Top 10 kitchen renovation tips
From the cabinets to the appliances, find out how to ensure a successful kitchen renovation
Renovating your kitchen will add ease to your lifestyle and value to your home. Here are the 10 most important things to consider when you’re updating your kitchen, especially as it is the heart of every home.
1. Use quality materials
Quality drawer slides and hinges mean cabinet doors will stay closed and drawers won’t stick. Stay away from drawers that are stapled together or made of particleboard. For cabinet interiors, melamine is more durable than particleboard.
2. Determine cabinet heights
If you have 2.4m high ceilings, choose cabinets that go to the ceiling. They offer more storage, enabling you to use extra wall space for artwork or open shelves. If your ceilings are higher than 2.4m, leave 380-457mm above the cabinets.
3. Decide whether to paint or stain
Though stained-wood cabinetry is forgiving, most finishes date quickly and aren’t easily altered. Brush-painted cabinets can lend a unique personality.
4. Select an elegant countertop
Sealed white marble and stained wood add elegance and warmth. Try some new textures like slate, soapstone or plastic laminate with a wood edge for a sophisticated look.
5. Install an island that works
Beware of placing a bulky cube in the middle of the room. We like islands that have an open, airy look. Ideally, an island should be unencumbered by appliances, but if you want it to house a dishwasher, sink combo or a cooker, try to maintain the light look of a leggy harvest table.
6. Don’t overdo the details
Design accents such as pediments over stoves and plaster mouldings on cabinet fronts can represent decorative excess. Remember that the style of your kitchen should be compatible with the rest of your home.
7. Avoid maintenance nightmares
Natural surfaces with inherent texture like slate, terracotta, brick and tumbled marble are more difficult to clean, but camouflage the odd crumb. Smooth surfaces in light colours such as white laminate counters or ceramic floors, are easy to clean but show everything. And as much as we love stainless steel, it’s not easy to keep smudge free.
8. Stick to basic appliances
Instead of lots of appliances and gadgets, consider selecting a few reliable basics. For example, a commercial quality stainless steel range makes an interesting focal point and takes up less space than a separate wall oven and a cooker.
9. Incorporate an adjacent dining room
A clever design, plus the appropriate lighting and furniture, will let you adapt the room’s atmosphere to suit any occasion. Consider a banquette design combined with slip-covered chairs for an efficient use of space.
10. Add interest
Your kitchen should reflect your tastes, not look like a showroom. Before designing the space, search for a piece of unique furniture and use it in your design. A room full of floor-to-ceiling wall-to-wall kitchen cabinets looks boring and uninspired. Find signature pieces like an unusual tap or square sinks.
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