Designing your dream kitchen can seem so exciting yet daunting at the same time. Having a brand new beautiful kitchen that is functional to your needs is anyone’s dream come true. However, deciding every single detail down to the hardware you’ll use to install said dream kitchen can also make anyone freak.the.fuck.out!!! Well friends, I’m here to break it down for you, every big to small detail, so that we can keep all mental break downs to a minimum. We’re in this together!
Open concept or closed off
First things first, the floor plan. Do you want your kitchen to be open concept to the rest of the house or is your kitchen going to be its own exclusive room? The flow of your home is found and created within the floor plan so it’s important to take your time with this process.
Here’s some questions to ask yourself:
Do I entertain frequently? If the answer is yes then you may want to consider an open floor plan. This way if you’re in the kitchen or dining area you can still mingle with your guests who frequent the sitting area or living room as well and vice versa.
Do I want an outdoor living space? I’ve seen more and more recently indoor to outdoor living spaces becoming popular, where the kitchen opens up to a grand backyard oasis. In this case you’d want the kitchen separate from the rest of the house and typically at the back of the house.
Once you’ve decided on your floor plan everything else can start to fall into place such as appliances, cabinetry, tile & backsplash. All the pretty things that will make your kitchen really unique and yours.
When it comes to flooring there’s a few things to keep in mind: style, function, and type. Most people prefer tile in their kitchens because it’s known that messes are bound to happen and tile is extremely durable. Here’s the thing with tile – the style options are pretty much endless. If you’re into bold and unique flooring there’s endless prints, unique shapes, and gorgeous colours to chose from.
Despite how versatile tile can be, I’m also seeing a trend of uniform flooring throughout the home more and more these days. It’s actually how our flooring is in our apartment and I love it! If you opt for vinyl flooring planks you won’t have to worry about sacrificing style for function because it too is very durable and easy to clean!
Let’s start with material. Contrary to popular belief you can use more than tile for your backsplash, and some of these options will also help cut costs.
You can opt to use peel and stick tiles which are usually less expensive than traditional tiles, yet no one will be able to notice the difference. There’s so many styles to choose from and they’re easy to install on your own! You can also use wallpaper – although typically when you use wallpaper the area behind the stove will have a material that is more durable and acts as a design feature.
Next you’ll want to think about the height of the backsplash – are you going to take it all the way to the ceiling or just below cabinet level? Each gives the room a different feel, so make sure you compare images so you can get a feel for what would work best in your kitchen.
Cabinetry is one of the biggest design features of a kitchen and they’re an important element of function as well. In my opinion there’s two ways that you can sway: custom and store bought cabinets vs second hand and vintage cabinets.
The beauty of custom cabinetry is the ability to make it exactly what you want, where you want. This is the more expensive option however built-in custom cabinetry is timeless, can be resurfaced when you want a change, and will up the value of your home.
On the other hand there’s something about vintage furniture that brings warmth and an already lived-in feel to the space. Depending on where you thrift/look for vintage pieces, the price will of course vary. Keep an eye out on sites like kijiji and marketplace for really rare finds, sometimes people don’t know the value of an item they are trying to get rid of!
If you want a low maintenance countertop you’ll want to opt for stones like quartz as opposed to marble. Quartz has amazing qualities, specifically it is non-porous and won’t stain or scratch easily. Quartz can also be designed to replicate the look of marble/natural stone so you have the best of both worlds!
If you want to steer away from stone altogether, butcher block countertops or concrete countertops are trendy and durable alternatives. I personally love the warmth and scandi vibes a butcher block counter top brings to a space.
There are many many many different ways that you can design a kitchen island, but the first thing to ask yourself is: do I want the island fixed or do I want to be able to move it?
A fixed island is typically custom built and once it’s installed there is no changing your mind. However with a fixed island you can incorporate things like an additional sink, it’s where you could put the dishwasher and you can add storage.
A moveable island is great if you need the extra prep space but don’t want to interrupt the flow of the kitchen with a built-in. Moveable islands are the more affordable option and they can even be DIY’d!
Sink & faucet
Your kitchen sink, believe it or not, can be it’s own statement piece if you do it just right. Toss the idea of a boring stainless steel sink out of your head and enter farmhouse, copper, and fluted.
Once you’ve figured out the material you’d like to use, you can decide if you’d like your sink to have an open or closed front. Aesthetics aside when thinking about functionality you can choose between a single basin or double basin – if you have a dishwasher then personally I’d opt for the single.
Here’s some great faucet options –
You may think that picking out your appliances will be easy peasy, how many choices could there be? I thought that exact same thing as well until I started looking into the logistics.
When it comes to the fridge specifically there’s a couple things to keep in mind. First consider the depth that you desire, if you want your fridge to line up with your counter/cabinetry then invest in a counter-depth fridge. A standard-depth fridge will typically stick out a few inches.
If you were thinking about plain ole’ stainless steel think again. Try a panelled fridge that blends in seamlessly with the rest of your cabinetry!
Range & hood vent
Besides choosing a range that matches the overall aesthetic of the kitchen you’ll first have to decide if you’d prefer your stove top and oven to be separate from one another or one single unit.
When it comes to hood vents they too can be a statement piece all of its own volition. The most popular styles tend to be mounted hoods, range hood inserts, under cabinet hoods, and professional-grade hoods.
Finishing aren’t just the pulls/cabinetry hardware – although that’s a big portion. Think even bigger, like items to invest in that will make everyday living flow easier. Pot filler’s are a great faucet to invest in that go above the stove so you’re able to fill a pot with water without having to transfer it from the sink. Garbage dispensers are amazing when you don’t want to clean out the yucky food mess in your sink. It’s little things like this that make our lives easier!
Here’s some great options for cabinet pulls –
There’s many avenues you can take with the lighting in your kitchen. Most kitchens boast a gorgeous hanging chandelier, however you could also incorporate pot lights, wall sconces, or pendant lights.
Custom cabinetry lighting is an additional expense but will level up your kitchen even more giving it a bougie restaurant feel.
Whew that was a lot of ground to cover! I hope you’re still with me and if you are, that this post helped you navigate the craziness of a kitchen reno.
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