Friday, March 20, 2009


The energy and reflections generated by a colorful glass-tile backsplash work well against a dark concrete countertop. Other options include black granite, soapstone, or solid-surface materials. For a contemporary look, pair the glass tiles with stainless-steel countertops.

This newly updated kitchen mirrors the symmetry of the home's Federal architecture. Rustic horizontal siding, salvaged ceiling beams, and concrete pavers set a primitive tone. The granite-topped island, however, is all about modern amenities.

Because the kitchen is open to the dining and living rooms, the homeowners chose a formal look that features painted cabinetry with inset drawers, beaded details, and glass knobs. At the far end, a built-in hutch holds dishware opposite the breakfast table.

It took more moxie than money to give this kitchen its color and cost-conscious character. Most of the budget went to stainless-steel appliances. Working with other existing elements kept the budget in check.

To maximize function in this odd-shape kitchen, cabinetry starts at the widest point and runs down two opposing walls at angles. With a prep sink, a warming drawer, and storage, the 10-foot-long island narrows at the dining room end to maintain ample traffic paths.

Banquettes are an especially attractive option for informal dining. They conserve space without sacrificing comfort and link busy kitchens with a place to sit and eat, read, or do homework. This dining space features a built-in banquette with a cottage-look custom table.

This family kitchen displays it all: storage, organization, convenience, vintage charm, warmth, and a clean fresh look. The customized architectural details contribute to the beauty of this efficient workspace.

The character of an English country home took top priority in this kitchen remodel, with cabients built to look like freestanding furniture pieces. Hand-hewn ceiling beams in the kitchen and divided light windows add to the look and feel of British elegance.

Shallow ceiling beams add intimacy and warmth to this kitchen. Buttery-yellow beaded-board cabinets provide plenty of storage, including a spice drawer, a foldaway mixer stand, and large shelves for pots. Traditional soapstone countertops complement the cabinets' warm hue.

Stainless-steel appliances, custom cabinetry, and a large island add luxury and utility to this kitchen. Tumbled-marble and granite surfaces add to the room's sophisticated European look.

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