Light & Bright Kitchens Are In - How To Make the Heart of Your Home Come To Life
Generally, the kitchen is the most important room in your home because it is the center of your family’s day-to-day living. In older homes, kitchens were smaller, separated and removed from the rest of the home. It was a contained space used almost exclusively for cooking that could be closed off to conceal the mess. Family and friends would eat and congregate in the dining and living rooms that were situated nearby. In older homes more importance was given to the dining and living rooms. Kitchens were considered utilitarian.
Over the past 20 years or so, the kitchen has taken on a new role in American lifestyles. Rather than just a place for cooking, the kitchen has become a place of gathering and entertainment. The kitchen is now officially the most important room in a home, according to realtors, as a home’s resale greatly depends on its kitchen. Due to our new lifestyles, a kitchen’s layout, design and functionality are taken into consideration. And kitchen renovations are consistently made to make the space feel more open, welcoming, and comfortable.
The amount of light within a kitchen greatly contributes to the overall tone of the space, and is always considered in the design of new construction, or renovation projects. We want to provide some ideas to help you increase and manipulate the lighting within your kitchen! These ideas range from simple, cost-effective changes to more extensive, home-improvement projects.
Add under-counter lighting
Your ceiling isn’t the only place you can install light fixtures. Under-cabinet lighting can create a glow all-around the kitchen, long after the sun goes down. If you have reflective tile on the backsplash, the light will travel even further. The lighting also showcases any décor you have on your countertops that would otherwise be in the shadow from the upper cabinets. Show off your gorgeous backsplash or fancy cookware with inexpensive lighting solutions.
Paint or stain your cabinets with lighter colors
One of the easiest ways to lighten a kitchen is to use lighter colors in the space. This means painting or staining the kitchen cabinets, since they make up the bulk of the kitchen. If you plan to get new cabinets, look for lighter colors. You could utilize options such as white cabinets, light grey cabinets, and light wood stains.
If you are worried about fingerprints on white cabinets, use dark-colored lower cabinets to hide the dirt. These cabinets are most susceptible to spills, child messes, fingerprints, and more. You’ll have a light color at eye-level, so the kitchen will still feel brighter overall.
Take advantage of natural light in kitchen
This is a potentially free way to brighten your dark kitchen! If you have windows in the area, don’t block them with window treatments! If you’re worried about privacy, you could add privacy film to the window that still allows light to pour in. You could also use sheer curtains in place of dark curtains. The more natural light you have in the kitchen, the bigger it will feel.
Use reflective surfaces
You want light to bounce around your kitchen. This doesn’t mean you have to install mirrors everywhere. You can achieve the same effect with reflective surfaces. Upgrade from black appliances to stainless steel. Add a glossy tile backsplash that complements your other finishes in the space, or add shiny granite countertops. Find ways to help light travel in the kitchen, and the space will quickly feel more pleasant to be in.
Utilize a more open floor plan
This is a bit more complicated than the options above, but it is a way to brighten a dark kitchen. Make use of the light from other rooms and create a line of sight into the kitchen. You could either remove a wall completely or create a ‘window’ to the other room. This is a good option for load-bearing walls, and it doesn’t require an expensive support beam for construction. Opening a wall may not be an option for everyone, but if you have the opportunity, take it!