The kitchen renovation can be a massive undertaking, and if not done properly, can exact a serious toll on your energy, your life, and your budget. Kitchen renovations can occupy a weekend or can eat up six months of your life; they can cost anywhere from 10 thousand dollars to well into the six figures. You can “DIY” everything or you can shell out to let the experts do the heavy lifting. There is a wide range of possibilities when you undertake a kitchen renovation. But if you’re like me, you’re all about efficiency: getting it done as quickly and effectively (and with as little effort) as possible. So here are a few handy ways to help you make the most of your kitchen renovation.
Think about function first
It’s tempting when you undertake a big renovation to want to go all out and find upgrades for every element of your space. That’s how a small kitchen upgrade can quickly become a hundred-thousand-dollar, multi-month overhaul. And often, when you’re staring down a laundry list of potential upgrades, you tend to forget about something that’s critical in a kitchen, and that’s the function. Function is key: the flow of movement from the fridge to the range to the sink (the designer’s “golden triangle”) needs to be seamless. So while that bigger island may seem like the height of luxury, if it limits space or flow and doesn’t allow you to move easily around your kitchen, don’t do it. Likewise, if that gorgeous porcelain farmhouse sink is going to use up the majority of your counter space, then it’s not worth it. Remember function before form (always), and you should end up with a renovated kitchen that will work for you for years to come, and won’t have destroyed your budget in the process.
Find one focal point and let it shine
Again with the upgrades: don’t go crazy with every single one. After all, at the end of the day, your kitchen should have one beautiful, spot-lit focal point that draws the eye and lights up the room, and everything else should support that singular feature (not overpower it). In most kitchens, this focal point is the range. Invest in a beautiful hood and a stellar, eye-catching tile backsplash to make this area pop (recessed ambient lights that shine a spotlight on the space are going to be key here, too). Let this one space set the tone for the rest of the room, and then don’t worry over how you didn’t go for the massive farmhouse kitchen sink (or the gorgeous island with juxtaposing cabinet colors). It’s okay! You picked your single focal point and you stood behind it (and your wallet is grateful).
Remember the little things
Hardware and appliance stores are going to want you to invest big in the gorgeous oversized appliances, the luxurious marble countertops, or the alder wood cabinets that are custom-built for your space. But you can re-create a space without overhauling these massive (and wildly expensive) items: let the little aspects of your kitchen give it a whole new look. Hardware is a little thing that can go a very long way in giving a room character; so too can faucets and fixtures. Lighting is another important element that gives a space its charm: switch from drab ceiling fans to ambient, recessed lighting to grant your space an air of intimacy that it never had before. Cabinets can be repainted, smaller countertop appliances can be upgraded, and dishes and utensils can be replaced: these easy, inexpensive items can lead the charge in revamping your space in a way that won’t devastate your bank account.
It’s okay to trust in trends
Any episode of an HGTV show will tell you: dark hardwood floors, grey shaker cabinets, and light quartz countertops are the thing to have. But you know what? Just because everybody wants them doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have them too (you’re not being a sell-out, I swear). If these aspects of a kitchen are so on-trend right now, what it means for you is that future buyers of your home will likely like them, too. What’s more, on-trend updates are probably highly popular at the hardware store and therefore likely to be found at a discount. If everyone is out shopping for natural countertop options, then there’s probably going to be a wide-range available (wide-ranging in style, construction, and price point). And we’re finding that that’s true: because natural stone countertops have become so popular, you can find them today in almost any color or material you want, if you visit website Marble. Limestone and sandstone offer a natural, earthy vibe to a space, while marble gives it that air of polished elegance. And granite and quartz offer a little something in between. There’s so much choice, and that’s because there’s so much interest.
Same goes for wood flooring: today you can find bamboo floors, alder wood, cherry, and a lot of really nifty faux-wood flooring options that have incredible durability (and, again, a really stellar price point). So don’t be turned off if everyone is shooting for the brass fixtures and porcelain sinks: there’s probably a reason.
And have fun with your kitchen renovation! The kitchen is truly the heart of the home, and yours should shine through no matter what type of upgrades you make. Just make sure that you’re selective with your updates, that you keep a single focal point in mind, that you remember the little things, and that you pay close attention to popular trends (and follow them when it’s warranted).