

The Lighting

The lighting of your kitchen will ultimately define the mood of your space. Looking for soft subtle romantic mood, go dim and sparse. Looking for a loud and more energetic mood, go bold and bright. Regardless of the mood, the job will ultimately remain the same. Review what you have, what you need, and what you want. Find a good resting spot between functionality and design to get the most out of your lighting choices.

The rule to lighting today is taking something essential and primarily for function and turning into art. Each lighting fixture can bring in more shape, style, and color. For more dramatic interest choose similar or matching fixtures and upgrade the globes for more color. Instead of a traditional chandelier try a pendant light or group them. These are being admired for their simple detail but bold appearance.

The beauty of updating the look of the kitchen today is the freedom it brings to express yourself in any way that you choose. Keeping in mind that this is your kitchen and your design, be sure to take advantage of your opportunity to really show your guests who you are and what you are all about. If you are bold and dramatic then go bold and dramatic. If you are subtle and simple then go subtle and simple. Either way, you will gain great satisfaction knowing that you are up to date and ready to show a modern and stylish kitchen.

 

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