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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Fitted vs. Unfitted Kitchen Design

Kitchen design considerations for built-in cabinets or furniture-style cabintetry.

A key consideration when designing a new kitchen is whether you want the overall design to be "fitted" and uniform, or "unfitted" and more eclectic.

Fitted Kitchens
Fitted kitchens came into vogue in the 1950s, when matching, streamlined cabinets ran wall to wall. The design is somewhat formal and allows for maximum storage and counter space. Fitted kitchens usually employ standard built-in cabinets, which are more economical than custom cabinets.

With a bit of creativity, these cabinets can have warmth and personality and avoid seeming monotonous or institutional. Put glass fronts on some of the kitchen cabinets and light the interiors; use an interesting and functional countertop material; paint the cabinets a bright color; or hire a carpenter to customize one section -- perhaps to build open shelving or a dresser for displaying a collection of favorite dishes.

Get free quotes from local carpenters.

The unfitted kitchen features freestanding, furniturelike-cabinetry, often paired with handcrafted items or repurposed flea-market finds to create a highly personal look. Unfitted kitchens employ a mix of colors and shapes and may incorporate work spaces of different heights and materials according to their functions. There may be a marble slab for pastry making, heat-resistant granite near the oven, and a butcher block.

In an unfitted kitchen, pieces often can be approached from more than one direction, as opposed to in a built-in or fitted kitchen, where elements are attached to the walls all the way around the room.

Nothing has changed the nature of kitchen storage as much as the proliferation of cabinets modeled after furniture. This fits homeowners who want their open kitchen's floor plans to coordinate with adjacent living rooms, dining rooms, and family rooms. Whether or not you plan to incorporate family heirlooms into your kitchen, shop for your new storage and workstation pieces as if you're shopping for furniture.

Keep in mind that placing furniture within a kitchen's footprint differs from designing with standard cabinets -- same height, same width, same finish -- that run from wall to wall. An unfitted kitchen looks as if it evolved over the years, a single piece at a time.

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