The kitchen is one of the most-used rooms in your house, so why not make it beautiful? No, a big-budget renovation isn't necessary. After all, it's the little things that count! Read on for inexpensive ways to add elegant touches to your kitchen.
REMOVE A COUPLE OF CABINET DOORS
Seeing shelves instead of a solid front will make the room look bigger (fill in screw holes with wood putty and repaint the interior). Create a balanced focal point with units that flank a large object (the stove, sink or a pair of glass-front doors). Then fill them with your kitchen's best-looking contents, like rows of glasses, cookbooks or stacks of colorful plates.
Display-worthy dish soap brings some joy to this chore (psst—you can buy "designer" soap once for the packaging and refill it with your brand of choice). Or, look for a dispenser in the bathroom aisle if you're not having luck in the kitchen department.
Mandarin Vetiver Dish Soap, $8.03;
Threshold Soap Dispenser in Amber, $10;
Beach Sage Dish Soap, $7;
A rug under your feet is a blessing when there's a sink of dishes to tackle—plus it brings texture and color into the room. Instead of a mat or runner, consider carpet tiles. You can combine these mix-and-match squares into whatever size or shape you need, pick them up easily for washing and replace just one tile if it becomes damaged.
Don't put these away when you're done with them! A cheery toaster, mixer or slow cooker might be all your countertop needs for a little pick-me-up.
Bella Dots 2-Slice Toaster, $24.99;
Cuisinart Mini Prep Food Processor, $39.95;
French Bull Crock-Pot Slow Cooker, $34.99;
White porcelain tile is classic, but that doesn't mean you can't experiment with something more decorative—or change your mind again later. Available in 4" and 6" sizes, Mibo's Tile Tattoos are moisture-resistant stickers that adhere directly to tile, and can be removed cleanly in the future.
4" Yellow Mosaic Animals, $24 for 8;
4" Blue Mosaic Animals, $24 for 8;
An eye-catching pendant is a multitasker. It fills an empty space, makes a style statement and, of course, illuminates an area where you might be chopping, peeling, washing or reading the paper.
Metal/Rope Pendant, $49.99;
Style Selections Polished Chrome Mini Pendant, $39.97;
FOTO Green Pendant, $19.99;
Bubble Glass Pendant, $49;
Changing the color of all your cabinets can be quite an undertaking. Skip the big project and redo only the island (or a rolling cart or prep table) in a contrasting hue like French blue, farmhouse red or sunflower yellow.
Vibrant designs, seasonal flair—use your kitchen towels, potholders and chair cushions to express some personality. Keep a few in rotation to match your mood.
Kaeden Bright Cushion, $40;
Agra Mitt, $8; for stores
Peking Handicraft Good Folk Kitchen Towel, $9;