10 Ways to Add a Splash of Color to Your Kitchen

Do you want to brighten up your kitchen? Adding some color is a great way to do this. Here are some great suggestions that you can implement in your own kitchen. 
  1. Accent doors- Having two different colors for your cabinets allows you to add a pop of color. You can make a few of your cabinets, like a row of uppers, have a colorful door and then it adds an intriguing pop of color to your kitchen.
  2. Wallpaper- Instead of using tile or paint for wall finishes in your kitchen, wallpaper is a great alternative. Using wallpaper(make sure its wet-space-safe) allows for a fun wall pattern or color in your kitchen. It can either be an accent or an all-over treatment.
  3. Wall Paint- You can also add an accent wall really easily with wall paint. This is great for a wall without cabinets or if you want a small bold color you can add it on a wall with cabinets and the cabinets will break the color up.
  4. Counter and bar stools- Feel free to use these as a way to get creative with adding colors. the stools around the counter are a great place to put a pop of color right in the center of your space. 
  5. Pendant lightening- Small glass pendant lights are now great sources of light because of the power of LED lights. They also are a great way to add a splash of color without being right in your face. 
  6. Open Shelving- Open shelves allow your kitchen to be part of your decor since it makes your kitchen supplies and tools viewable at all times. Also just having a few opens up your space to pops of colors because of the different hues from pots and supplies. 
  7. Color changing LEDs - These lights allow for you to add a variety of color accents to your kitchen without the permanence of paint. You get to change the colors whenever you want for different events and more. 
  8. Glass accents -  Translucent or frosted glass objects are really nice for kitchens because of the way that light reflects off the surface of them. These can be any different types of objects that you place around your kitchen.
  9. Warm Metallics - Warm metallics like Brass and Gold work really well in spaces that don’t have much color but they still add a sense of warmth and color to your space. They also work really well with stainless steel and other cooler metals. 
  10. Window Treatments - Window Treatments are pretty normal for more traditional spaces however they are great for modern spaces as well. Having an in window shade allows an opportunity to add a color or pattern to your kitchen. 

The Best Kitchen Countertop Materials

Shopping for countertops can feel very overwhelming since there are hundreds of colors, patterns, and textures. However, there are really only a few basic categories of materials for countertops that you should know. Let's break down the pros and cons as well as the important information to know for each type of countertop.

First off, when choosing a counter material you need to think about your needs and habits in the kitchen.  For example, if you cook a lot and do prep on the countertop, you don't want to use a soft porous material. You also have to consider your overall kitchen design. You want to make sure the counters fit with the appliances, the backsplash as well as the cabinets in your kitchen.

Natural Stone

Granite: This is a very common and popular material for a countertop since it comes in a variety of colors. The colors offered range from vibrant reds and blues, midnight black, as wells as white.

Pros - no (or low) visible seams, durable surface, heat-resistant

Cons - must be sealed to resist heat as well as can be expensive

Marble: This is a softer stone and more high end then granite. It is also comes in much fewer colors. However it is great surface for baking but since it is softer might show knife scars or be discolored by citric acid.   

Pros - durable, striking natural patterns

Cons - high-maintenance, needs repeated sealing, expensive

Soapstone

pros - won't need sealing

cons - soft and may show knife marks

Slate

pros - won't need sealing

cons - brittle especially at corners

 

Engineered Stone

Quartz : This is stone is what most engineered stone is made out of. It comes it lots of different colors and is a hard material so it doesn't need any sealing

pros - no sealing, durable, low maitenance

cons - expensive 

Concrete

 

Precast: These concrete slabs are extremely smooth and flat. These countertops can also have a variety of colors as well as have glass or other materials embedded in to give it an artistic feel. 

pros - won't scratch, durable, heat resistant

cons - must be professionally installed, expensive, needs sealing

Solid surfaces

Acrylic or Polyester: These counters show no seems since the pieces get fused together. This is great for long stretches of countertop. You can also get sinks to match

pros - low maitenance, lots of colors, repairable, non-porous

cons - not heat resistant, shows knife marks and scratches

Plastic Laminates

pros - very affordable, durable and hardwearing, ready-to-install,

cons - not heat resistant,  can chip or scratch

Tile

Ceramic or Stone:  Lots of color options and many different styles. Has to be applied over laminate or fresh plywood topped with cement backerboard. 

pros - lots of colors,  affordable, lots of choices,  ceramic is non porous

cons - regular grout cleaning is necessary

Wood

Edge-Grain: These counters have long, thick strips of wood that are glued together with the edge grain facing up

End-Grain (aka Butcher Block): These counters have relatively short, square sticks of wood that are joined together with the tough end grain facing up

Wide-Plank: These counters are made by edge-gluing wide boards together. These counters are the most susceptible to warping and cracking.

pros to wood - warm, ideal work surface, heat resistant

cons to wood- medium maintenance, will show knife marks

Create Space For Your Next Renovation

According to The New York Times article, “Making the Most of a Tiny Kitchen On A Tiny Budget,” Laura and Ian Greig found new ways to create more space during a home renovation. They did this by remodeling their small kitchen. 

Before the kitchen renovation, Laura and Ian did not have space to store a dishwasher. Many of their belongings would block the only window they had in their kitchen. Their kitchen was deprived of natural light. They were also burdened by the lack of space caused by their bulky cabinets and large air-conditioning soffits. They always thought that a kitchen renovation would not help their situation until they were made aware of a few renovation tips that would help any living space look bigger. 

Open The Window 

The first tip is letting in some light. The key to renovating Laura and Ian’s kitchen was to create space in front of their window. Along with rearranging their kitchen appliances, they painted other areas of the kitchen white so that the natural light looks like it’s bouncing off the surface. White and other light colors create space by creating a reflective quality that allows for light to bounce around and make a kitchen look bigger. 

Get Creative 

Laura and Ian were then advised to play with the layout. Playing with the layout of your kitchen is a key tool in creating space. By moving their sink flush against the wall with the window and new refrigerator, they were finally able to fit that dishwasher they’ve always dreamed of doing! For tips on playing around with your kitchen layout, contact us by clicking here

Think Bigger

Laura and Ian then took the final step of looking for other areas where space was being wasted. During the renovation, they realized that soffit around the refrigerator was much bigger than it had to be. Getting a smaller soffit, allowed for them to gain about six inches of overhead space. Laure and Ian made their hove not only look more spacious, also feel more comforting. For advice on your next hove renovation visit:
For more information on the article, click here.

Do I Need an Interior Designer?

If you’re planning to remodel a larger area, it might be a good idea to hire an interior designer. It might seem like a waste of money at first, but it is important to keep in mind that an interior designer will assume many of the roles traditionally assigned to subcontractors. Interior designers can also improve your home in ways that a subcontractor would not catch.

Researching and shopping for fixtures can be very time consuming, and having someone come to you that knows how to select these products can save a lot of time. Hiring an interior designer can design your workspace in a shorter amount of time, and it can also save on extra costs. Good interior designers know how to maximize the qualities of a space, emphasizing positive attributes and downplaying less desirable qualities.

Hiring an interior designer is a good idea no matter what, even if you have a full plan for your room or you have no idea. Hiring an interior designer will allow you to gain the advantage of their expertise and technical knowledge in terms of design, which will help you avoid potential issues and costly design mistakes in the future.

 

5 Pros and Cons on Open Floor Plans in Your NYC Apartment

Here we will talk about the pros and cons of open floor plans. First of all, what is an open floor plan? An open floor plan is when you knock down walls, creating one BIG” room instead of having 3 small rooms (kitchen, dinning room and living room). 

PROs:

Increase natural lights. Why do you want to pay more for electricity when you have natural sunlight?  Having large windows can maximizing this effect.

 Increase sociability among family members and guests. Think about the time when you are alone in the living room of a friend’s house while your friend is cooking. Aren’t you bored? Isn’t it awkward being alone? What if you want to catch up with your long time no see friend? Open kitchen allows people to converse more easily without having to shout through walls.

 

Increase visibility in the house.  

Keeping an eye on your children and pets. It is time to make lunch/ dinner but you can’t bring your kid to the kitchen. Wouldn’t you want to keep an eye on your kid? What if he/she is just learning how to talk, wouldn’t you want to here their first words? What if your toddler just learn to walk, would you want to respond to any falls. Well, you definitely will not hear them through walls.

Dinner is ready but your soup is not. You are so hungry but you need to keep an eye on the soup. Should I wait for the soup to be done or should I eat first? Why do you have to choose? Having an open kitchen allows you to see what goes on in other rooms

Flexibility in customizing your apartment. When the walls are down, there are more space to work with.

If you are a indecisive person, like me, you are going to have trouble styling each room. Why not have one design that represent you?

Creating an illusion. The populations in NYC exceeds 8 millions and there are limited space in housing. Having an open floor plan creates an illusion that a small apartment is looks bigger. 

 

CONs:

Keeping the pets away. When there is food, you pet is always going to want it. Having an open kitchen may be difficult to keep your pets away. In addition, it also makes it easier for your pet to get to the kitchen.

It can get noisy. What did you say? I cannot hear you! Without the walls to keep the noise out, you hear everything in that one big room. Your toddler is crying, your dog is howling and your spouse is watching television, can you concentrate on making make dinner?

Less Privacy. Because it is one big room, you see everything. 

Less Creativity  With the less walls you have, there can only be a limited pictures and artworks you can present.

Bad Reflection If your open room is messy, it makes the whole apartment looks messy.