10 Creative Ways to Establish a Kitchen Focal Point
Monday, April 11, 2016
Here’s how to create a statement-making cooking space with your backsplash, countertop, appliances, cabinets and more
It may be tempting when designing a kitchen to select the most fetching eye-candy materials, fixtures and furnishings you can find. But the problem with creating so many focal points is that the result can be a confusing and visually busy mishmash of items that battle one another to be the star of the space. And designing this way will put you on the fast track to maxing out your budget before you’ve even had a chance to finalize all of the selections.
A better way to go is to select one or two focal points and invest a decent chunk of your budget on those items. Then you can let the other elements support those choices, both visually and budget-wise. Here are a few creative ways you can create a strong focal point in your kitchen.
1. Bold backsplash. Sure, a backsplash serves an important function in your kitchen, protecting its walls from food and drink spatters, but it can also step up and be a strong decorative element. If you go for colorful tiles such as these, try adding small bits of their hues throughout the space, to tie the decor together.
2. Accent countertop. Gone are the days when we seemed to have an unwritten rule that you could use only one type of countertop material in a kitchen. Accent countertops are all the rage these days, especially for kitchen islands, so why not use them to create an interesting focal point in your kitchen?
3. Fun furniture. Say you love the color red. Rather than installing bright red countertops in your kitchen, consider adding your favorite color via something that will be easy to change down the road, as trends and tastes evolve. These stools add a fun splash of color, and I like that they are a flexible, low-commitment option.
4. Colorful appliances. Tired of stainless steel appliances yet? If so, you’re in luck, as appliances now come in a rainbow of vibrant hues. But unless you are going for a super-colorful and eclectic kitchen, think about keeping the remainder of the hues in the space neutral, as has been done in this beautiful kitchen.
5. Painted cabinets. Here, a mostly white kitchen gets a nice kick of color, and a great focal point, from leafy-green painted base cabinets. If you consider yourself handy, this can be a terrific DIY project. Or you can hire a pro to spray your cabinets in your favorite hue. The more vibrant you go with the color, however, the more you should support it with neutrals.
6. Textured wall. Bold color isn’t the only way to create a focal point in a kitchen. Texture is another, often-underused, design element. In fact, if you desire a monochrome kitchen, it’s a great idea to add some variety via sheen and texture, to keep the space from having a monotonous feel. This 3-D feature wall really makes the minimalist kitchen sing.
7. Stunning view. Some focal points don’t need to be added to a kitchen; they already exist. If you are fortunate enough to have a breathtaking view out your kitchen windows, ditch the upper wall cabinets and install expanses of glass instead so you can take full advantage of the view. A full-height pantry on an interior wall can provide the needed storage you would lose from going without uppers.
8. Fetching fixtures. Good lighting is a kitchen must-have. But don’t just install a few ceiling can lights and undercabinet strip lights and call it a day. Decorative kitchen pendants and chandeliers are hot right now, and they can be an excellent focal point in an otherwise neutral or minimalist kitchen.
9. Amazing artwork. This charming eclectic kitchen has a few focal points, but I find my eye going immediately to the artwork. The great thing about using an original piece of art as a focal point is that yours will be the only one like it. It goes without saying, however, to use care and consideration when installing art in the kitchen. Grease, humidity and food and drink messes could cause damage, so make sure your space is well-ventilated and the artwork is kept out of harm’s way.
10. Family wall. Of course, don’t discount any budding young artists in your own midst. Rather than haphazardly slapping the kids’ creations on the fridge, think about displaying them in a more pleasing way. You can easily change out pieces in a setup like this as your kids bring home more masterpieces from school. You could also do this with items such as family photos and postcards from your travels.