Livening Up Your Kitchen

There's no reason you have to cook meals in a kitchen that has zero personality. Own your kitchen by changing the layout to suit your needs instead of the other way around. Here are some simple ideas you can use to personalize your kitchen:

Feel Good

Don't worry about trends and fads; make the décor of your kitchen reflect your personal taste. The look of your kitchen should make you feel good. Your kitchen should function in a dependable way and be a comfortable place in which to prepare meals. This is the biggest step you can take toward maximizing your chef skills.

Exert some effort and spend the time to find the accessories and accent pieces that will make your kitchen call your name. Do you like the country look—or the shabby chic look? Accessorize with baskets and fill them with your choice of dried flowers, growing plants, or fresh cut flowers. You can also fill a basket of fruit which will not just look attractive but serve as a healthy grab-it-as-you-go snack dispenser.

Clean Lines

If you're the minimalist type, go for sleek and modern by taking advantage of the silvery gleam of stainless steel racks and hardware. Keep the kitchen spare and use only items and appliances with clean lines.

Your kitchen cabinets should fit with your chosen kitchen style. Keep in mind that paint is an inexpensive and easy way to change the look of your cabinets. Or you can strip and varnish the cabinets to go with the rest of your interior.

Another way to get a quick kitchen cabinet makeover is to change the hardware, such as knobs and handles, to get a brand new look. It's also possible to update your cabinets with some recessed interior lighting.

Other changes include switching your appliances for some new ones. Or you can dig your pots and pans out from your cabinets and hang them from a ceiling rack. This will improve the flow within your kitchen, too. A ceiling rack tends to make your kitchen look more busy and alive and gives you more storage space, too. Who can't use more storage space?

Tempted to change some architectural details? How about using some bead board paneling in your kitchen? This will make your kitchen look brand new without any need for a major remodeling job.

If you've gotten to this point, and still feel your kitchen needs a bit more "umph," it's time to check out the flooring to see if you should switch to something new. Looking for a cozy glow to make your kitchen a warm family hub? Go for a highly-polished hardwood floor.