Designing Your Kitchen

For a kitchen remodel, the greatest constraint to your creativity is the layout of your kitchen. If you are so fortunate to do a tear down and rebuild, then you have a lot of flexibility in this area.

In any kitchen design, the most important aspect is functionality. Even the show piece kitchens nowadays still retain the basic form and function of traditional kitchens. The best way to define functionality is to consider the kitchen work triangle. The kitchen work triangle is made up of three main stations of the kitchen – the refrigerator, sink, and range.

The idea of the kitchen work triangle is to have good separation between the three stations so that there is no cross-traffic which may interfere with the chef. Also, the triangle is the most efficient shape, allowing the shortest distance traveled between these stations.

While keeping the kitchen work triangle in mind, there are a few basic layouts from which other layouts can be derived.

In a small kitchen, sometimes you have to sacrifice the kitchen work triangle due to lack of space. You see the “wall layout” style in lofts and small studio apartments. This is where all three stations are lined up against the wall. This is only workable if there is the kitchen is in an open area unobstructed by walls or furniture.

Another small kitchen layout is the “corridor layout” which has stations on both sides of a narrow hallway. The difference between the corridor and wall layout is that the corridor layout actually satisfies the kitchen work triangle concept. This layout also gives you more cabinet space as you have two walls for cabinets instead of one. The disadvantage of the corridor layout is that passing traffic in the hallway often conflicts with the chef cooking.

For larger kitchens, you can use the “L-shaped layout” or the “U-shaped layout”. The L-shaped kitchen is in a corner of the house with two adjoining walls like the letter “L”. Usually the refrigerator would be situated closest to the public space while the sink is in the back. This allows easy access to the refrigerator by others and not run into the chef. The U-shaped kitchen is like the L-shaped except it’s joined by another wall forming a “U” shape. The U-shape kitchen best demonstrates the kitchen work triangle because only one station is placed in each wall creating an ideal workspace for the chef.

If space permits, you can also put an island in the middle of your kitchen. Another design concept is to create a peninsula which juts out from the “L” shaped kitchen to provide a better work area as it then forms a U-shaped kitchen.

There are many options and layouts when designing the kitchen. To build the perfect kitchen, you should really look at the role your kitchen plays in the home.

  • Is design and beauty more important or is the ability to prepare meals for guests and ease of clean up more important?
  • How much storage space do I need (overhead cabinets and under-counter cabinets)?
  • Would the kitchen be used on a daily basis for cooking or only special occasions?

For more information on kitchen designs, please refer to kitchen layout designs [http://www.kitchenremodelpro.com/learn/kitchen-design-ideas/kitchen-layout-designs].

Design Your Own Kitchen – Create Your Dream Kitchen All by Yourself

Designing your own kitchen is now as easy as 1-2-3! By using computer-based design software, you can create an accurate, graphic illustration of how your kitchen will look using your own design ideas. The software allows you to make changes with just a click of the mouse.

As the kitchen is the heart of many homes, a perfectly thought out and built kitchen can add more value to your home at sale time. One of the many remarkable features offered by the kitchen software program is that it gives you or your client the ability to view the finished kitchen from virtually any angle. This allows both planner and the homeowner to gain a whole new perspective on their new kitchen.

By using the design software you’ll be able to create that perfect kitchen you’ve been dreaming of!

With the easy to use range of features, you’re sure to be able to create a design that suits you. The design software allows you the freedom of altering and re-positioning your layout, design or products, as well as changing worktops and all other fittings and fixtures, until you are truly happy with you design.

With the use of the kitchen design software you will be able to freely decide on the look and feel of your new kitchen, and be assured that the design will meet your or your family’s own specifications.

By using this software you are not constrained by the suggestions made by some kitchen planners or manufacturers who don’t have a proper understanding of your needs or vision.

Common Kitchen Forms:

  • A single file kitchen has all the units along one wall. This is usually the solution for small spaces.
  • The galley or corridor type of kitchen has two rows of cabinets at opposite walls, one containing the stove and the sink, the other the fridge and other appliances. This is considered to be the classical work kitchen.
  • In an L-kitchen, the cabinets occupy two adjacent walls, the work triangle is preserved, and there may even be space for an additional table.
  • A U-kitchen has cabinets along three walls, typically with the sink at the base of the “U”. This is a typical work kitchen for most designers and homeowners.
  • The block kitchen is a recent development, typically found in open-plan kitchens. It has a freestanding island and allows more space for movement, especially when there’s more than one person cooking at the same time.

You can design your own kitchen with the use of Do-It-Yourself design software, which you can download for free from some websites. Take a tour and be inspired to try and do it your way!

Some Useful Tips for Kitchen Design

  • Plan the main working areas such as the sink, food preparation counter or table so that they are close together.
  • If you decide on a two-way galley kitchen, make sure you measure the size of the kitchen and the exact shape of the walls, so as to leave enough walking space between the two galleys.
  • If choosing a U-shaped kitchen, consider the floor space you will have left and consider using one of the legs of the ‘U’ as a breakfast bar or a working table.
  • Create more head space by making the wall-cupboards taller, rather than having them protruding outwards as this will also make the kitchen look wider. Storage for heavy items in the cupboards should be underneath the worktop.
  • To create more order, use special drawer organizers. Store your utensils near to where you are most likely to use them as this way they will be within easy reach.
  • Keep your worktop clutter-free for a tidy look. This will make your kitchen more efficient.

Ultimately it’s you who is going to be spending all the time in the kitchen so why not design your own kitchen – that kitchen you’ve been dreaming of for all your life.

Kitchen Renovations – 10 Tips You Need to Know Before You Start

Kitchen Renovation can be an exciting, creative project, and you can create your dream kitchen. But where do you start? There is a bewildering array of choices available – from faucets to flooring, kitchen cabinets and countertops, appliances, lighting – you have unlimited options available, and your are really limited only by your budget. Still, kitchen renovation is a big job, and mistakes are not only costly, they are time consuming. Here are 10 tips you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation.

The first of the 10 tips you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation, is decide on a budget and stick to it. Once you start going through magazines and catalogues, and visiting stores you are going to be sorely tempted, so you might want to add a little leeway into your budget, but unless the sky is the limit, give your budget a limit and stick to it, or your kitchen renovation will drain your cash reserves far more quickly than you could ever have anticipated.

The second tip may seem obvious, but you would be surprised how many people skip it and launch right in, to their detriment later on. It’s simple, plan, plan and plan. You have your budget, now look at your kitchen, the space you have available, how often you use your kitchen and think about what you want to achieve with your kitchen renovation. Do you use your kitchen as a family room, for snacks and breakfast? Then you may want to include entertainment options such as a wall-mounted television, and a sound system in your kitchen renovation plans.

The third tip you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation is a good one – heed it. Kitchen cabinets usually account for about half the cost of the budget of the average kitchen renovation. Decide early what you want, how much you want to spend, and then plan around that. It’s advisable not to skimp on quality when it comes to kitchen cabinets – rather go for the best you can afford.

The fourth tip you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation is not that obvious to many – pay attention to the flooring. Just because it’s a kitchen, does not mean that the floors have to be ugly. There are many great options available – just make sure you look for durability, along with looks.

The fifth tip you need to know before you start is to decide early on what kind of a look do you want for your kitchen, and stick to it, or you will end up with a mish-mash design. Unless you are going for an eclectic look, you would be better off sticking to a theme, so all the elements blend together seamlessly.

The sixth tip you need to know before you start your renovation is to follow-on from the last tip. Make sure your kitchen design is timeless, and fits in with the rest of your home. You may want to redecorate the rest of your home long before you get around to renovating your kitchen again, so make sure you can live with the kitchen design you choose.

The seventh tip you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation is that lighting has gained prominence in modern kitchens. The old fluorescent bulb not only looks unattractive, it gobbles electricity. Where possible consider the use of LED’s and layered kitchen lighting. Lighting can be expensive, so it’s something you need to think about early in your planning stages.

The eighth tip is important – if you are going to choose a contractor, choose wisely. Look for someone reputable, and don’t hesitate to check up on references – many people have had terrible experiences with contractors who didn’t do what they promised, or disappeared halfway through the kitchen renovation.

The ninth tip you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation is that there is a lot of kitchen design software that you can make use of when you are planning your kitchen. Don’t grab the first option – look at reviews, so you can find something that will work for you.

The tenth tip you need to know before you start your kitchen renovation is keep in mind your existing kitchen, how big it is, and what shape it is – if you are renovating your kitchen, you are not going to alter the basics – so work with what you have.

Kitchen Design Ideas and Layout

Kitchen design ideas –

Are You Designing Your Kitchen?

A kitchen is the central headquarters for the family. Kitchen is often the showplace of the home, and yet it is required to function well for a wide variety of tasks. A well-equipped, beautifully dressed kitchen will provide both a sense of well-being and a favorite place in the home. As you plan your new kitchen, you must consider both the utility and the look factor.

Kitchen design ideas – choose the one that suits you best!

When thinking of ideas for designing your kitchen, you could either consider one- one part of the kitchen at a time or pick up a complete theme. A complete theme could be something like a design based on Feng Shui which incorporates all its principles. Feng shui concerns the art of placement and you could help you to arrange your kitchen in a way that enhances its good energy. For instance, according to Feng shui, the cook’s back should never face the kitchen entrance so you must design accordingly

Now according to the other way, you could choose a particular look for the kitchen floor, the walls, the storing place etc. this can be done in various ways depending upon the amount of money you are willing to spend, the lay out of the kitchen and your taste. Here are some specific design ideas for your kitchen –

* Kitchen floor- Your flooring choice is important as it will set the tone for the whole kitchen. The textural quality of the floor always appeals to eye and has a radical effect on how one perceives the room as a whole. For kitchens, the two most elegant floors are tiles / stones and laminated or hardwood floors. Ceramic tiles are a premium product for a kitchen and represent an impressive upgrade over any other floor. The only disadvantage is the cold feel. However if you want you can also opt for a floor heating system.

* Kitchen countertops – While choosing your countertop, select a color and texture that will compliment your cabinetry, floor or paint selection. Don’t be afraid in combining two or more countertop materials. Complimentary colors and textures on adjacent surfaces create visual interest. Also remember, it pays to select a material, which will withstand years of use without extraordinary maintenance requirements and is easily repairable should an accident occur. Granite and marble are strong options.

* Kitchen lighting – you might have a large ceiling fixture, equipped with energy-efficient fluorescent tubes that supply plenty of well-diffused general lighting. However it may leave you working in your own shadow at the sink, range, and countertops. These areas in your kitchen need supplemental task lighting. Also placing your windows is a tricky question.

Kitchen design layout –

The perfect arrangement

Kitchen designing is very subjective, so a layout that might be perfect for one can be disastrous for another. This is primarily because the tastes, and the ways of people in terms of working habits, styles are vastly different. Thus kitchen layouts should be done according to the necessities and specifications of the prime user of the space, who has definite ideas about how he/she would like their working space to be. But apart from this subjective outlook, there are certain steps that you should follow while designing your kitchen plan or layout. Following are the stages –

Stages in kitchen design layout

Follow these simple steps in order to get your kitchen space rightly utilized with a desirable look-

1. Measure your kitchen in a detailed manner, the position of the doors, windows, electric points, drains and sinks etc.

2. Demarcate the kitchen areas into three – Storage, cooking and cleaning. Go about planning the space, keeping these three aspects in mind.

3. Make a list of the appliances that you are likely to use in the kitchen, and provide space for them according to their dimensions.

Keep these three points in mind and then design your kitchen in a style that fits in accordance to your tastes. Following are some of the stereotypical kitchen design layouts that are used –

Kitchen design layouts – Types

These are the 4 basic kitchen layouts that are generally followed while designing a kitchen –

1. Corridor layout – This is meant for a narrow kitchen, where there are two facing rows. One for storage and the other for cleaning and cooking. Make sure there is a minimum 1200mm space between the two rows.

2. L shaped layout – This is a layout, where the rows are diagonal to one another, thus forming an L shape. This gets the kitchen working space into the corner, thus giving a lot of free space to move about.

3. U shaped layout – this is the best choice for small kitchens and very convenient too.

4. Island layout – This one on the other hand is meant for large kitchens. Here the cooking hob is altogether a different box unit, while the L shaped row is meant for the sink and storage purposes.

Kitchen Decorating Ideas

Choosing your kitchen design from the multitude of kitchen decorating ideas that abound can be an incredible experience into the insight of kitchen manufacturers. It is totally amazing exactly how many kitchen designs are sold on the retail market and even more of a surprise which ones are the most popular. Spend an afternoon in one of the many retail outlets that sell kitchens and listen in on the various conversations around you. People home in on the ultra-modern kitchens like flies round a honey pot but, as the conversation progresses, you hear them admit to not being able to live with such a design on a daily basis, eventually plumping for a more modest middle-of-the-road design, or even one of the many rustic designs. Kitchen decorating ideas naturally need to take into account the kind of kitchen furnishings you have installed – you couldn’t imagine a Belfast sink in one of those modern glass and stainless steel kitchens anymore than you could imagine a high-tech sink in a totally rustic setting.

Pick the right kitchen decorating ideas in accordance with your fitments which, when decorating generally, would already have been installed and are generally expensive enough to remain in situ each time you feel the need to re-decorate your kitchen. Another factor that needs to be considered, when thinking through your kitchen decorating ideas, is the size of your kitchen. Size and function do tend to go hand-in-hand. If you have a spacious kitchen you are more likely to use it as a centre for the family to congregate than if you your kitchen is one of the tiny, galley styles. Size does need to be taken into account: the kitchen may have the reputation of being the heart of the home but that was generally in the days when kitchens were large enough to accommodate the heart of the home, with a central table for the family to spend time around.

Modern homes are often much too small for kitchens of this size unless, of course, it is a kitchen/diner – in which case, the decor of your kitchen decorating ideas need to take that into account. There is often a lot of actual wasted space in a large kitchen, requiring the person who uses the kitchen on a daily basis to cover a considerable distance between cooker, sink and work surfaces. This is often not particularly conducive to the most efficient use of a person’s time. Reducing this ‘working triangle’, as it is called, is one of the more fundamental aspects of good kitchen planning and something that also needs to be factored into any kitchen decorating ideas. This has led to the innovative kitchen island which sits in the centre of the kitchen and often houses the sink, work surfaces and usually the hob.

Appliances that tend to be used frequently are then free to stand on the surrounding work surfaces, brought onto the central island when they need to be used. Not everybody, however, is blessed with a kitchen large enough to accommodate a kitchen island. In smaller houses the galley kitchen is the norm and, again, the ‘working triangle’ needs to be taken into account when implementing suitable kitchen decorating ideas. In most galley kitchens the hob is along one wall with the sink directly opposite and work surfaces either side of both hob and sink. This means the main working area is the triangle within the centre of the kitchen. In Western kitchens, regardless of the level of cooking skills the kitchen user has, each kitchen houses very similar appliances. There are certain items that are found in all kitchens, such as washing machine, fridge, cooker – either fitted or free-standing – sink unit and fitted cupboards with work surfaces built-in.

Most kitchens, regardless of size, find room for a dishwasher, even if it is only a table-top size. Juicers, slow cookers, deep fat fryers and pressure cookers are the norm in most homes – as are food processors, coffee grinders and coffee machines of one sort or another. Breadmakers and microwaves are also common acquisitions. The problem arises in where to house these movable appliances and sufficient cupboard space needs to be given over to store these items. This has led to the majority of Western kitchens now being fully fitted with wall cupboards as well as base units, inevitably reducing the need for too many alterations in the way of kitchen decorating ideas – especially as the gap between the wall units and the base units are usually tiled. This leaves the opportunities for kitchen decorating ideas rather limited unless you are starting from scratch completely. However, for those of you who are putting together a brand new kitchen, you need to be extremely careful about choosing your kitchen decorating ideas as the outcome is likely to remain with you for many years to come.

Remodeling Your Kitchen, Some Ideas That Might Be Beneficial

Making the kitchen your first home improvement project is a great idea. Remodeling your kitchen is one of the best home investments you may make and is often the top priority when it comes to home improvement projects. The kitchen is the most crucial part of your house, so making this room appealing and agreeable to work in as well as practical can be imperative. Having a smooth running, well planned kitchen is crucial in getting the entire home to function effectively. Even if you just own a little kitchen, take care not to let this hamper your kitchen remodel project. When size is limited the organization of the kitchen ought to be most important.

The main directive when it comes down to how to put into action your kitchen modernizing ideas is to have your budget in clear view at all times and stick to it. Remodeling your kitchen on a tight budget will be tricky but you need to instruct yourself to turn down any ideas that will bust your budget and search around for affordable substitutes.

When you are upgrading your kitchen, you may need to understand how to work out in what order to bring about the changes. Equally, as it may be awkward to carry out kitchen upgrading all at the same time, you have to prioritize the alterations that are most important to you. If the main thing you really want is extra cabinet storage space, then set aside money for new kitchen cabinets instead of spending on a new copper sink. Discovering how to upgrade the kitchen without wanton spending necessitates that you prioritize the elements in your kitchen that will need to be refurbished.

Another central part of kitchen remodeling will be picking the correct lighting, from general light fittings for kitchens to light fittings for kitchen islands.

When your kitchen has a high ceiling then a single ceiling lighting fixture may possibly not be enough to illuminate the whole room. Think about special types of lighting arrangement for different parts of the kitchen such as; under shelf lighting, pendants, chandeliers, semi-flush lighting, or recessed lighting if you can afford to have that done.

Granite is rapidly becoming one of the most well-liked constituents for kitchen counters. Whatever your individual style, there should be a granite color absolutely suitable for you and your interior. With a lot of assorted eye-catching colors to pick from you will most likely have lots of choices in deciding on the wonderful granite countertops for your upgraded kitchen.

An added well-liked favorite used for kitchen remodeling are concrete counters. Today you will be able to find out in online stores why concrete counters are very sought after. They can be made in virtually any design, including rounded which is something that may not be done easily with natural granite. See how you can make the versatility work for your upgraded kitchen plus what color options are now available. There will be different kinds of coloring additives, stains, and concrete variations, so concrete counters will forever be unique. Concrete is friendly to the environment in every part of its life span, making it a foremost choice for environmentally friendly kitchens.

When kitchen remodeling, your kitchen sink is almost always replaced. If you would prefer a up to date, retro, or country style kitchen, there are now a lot of kitchen sink designs to decide from. There are a significant variety of kitchen sink styles which as well are presented in a variety of materials which are in turn offered in a large array of colors, shapes, and sizes. When you have decided on the kitchen sink you would like, you then will need to decide on a faucet.

Kitchen faucets were formerly a clear-cut essential. But today you will be able to have faucets to complement any kind of kitchen in a assortment of configurations and finishes. There are new designs and new technology that can help your upgraded kitchen to a much more user friendly space.

Use the web to help you discover which style of faucet would match your upgraded kitchen the best. In addition to your principal kitchen faucet, you may also like to incorporate an entertainment sink faucet for an extra water source on a kitchen island, a pot filler kitchen faucet or a water filtration faucet to make sure that you will be supplied with pure and the safest water.

One eye-catching highlight you can add to your modernized kitchen is a copper sink. You will be able to choose from a expansive variety of copper kitchen sinks in purpose made styles and shapes, copper country style kitchen sinks, hammered copper sinks, double bowl copper kitchen sinks, and others. You may be certain that if you get a copper kitchen sink it will bring a talking point into your kitchen and everybody will love it.

Kitchen tiles for backsplash and walls were a long time ago common old dull white ceramic. But today you will be able to acquire tiles for your refurbished kitchen in a massive assortment of finishes, colors, shapes and sizes. Glass in a variety of sizes from big sheets to tiny mosaic pieces can be used with splendid effect within a kitchen. Glass could even be cast to look like marble tiles and using recycled glass in your remodeled kitchen can be an environmentally friendly preference.

Refacing your kitchen cabinets will most likely be a easier alternative to a total kitchen upgrade. Does your kitchen need modernizing? If so, think about cabinet refacing as a replacement for the expense of buying and installing brand new ones. If your hardware is tatty after cleaning, you might want to replace it. Today is a good opportunity to give your cabinets a total modernization. There will be many beautiful handles plus hinges offered at your local home improvement stores or in online stores.

The least costly way in which to upgrade to a fresh look for dark and unloved wooden kitchen cabinets is to paint them. Ensure the kind of paint you utilize should give a functional, washable surface.

When choosing new kitchen cabinet handles, select a design that should look spectacular in your upgraded kitchen. Should you live in a retro home, opt for brass or pewter. If your house is minimalist, go for hardware to match like glass, aluminum or novelty handles, allowing the kitchen cabinet handles to match your refurbished kitchen.

Using the huge quantity of online stores and kitchen design specialists, it is easy to explore the best brands of flooring materials for your kitchen. If you know what brands of floor covering are offered you can decide whether you intend your upgraded kitchen floor to be of cork, vinyl, travertine or limestone. Should you prefer to become environmentally friendly, then you might be thinking of bamboo.

Kitchen Remodeling Top 10 Tips

1. Determine a Kitchen Layout that Suits your Needs

Ever find yourself in the kitchen at a house party or during the holidays? It’s safe to say the kitchen is the heart of the home and over the last 50 years the kitchen has moved from the back of the house, to the center of attention. Once a dead end in the house, the kitchen’s contemporary application is often found in a “great room” setting promoting a home’s open floor plan. Although the kitchen’s modern appeal has doubled it into a social gathering space, one thing has remained the same:

Most of us are probably familiar with the work-triangle. This refers to the optimal relationship between the sink, stove, and refrigerator, being spaced no more than 6 feet apart. A proper “work-triangle” is designed to reduce needless steps while cooking in the kitchen.

2. Use Quality Materials

Cabinets provide the heart and soul of the kitchen as well as help set the tone and style of your entire home. Whether you prefer a traditional look or a contemporary kitchen, the drawer fronts and cabinet doors you pick accentuate the beauty of the kitchen, while also determining much of its durability. It is essential to consider both the aesthetics, including color and style, along with the function and strength of the material. As a major portion of the kitchen budget, balancing beauty, durability and cost are vital to a successful cabinet choice.

Although there is a multitude of different cabinet materials available, solid hardwoods, wood veneers and synthetics are currently the most popular.

Common Solid hardwoods:

Alder: This solid hardwood has remained popular due to lower cost, broad range of available stain colors, and subtle grain appearance. Alder’s natural nut brown undertones allow it to take stain similar to a light colored maple, a dark walnut, or even a red cherry. It is a softer wood within the hard wood category, so not that tough. Great economical choice for raised panel stained wood with a high end look in the rustic and traditional kitchen styles.

This solid hardwood maintains its popularity due to its great versatility of use coupled with a reasonable cost. The subtle grain and natural nut brown undertones opens the alder to a variety of stain options. Well stained alder can have the appearance of many other wood types including light colored maple, dark walnut, or even a red cherry. Alder is a bit softer than other hardwoods so it may not be quite as resistant to wear and tear. Overall, it makes a great economical choice for decorative raised panel, stained wood giving a high end finished look best suited to rustic and traditional kitchen styles.

Poplar: Good economical choice for painted kitchen. Difficult to stain due to natural green undertones. Softer end of the hardwood spectrum, less durable than a maple, oak, and a little softer than alder. For the white French country style kitchen, painted poplar will give you the same look as maple at a lower cost, but it will not resist nicks. Typical used for high end decorative painted trim such as white wainscoting and crown moldings in tradition and French country kitchens.

Cherry: Higher end material choice that carries good durability and a rich red undertone. Often found in formal and refined traditional kitchens. Alder is an economical substitute that will achieve the same refined look at the sacrifice of durability.

Maple A very hard wood with a mild grain pattern. This material can take a natural stain, dark stain, or hold paint with a high level of durability. Cost is higher than poplar as a paint grade alternative and alder as a stain grade alternative but the maple will hold up better over the long run.

Wood veneers – Most any wood commonly used for hardwood doors is available is in thin sheets called veneer which are applied over resin particle board or MDF (medium density fiberboard). This type of door construction accomplishes a clean look with a natural wood finish often found in contemporary kitchens. A kitchen cabinet door cannot resist warping when fabricated in a flat wide style, so a wood veneer is used to create the appearance of a solid wood door without losing stability. When selecting specific veneer wood, the hardness plays a large factor in long term durability. Maple and cherry are the toughest, while alder and poplar are the softest or least durable. Cost is often pretty comparable to a solid raised panel door of similar wood species.

Synthetics – Process is similar to the above mentioned wood veneer, with the exception that the veneer material is a PVC substance that typically possesses more durability and lower cost. Often used in commercial applications and utilitarian residential. applications such as garages and laundry rooms.

3. Decide Whether to Paint or Stain

The debate continues, to paint or to stain! I’ll leave my biases out of this one (even though stain is easier to maintain, paint is often still preferred) and list the major pro’s and con’s:

  • Stain
  • Colors come in variety of shades
  • Repair and touch-ups are easier. Easier to keep your cabinets looking good for a long time.
  • Less expensive and fewer steps.
  • Distressing or glazing make the maintenance easier.
  • Great choice for the Do It Yourselfer’s
  • Paint
  • Probably the most popular look amongst home owners.
  • More process steps than stain and more expensive to finish.
  • Touch-ups can be difficult.
  • Refinished often requires professionals to match your existing colors.
  • On average 10-12% more expensive than stain ($2,000 more on a $20,000 kitchen packet).

4. Choose Appropriate Colors

This might seem like the simplest of things to do in a kitchen remodel, but choosing the right colors can either bring harmony to a room, or a create a wrong impression. In basic color theory, colors have different meanings and are generally either stimulating or relaxing. Here is a list of the colors of the rainbow and their meanings:

  • Red: Stimulating/Increases Appetite
  • Orange: Stimulating/ Increases Appetite
  • Yellow: Stimulating/ Increases Appetite
  • Green: Relaxing/Balance
  • Blue: Relaxing/Decreases Appetite
  • Indigo: Relaxing/Decreases Appetite
  • Violet: Balance/Relaxing/Decreases Appetite

The kitchen should be a combination of both relaxing and stimulating colors. It is difficult to work in a kitchen that is too relaxing but at the same time shouldn’t be too stimulating that it makes you hungry.

5. Break the Horizontal Line

Stagger the height, length, and depth of wall cabinets. Horizontal lines at the top and bottom row of cabinets can make a kitchen look rigid and static. A break from the horizontal line can give your kitchen remodel an updated look.

6. Build Bridges, Not Walls. Islands and Peninsulas are the New Kitchen Walls

Over the last 30 or so years, the open floor plan has become increasingly popular and the function of a great room (containing kitchen, dining, and living space) is becoming the norm. Many remodels we’ve done in the past have been transforming compartmentalized floor plans into a contemporary, open floor plan by knocking down any barrier walls between kitchen and living room. Instead of walls defining the kitchen’s borders, peninsulas and islands provide a better alternative. They prevent the kitchen from spilling over visually into other spaces, and also allow the cook to maintain visual and conversation contact with family members and guests.

7. Find a Creative Contractor with Expertise and Realistic Ideas

There’s no one size fits all approach to kitchen remodeling (or home remodeling in general). That’s why it’s important to find a contractor that has access to designers capable of creating unique solutions specific to your kitchen’s needs. A popular model contractors are beginning to use is the design/build model.

Traditional remodels typically involve an architect or designer, an engineer, and a general contractor. The design/build model combines all three into one convenient package. Allowing one company to oversee your kitchen remodeling project saves you money and headaches. In addition, a creative contractor will offer practical design solutions that may otherwise have been overlooked.

An example is creatively using the existing kitchen footprint which saves money on flooring, plumbing, and other minor expenses allowing money to be dispersed on larger features of the kitchen remodel.

8. Selecting the Right Kitchen Countertop

Countertops are important to your kitchen because they can help give your kitchen a particular tone that represents your lifestyle. If you have been looking around, then you are probably aware by now that there are numerous alternatives to granite or laminate.

9. Selecting the Right Kitchen Sink

Kitchen remodels are everything AND the kitchen sink. When it comes to the kitchen sink, the function will usually outweigh the looks. Sinks come in an array of styles, but it is important to consider how you plan to use your kitchen sink. It is also important to choose a sink appropriate to the size of your kitchen.

It is recommended for kitchens less than 150 sqft to use a standard 22×24-in. single bowl. For larger kitchens there are multiple bowl options and it is often recommended to consider a secondary bar sink if multiple cooks will be in the kitchen.

10. Light your Kitchen Appropriately

What good is the your perfect kitchen remodel if you can’t SEE its features? If you are fortunate enough to be situated near windows, use them! Nothing beats natural lighting. But what about at night or in cases where you don’t have any windows? That’s when using a combination of ambient, task, and natural lighting comes in hand.

Pendant lightings are typically used as task lighting above a kitchen island or peninsula. They serve as a perfect design element that accentuates the tone of your kitchen.

Under mount lighting is a nice way to add luminosity to areas otherwise void in your kitchen. They’re a great way to accent your kitchen’s features such as a special tile backsplash or glassware.

Recessed lighting is by far the most popular way to light a kitchen. It has become a standard choice of lighting in contemporary homes.

Different Kitchen Designs – Deciding on the Right Kitchen Design For You

As much as possible, you would want your kitchen to be efficient, functional, and stylish all at the same time. Creating a bespoke kitchen design has now become popular so that one’s kitchen stands out and that it caters to the owner’s purpose and goal. But, there are things that you must know when building a new kitchen or remodeling your existing kitchen. Besides the furniture that you are going to put in it, the light fixtures, and color, you also have to decide on the layout that you prefer.

To help you with it, let us take a look at some of the basic types of kitchen layouts:

Single Line Kitchen

This is recommended for narrow rooms. This layout will produce an I-shaped kitchen, which results to having longer journey distances as you would have to walk from one end of the room to the other. To solve this, have the sink placed between the refrigerator and the stove. Moreover, place the refrigerator in such a way that the refrigerator door opens away from the sink.

L-Shaped Kitchen

A very popular kitchen layout, L-shaped kitchen allows for a good traffic flow. This type is recommended for a family kitchen or for entertaining guests as table and chairs can be accommodated in the same room. When having this type of layout, a preparation area must separate the sink, stove, and refrigerator.

Double L-Shaped Kitchen

This allows for plenty of cabinet space as well as counter space. It is generally used for large kitchens with two cooks. The problem that may arise with this layout is that it has two or more entering areas; hence, it may cause problems on traffic flow. This problem, however, may be addressed by having two separate working areas on each L of the kitchen.

Galley Kitchen

Because of its efficiency in the use of space, this layout is often used in apartments or houses where there is limited space. This space efficiency is also the reason why this type is preferred by many professional chefs. For smooth work flow, the cabinets and appliances can be placed on opposite walls. But, it must be made sure that the cleaning and cooking areas are on the same side to avoid accidents while hot pans are being moved between the sink and the cooktop.

G-Shaped Kitchen

Providing a fourth wall to use, a G-shaped kitchen is also recommended if you have more than one cook in the house. Moreover, the fourth wall may be utilized for a counter, island, and storage space.

U-Shaped Kitchen

This layout has three walls, allowing short distances around the kitchen and making it an ideal working kitchen. Furthermore, it allows plenty of worktop and storage space.

Island Kitchen

It is another popular layout as it allows you or the cook to entertain and socialize with guests or visitors while preparing. Thus, it is the ideal layout if you plan to entertain.

Getting the kitchen that you desire indeed requires some thinking and sound decision making. You just cannot say, hey I want this and poof there goes your desired kitchen. It is important that you equip yourself with the basic knowledge in kitchen design, just like the basic layouts. The internet, for example, is a powerful source of information. Make some research, ask questions, and set a clear picture on your mind what you really want, although it may slightly be altered as you go on with educating yourself about the basics in kitchen design. So get those hands and mind working, squeeze those creative juices, and make your dream kitchen a work in progress.

Five Cures For Ugly Kitchen Designs

Just because you have an ugly kitchen doesn’t mean that you have to leave it that way. There are many quick fixes that can spruce up the space – either for your own enjoyment or for resale value – without breaking the bank. From kitchen cabinets and flooring to cabinet hardware and lighting, there is always a solution to banish the ugly kitchen and to create a working, enjoyable space.

Ugly Kitchen Issue #1 – Fluorescent Ceiling Fixtures
Fluorescent ceiling fixtures are simply ghastly. They don’t light well and they make everything in the kitchen turn a slight shade of yellow. Rather, for an inexpensive option, take down the fluorescent fixtures and install a ceiling fan with lights. This will create better lighting in the kitchen, and will help to keep the air circulating and fresh. Ceiling fans are also a fantastic option for going “green” as they help to cut down on heating and air conditioning costs. Other ideas are to install track lighting and under the counter lighting, and to install a few hanging pendants over an island or work area, and a ceiling light or two in other areas of the kitchen.

Ugly Kitchen Issue #2 – Terrible Paint Colors
If you’ve purchased the home from someone else, you might find the kitchen has been left in a 1970s throw-back state. With green walls, yellow curtains and brown cabinets, you feel like you might turn into Mrs. Brady at any minute. Don’t despair. Painting is one of the easiest ways to quickly and easily transform the look of the kitchen. Tear down the curtains, first of all, and find a paint color that you enjoy for the kitchen walls. You can paint the walls white, or enjoy a light yellow hue for a cheery appeal. If the ugly kitchen cabinets are worth saving, you might decide to simply reface the cabinet fronts, or to paint the cabinets a more appealing white, black or light brown.

Ugly Kitchen Issue #3 – Outdated Cabinet Hardware
Now, this is one of the easiest ugly kitchen issues to remedy. If the present cabinet pulls or knobs are unseemly, simply remove them from the cabinets and find something more appealing! Keep in mind the existing pull or knob size and, for the easiest make-over job, install new cabinet hardware with the same drill center. Pewter hardware is often a great choice, as it matches with most cabinet doors, it doesn’t tarnish, and it actually looks even more lovely with continued handling. Look for cabinet hardware sales online, and buy in bulk.

Ugly Kitchen Issue #4 – Old Kitchen Furniture
Perhaps you’ve inherited a kitchen table and chairs set from the 1950s that is falling apart and hard on the eyes. You have a few options with this furniture. Certainly, you can throw it in the junk pile and declare that everyone will eat at the dining room table from now on. If the furniture is wood, why not have fun painting it? Paint each chair a different, vibrant color and then paint the table with a combination of these various hues. If you simply can’t salvage this set (or don’t want to), but you want something else in the kitchen, you have a few options. Start going to garage sales and looking for a kitchen set that you’ll enjoy. Purchase a kitchen island that has room to eat at it. Or, save up for that kitchen table of your dreams.

Ugly Kitchen Issue $5 – Breaking Kitchen Flooring
Many people try to ignore their ugly kitchen flooring for as long as possible, since it is quite expensive to replace the flooring. However, if you have awful ceramic tiles circa 1980, or linoleum that is screaming to be repaired, it’s time to consider new flooring options. If you have the money, hardwood floors are a beautiful choice, and one that will stay relatively clean without too much care. Cork is an interesting option, as it’s cheaper than hardware and can be a DIY project. Today, there are also many laminate flooring options that are inexpensive, easy to clean and cute to look at. Select something that will last for years of use, that is easy to clean and that will fit your specific family’s needs.

While these are but a few of the many ugly kitchen dilemmas that we all face at some point, they should help to pave the way to a much more attractive kitchen space. Even if you only have the time and money to give the kitchen a paint job and some new cabinet pulls, you’ll be amazed by the difference that a few key changes can make.

Kitchen Design and Renovation Ideas

It is important that you know how each material and design option is crucial as it determines the space, functionally and aesthetically.

Moderate, rejuvenate, innovate, contemplate. This is the mantra to renovate a kitchen. While one can find ample options and suggestions, putting together value based information before the start of the renovation project can be the best companion for all the right answers one seeks for a new kitchen.

It is very easy to fall into the trap of being lured by the most exclusive looking kitchen and spend a fortune on it only to realise in due course of time that it never really suits you.

Trends are only an indication of popularity and for spaces like a kitchen, it is recommended to look into one’s lifestyle and budget than look at what’s popular. Lifestyle and budget are key factors that should moderate the renovation project. Ask yourself some basic questions first: How do you use your kitchen? How much time will you spend in the kitchen every day?

How many of you will be using the kitchen at a time? Will you all be dining there as well? How much of storage do you need and most importantly what sort of storage? Let a clear understanding of your lifestyle guide your choices. Budget is imperative to the choices as well as determining the extent of the renovation.

Getting a new look for the kitchen need not entail a complete overhaul. At times, a revamp of a surface or interesting additions such as accessories can bring in the much needed renewal. The wall surface can be the most apparent to start with. Retiling the walls can be a start.

While tiles are useful when it comes to maintenance, one has to be careful about the joints and the height to which the tiles are being laid. The pattern on the tiles are important for creating the ambience of the space and in making the kitchen seem larger or smaller than it actually is.

Light, especially natural, adds exceptional warmth to the kitchen. Planning for a window in the kitchen adds value, preferably away from the cooking area. Even if the natural light can be filtered in through overhead openings, it should be accommodated.

Integrating light fixtures as accessories is good too. Colours matter. They rule the psyche. Each colour has a perception significance, which has made its impression on our minds over centuries. Colour affects our moods, whether it is in our living and working environment or in the clothing we wear. For a kitchen, colour is vital. Be it through paints or stains of the wooden furniture or the cabinetry, colours can revive a space.

Most often, one ends up in predictable types of kitchens. The layout of the work areas usually follows the conventional open, L shape, U shape, corridor or island kitchen types. While these are tried, tested and successful options, one should innovate and explore combinations of these types for an effective use of space and to evolve a personalised and interesting kitchen.

Segregating a pantry and breakfast area from the actual cooking area, exploring lighting fixtures as accessories, placing planters, integrating a music system in the kitchen; these are some “out of the ordinary ways” of setting up a kitchen. However, maintaining the work triangle is important for ease of work.

Innovation will surely add interest and more importantly personalise it making the use of the kitchen more delightful. However, the path to remain innovative yet generic could also be tried if one anticipates renting the space in the future.

In either case, the exclusiveness and identity of the kitchen is established.

Certain parameters have to be contemplated upon for any kitchen design. Ease of maintenance, quality and durability of material and hardware used, ease of operation and most importantly ergonomics are principal factors. All these have set standards but it is advisable to determine them based on one’s requirement especially the height of the countertops and overhead cabinetry.

Maintenance of different areas of the kitchen, especially the worktops and the underneath surface of the cabinets are critical. The worktops are the most used surface in a kitchen and the choice of the material for this has to be carefully evaluated. Stone tops like granite are the conventional ones. While they do not require a lot of maintenance, they can be aesthetically limited in terms of colour and pattern. The stone tops which are porous can become cold surfaces.

Acrylic solid surface countertops are a competitive option. Composed of nature’s minerals and acrylic polymers, this nonporous solid surface can be fabricated and installed with invisible seams.

The choice of colours and patterns are plenty and can be customised as well. Fixture choices determine the durability in kitchen apart from the worktop. The hardware used, especially of the cabinetry, hinges of shutters and drawer pulls, are the most taken for granted elements in a kitchen.

These need attention and their detailing holds the key to the kitchen’s longevity. The search for exclusivity and identity reigns in every section of the building industry. Base your kitchen renovation on personal choices than on market forces, making the smart picks to give your kitchen the right ambience it needs.