6 Of The Best Materials For Designer Looking Kitchen Countertops

Soapstone Countertop SD Flooring Center And Design 500x338 6 Of The Best Materials For Designer Looking Kitchen Countertops

Soapstone Countertop sdflooringcenteranddesign.com

Guest Post, Jason Phillips

It used to seem like everyone wanted granite countertops. Nothing else measured up to granite in the minds of designers and homeowners. In 2014, this is starting to change, with a range of different countertop materials coming into their own. Some, like concrete and stainless steel, have been around for a while and are rising in popularity. Others, like lava stone, are relatively new to the market. Here are some countertop trends you'll see in 2014 that are unexpected yet incredibly enticing.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a popular look for appliances, and now more people are selecting this sleek material for countertops, too. Stainless steel is well suited for counters because it is resistant to heat. It is also nonporous, so it won't absorb any spills, and it doesn't stain. Stainless is easy to clean and hygienic. If you have stainless appliances, this can give your kitchen a unified, highly functional look. On the downside, it can be scratched and dinged, and it may show fingerprints easily.

Stainless steel counters must be cleaned gently. Use a damp cloth and stay away from abrasive cleaning sponges.

Lava Stone

This is a fairly new addition to the world of countertops, and has been getting a lot of attention recently. Lava stone is nonporous like stainless steel, and it is almost impossible to stain or scratch. As you might guess for lava stone, heat is no problem. This stone comes in a wide range of colors, and you can opt for either a matte or glossy surface. Because lava stone is relatively new, it is also fairly expensive now; nonetheless, if you can afford to invest in high quality do it.

Soapstone

Countertops made of soapstone look sleek, and can fit into almost any kitchen decor. The surface is heat resistant, though not as much as granite. Acids like vinegar or lemon juice do not affect soapstone, so these types of spills won't stain it like they might concrete. Soapstone does require oiling and buffing regularly. Although the material is not as tough as granite, it’s a lot more pliable. This means it won’t crack and it’s less brittle. Furthermore, soapstone is non-porous and it will match perfectly with any type of kitchen décor.

Glass

Both new and recycled glass countertops are gaining popularity, because of the modern and artistic look that they can give your kitchen. A glass countertop can make a statement, yet not dominate the room. Glass is very resistant to heat and stains. It is nonporous, so it is easy to clean and very hygienic. On the downside, it shows fingerprints easily, and may get chips or cracks. To give your kitchen a complete makeover, opt for colored or translucent glass and have lighting systems installed beneath for a wow effect. Go for aqua or turquoise shades and you’ll transform your cooking space into an oasis of tranquility.

Concrete

Countertops made of concrete are highly durable, and if sealed properly, can be very resistant to heat and scratches. The surface can be customized with respect to shape, texture, and color, to fit exactly what you want for your kitchen design. The potential issues with concrete are that it can be stained by acidic spills like orange juice, and these countertops are quite heavy.

Quartz

This is becoming another popular option. Quartz is stylish yet practical. It is tough, durable, and long-lasting. You can get it in a variety of different colors, with a beautiful glossy sheen. It is easy to clean with just a little soap and water, and it doesn't require any sealing or maintenance. The potential issues with quartz are that it is heavy, and isn't as tolerant of heat as other options. Nonetheless, for recently painted kitchens with lots of modern elements and accessories, a quartz countertop will perfectly compliment the whole décor.

We love unexpected materials for kitchencountertops because they completely change the appeal of a space. Unusual materials are chic, durable and interesting. They give a cooking space a little extra without forcing the owner to invest a fortune in a remodeling. Which of the above mentioned materials for countertops would you choose? Are you into shiny glass or you’d rather go for Quartz?

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6 Ideas For Rental-friendly Paint Colors And Organization

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Guest Post Jason Phillips

How hard can it be to keep your kitchen organized? It’s amazing how fancy and chic a cooking space can look when all the things inside are properly organized. Shelves, cabinets, countertops, accessories and appliances should all be adequately arranged in order to make the kitchen seem neat and modern. Here are some ideas on color and kitchen organization you may want to consider for your beautiful cooking space.

Small kitchen should be efficient, and efficiency can be attained when things are properly stored. It’s important to have tools within easy reach. If you lack space or you don’t have the money to purchase cabinets, install some shelves over the sink. Use them to place plates, but make sure they’re organized nicely. Don’t overcrowd your shelves and stick to a color palette to make the kitchen seem colorful and stylish.

When you want to give your home a fresh look, a popular place to start is the kitchen. This is where many families spend happy moments together, so it's an appropriate place to focus your efforts. When you want to make this key room more attractive, warm, or inviting, you don't need to spend a fortune on new cabinets and granite countertops. Just changing the color scheme with some paint can make a big difference for a modest price. Here are some tips for painting your kitchen.

1.  Coordinate Your Colors

When you plan your kitchen upgrade, consider the colors of your ceiling, walls, trim, and cabinets all together. These need to work well with each other, and also fit with your kitchen's overall style, appliances furniture, lighting and accessories. Avoid white walls and think of a different color to make your space seem cozier. Your kitchen will be a more vibrant place if you paint the walls in a color (like pastels for example) instead of white. If you really want to use white, you can achieve a dramatic effect by having white walls, counters, and cabinets, and then adding splashes of color, but this will show dirt easily.

2.  Balance Subdued And Intense Colors

Think of the different parts of your kitchen, and where you want your colors. You can use your boldest colors for the elements you want to accent, with subdued colors elsewhere. For example, you could use a mellow color on the walls if you want your beautiful cabinets to stand out, while using a darker shade for trim.

3. Use The Boldest Colors In Small Areas

If you want to incorporate bright, bold colors, think about reserving these for trim or accent areas. If you paint the entire kitchen bright red, for instance, it can have an overwhelming effect, while red in small doses can give a lively, upbeat feel to the room. Yellow is cheery, and it has the ability to bring a lot of natural light into your kitchen. For a sunny, cheerful feel that will tend to lift your mood, yellow is an excellent choice. You can use yellow paint on the kitchen walls, combined with white cabinets, to create a bright, airy feel, even if you don't get a lot of natural sunlight in the room.

4. The Color Green Is Soothing

Green is the color of nature, and it tends to have a calming effect on people. When you choose a crisp green color for your kitchen walls, it can give the room a homey, comfortable feel. Green goes well with natural wood cabinets, and you can also use it with stainless steel appliances, where the soothing green can soften the more industrial metal finish.

5. White Ceilings Do Wonders In Brightening A Room

If your kitchen seems dark or closed-in, painting the ceiling white can help to make the room feel more bright, open and airy. You can accentuate this with mirrors or bright surfaces which will reflect light around the room.

6. Black And White Can Be Dramatic

For a memorable kitchen design, you can go with a black and white color scheme, combined with stainless steel or black appliances. Accent this with bright colors on the trim and backsplash, and it can create a lasting impression.

Painted kitchens are always a convenient alternative to redecorating and spending a lot of money on furniture. Don’t forget to accessorize with fresh flower pots, they’re cheap and can really change completely the blunt appearance of your kitchen.

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7 Ways To Improve Your Kitchen On A Budget

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Guest Post Jason Phillips

The dining room is where you entertain guests for special dinner parties. It's also where your family gathers for major meals and holiday feasts. Though the dining room does not typically get as much use as the kitchen, you want it to look attractive for your guests and special occasions. Here are some tips to help you decorate your dining room on a budget, so that you have a stylish setting for those elegant meals.

Window Coverings

If your dining room has windows that bring in natural light, you are in luck. The daylight streaming in can make any space seem larger, brighter, and airier. Use simple window coverings so that you allow the daylight to come in, while preserving privacy when you need it. One good idea is interior shutters. These are inexpensive and easy to install, and you can find them made of a composite material that never needs painting. The look is clean and crisp, and if you have dentil molding around the edge of the ceiling, it will go together perfectly.

Hang A Large Mirror

Buy a large mirror with an attractive frame, and hang it on a wall of your dining room. Not only is it a decorative element itself, but it can also help your room to seem larger, by expanding the visual sense of space. A mirror can reflect natural light, brightening the room, or reflect the dancing flames of candles at night.

Mix Styles

There’s nothing wrong with playing with different styles, as long as you don’t create an unpleasant amalgam. If you’re the modern type o homeowner, placing a traditional rug right in the middle or the room or buying a vintage table cloth will make your dining area seem more interesting for family and friends.

Match The Cabinets

Get a corner cabinet made from unfinished wood, or buy a vintage piece from a flea market or thrift store. Put this in a corner of your dining room, and paint it the same color as the walls. This will give it the look of an original built-in cabinet, for a fraction of the price. Use the shelves to display attractive glassware or serving pieces.

Soften The Space With Linens

Linens are a convenient way of redecorating a room. Use cotton materials and make sure the patterns are in tone with the rest of your space. You can always add a pop of color if the space is too dark or too boring. Go for deep yellow linens for the sofa, and create some balance with flower pots in the same nuance. This idea will convert your gloomy dining area into the most pleasant environment.

Decorating a dining room on a budget can be challenging. First, you should settle on a budget; next, you must get your priorities straight. Do you want to invest in dining furniture or buy accessories to beautify your space? It’s always a good idea to plan ahead rather then get into the redecorating and realize you don’t have enough money for elaborate modifications.

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Paint The Ceiling

Most people stick with a white ceiling, but there is no reason that you have to. Adding color here can give your dining room a brighter feel, or a touch of the dramatic. If you choose a pale yellow, lavender, or grayish blue for the ceiling, it tends to draw the eye up, and open the space without seeming brash. If you are ready for something bolder, some dining rooms achieve a memorable look with a red or metallic gold ceiling.

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Create A Chair Rail

This architectural feature gives a room a traditional feel, and a sense of the elegance of times gone by. You can easily add this touch to your dining room, without costing very much at all. Just get a narrow stick-on molding from a home improvement store. Install this around the walls of the room at an appropriate height. You can use white molding on a colored wall, but for a more decorative look, get paint in two different shades of the same color. Paint the bottom portion below the chair rail in the darker shade, and use the lighter shade for the top portion of the wall.

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7 Secrets That Kitchen Designers Use For Easy Beautiful Updates

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Guest Post Jason Phillips

Every homeowner should want to upgrade his kitchen every now and then. Replacing new hardware, repainting cabinets, and accessorizing the space to make it livelier and more modern are just some easy ways of revamping the cooking area. Who doesnt love a bright, practical kitchen? Here are some ideas to help you upgrade without having to make a substantial investment.

1.  Include A Table Lamp On A Buffet Or Countertop

Who says table lamps are for meant solely for the living area? Some models are excellent in the kitchen, too. The key to making the cooking area appealing with lamps is to place them in the right spots. First, select a model and a colour. White for instance, is a smart choice. As for the location, you want to put them in visible areas like on the kitchen island. The idea is to make the whole space look feel and look like room, not like a laboratory. Invest in quality lamps that are beautifully decorated, and stay away from those awful desk lamps.

2. Show Off A High End Kitchen Gadget On Your Countertop

We are not talking about purchasing an industrial stove, or a new fridge. Advanced technology is cool, and you can use it to add a touch of innovation into your kitchen. Purchase an automatic, fun-looking citrus juicer and put in someplace where everyone can see it. Add a basket filled with fruits next to it, and your whole kitchen will come to life. The family will surely want to try the gadget, so apart from creating great ambiance you’ll also enjoy a beautifully-decorated cooking spot.

3.  Feature Nice Pots And Pans 

Rather than invest in new kitchen cabinets, why don't you try something different? Hang pots and pans from the ceiling. Purchasing a pot rack is a lot more convenient, not to mention that it is an excellent way of adding style to your cooking spot. If you are an avid cook, showing off your kitchenware is a great way of making the kitchen seem busy-cool, yet not cluttered. Suspended pots and pans are an excellent idea for homeowners with limited space, so if you want free cabinets and a neat kitchen, this idea will work wonders.

4.  Add Old World Style By Utilizing Large Baskets

Including large baskets into the kitchen is a smart, chic way of making your space environmentally-friendly, cool, and welcoming. Use baskets made of bamboo or wicker for example, and fill them with fruits and veggies. This idea is great for kitchens that lack shelves and storing areas. Make sure to keep everything organized, though, and place the baskets in plain sight to add colour and impress guests.

5.  Show You Have A Green Thumb With Fresh Herbs

Planting fresh herbs is probably the cheapest, most interesting way of making your kitchen seem bright, inviting, practical, and modern. Invest in a dozen beautifully-designed pots and buy herb seeds from your local store. The idea is such a great way of saving cash, too, because you can always use the herbs during the cooking process. Plant thyme, basil, chives, rosemary, and mint, and just enjoy the smell!

6.  Use Time Tested Designer Paint On Cabinetry That Looks Rich

Repaint your cabinets and counters. Leave your upper cabinets in their natural wood, and paint the cabinets below.   Use lighter shades to open up your kitchen. Decide what style you are after and work within those colors.  This season it’s all about pastels – mint, lemon and light pink, however beige, off white, gray are classic choices that show great from year to year.

7. Upgrade Your Hardware, And See Your Kitchen In A New Light

Replacing cabinet knobs will completely change the overall appearance of your kitchen. Purchase good quality hardware and pick attractive models. Vintage knobs for example, are absolutely amazing. Theyll instantly make your space seem alluring and visually enticing.

There are endless ways of upgrading a kitchen. Whether you choose to accessorize, repaint or replace items, make sure to assess the space you have available first.

Painted kitchens light up a gloomy space, while new hardware and planted herbs freshen it up to make it feels rejuvenated. Homeowners don’t have to invest huge amounts of cash to revamp their kitchens; they just need to be original, think outside the box, and take risks. Upgrade yours right now and make cooking your newest passion!

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