The kitchen. Also known as the heart of the home. It's where you nourish your family, sneak a midnight snack, refuel after a long day, brew your morning coffee, make school lunches, and prepare holiday dinners. Considering how much we depend on our kitchens, it's no wonder we want to do our research to find the best possible ideas.
Culinary spaces are notoriously expensive to renovate and it can feel overwhelming to face all of the decisions that need to be made along the way. What finish is the best for your appliances? Will wood countertops hold up against rogue Crayola markers and your book club's wine glass stains? What type of lighting should go over the kitchen island?
Ahead, our editors have compiled a comprehensive kitchen design guide, addressing everything from storage to flooring to cabinets.
Kitchen Lighting Ideas
Lighting is a make or break feature in just about any space, but this is especially true in the kitchen. Whether your style is boho, midcentury, or purely budget-friendly, you need lighting that is functional and bright enough to prepare meals, yet ambient enough to feel peaceful and inviting. (PSA: There's a fine line between functional ceiling lights and soul-sucking fluorescents.)
Kitchen Island Ideas
No matter how beautiful the rest of your home may be, it's a fact that nine times out of 10, all of your guests will end up gathered around the crown jewel of your kitchen: the island.
Kitchen Backsplash Ideas
The kitchen backsplash is one of the most defining parts of a culinary space. From classic, clean white subway tile to bold black slate tile, or a creative and unusual patterned tile, there's no shortage of ideas, along with a myriad of things to consider: budget, durability, and style, to name a few.
Here's everything you ever needed to know to select the perfect kitchen backsplash.
Small Kitchen Ideas
It's true that grand, stately kitchens often get all of the attention, but there's plenty of beauty to be found in pint-sized spaces, too. Small kitchens encourage us to get creative with organization, carve out cozy dinettes, and ensure that tons of unique style and personality can be found in every last detail.
Here are the best small kitchen ideas to help you make the most of your diminutive cook space.
Kitchen Color Ideas
All white everything may have reigned supreme in kitchens for the last decade, but that doesn't mean there aren't plenty of (arguably better) color options out there. From verdant green to chic black to vibrant yellow to moody blue, you might be surprised by which colorways win you over.
Kitchen Style Ideas
There are plenty of opportunities to inject your own unique flair and personality into the kitchen, whether you're a fan of boho style, sleek and modern, or you prefer to channel your inner Joanna Gaines with a hint of farmhouse. Why settle for builder-grade when you can have a cook space dripping with character and charm?
This run-down will help you decide which kitchen style is right for you and your home.
Kitchen Flooring Ideas
In our humble opinion, you just can't go wrong with classic hardwood flooring in the kitchen. Then again, there's just something so irresistible about a bold, patterned tile. Oh, and there's also terra cotta, limestone, ceramic, slate ... and the list goes on.
Ready to learn more? Here are all of the details on kitchen flooring, and how to choose which one is right for you.
Kitchen Cabinet Ideas
Kitchen cabinets are likely to be one of the biggest investments you'll make in your kitchen, and for good reason. Even on the days when you trade cooking for takeout, chances are, your built-ins will still see a lot of use. As a major investment piece, it's important to feel confident in your knowledge about all of the possible options, from materials, to colors, to style, to hardware.
Here's a definitive guide to everything you need to know before committing to your kitchen cabinets.
Kitchen Storage & Organization Ideas
As much as we relish a beautiful kitchen (Guilty as charged: We would do next to anything for a good slab of soapstone.), there's no denying that function outweighs all the bells and whistles when it comes to the heart of the home. A beautiful bridge faucet and sleek appliances may look great, but they won't make much of a difference if you don't have a proper place to store your cookware or cleaning supplies.
Read on for all of the best tips and tricks for tackling kitchen storage.
Kitchen Countertop Ideas
Kitchen countertops are the very foundation on which meals are prepared. They're the place where the kids will help bake chocolate chip cookies, where you'll chop veggies for Sunday night dinner, and where you'll add icing to each and every birthday cake. In short: they're not a suitable impulse purchase. The good news? With options like industrial concrete to vintage tile to budget-friendly laminate, there are plenty of possibilities to mull over.
Kitchen Appliance Ideas
Aside from brand names, product models, and whether you'll be buying new or refurbished (a great hack to save money when renovating on a budget), you'll also need to decide which color and style is right for you when it comes to your kitchen appliances. Whether you go with modern stainless, classic white, sleek black, or make a statement with copper, there's undoubtedly something for everyone.
Be sure to add this kitchen appliance guide to your list of reading materials before you reach your final decision.
Kitchen Sink & Faucet Ideas
There may not initially seem like much to consider when it comes to sinks and faucets, but you'd be surprised! Whether deciding between a single bowl sink or a double, undermount or integrated, or considering pros and cons of different materials, it's important to take a thoughtful look at your options. Just remember, function is king when it comes to choosing the right sink and faucet for your culinary space.
Give our kitchen sink buying guide a thorough read before pulling the trigger on this cornerstone feature.