Jun
18

Finding Space in A Condo Kitchen

finding-space-in-a-condo-kitchen

Learning to love your condo kitchen can be challenging if you’re always disappointed in the lack of space. It’s easy to become envious of other people’s extravagant kitchens. But it is possible to create an elegant look in a condo kitchen. You just need to start by finding space in it.

Appliances

Using condo kitchen appliances are the best way to find space. Most refrigerators and stoves come in smaller, apartment-size versions which will help free up space. They’re extremely practical because chances are if you live in a small condo, then you’re only cooking for one or two people.

As for other appliances, such as a dishwasher and a microwave, there are definitely smaller condo kitchen sizes available, but it’s important to consider if you really need them. Yes, a dishwasher is extremely convenient, but if it’s just one or two people who work, then chances are there won’t be too many dishes. However, if you like to entertain a lot, and hate washing up afterwards, then a dishwasher might be a good investment.

As for a microwave, while once considered the future of cooking, more and more people are actually ditching them for extra space. Leftovers can be re-heated in the oven, and who actually wants to eat a TV dinner?

Go up

Make sure that all of the wall space in your condo kitchen is being used. Start at the bottom, above the counter top, and go all the way to the ceiling. A magnetic knife rack can be easily installed on a wall, and keeps knives safe and secured. Install a shelf over the stove for spices. Use the tops of cabinets to store seasonal or fancy dishware that doesn’t have to be accessed on a daily basis.

Do you really need that?

The best way to find space in a condo kitchen is to be truly ruthless when it comes to stuff. This can be hard, especially if you are downsizing. Start with small appliances, that really aren’t very small. A panini press is a great tool, but if you only use it once a year, try to toast your sandwich in the oven instead. A griddle makes sense if you are cooking pancakes for a large family, but if it’s just one or two people, then a large frying pan will suffice. Think about how often you use each small appliance. Then, test out alternatives. You don’t need to throw out everything right away, but see if you can make do with other devices.

It’s a good idea to look at small objects, too. You can find different gadgets to peel an avocado, an orange, and an apple, but you could also just use a knife. Little things add up to a large amount of space, so think twice about how useful something actually seems. 

Jun
18

How To Decorate A Vintage Kitchen

how-to-decorate-a-vintage-kitchen

Everything old is new again, and this applies to your kitchen. A popular theme for kitchens is a vintage look, which can leave you wondering just how to decorate a vintage kitchen. Here are some areas to focus on to get a classic look.

Bold patterns

Vintage screams patterns. Vintage can actually mean a lot of different eras, from Victorian to 1970s, so be sure to pick a decade and stick to it. Whichever era you decide on will influence your pattern choice. Florals denote a more rustic, turn of the century charm, while paisleys will give a 1970s vibe.

To decorate a vintage kitchen with bold patterns, try to stick to one focus area. Otherwise, the patterns can become to distracting, especially in a smaller space. Options include floor tile, backsplash tile, or wallpaper. It might be a good idea to start with your patterned area, and then design around it. This way you can pick up accent colors within the tile or wallpaper, and coordinate around them.

Accessories

Accessories are at the heart of planning to decorate a vintage kitchen, and are arguable the most fun to pick out. Again, your preferred design era will dictate the accessories. Classic ideas include a china tea set. It’s nice to have an open shelf for your tea set for others to admire. There’s no sense hiding a beautiful set behind a wooden door so that no one ever sees it. If possible, find a plate rack where you can show off china plates. This can go on the side of an island or on a wall.

If you’re going for a farmhouse feel, be sure to include practical elements. Canning is an essential part of farm life, so use mason jars as both accents and to store food items in. Check out local antique stores for a bread box or even a butter churn. Galvanized metal pails can act as a basket or a place to plant accent flowers. This is a chance to really repurpose antique items.

Authentic Touches

To truly capture a vintage feel in a kitchen, look for large items that seal the deal. Apron front sinks give a rustic feel and there are now many modern choices in this design. You can even decide to go all out and have a fabric curtain under the sink.

If your vintage era is the 1950s, look for appliances that give off this feel. There are a few brands that carry new, but vintage-inspired designs, although their rarity is reflected in their price. But, if you can budget for it, the look will be well worth it. It’s always great to have both the fridge and stove matching, but no one will fault you if you can only incorporate one or the other into your design. And even though dishwashers are a modern convenience, their necessity may just trump any design ideals.

May
18

3 Types of Bathroom Sinks

3 types of bathroom sinks

Bathroom sinks can make or break the design of a bathroom. They are the focal point which is why it is important to choose one that best represents the style you want to create. Whether it is traditional or modern, eclectic or tame, there are many to choose from. Here are three types of popular bathroom sinks and what they are best used for.

Pedestal

Pedestal sinks are unique in that they convey an image of both a vintage home and a modern home. They are perfect if you have a small space and are often found in powder rooms. There are many designs to choose from for the pedestal, and something for all décor choices.

Pedestal sinks usually have their plumbing concealed within the pedestal, although because there is some space between the pedestal and the wall, some plumbing will be exposed. This can result in a bit of a choice when it comes to decorating. Sometimes the same paint color is used from the wall to paint over any exposed pipes, to try to blend everything in together. Other times the pipes are left exposed as a more industrial look.

Cabinet

Cabinet vanities and bathroom sinks are the most popular option, and within this category there are a lot of options. Sinks can be drop-in or where the rim sits on top of the counter. They can also be undermounted, where the rim sits under the counter for a more modern look. Sinks can also sit atop cabinets as either a glass or ceramic vessel.

The biggest benefit of cabinet bathroom sinks is that they offer storage underneath. This is great for families that need extra storage, and can even take the place of a linen closet. Most cabinets are built attached to the wall, but if you want more modern design, there are many pre-built cabinets that can be purchased and assembled in your bathroom.

Wall-Mounted

There is perhaps nothing more modern than a wall-mounted sink. Its beauty is in its simplicity. Seemingly jutting out from nowhere, wall-mounted sinks force you to remove all clutter. They can be thick or thin, and the taps can be of any choosing.

What is especially nice about wall-mounted sinks is that their plumbing is minimal. While there still needs a pipe for the water to flow, unlike cabinet sinks, wall-mounted sinks include a pip that is about function as well as design. Instead of typical plastic, the pipe is often made of metal. And as a design bonus, the finish of the pipe should match the finish of the tap. Therefore, if you have a brushed nickel tap, you should also have a brushed nickel pipe.

Wall-mounted sinks are definitely not for everyone. There is absolutely no storage space, so they are not a great idea for families. It can also be hard to retro-fit them in an existing bathroom, and are best built in new homes.

May
18

How To Keep Bathrooms Organized

how to keep bathrooms organized

A bathroom can be an overlooked room in the house. After all, we don’t really spend a lot of time in them. But it should still be a place worth investing some time in to make it an extension of your home. Bathrooms don’t have to be cluttered places where products are just deposited. Rather, they can be organized, calming rooms. Here are some simple ways to keep bathrooms organized so that you can feel good when you enter them.

Be Selective

Before you start any organization process, be sure to first go through all your items. If you can, remove everything from the space itself so that you’re not merely moving things around. Take all your bathroom items from the vanity, shower, and closet, and move them to a different room. Then, make three piles: keep, garbage, store in a different area.

You may find that extra, unopened bottles of shampoo are best placed in a linen closet. If you have a little bit of shampoo left in a bottle, be sure to use it before moving on to the next bottle. Go through your makeup. Makeup actually does expire, so ask yourself if you’re really going to wear that blue eyeshadow ever again.

Keep Things Hidden

It really is amazing how much space a medicine cabinet can have inside of it. And what’s great about them is that they’ve been updated to reflect more modern tastes. A medicine cabinet works as both a mirror and storage, so it’s a win-win for smaller bathrooms. You can use it to keep medicine in, but also anything that you don’t want to leave on the counter.

Use Shelves

If don’t have much space in bathroom, don’t be afraid to go up. Shelves are a great way to add organizational space. Don’t use too many shelves as they can overwhelm the area. Also, take into consideration the material you want to use. In small spaces, glass shelves are a good idea as they won’t add to the clutter. The area over the toilet is often unused space, and a great place for shelves. If you have a lot of people that use the same shower, there are a wide variety of shower shelves and caddies that you can purchase to keep bathrooms organized.

Keep it Clean

Bathrooms that are clean are more likely to be organized. That’s because a clean space represents pride and when you’re proud of something you’re more likely to take care of it, including keeping it organized. It’s really quite cyclical. A bathroom should be seen as an oasis, and not just a room of necessity. Think about the tone you want your bathroom to convey and work towards that. Be conscientious of this any time you leave the room. Perform a mental check list. Are the towels hung up? Has the shower door been wiped down? Is the lid on the toothpaste on? All these small actions will add up and allow you to maintain your sanctuary.

Apr
18

What To Know About Butcherblock Countertops

what to know about butcherblock countertops

If you are looking for a wow statement with your kitchen, look no further than butcherblock countertops. They are elegant, warm, and also practical. Here is everything you need to know about butcherblock countertops.

What are the different types?

There are three basic types of butcherblock countertops, and it’s important to know about them they all have a very different look.

Edge grain is the most popular and the most practical. The edges of the wood are placed in an upright position. The result is a more together look that is less busy.

Face grain is a very decorative look. Here, the wide surfaces of the wood are placed upright so that you can see the grain of the wood. The emphasis is on visual appearance and not practicality as it can be harder to use as a cutting surface.

End grain produces a checkerboard pattern. This is accomplished by placing ends of the board facing upwards. While visually stimulating, it can be a lot for large areas. As a result, end grain butcherblock is often used in a smaller area of the counter. It is very durable and perfect for meal prep.

What are they made of?

There are many options for the type of wood for butcherblock countertops. In the end, it all comes down to taste and budget.

Maple is one of the most popular woods as it is strong and has a nice, neutral color. It has a clear grain which adds to a striking look in a countertop

Cherry is a great option for butcherblock countertops if you want a pop of color. It has a red tint to the brown color, and can add a bit of warmth and personality to a kitchen

Zebrawood is definitely not for everyone, but if you want a bold statement with your butcherblock, then this is the way to go. The black stripes that run through the tan wood do indeed look like a zebra. If you’re considering this type of wood, be sure to layout a picture of it over your existing countertop to make sure it is what you want.

Bamboo is a great option if you want a checkerboard pattern. It can even be steamed so that there is a variation in colors which makes a great design. The nice thing about bamboo is that it is very sustainable, and a great option if you want to make your kitchen eco-friendly

How do you protect them?

When deciding on butcherblock countertops, decide if you will be using them as a meal prep surface. If you are, then they should be sealed with a mineral oil. This means more upkeep in the long run, as they will need to be re-oiled.

If, however, you don’t intend to use the butcherblock for cutting or chopping, then they can be sealed with a resin. This protects the wood for longer, leading to less upkeep.