Easy Kitchen Updates

The kitchen may be the hardest-working room in the house, so it runs the risk of looking overworked. Give your kitchen fresh appeal with these quick and easy updates, including solutions for your windows, floor, pantry, and more!

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Freestanding Pantry Ideas

Short on storage and space? No worries. These stylish go-anywhere pantry designs house everything from baking pans and cooking staples to party supplies -- exactly where you need them most. As a bonus, many of these units are transportable so they can travel with you when you move.

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One-of-a-Kind Backsplashes

In a hardworking kitchen, a backsplash is an ideal opportunity to add a little personality. See how pretty materials and unique installations can bring a fresh face to your kitchen.

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Drab to Fab Makeover

See how a basic kitchen received a fresh face on an affordable remodeling budget.

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Guide to Cabinetry

From Better Homes and Gardens, ideas and improvement projects for your home and garden plus recipes and entertaining ideas.

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Countertop Ideas

Countertops are big part of your kitchen. Consider these up-and-coming materials to make a statement in your space.

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Subway Tile Backsplashes

When it comes to a classic backsplash, nothing beats the traditional subway tile. Subway tiles make cleaning up kitchen messes a quick and easy task, plus the variety to choose from seems almost infinite. One thing is for sure, subway tile will never go out of style.

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Popular in Kitchens

Black Kitchen Countertops

Ready to give your kitchen a little dramatic flair? Black countertops are a bold choice and look great in any style kitchen. Before purchasing new counters, use our guide to weigh the pros and cons of popular materials.

Black countertops can take any kitchen from bland to bold. At home in both traditional and contemporary kitchens, black counters pair best with white or lighter wood cabinets and white or stainless-steel appliances, unless you are hoping to create an ultra-modern monochromatic look.

If you're worried black counters will make the room appear dark or lifeless, Add color to the space with a bold backsplash, dinnerware, rugs, and window treatments.

Nearly every surface material is now available in black so you can get dramatic black countertops, no matter your budget. The most affordable countertop material is also the most popular. Laminate comes in several shades of black and in a multitude of interesting patterns. It is durable and easy to clean, however, damage can be difficult or impossible to repair. Another inexpensive option is ceramic tile, which is also available in an endless variety of colors, patterns, and textures. If you're concerned about keeping grout clean in a kitchen, choose larger tiles that require less grout, use colored grout that doesn't show dirt, and seal the grout to reduce discoloration.

Concrete is becoming a more popular choice for kitchen countertops, due in part to its cost savings over natural and engineered stone. Thanks to integral color or stain, the material can be made any shade of black. Pebbles, glass, or other embedded items can be used to give the counters pattern. Concrete is porous but a surface sealer will make it water- and stain-resistant.

Synthetic solid-surfacing counters are more expensive than concrete but are more affordable than the natural or manufactured stone. Available in a wide range of colors and patterns, Corian and similar products are extremely durable and require very little maintenance. The nonporous surface keeps out mold and mildew, which makes it easy to clean and a good choice for people with allergies.

When choosing black countertops, many people prefer the look of natural stone because of its unique colors and patterns. While granite is the most popular material, manufactured quartz is quickly gaining ground. This composite product replicates the look of natural stones, such as granite or marble. It's no cheaper than granite but it is stain- and scratch-resistant, durable, easy to clean, and doesn't need to be sealed. Black marble is a classic choice for high-end kitchens but it is extremely porous, easily stained, and requires frequent sealing.

Ideas for Using Countertops

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Discover the Top 10 Kitchen Countertop Materials here. 

Kitchen Countertop Gallery
Get inspired with the beautiful kitchens in our kitchen countertop gallery.


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