Here are 10 tips for designing a smart, stylish kitchen that functions as well as it looks:
- If designing an open-concept kitchen, consider the colours, finishes and materials in adjacent rooms-plan a consistent look. Limit the number of focal points and opt for items that complement the entire space.
- Be open to new technology, materials and finishes. You will likely find something that really “wows” you.
- Choose a simple design for cabinetry to increase the lifespan of your kitchen. Avoid decorative details as they are costly and may become a passing fad.
- Don’t be afraid to brick-up doors or windows to reconfigure the space to your needs. An inexpensive solution that will pay for itself time and again. Depending on your locality, planning offices may allow you to open a new window or doorway elsewhere.
- Floors are no place to scrimp and save; if renovating, ensure they are level. Choose durable wood or stone finishes for practical and aesthetic longevity. Consider heated floors-you’ll thank yourself on cold mornings!
- Hide all practical elements where possible. Simple valances conceal under-mounted lighting and electrical outlets. Paint bulkheads and other fixed obstacles the same colour as the walls to make them recede.
- Choose as good quality appliances as possible. These are the heart and soul of any kitchen, big or small-it’s got to work! If you can’t sell the old ones, donate to a local charity.
- New production chairs can be painted and upholstered to your desire at a fraction of the cost of some antique or vintage pieces.
- Don’t forget even the smallest detail. Do a touch test before purchasing cabinet knobs. Knobs require one less hole than handles and in the future are more easily updated or replaced.
- The rare occasion any money’s left over from a kitchen renovation is a cause to celebrate. Think ahead to that splurge: chandelier sconces or a cool ’70s vintage light. It may motivate savings along the way!