One of the most important parts of any renovation project is selecting finishes. Your kitchen remodel involves countless decisions, but choosing the ideal finishes will have the greatest effect on your satisfaction post-renovation. Overwhelmed by the options and having trouble coming to a mutual decision? Check out these tips on choosing the perfect finishes for your kitchen remodel, countertops, cabinets, backsplashes and flooring that suits your tastes and lifestyle.
Countertops provide the largest visible surface area in most kitchens, especially with a kitchen island included in the design. Choose your countertops first, and keep in mind these important factors:
Some kitchen designers recommend using a contrasting countertop on the island. This could work in some instances, but most times a single material works best to provide a consistent, clear atmosphere. If you're leaning toward a contrast, stick with a slight variation in color or pattern, as opposed to stark contrasts.
Cabinets are next in line beyond countertop selection, although some designers make this selection first. Because cabinets hang at eye level the color, texture and profile are vital to the look and feel of your kitchen remodel. Cabinet design, including dimensions, hardware and extra features, come second in line to appearance.
Natural, simple materials work best for casual kitchens, while sleek cabinets fit into a modern space. Look at the door profile first, and consider which style you are drawn to. Solid wood cabinets provide a lasting investment, and can be stained or painted almost any color. Melamine or veneer-coated particleboard cabinetry is more affordable, but comes in a limited selection and will only last for 10 to 15 years.
Add depth and layering to your kitchen design by mixing in another material in small bits. Use door and drawer hardware to create visual interest, and incorporate architectural details for depth. A contrasting or complementary material can be used for trim and molding, transforming even the plainest cabinets into something extraordinary.
Plan your cabinet layout with your lifestyle and eating habits in mind. Many modern families are finding that deep drawers and pull out pantry shelving enhance kitchen efficiency, while others want the class and display value of glass-faced cabinets. Still others combine open shelving with casual cabinetry for an old-world feel. Consider how your family lives day to day, and lay out your cabinetry in a way that facilitates and complements your lifestyle.
Consider extending your kitchen cabinets into other areas of the home as well, to create a seamless look in your main living space. Tall cabinets work in the mudroom, while a desk and cabinet unit can be used as an impromptu home office in the family room.
Additional Features in Your Kitchen Remodel
Once you have picked out the ideal countertop and cabinetry, it's time to pull it all together with additional features like a backsplash, flooring, furniture and appliances.
The perfect backsplash blends the look and feel of your countertop with the texture and styling of your cabinets. Use this space to bring these two features together, or display their contrast. Choose from the most popular backsplash selections on the market, such as:
Flooring options center on durable, low maintenance options like tile and vinyl. Laminate and engineered hardwood provide the comfort and warmth of wood without the expense and potential hassle of solid hardwood. Both can be used in the kitchen, provided all spills are wiped up immediately and only the proper cleaning methods are used.
A patterned floor hides dirt better, and central vacuum outlets can be installed within the baseboards for fast, efficient clean up. Underfloor radiant heating is another possibility in the kitchen, to keep your bare feet toasty and energy bills down.
Choose furniture and appliances according to your tastes and lifestyle. What works for a magazine photo shoot may not work for your growing family. Investing in quality furniture is a wise move, but remember to purchase extra seating and opt for expandable tables for easier entertaining. Bar stools help to make use of a kitchen island or breakfast nook, while storage benches provide extra space in a bustling family kitchen.
Purchase matching appliances with decent warranty and reliability ratings. Try to stick with those appliances you will use on a regular basis; warming ovens may be nice to have, but they are essential a waste of money when left unused.
Choose your ideal kitchen finishes, such as countertops, cabinets, backsplashes, flooring and furniture, to ensure this well used space is comfortable and functional. Your kitchen remodel will be well worth the investment when you make sure to include the perfect finishes.