67 kitchen design ideas
Oversize windows and skylights invite in the sunshine. Walls are painted a light-bouncing white, while white ceramic subway tiles brighten the kitchen and baths.
For contrast, the wooden floors are stained in a custom mix of ebony and dark walnut shades; the high-gloss polyurethane top coat reflects even more light.
The soft gray walls and mushroom-colored concrete counters subtly complement the tile.
The kitchen counters are recycled granite, and the cupboards are made from unfinished wood.
“If it’s a great material, let it be,” Cisco says.
The kitchen cabinet doors were removed: “If a door’s closed,” says homeowner Jamie, “I have a tendency to forget things are there.”
To maintain the integrity of the house, the owners had the walls repaired with plaster, not drywall.
The kitchen also features eco-friendly cast-stone countertops and reclaimed wood floors and cabinets.
See more of this sunny Victorian remodel
Try following this homeowner's rule of thumb: “If you use it more than once a week, have it out. If you use it a few times a month, stick it in a cabinet. Once or twice a year? It belongs in the basement.”
The couple wanted to make it possible for Barden to interact with guests while he's preparing their meal. But they didn't want to look at big piles of pots and pans.
The solution: curtains to screen the kitchen when necessary.
"When cooking, it lets me face the room," Barden says. "It pulls me into the conversation and allows guests to be involved in what I'm doing."
They selected concrete counters, a farmhouse-style sink, and white wood cabinets.
A long center island with a butcher-block surface and deep overhangs is great for two-person cooking, prep work, and entertaining.
Glass-front cabinets provide a showcase for colorful pottery.
The bamboo-topped table on casters tucks under the island and can roll away for use throughout the house or outside. Mixing up the chair styles adds casual appeal.
New walnut veneers restore period charm to the original kitchen cabinets. Existing slate flooring was kept in place, and the interior of the concrete block walls was sandblasted to add texture.
The 1950s aesthetic was hardly limited to stainless steel and molded plastic. The use of wood, especially walnut and mahogany, was a main design feature of that era.
By removing the wall that closed off the room from the rest of the house, Dutto gained 5 feet of living space and united the layout.
After opening up the kitchen, Dutto devised a means of closing it off when needed. "From the kitchen window, you can see goats and a big barn up the hill," she says. "That inspired the sliding barn door."
Learn more about this warm kitchen makeover
The rolling island was designed by Artdecor (510/527-3904) and fabricated by Mark Turpin (510/469-6784).
The top of the island is a 3- by 5-foot chopping block of sustainably harvested Oregon madrone from a supply store in Portland. They stained the maple base red, then painted it black and sanded to reveal the color underneath.
The appliance-free island was made from a stainless steel and butcher block workspace purchased at a restaurant-supply store, then covered on three sides with plywood.
For a lacquerlike finish, he used a paint sprayer to apply paint both to the doors and to the insides of the cabinets. He also replaced the old grout and cleaned, buffed, and sealed the tile to bring out its vibrant yellow hue.
A new multipurpose cooking island solved a problem with the old layout.
Design: Jeffrey Alan Marks, Los Angeles (310/207-2222)
See more of this colorful kitchen makeover
It may be traditional, but it certainly isn't stuffy. "I always loved Victorians ― they reminded me of real-life dollhouses," says Sophie Fauveau of the 1890 Portland home she renovated with her husband, Mark Williams. "But I also knew I wanted light colors, no clutter, and a sense that everything belonged together."
Their remodel stayed true to the home's period details and old-fashioned charm while infusing it with youthful, contemporary sophistication.
Now the L is a multi-purpose island with a raised bar counter.
Design: John Jennings and Sasha Tarnopolsky, Dry Design, Los Angeles (323/954-9084, ext. 21)
Basket pendant lamps by Beach House Style highlight the kitchen island (Woodenbridge, Inc.).
The wood stain is covered with a sealer that blocks UV rays to prevent fading. Toe space underneath drawers and cabinets is often wasted, but here it holds drawers for long flat items like cutting boards and trays.
In this kitchen, out went the old mold- and fire-damaged interior walls, and in came space-saving wood cabinets, contemporary fixtures, and lightweight concrete countertops.
Now the former ruin is a neighborhood showpiece.
It started when the fridge broke. The owners couldn't find another to fit in the original space, and they started to talk about bumping out the kitchen wall.
Much of the gains came from reconfiguring the existing spaces. "Everyone thinks we made the kitchen much bigger," the owner says, "but we only added 2 feet to its length."
An antique barrister card catalog serves as an ingenious storage system for miscellaneous household items.
An 1887 tavern table serves as the island in this family-friendly kitchen. The 1920s utility sink is from a salvage yard.
A marble backsplash and wood display shelf make the kitchen handsome enough to entertain in.
For a sophisticated look, try pairing one red object with neutral tones. Here, dark-wood surfaces and stainless steel appliances do the trick.
Owner and architect Mary Griffin replaced a 1920s shed-roof addition at the back with a slightly larger addition that allowed the kitchen to move out of the historic part of the house.
She turned the new kitchen into a large light box with a translucent roof made of aluminum-and-fiberglass Kalwall panels. Widened openings between the major rooms further brighten the interior.
Design: Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects, Berkeley (510/841-9000)
Katherine and Josh Anderson worked with an architect and cabinetmaker to revamp the kitchen, using a mix of walnut and brightly hued laminates as the dominant organizing element.
Design: Dennis Fox, Fox Design Group, Point Richmond, CA (510/235-3369). Dean Rutherford, Rutherford & Singelstad, Berkeley (510/649-3069).
Open shelves around the sink and range hold smaller objects, such as dishes, serving bowls, and glasses—items the couple uses every day.
Meg Miller wanted the kitchen in her new house to be a feast for the eyes, as well as a central gathering place for family and friends.
Here, she and David Miller enjoy a glass of wine in their light-filled kitchen while sharing a few treats with Boo, a rescue mutt, and Sagres, a Portuguese water dog.
Within this transparent boxlike container, a center island accommodates a stainless steel cooktop and oven, and a work surface of fossilized limestone.
The renovated kitchen retains the original footprint minus the overhead cabinets that isolated it from the dining area.
The original flat ceiling was removed; now the angled line of the window bay extends upward, borrowing several feet from the former attic. Vertical bands of frosted glass panels set into a wall of cabinets emphasize the room’s newfound height. Stainless steel on the counters is repeated in new appliances.
Design: Neil Kelly Design/Build Remodeling, Portland (503/288-7461)
The hexagonal tile makes the room. Two shades of gray relate the tile to the wall color. The blues add shock value. Hexagon 8 tiles in Original Blue, from about $20/sq. ft.; kismettile.com
“We tried to leave everything as plain as possible,” Sandston says. “You’re not looking at anything glorified. You’re looking at honest materials and honest function.”
But not everything is new –The butcher block counters were salvaged from the former kitchen.