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

Kitchen Countertops Gallery

Countertops are the second biggest purchase in a kitchen, and there is a color and material to match any style. Take a look at the variety and beauty in your choices.


    Everything in this slideshow

    • Honed Limestone

      Honed limestone on the counters and backsplash adds further character to your kitchen. The material can scratch, but a little wear lends itself to the room's vintage appeal.

    • Butcher Block

      Butcher block is at home in a classic space or can add unexpected contrast to a modern space. Maple countertops can be less than half the cost of stone tile, but higher-quality butcher block can be as expensive as slab granite. Butcher block is finicky. Spills must be cleaned immediately to avoid stains. Wood counters are not heat resistant and extreme dryness can cause cracking, so it's important to use pads or trivets with hot pans. Butcher-block counters must be oiled often to fill in scratches and protect the surface, and also need frequent disinfecting to prevent bacteria. Butcher block tends to show nicks and scratches for a shopworn look, but if you don't like the wear and tear you can lightly sand out flaws and re-oil the surface to restore it.

    • Quartz

      Quartz has quickly become the hottest material in kitchens thanks to it's durable, low-to-no maintenance, and non-porous qualities. Plus, it can be made into any pattern or color under the sun and works in the most traditional kitchens to those that are cool and contemporary.

    • Slab of Concrete

      Concrete countertops work well in all types of spaces, including modern and traditional kitchens. Just like roads and driveways, concrete countertops are incredibly durable, and since concrete is a manufactured material, it can be made in any color or thickness.

    • Wenge Wood

      For a rich, natural surface, wenge wood counters are a perfect choice. Beyond regular oiling, high-quality wood countertops are durable and only look better with age.

    • Marble Countertops

      Chunky marble countertops reinforce the formal styling of this kitchen. Clean lines and square edges are a classic choice with this timeless material.

    • All About Stone Countertops

      Natural stone is a beautiful option. Discover the pros and cons of granite, marble, and limestone.

    • Polished White Granite

      Dark-stained cabinets are the perfect counterpoint to crisp white countertops, no matter the material. In this kitchen, polished white granite mimics the look of more expensive marble but is low-maintenance -- and often less expensive.

    • Quartz & Soapstone

      Rich soapstone countertops ground the white exterior cabinets in this mix-and-match kitchen. For the island, white quartz-surfacing -- a strong manufactured material -- is perfect for everyday use and ties in the room's crisp white finishes.

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      Colorful Granite

      Granite with a hint of green spices up the kitchen -- and accents the decor. Countertops are a big investment, so a subtle hint of the color will age better than a bold choice.

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      Butcher Block & Marble

      The combination of marble and butcher-block counters in this kitchen is the perfect juxtaposition of formal and casual elements. Taking a cue from the countertops, the playful wallpaper and green island go glam with a trio of crystal chandeliers.

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      Laminate has come a long way and offers a more realistic look than ever. Certain products allow you to iintegrate your sink into your countertop or add a decorative edge. There's no need to seal laminate, since it's nonporous, and it mimics granite and other stones for much less. Though laminate holds up well to water, it's not as durable as stone.

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      Small-Space Marble

      In a small space, marble countertops add serious style and often fit in the budget since less square footage is needed. This one-wall, all-white kitchen uses marble to add movement with the veining and extends it beyond the counter to create a petite breakfast bar.

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      Marble, Mahogany & Soapstone

      During this renovation, selecting disparate countertop materials -- Carrara marble, mahogany, and soapstone -- establishes an evolved-over-time feel. By pairing marble and soapstone in close proximity, the coloring of each material seems to be the reverse of the other.

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      Black Honed Granite

      For a casual look in your kitchen, try honed granite, which has a matte finish with little to no shine. Detailed granite often hides dirt and fingerprints, but removing the shine will often remove those qualities, as well. Before choosing honed granite, be sure to see the actual piece to know how it will stand up to daily use. 

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      Next Slideshow Top 10 Countertop Materials

      Top 10 Countertop Materials

      With exposure to water, heat, sharp knives, and more, countertops carry a heavy burden in the kitchen. Discover the pros and cons of each countertop material to help you make the right choice for your kitchen.
      Begin Slideshow »



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