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

Breakfast Room Banquettes

Banquettes offer terrific space-saving benefits for small homes, nooks of space, or cramped corners.


    Everything in this slideshow

    • Informal Seating

      Relaxing the color scheme in a banquette signals a break from the formality of the dining room. Here, classic stripe fabric on the seating coordinates with the yellow wallpaper and dotted seat covers.

    • Color Injection

      Rich reds and yellows enhance the dark wood prevalent in this dining space. The table is placed lengthwise against the banquette for the most seating room.

    • Quick Maneuver

      Place a table near a window seat for a banquette with instant style points thanks to vibrant Roman shades highlighted by a draped valance.

    • Pillow Keeper

      If you don't need a banquette every day, think of it as another place to add color, textures, and pretty fabrics. A pile of pillows does the trick here.

    • Serene Elegance

      Piles of pillows add elegance and comfort to this banquet. A round pedestal table softens the 90-degree angle of the seating, as does a round pillow or two.

    • Make It Yourself

      No built-in banquette? No worries! Push a sectional sofa into a corner and set tables nearby. This idea works great for a party -- guests have a natural conversation spot and a place to set their drinks.

    • Style Maker

      Muted neutral fabrics keep this banquette airy and bright in a dining full of medium-tone wood.

    • Dining Room Rescue

      A built-in window banquette saves this eat-in from space-hogging dining room chairs.

    • Down Home

      Rustic plaids are a natural next to the long pine farmhouse table in this kitchen. Keep the look simple with fresh flowers and a cotton table runner.

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      A Cozy Spot

      Dark pumpkin-colored walls frame this small banquette perfect for reading the paper over breakfast or sharing a cup of coffee with friends. The benches lift up for easy storage.

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      Blue Magic

      Blue and yellow make a fetching pair in this intimate banquette. Bright blue and a mix of patterns freshen the previously plain-Jane space.

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      Full Corner

      Cozy built-in seating replaced a traditional rectangular table and sits up to 10 people in this light-filled corner. Washable suede and easy-care cotton cushions ensure quick cleanup; extra storage under the seats keeps school supplies close at hand.

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      Lilac Elegance

      Here's a banquette dressed with style! The arrangement mixes formal furnishings with the convenience of casual kitchen dining. Built-in window seats include storage underneath and removable cushions -- a boon for families with kids.

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      Pink Plaid

      There's nothing shy about the color scheme in this corner dining space! An L-shaped sofa-style banquette in yellow and pink includes soft pillows for lounging. The table is a white column topped with thick glass.

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      Formal Dining

      Perfect for a combined living/dining room, this banquette features a curved built-in box covered with red cushions. Low back cushions don't block the window, but offer a bit of extra comfort. A large oval table can accommodate up to four more chairs when needed.

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      Two-Tone Banquette

      Though this kitchen is fairly neutral, the banquette makes a color statement in a mix of blue vinyl (for kid-friendly cleanup) and a coordinating fabric on the backrest. The view is dominant so window treatments were eliminated and the chandelier was kept out of the way.

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      Half-Round Banquette

      A half-round eating nook throws a contemporary curve into this kitchen's mostly traditional lineup of right angles and straight edges. The table was made from a granite top on a stainless steel pedestal base anchored to the home's foundation.

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      Custom Fit Banquette

      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.

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      Wipe Out a Wall

      A wall dividing the kitchen and breakfast area was removed, uniting the two spaces and making both brighter and more open. The new eating area features an L-shaped banquette, with storage under the benches and room for additional chairs at the table.

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      Banquette-Backed Island

      While island seating is a popular kitchen amenity, this island includes a furniture-look banquette for extra seating at a pedestal table. The banquette's middle-of-the-room location leaves clear routes to adjacent areas.

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      Fresh Vibe

      In the far corner, a colorful eating area dominates a corner space. The banquette's cushions bring in a mix of several colors that add interest to the intense green of the kitchen cabinetry.

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      Next Slideshow Breakfast Nook Ideas

      Breakfast Nook Ideas

      Large or small, breakfast nooks are a perfect way to make the most of extra space in or near your kitchen. Get breakfast nook design ideas, see how to add a breakfast nook with storage, and how to tuck one just about anywhere.
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