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Archive for the ‘Kitchen Furniture & Design’ Category

Easy Kitchen Makeover Ideas

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

The kitchen is the place where many of us spend a great deal of time. However, those with a small kitchen sometimes need a little pick-me-up to make their kitchen feel fresh. If a costly remodel is out of the picture, consider the flexibility of a new kitchen cart.

 

Stationary kitchen carts offer a new world of highly functional storage. Add some extra dining space which is great for homework, crafts or just the ideal spot to snack on a muffin before school. Kitchen islands also add extra storage space within your kitchen—which there never seems to be enough of, regardless of how large or small your kitchen is.

 

Crosley Oxford Butcher Block Top Kitchen Island with Stools in Black
Crosley Oxford Butcher Block Top Kitchen Island with Stools in Black

 

There is just something classically refined about having a black counter with butcher block top.

 

Home Styles Monarch Kitchen Island with Granite Top and Two Stools
Home Styles Monarch Kitchen Island with Granite Top and Two Stools

 

This weathered finish of this kitchen island creates the perfect beachfront cottage ambiance when paired with bright yellows or ocean blue.

 

Home Styles Monarch Roll-Out Leg Granite Top Kitchen Island in Black and Oak

Home Styles Monarch Roll-Out Leg Granite Top Kitchen Island in Black and Oak

 

Roll-out legs are a fantastic feature on this island. Lock in the counter top space only when you need it— perfect for a narrow kitchen. Pair the black finish with bold reds to jazz up your kitchen in no time.

 

Home Styles Aspen Kitchen Island with Drop Leaf

Home Styles Aspen Kitchen Island with Drop Leaf

 
Home Styles Aspen Kitchen Island and Two Stools Set

Home Styles Aspen Kitchen Island and Two Stools Set

 

Please the rustic cottage crowd with the rustic cherry finish of the Aspen kitchen island series. If you don’t like the stools that are included, seek out a pair of country kitchen counter stools that add a bit of mountain lodge charm with wrought iron accents.

 

The best part of purchasing a kitchen island is you can make a quick change to your kitchen for under $1100. That’s some serious small-budget decorating wile still adding a hint of designer flair. Now it’s time to invite your friends over and feed on the compliment frenzy.

Get Organized with a Kitchen Cart

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Home Styles Kitchen Island in Black

Many homeowners today are crunched for cash and putting off expensive kitchen renovations. But when you are faced with a kitchen that is unruly or just too small there are economical ways that you can improve upon your existing space. One great way to do this is by increasing your storage capacity with a kitchen cart.

Linon Granite Top Kitchen Cart in Wenge Finish

A kitchen cart can fill a multitude of uses. A larger kitchen cart can be used instead of a kitchen island. A small one can be wheeled from place to place and can hold a variety of kitchen supplies and appliances. Some kitchen carts have extra storage features such as towel holders or wine racks. If you need to stash your microwave, there are also carts designed to do just that.

Home Styles Premier Create A Carat 28 Inch Steel Top Kitchen Cart in White

Go for a larger kitchen cart when you are looking to increase your work area or counter space. Choose an option with a breakfast bar to gain additional seating as well as added storage in your kitchen. Or try out a kitchen cart with cabinet doors to hide away your things or try open shelves for easy access.

Catsill Craftsmen Country Square Butcher Block

The expansive selection of kitchen carts available today makes it easy to find the right one for your home.

Versatile Grills for Stylish, Yet Practical Patios

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

 Camp Chef Outdoor Camp Oven and 2 Burner Stove This summer, enhance the atmosphere of your back yard or patio with a stylish new grill and get a practical product at the same time.

We’re excited to share a selection of portable grills that will look great in your yard, but also pack up and go with ease.

We love the look of the Camp Chef Outdoor Camp Oven (shown top right) that captures the feeling of a full-size stainless steel range, sized right for portability. Just imagine how nice it would be to bake in the summer without heating your indoor kitchen? Or how about fresh muffins on your next camping trip?

 Fire Sense HotSpot Notebook Charcoal Portable Grill Other portable products – like the Weber gas grills on sale at CS Grills – are a great choice if you’re looking for a budget-friendly grill that delivers the quality of a brand you trust. Selection ranges from the more economical Go-Anywhere model up to the Q 220 with extra shelving either side.

Back in April, we shared our picks for charcoal grills, including the Fire Sense HotSpot Notebook Charcoal Portable Grill (shown bottom right) which also happens to be a very attractive, highly portable grill.

Kitchen Islands To Go

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

Home Styles Furniture Natural Wood Cart with Salt and Pepper Granite Top Have you always wanted a kitchen island? The appeal of an open, sharable food preparation space is a great addition to any kitchen, making islands popular for good reason.

So, no need for more convincing, you’d like an island. But you keep moving from one house or apartment to the next. Or you’re still renting and don’t want to invest in a kitchen you don’t own. Or the renovation is too expensive and hard to justify when it’s for lifestyle or aesthetics rather than structurally necessary work.

Consider a stylish kitchen cart instead. Ideal for renters, urban dwellers, or anyone on a budget, kitchen carts come with butcher blocks, storage shelves, cabinets, and more. Capped with granite, stainless steel, laminate, or 100% solid unfinished wood, you’ll find the selection to fit your taste and lifestyle.

Should you consider a kitchen cart for a larger kitchen? Absolutely. Even if you already have ample counter space, many avid cooks and bakers find that small appliances start to creep onto every surface. A portable cart could be the solution you need to finally have the clear food prep space you need and want.

From the Design Files of Heather B – Wallpaper or Paint?

Monday, December 27th, 2010

Design Question

I have really bad wall paper in the kitchen of the house I live in. Should I change it to a new wallpaper or should I paint? It is an old kitchen. I would like to update it in expensively. It has a border I really really don’t like. The main wallpaper is a red check. It is ok but the “chicken and egg theme” border is bad! Is wall paper still “in”?

Design Answer

One of the cheapest ways in terms of renovating is to repaint or repaper the walls. Yes, wallpaper is still definitely “in. While some design professionals insist that wallpaper never fell out of favor in the first place, it has been making a comeback in interior design for several reasons:

  • there are an endless variety of patterns and colors to choose from; while there are an endless number of paint colors, they don’t come in different designs
  • because of the different designs and patterns, wallpaper adds “texture” to the room, in this case, your kitchen; adding texture to a room’s décor makes the space visually interesting
  • wallpaper has entered the 21st century, so to speak – since it is no longer thick, requires paste to install and the patterns have become more stylish and sophisticated, wallpaper or wall covering, as it is also known as, has become more and more appealing to homeowners

If you are not happy with the wallpaper, you should change it. Paint or wallpaper can be inexpensive if you look for bargains. Paint/hardware stores often sell “mistakes” (paint that was improperly mixed, but still looks fine; it’s just not the color on the paint chip) at a fraction of the cost of a regular can of paint. You can sometimes get good deals on wallpaper “ends” or patterns that have been discontinued.

Why not do both – paint and wallpaper? Paint three walls, and wallpaper an accent wall. You mentioned that your kitchen is older; you’ll have to do a little investigating; if the current wallpaper is the older kind it’s going to take some effort to get the paper off the walls, and depending on what you find, it might take some work to prime the walls for whatever you want to do with them – painting or wallpapering.

While wallpaper is making a bit of a comeback, the same cannot be said for borders. Manufacturers make them available because people like what is familiar, but for the most part, they are keeping a low profile in spaces designed by decorating specialists. Especially if you don’t like it, I suggest that you dispose of the border and plan not to replace it.

Thanks for writing in. Let me know how it turns out. I hope all of you have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve. Don’t forget to join me in the New Year for more design questions and answers.

From the Design Files of Heather B – Countertop Color Dilemma

Monday, December 6th, 2010

Design Question

Hi Heather, I’m really having an issue with a color for my kitchen which I have not done anything with for 9 years but I’m ready to have it done before the Holidays. My countertops are Kelly Green and cabinets and wood floor are Oak. I have not changed appliances (not in the Budget) except the dishwasher which is stainless steel and fridge and stove are Ivory. What can I do?  Anything you suggest will be helpful. Thank You.

Design Answer

Thanks for including a picture – it makes it easier for me to visualize what’s going on.

I have a few suggestions for where you can start getting some color choice ideas.

The kitchen mat has colors in it that would be excellent matches for the kitchen island counter tops. For example, there’s a shade of lighter green that might be a good hue for your kitchen. Choosing a lighter toned green that works with the Kelly green is called a monochrome color scheme.

The second option is to choose a complementary color scheme. The complementary color of green is red. Selecting a very pale rose, pink or beige with pink undertones might also work in the space.

The third option is to pick a neutral color such as beige, cream or lighter earth tone shades. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, don’t forget to test the color out in the kitchen itself, just to see how it really looks. Some paint company websites have visualization tools that will let you upload a picture of your kitchen so that you can see what the color might look like.

Thanks for writing in. I hope this is helpful. Let me know how it turns out. Don’t forget to come back next Monday when I’ll be answering another design question.

Some like it Hot: Kitchen makeover tips

Friday, December 3rd, 2010

If your kitchen isn’t quite guest-ready for the holidays, but you don’t have the budget to fund a major remodeling project, there are ways to give it a much-needed makeover without breaking your piggy bank. There are a number of fairly simple things you can do to breathe new life into your kitchen without have to accommodate a big reno or budget for one.

Grab a Paint Brush

It is disruptive, and yes it does require some elbow grease, but painting the room is one of the cheapest ways to “remodel” the kitchen. Especially if you choose a totally different color, it can instantly (well, almost) brighten the room and lighten the mood.

If you don’t want to do the whole room, pick one wall to paint as an accent wall. A bright or bold color in a kitchen that has a neutral palette will make the room “pop.”

Maybe you don’t need to paint the kitchen, but how about the cupboards? Especially if they are throw-backs from some decade we don’t care to mention, a fresh coat of paint can transform your cabinetry from thumbs down to thumbs up.

Rethink Storage

What kitchen ever has enough storage? Add a kitchen island with drawers for more work space. Not only can kitchen accent furniture like a bakers rack, china hutch or kitchen cart can add those special finishing touches to the room that many of us think of as the heart of the home, it can also help you get organized. Furniture accent pieces that include several different types of storage features increase the efficiency of your kitchen as well as the aesthetic value of the room.

New Hardware and/or Fixtures

Whether you end up painting the cabinets or not, simply by replacing the hardware, you can make your old cabinets look like new. Consider selecting themed hardware (forks, vegetables, fruits, etc.) for a really unique touch.

If your taps are more the ten years old, now is a good time to replace them with a more contemporary faucet. And because faucets are available in a range of prices, you’ll be able to keep your budget in mind.

Were you ever really happy with the overhead light? Particularly if your kitchen doesn’t get a lot of natural light by changing the lighting fixture, you can make the space appear brighter.

From the Design Files of Heather B – Paint Color Choice for Oak Furniture

Monday, September 6th, 2010

Design Question

Hello Heather, I have quite a dilemma in choosing appropriate colors for a house we recently bought and are moving into, so I need some help!!

My furniture is mostly oak wood. The kitchen has oak cabinets, white Corian countertops, the white and gray floor, and white appliances. It is a pretty good size room but is in the center of the house and doesn’t have a window. It is currently painted a dark green and looks very dark. This room adjoins the family room which does have some but not a lot of light and vaulted ceilings. That room is currently painted a very pale bright yellow.

The dining room and living room are also open to the kitchen and living room. They also have the white and gray tile floors. In those rooms, there is small white dentil crown molding and an oak top on a half wall at the entry. These rooms are painted in gray and tan combination where my son started to paint gray over the existing tan and quit. At least the top of the 1/2 wall is oak and will go with my furniture. The tan is just too much brown with my oak furniture, but I am questioning the tone of the gray.

I need to know what color or tone and color I can paint all these rooms that will be a light neutral backdrop. I have been pulling out my hair trying to figure this out. I don’t want any red or bright primary colors. More understated, simple elegance is my style. I was thinking something like a gray, putty, taupe or stone color. My biggest problem is trying to get the right tone since the oak is so orange. I do like light shades of blue, green, yellow, neutrals and soft muted tones. I am just STUMPED. I don’t want to do this twice! ANY help would be most graciously accepted!

Design Answer

You’re right; the oak is definitely orange rather than tan or golden. But it is beautiful; the cabinetry in the kitchen is simply stunning. However, I do think that because the oak/orange is a warm color and is such a commanding element in the room, it should be balanced by neutrals like gray and cool colors like blue and green.

Color Choices

I also agree that the gray currently in the space doesn’t work with the ceiling – it is my feeling that it doesn’t provide enough of a contrast, making them both blend into one another. Based on the colors you said that you preferred, except for yellow because it is a “warm” color, I picked some shades and hues that I thought would work in all four rooms – the living room, dining room, kitchen and family room. The palettes are loosely divided into gray, green and blue.

Once you’ve narrowed down the color or colors you think you would like to use, don’t forget to test it out by seeing how it looks in the room, either by applying paint samples or using the online tools many paint companies offer through their websites.

Hopefully you won’t have to paint it twice! Let me know how it turns out. Thanks for writing in. Come back next Monday when we’ll answer another reader’s design question.

Skip the Reno: Ways to improve your Kitchen

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

If you have a kitchen that is in need of a renovation that you just can’t afford right now, but it’s is driving you a little crazy, there are some inexpensive things that you can do right now to improve the space. You can get a lot of redecorating mileage out of simply taking inventory of your kitchen and making note of what needs your immediate attention. Particularly if the kitchen is small, include a “spring cleaning” as part of your inventory process – discovering what needs to be removed (permanently), replaced or recycled will free up cupboard and counter space, giving you more room to work with.

Think Color

Mix it up color wise. Bring as many different colors into the space as you can without making it feel “busy” or cluttered. A blue glass vase with yellow and white flowers in it sitting on a stone counter can add that perfect accent. A cheerful ceramic bowl displaying fresh fruit brightens up a kitchen while making it feel welcoming.

Think Upgrading

It doesn’t have to mean a major expense. When finding ways to give your kitchen a facelift without a major renovation, choosing one thing in your kitchen that you would like to change, for example the kitchen taps, will make a big difference to the look and feel of the space. Especially if something is outdated like the faucet or the kitchen cabinet hardware, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to upgrade one specific thing or area.

Think Accessories

When accessorizing, think practical and pretty. Curtains, decorative shelving or hanging baskets can convert a bland kitchen into a pleasant place to spend time, preparing a meal, making the kids a snack or just hanging out with the family.

Think Furniture

Particularly if it’s a small kitchen, avoid placing items such as a trash can on the floor. Not only does it use up valuable floor space but it can give the kitchen an untidy look. Pieces of furniture like the Venture Horizon Granite Top Butcher Bin Venture Horizon Granite Top Butcher Bin with Pantry that is multipurpose will add both functionality and style to any food prep area. The Winsome Drop Leaf Table with 2 Square Stools doubles as a breakfast bar and a kitchen cart, providing you with versatile, space-saving solutions.

Today’s kitchens aren’t just for meal prep any more. The modern kitchen is often the social hub of the house, whether you’re hanging out with the family, entertaining friends or need somewhere to finish your cup of coffee while completing the Sunday crossword. But it’s not going to be the heart of your home if you’re unhappy with the space. Without going through a major reno, try some of these ways to breathe new life into your kitchen without having to break the budget.

Decorating with Counter Height Bar Stools

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Counter height bar stools have the distinction of being “borrowed” from the favorite local pub and transformed into a popular kitchen décor or dining room trend. By blending trendy style and contemporary design with practicality and comfort, decorating with counter height bar stools is an easy way to make a room like a kitchen, dining room or virtually anywhere in your home where you entertain more functional and convenient. Regardless of the décor style, bar stools can bring a sophisticated look and feel to any kitchen island, breakfast bar, family room or den. Nothing else quite shows your personal taste like bar stools that make a statement.

Bar stools or counter stools for intended for a kitchen, dining room or a home bar come in a variety of heights, colors and designs. Many types of bar stools have unique designs that can complement any number of décor themes and/or interior design style. A bar stool chosen to match the height of a counter, kitchen island, home bar or gathering table can help improve a room’s appearance in addition to enhancing your lifestyle. Well-placed bar stools can make a room “pop,” converting a kitchen counter or a wood gathering table into a focal point that draws the eye into the space in a pleasing and surprising way.

Even if you don’t have a kitchen island or a breakfast bar but you do have a dining room, turning an unused corner of your kitchen into handy eating area or as place to gather with family and friends is a practical way to increase the versatility and functionality of your living space. It’s as easy as choosing a counter height dining table and matching barstools. Since space is hard to come by in apartments, condos or smaller sized homes, having an extra eating area is especially useful when planning a holiday get-together or other celebratory occasion.

The main advantages of decorating with bar stools are esthetics and practicality. Even if they have been bought for a certain location in mind, such as a breakfast bar or gathering table, they can be easily moved to other rooms in your home when needed. Kitchen counter bar stools can be simple in design or as decorative in appearance as a dining chair, but whatever the style, color or type, well-chosen kitchen counter stools can unify the different décor elements in a room, creating an atmosphere that is both stylish and welcoming.