Q. I really don’t like my kitchen. It’s really outdated and not in the good way. We have linoleum tile and yellow laminate counter tops. The rest of our house is really modern and makes the kitchen even weirder. How can we make it look more modern without spending a lot of money? -Erika P.
A. Oh man I know that you say it’s not great, but I kind of like how your kitchen sounds. Although my place is not so modern, so I can see how this is a problem for you. Kitchens, as I am sure you know, are commonly the most expensive room in your home. So to do it on the cheap is tough, but certainly not impossible.
There are common characteristics that you can find in a kitchen that makes it scream out one specific style. Basically, try to do as many of these as you can, and it may help out your room significantly. Also, I recommend doing it slowly instead of all at once. Tackle the important elements first and spend as you can. Don’t break the bank when you don’t need to.
Flat panel cabinet doors scream modern. Perhaps your doors don’t fit the bill. If you’re place is as “retro” as you say, then I am guessing you may already have yourself some flat panels. If so, just paint them a bright white, or dark navy . If you don’t, you could try to make your own using this tutorial. If you are able to install new cabinets, IKEA is a great place to go to for modern Kitchen cabinets.
This is such an easy way to get that modern look without having to spend much. I say go with nothing at all, or something with no ornamentation. See this guide on Kitchen Hardware for help choosing the modern features you need to get that perfect look.
This is usually entirely dependent on your budget. Try to make your present counter tops work if it’s possible. If not, laminate is your cheapest option. However it’s really not the most durable. I think a butcher block counter top looks pretty great in a modern setting. For a more detailed list of counter tops and pricing, see A Breakdown of the Most Popular Counter Tops Materials.
Replace those out dated fixtures with something new and simple. Look into installing recessed lights above. This looks sleeker and gives you a much better light source than you presently have. If you have an island, or a place for seating, install some modern pendant lights that make a bold statement. You will be amazed by how much this alone will vastly improve the look and feel of your space.
Again, this is another area that can be pricey. This is where you may want to splurge if you can. Think about getting yourself some sleek stainless steel appliances. It’s going to look great with your new cabinet doors. I would also recommend getting yourself some energy efficient appliances. It’s a huge trend and will only be more beneficial to you in the long run.
You absolutely need to update your floors. My favorite look for a modern kitchen is wood or concrete flooring. Concrete flooring looks unbelievable in the kitchen and is another budget friendly option. Laminate however is one of the most budget friendly, and as you can see in Wood Vs Laminate Flooring, laminate can look just like real wood.
Less Is More
They key to a great looking modern kitchen is avoiding excessive ornamentation. Simplify accessories, and remove all extra items on your counter tops. Avoid window treatments, and stick with flat pleated roman shades or roller shades. Keep as much as you can down to a minimum and you will be happy with the results.