The kitchen should be the heart of the home. It is a place that creates food for family dinners. It is a place to gather, to chat, to laugh. As such, the kitchen should be a welcoming, inspiring place. If you feel like you might be time to reno your kitchen, but aren’t quite, sure, here’s an easy checklist of signs that your kitchen is in need of a renovation.
When you walk into your kitchen, what do you feel? Are you ready to crack open your cookbooks and try a new recipe? Or will be it be soup and toast for dinner again? You don’t have to be a gourmet chef to feel inspired by your kitchen. But the room should make you want to prepare the next family meal. Your kitchen should be an extension of yourself and it’s tired and worn, then chances are you could be feeling the same way about yourself. If your kitchen is uninspiring, it may be time for a renovation.
Is it possible for two people to cook in your kitchen and not get in each other’s way? Or, are you constantly running into open drawers and having to bend around cabinet doors? Does your fridge open smoothly, or is there a too-close cabinet on one side? A poor layout greatly disrupts the flow of the kitchen. If the only storage space is at the top of the cabinets and you’re always having to use a ladder to access anything, then your kitchen really isn’t working for you.
It can feel defeating to work with a poor kitchen layout. And even harder to imagine how to change it. A design expert is a valuable tool in this instance. It’s ok to ask for help. Those with design experience can help to reshape your kitchen and offer alternatives that don’t always require the demolition of a wall.
A kitchen’s purpose changes with the dynamics of a family. With children, it’s beneficial to have a Tupperware drawer, or two, for easy access. For teenagers, a large, well-stocked pantry is in order. And for empty-nesters, more storage space for dinner parties, or maybe alternately, converted space to a desk or book area.
While it’s not practical to complete a full kitchen reno every time your family dynamics change, if your kitchen no longer works for your present circumstances, it’s a good time to think about a renovation. We often let parts of the home get a bit shabbier when there are small kids running around, dropping toys, or making messes. But once you’re out of the toddler stage, it’s a good time to look at your kitchen and create a new mixture of design and function.
There is so much you can do with kitchen cabinets. These functional spaces should also look good and with a bit of imagination, you can make your kitchen cabinets be a true amalgamation of form and function.
You’ve spent a while collecting beautiful plates. You’ve inherited a funky glassware set from your Grandma. Why hide these items behind a piece of wood? Open shelving showcases your prized possessions and gives them new life. While open shelving can be a bit overwhelming for the entire kitchen, even having a few strategically placed shelves can really add depth to the room.
Let’s be honest. Not all of your dishware is meant to be on display. Stained coffee cups and chipped bowls are a normal part of the kitchen. It’s ok to keep these behind closed doors. But open shelving is perfect when you have a few pieces you’re really proud of. It also solves the dilemma of not having a china cabinet. Most houses don’t have the room for a stand alone piece of furniture. By bringing this element into your kitchen, you can keep your most important dishware and glassware on display.
If you want to display your kitchen possessions but aren’t sure about open shelving, glass cabinets are a happy medium. They still allow you to see what’s in the cabinet but add a bit of a buffer. If you have any figurines you want to show off, or even just a nice set of wine glasses, a glass cabinet or two add an extra dimension to the kitchen. Whenever you can incorporate different textures to a room you instantly add depth and personality.
Looking to really wow the next guests that walk through your kitchen? Why not install copper-faced cabinets. Ditch the traditional wood and instead use copper. This unique color adds some great depth to the cabinets and definitely brings a wow factor. Copper has long been used as a kitchen accent, including with pots and pans, so it’s natural to extend its use to cabinets.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the design choices, note that most copper cabinets are actually inlays. They rectangle section of copper is usually encased in a border of wood, which makes the metal blend in a bit better with the rest of the décor.
Need storage space but not sure where to find it? How about the kitchen? Traditional kitchens used to leave a gap between the top of cabinets and the ceiling. This space was then either taken up with knick-knacks or dust. Modern kitchens will usually have the top cabinet reach all the way to the ceiling. Ultra modern kitchens will not include a row of small cabinets that reach the ceiling.
These small, often square cabinets are the perfect antidote to cabinet doors that have become too long. They close off the top space and make it the perfect area for storage.
Condos are the perfect solution when you’re on a budget and don’t need a lot of space. You can still have all the amenities needed for a loving home, without the hassle of yard work and maintenance. The tricky part of a condo is ensuring that there is enough light and space to make it both functional and lively. The kitchen can be an especially hard place to make bright enough that you want to spend a lot of time in it. Here, then, are three ideas to brighten up a condo kitchen.
Lights, camera, action
Need to brighten up a condo kitchen? The easiest way is to invest in proper lighting. Be sure to vary your types of lighting. Track lighting is great for the overall space of the kitchen. Also look for area-specific lighting. Equally as important as the lighting itself are lightbulbs. Purchase lightbulbs that are at least 60 Watts in strength. Try to avoid blue light or stark white colors as this can make the room look to clinical. Warm white lights are nice but can make the area too cozy. Instead, opt for a bright white light. You may have to try a few lightbulbs to find the ones that work best for your condo kitchen.
Sometimes you need proof that your condo kitchen is bright enough. And what better proof than plants? Plants need light to survive. So, if your plants are thriving, then you must have enough light in your kitchen. You can try your hand at a herb garden, but many herbs are actually quite fickle. If you don’t have a naturally green thumb, or don’t think you’ll have the time to invest in them, there are other plants that are perfect for a kitchen.
Common plants include aloe vera and English ivy. They are hearty and can withstand a lot. You can also try fragrant white jasmine or the good looking spider plant. Place the plants in small containers in the brightest spots of your kitchen. Check the watering instructions as they vary by plant.
The only thing you want to consider if you’re getting plants for your condo kitchen is that they could start to clutter an already small space. Avoid just placing them on the counter as chances are you don’t have much counter space to begin with. Instead, look to your walls. Can you place a shelf, or better yet, a plant-specific holder? When you go vertical you can leave a lot more room on your counter for other important gadgets.
The most obvious color to use to brighten up a condo kitchen is white. However, this can become a bit boring. You can definitely use color paint in a condo kitchen, but stick to light colors as dark colors can overwhelm the space. There are many shades of yellow, blue, and green that you can use that will make your condo kitchen shine.
Deciding on a bathroom reno is a big step. You want to make the most out of your money and your space, so hiring the best bathroom reno company is important. Before you start the process, here are some important details to be aware of. Remember, the better the communication with your reno company, the better your expectations will be.
The design process
Sometimes a bathroom reno company will have design experts on their staff. Sometimes they won’t. It’s important that you begin your bathroom reno with a design already in mind. Do your research and think about the big picture of the room along with the little designs. But even if your bathroom reno company are experts in design, they will have seen plenty of renovations. Don’t be afraid to pick their brains and ask what they’ve seen that works well, and more importantly, what really doesn’t work.
If you have a specific fixture in mind for your bathroom reno, you can supply it. In fact, before you agree on a plan with your bathroom reno company, be sure to go over the materials with them. Who will be supplying what? Keep in mind that whenever the company gets to the specific part of the reno, the materials will need to be there. If you’re in charge of on aspect of the material, and it’s not there, the company may have to move on to meet the schedule.
Scheduling a bathroom reno is important. You’ll want it done as soon as possible so as to minimize any disruptions to your life. But keep in mind that your bathroom reno company has other projects they will be working on. Again, communication is key. Talk about when they can start and how long the project will take. Talk about time allowances and what could possibly help speed up the project.
Obviously, the price needs to be discussed with hiring a bathroom reno company. But the payment structure should also be discussed. Most companies will allow for partial payment, or holdbacks. This means that payment is due only when certain parts of the project are completed. This protects the homeowner as it means if only demolition has happened, then you only have to pay for demolition. It also works for the reno company. If they aren’t paid along the way, then they won’t keep working.
Hiring a bathroom reno company is all about trust. You are entrusting not only your money but your home and as such should expect that the job is completely satisfactorily. Be sure to check out online reviews about a company prior to hiring them. You should also be able to see a catalog of completed projects to see the company’s craftsmanship.
When you think about all the bathrooms in your home, which one gets used the most? Most likely it’s the small powder room on the main floor. While it doesn’t have a shower or bath, it’s proximity to living space means its used by both family members and guests. The powder room, however, is often overlooked. It’s small, doesn’t have a lot to offer, and is more function than form. But it can actually be the star of your home.
1. Go bold with the walls
Small spaces tend to have the most neutral of colors, but what if you were to go the opposite way? Try a bold color, like deep raspberry or cobalt blue. Or, alternately, try wallpaper with a funky pattern. The other fixtures, like the toilet and vanity, will be neutral, so they will offset the bold walls.
While many people try to match the powder room with the rest of the main floor’s décor, this doesn’t really have to be. Most often the door remains closed, so the wall colors won’t intrude on the rest of the area.
2. Quality fixtures
With a powder room, you can invest in higher quality fixtures because there are so few of them. The bathroom taps can have a nice, sleek style. Make sure your towel rack and paper holder match. And for all your metal fixtures, stick to one style. Choose either a shiny chrome or a burnished nickel. There’s not enough room to mix and match the finishes.
3. Power up your toilet
One of the easiest ways to conserve water is with a low-flow toilet. Purchase one that meets your budget, but that will also help save you on water usage. It’s a great way for family members to become aware of the water that is used for everyday tasks. It’s also a nice reminder for guests that stop by, and might even inspire them to make more environmentally friendly home purchases.
4. Create storage
There’s nothing worse than running out of a towel while in the powder room, or worse, toilet paper. But a bit of well placed storage can help with that. Most powder rooms are small, which limits the amount of space. And, if you have a pedestal sink, then there won’t be any built-in storage. Time to be creative. Narrow baskets that fit between the sink and the wall can slide in and hold a number of items. Shelves on the wall can hold smaller objects, such as soap and hand towels. You don’t have to be limited by what is already in place. Instead, you can get creative and make the space work for you.