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10 Kitchen Remodeling Design Tips

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Are you dreaming of a newly remodeled kitchen but unsure where to start? We’ve got you covered! J. Carsten Remodeling has renovated our fair share of kitchens, and it’s safe to say we’ve picked up a few things along the way. Keep reading for our top 10 kitchen remodeling design tips — and if you want an extra dose of inspiration, check out our kitchen photo gallery!

1. Set a Realistic Budget

Perhaps one of our most crucial kitchen remodeling design tips is establishing a realistic budget. Depending on the size and design selections, a full-scale kitchen renovation typically costs a minimum of $75,000. Either way, it’s essential to manage your budget accordingly, as no one wants to find out they’re over budget midway through a project! Be sure to plan for any surprises, as well. You never know when you’ll run into a plumbing or wiring issue, especially in older homes.

2. Go Easy on Trends

There is no shortage of kitchen design trends, but it’s important not to go overboard. Certain materials and colors may look great as a small sample but can appear overwhelming in a larger size. Instead of going wild with bright patterns or unique appliance colors, err on the side of subtly. Incorporate the trends and designs you like as accents rather than centerpieces. This will also be beneficial if you plan to sell your home, as a universal design will appeal to most buyers.

3. Direct the Flow of Traffic

Create a design that helps direct traffic while in the kitchen. Keep the cooktop or stove away from high-traffic areas to prevent anyone passing through the kitchen from getting caught on handles and causing spills. Place the refrigerator in a spot that is easily accessible to passersby and those working in the kitchen’s cooking or cleanup areas.

4. Create a Focal Point

While there’s nothing wrong with splashy range hoods, painted cabinets, vibrant tile, and countertop patterns, trying to incorporate too many eye-catching details can be overwhelming. Create a cohesive kitchen design by creating a singular focal point, like a backsplash. Then, use other materials and pieces to complement that area and make it stand out.

5. Identify the Island’s Purpose

Kitchen islands serve different functions depending on who you ask. Some people prefer the island for gathering and eating, while others like it to serve more than one purpose, i.e., cooking and eating. To get the most out of your kitchen island, decide what function you want it to serve. If you’d like it to house the cooktop and be a place to eat, leave enough room to separate the cooking and dining spaces.

6. Keep it Light

If your kitchen is on the smaller side, steer clear of dark colors, which can make the space appear much smaller and less inviting. Opt for a combination of natural light and lighter tones for paint and cabinetry to make the room appear larger.

7. Find the Right Height for the Microwave

This detail often gets overlooked during a kitchen remodel but can pack a big punch. The best height and location will depend on your preference as the chef. A good rule of thumb for adults is to place the microwave 15 inches above the countertop level. If your kitchen needs to be kid-friendly, installing the microwave below the countertop may be a better option.

8. Double Your Space With a Working Pantry

If you love to entertain, you’ll likely benefit from an additional prep area. Installing countertops and outlets in your pantry can create the space you crave, as it can house other appliances like a microwave, toaster oven, or mini-fridge. Plus, it keeps the kitchen counters free of clutter.

9. Incorporate a Pot Filler

Work a little convenience into your kitchen design with a built-in pot filler above the stove. The swing-out tap eliminates the need to lug heavy pots of water from the sink to the cooktop and prevents messy spills. If that’s not in the budget, installing a sink faucet with an extra-long hose can also get the job done.

10. Be Strategic About Lighting

Lighting may be one of the most functional kitchen design elements, but that doesn’t mean it has to be boring! Layer different types of light (ambient, task, accent, and mood) in your kitchen with a mix of fixtures. Recessed ceiling fixtures are always a good choice for overall light, while under-cabinet task lights are perfect for countertop work areas. Use pendant lights and chandeliers over the island and dining area to draw the eye and delineate those spaces from prep areas.

White kitchen island with quartz countertops and pendant lighting

We hope these kitchen remodeling design tips were helpful! When you’re ready to plan your kitchen remodel, contact our team at J. Carsten Remodeling. Watch our video to learn about our process, or contact our team for more information!

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