Whether your kitchen is a fixer-upper from decades ago or your laminate countertop and linoleum floor have seen better days, it may be time to modernize your kitchen. With all of the new ideas out on the market from creative uses of colors, modern appliances and innovative materials there is a world of kitchen amenities to bring your kitchen into the present day of modernization. If you are trying to sell your home, or if you plan on staying in your home for generations to come – use these 10 creative ways to make your old and dull kitchen feel new and inviting once again.
1. Replace old metals with modern innovative alternatives:
Older kitchens were made with materials that were popular decades ago, but with manufacturer’s coming out with innovative materials there is no reason not to try them out in your updated kitchen. Metals are a hot trend in kitchen design from chrome, brushed aluminum, stainless steel, nickel and copper – try these materials out in your cabinetry hardware, pendant lighting, and range hood options.
2. Change out old flooring with wood or resilient materials
Flooring is one of those areas of your kitchen that is often forgotten but consumes your entire kitchen. While you may think it won’t make a difference try switching from your traditional rolled vinyl or linoleum flooring to a resilient material such as wood, tile, or stone. These materials will last longer as well as boost the value of your home. In recent years ceramic tile that looks just like hardwood has become popular as well as travertine and slate.
3. Remove upper cabinetry for a sleek kitchen
In older homes the trend was to include walls and walls of upper cabinetry to house dishes and cookware and often times these cabinets consumed the eye. If you want to increase the visual space of your kitchen, consider removing the upper cabinets and just leaving the lower ones. This frees up the wall for adding color, or even attaching floating or open shelving for a few decorative items and dishware. You will be surprised how modern your kitchen will feel once your upper cabinets have been removed and the human eye will enjoy the space too!
4. Change countertops to innovative materials
Countertops are another material that consume a large portion of real estate in your kitchen. The kinds of countertop surfaces options out there are mind boggling from solid surfacing varieties that consist of resin, polymers to natural stone varieties such as marble and granite, there are a plethora of options in the countertop market. Over the last few years designers are becoming more creative and are using materials that used to be considered only for structural purposes now for countertops. Concrete, brick, tile, and aggregate options bring innovative appeal to your updated kitchen.
5. Incorporate modern seating inside the kitchen
Your kitchen is most likely the busiest area of your home. They call it the heart of your home due to it’s traffic as well as bringing the family together for family meals – the kitchen is the “pulse” of your home. To modernize your old kitchen, consider bringing seating from the dining room into your space. Whether you choose countertop stools and seats at a breakfast bar or you opt for a banquette or bench at a window side table, seating can make your kitchen have a whole new appeal. Busy families with children doing homework to parents entertaining friends while cooking make seating essential in your modern-day kitchen.
6. Replace appliances with energy efficient ones
Let’s face it – we are in the green age of saving resources and your kitchen is a great place to start. Energy efficient appliances should replace your old ones to bring modern styling into your kitchen and to save water and energy from your household expenses. Consider replacing plumbing fixtures as well – low flow kitchen faucets can save water and with the new styles available from kitchen plumbing manufacturers you will love the “touch free” technology and temperature sensor options that are available. Remember updating your kitchen shouldn’t only be for aesthetics; it should help save you money and the Earth’s resources.
7. Paint Cabinetry with Modern Colors
For homes that love their current kitchen cabinets but would like to add modern appeal- why not add color? Painting, staining, and even replacing cabinetry doors with new and modern detailed ones are a great option for homeowners on a budget. There are plenty of faux finishes you can try while painting kitchen cabinets and who doesn’t love a great do it yourself project in the kitchen? From distressing doors to paint glazes and stains, you will be surprised how your elbow grease and some additional color will transform your old cabinetry into new.
8. Install new lighting options
Once you have modernized the major components of your kitchen, don’t forget the lighting! While kitchen lighting can be very minimal it is essential for safety, ambiance and versatility of your kitchen. If you have been suffering with one overhead ambient lighting fixture, look to recessed lighting or “can lights” for a modern illumination source. Consider installing a dimmer switch for versatility in mood and illumination strength while entertaining, cooking, or just relaxing for a midnight snack! Pendant lighting over a kitchen island, under cabinet lighting to illuminate countertops, and chandeliers are all becoming great options for updated lighting sources.
9. Adding decorative elements
While you may not think about it, your kitchen is a great place to add decorative elements to bring a sense of you and your lifestyle into your kitchen. For many homeowners plant shelves on top of cabinets allow area for plants, sculptures, artwork and other decorative items. Built in display shelves below your kitchen island can display kitchen memorabilia, your favorite cookbooks, or display an heirloom set of china passed down through generations. Add a vase of flowers, a fresh bowl of limes or lemons for a shot of color and bring a sense of you to your modern kitchen with decorative additions.
10. Enlarge your kitchen – knock down walls
For many older kitchens the compartmentalized and boxed-in feeling of kitchens built generations ago is very common. If you’re looking to open up your kitchen and share the view with an adjacent dining room or living room – consider knocking down some partitions! This method works well for non load-bearing walls that don’t carry any structural value. Your kitchen can grow in size or it can just get opened up to other areas of your home. While your kitchen could look fabulous as-is, what would it look like without that bothersome wall? If you’re unsure if this is possible – consult a structural engineer or architect to see what possibilities there are for your kitchen.
Your older kitchen just got a makeover with these simple tips to modernize the heart of your home. From updating finishes and materials to bringing in color, illumination, and space – the options abound for your older kitchen. While you may not use all 10 of these ideas, see which ones are perfect for your lifestyle, budget and family. I bet you can’t wait to see how your kitchen gets transformed.
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