Kitchen design encompasses a whole lot more than just installing custom kitchen cabinets or painting them
A friend of mine was all gung-ho about shifting to her new home. When I met her recently, I found her immersed headlong into making her swanky new kitchen look absolutely flawless. It was a bit of a revelation for me, someone who was under the impression (a completely wrong one, I’ve realized of late) that kitchen design was only restricted to installing custom kitchen cabinets or just painting them with some wild, whacky colors.
People like me are content with sticking to conventional ideas, but I guess times are changing. More and more homeowners are looking for a reprieve from the traditional and are breaking new ground with some really innovative, highly creative kitchen design ideas. Well, its time to ring in the new.
Kitchens have a whole new meaning today
Lets all take a trip down memory lane. Remember the kitchen in the homes that we spent our formative years? More often than not, it was just a service area where Mom slogged it out all on her own, while the rest of the household continued to be immersed in their respective fields of interest. But today’s new-age Moms are certainly a departure from their 70’s counterparts. So it’s no surprise that kitchens today are more than just a place where tantalizing delicious meals get prepared. It’s about interaction with friends and family alike. So whether it is Mom giving final touches to her presentation, settling pending bills, feeding the equally famished pets or even helping kids with their home work, its all done in today’s modern kitchens. And yes, it is also used to prepared meals. The kitchen is arguably the most important part of every home. For the uninitiated like me, there’s more to kitchen design or remodeling than just a few deft strokes used in painting custom kitchen cabinets or installing brand new ones. There are innumerable ways in which you can infuse life in to your kitchen and make it an extension of your vibrant personality and character.
It’s a great deal of brainstorming
If you thought kitchen design or remodeling was just about plush interiors with some crazy colors thrown in for good measure, then think again. There are scores of facets that need to be worked out thoroughly before you can have a successful and long-lasting kitchen design on hand. Just like while designing your dream bathroom , every minute detail from the tiles to the shower faucet get highlighted, similarly, in the kitchen design or remodeling project, you just cannot afford to leave anything to chance. From the kitchen flooring, kitchen lighting, kitchen backsplash, kitchen countertops, kitchen cabinets, custom kitchen islands to even the kitchen furniture, inclusive of the rather insignificant looking kitchen chair cushions and kitchen chair pads, need comprehensive planning and consideration. Even easy to ignore aspects like a bronze kitchen faucet or copper kitchen faucet, something that we all take for granted, need to be highlighted. Before you give a concrete definition to your ideas, make sure your goals are well-defined, costs are well within limits and all the dimensions are worked out correctly. This apart, there are other considerations as well that need to be looked in to before work begins on the kitchen of your dreams:
- Space considerations: Since you certainly don’t want people bumping in to each other and need to permit free movement, make sure you opt for fitted kitchens that occupy less space.
- Family lifestyle: If it is a kitchen to be frequented by just one person, it is sure to be rarely used. But that’s not going to be the case with a large family for whom it will be more of an activity hub with lots of space for groceries, crockery, cutlery, kitchen equipment and area for seating.
- Seating area: This really depends on the dimensions of the kitchen space. If it’s a small kitchen, you may just be able to manage to squeeze in a small breakfast bar. But there’s more than just the conventional dining table that a large kitchen can hold.
- Fitting the refrigerator: It does not require great powers of imagination to understand that the refrigerator needs to be placed such that it allows free access by one and all.
- Shaping the future: The shape of the kitchen will go a long way in determining the future of the space. You can opt for either a U or L-shaped kitchen, 2 way gallery or even a gallery kitchen
- Lest we forget: Ventilation, skylights, service points for water and electricity are also equally important when it comes designing the kitchen.
Kitchens that will stun the world
If you’re looking beyond the realms of stainless steel kitchen cabinets, stunning colors or kitchen chair cushions and kitchen chair pads that revel in the unconventional, then it’s about time that you grabbed that hot cup of coffee and checked out some of these styles that are sure to allow your innate persona to take centre stage:
- Contemporary: For those who prefer their designs without any fuss, this style of kitchen is quite something. The emphasis is on clean, minimalistic horizontal lines with hardly any ornamentation. The profound impact of man-made materials is unmistakable, be it stainless steel, frosted glass, concrete or laminate. The styles from European heavyweights like Italy and Germany are extremely enchanting.
- Country: One look at the bright, vivid colors that are an inherent part of the country kitchen, and you know you’re captivated for life. These kitchen styles are replete with painted and glazed cabinets, metal and wire inserts, woven baskets and floral motifs. Your guests are sure to be floored by the decorative shelves and moldings. French and English country or Tuscan kitchens are a rage with those looking to create that homespun look in their kitchens.
- Old World: If you’re keen to trace your roots back to pre-17th century Europe, then make sure your kitchen echoes with the European kitchen design that flourished in the Tuscan, Mediterranean, Medieval and Normandy areas. With stone floors, brick walls, copper or pewter accents, your trip down memory lane is complete.
- Rustic: If your heart swells with pride when you think of your Native American roots, then check out this kitchen style that has a 100% regular American flair, be it Southwestern or Pacific Northwest. The rich texture of the pine or alder wood cabinets looks as stunning as the warm shades like green, brown, yellow and red.
- Traditional: There’s more to the Victorian and Edwardian era than just the stiff upper lip. The extremely elegant kitchen styles that were prevalent in the 18th, 19th and the early part of the 20th century, get a whole new definition. Feast your eyes on the cabinets in cherry, walnut and mahogany. The antique fixtures and appliances are more than just great accessories.
- Transitional: This style is perfect for those that want the best of both worlds. It is the ideal amalgamation of the modern and traditional. On one hand, you have bamboo flooring but at the same time, there’s no hesitation in displaying the kitchen appliances. The understated ornamentation of the fixtures and moldings is a perfect foil for the lighter color palette.
In addition to these awe-inspiring kitchen styles, there are several ways to raise the bar, so to speak. Eye candy addicts can make a bold and dramatic statement with kitchen cabinets that not only look fetching, but are also equipped with drawers without handles. This coupled with potfillers (faucets used exclusively for filling pots in the kitchen, for the uninitiated) and eco-friendly knife holders, are sure to convert your guests in to hyperventilating, dazed masses.
Show me the money
Whether it is a kitchen remodel project that involves installing or even painting custom kitchen cabinets or the creation of a completely new kitchen, it is absolutely incorrect to think that it’s going to leave your bankrupt. Believe it or not, a kitchen makeover can be done with consummate ease in $1000 too, all this despite the spiraling kitchen cabinet prices and kitchen remodeling costs. But to figure all that out, there’s lots of help at hand. The Internet is one place that is loaded with millions of time-tested, innovative and refreshingly creative ideas on kitchen design. From measuring dimensions to designing your countertops, from selecting the right color schemes for your kitchen chair cushions and kitchen chair pads to evaluating the materials for the counter top, navigating through these sections can be a pretty insightful experience. What’s more, there are sections on faucet repair and selection too. For the creatively inclined, the free kitchen design software is quite a handy tool. Your creative instincts are sure to work overtime.
Whether you decide to design the kitchen on your own or hire the services of a designer, kitchen designing and remodeling is certainly not as simple as changing a leaky shower faucet. But it is no rocket science either. All that is required is a little bit of patience and determination to create a kitchen of your dreams that is the perfect getaway for your friends and family. After all, there’s nothing like a sumptuous dinner with your kids in a kitchen that redefines luxury and style.