Installing a new kitchen is one of the greatest expenses for any homeowner. Factor in the upheaval time and mess as well and it’s not a project most of us want to repeat too often. But how can you make sure your investment will stand the test of time and you won’t get bored with it – and it won’t look outdated within a few years?
Cabinet and cupboards
A long-lasting kitchen must have good quality and well-made cabinetry and cupboards. In frame cupboards made from solid wood will last well – the hinges won’t wear and the doors won’t slip out of alignment. Dovetail joints throughout and well-made runners on drawers will last well. Light wood or white cabinets have both a timeless and modern appeal. And handles are important too. Anything overly ornate can date a kitchen very quickly so keep them simple and classic.
Stick to neutral colours with cupboard doors – while you may love bright, zingy colours right now, the appeal might have faded in a couple of years. White and light woods have stood the test of time and remain as popular now as 20 years ago. Colour can easily be added with tonal accents in accessories and small appliances. And it’s much easier – and a great deal cheaper – to change the colour of your walls than your cupboards.
Consider kitchen features that have been around for some time but don’t look dated – Belfast and butler sinks, for example, and Shaker-style units, islands and painted cabinets. There have definitely been kitchen trends that have long gone (think country kitchen-style wood with huge cooker hoods and ornate shelving) but some have stood the test of time for a reason.
Kitchen appliances and white goods do tend to change shape and style quite often and that can quickly date any kitchen. If you haven’t got space for a utility room to hide them away, opt instead for integrated appliances. Not only will they be out of sight, but your kitchen will look bigger with its extra cupboard fronts too. Some appliances do have vintage status though and can be made a feature in a kitchen – a range cooker or beautifully designed Smeg-style American fridge, for example.
Accessories provide an excellent opportunity to keep any kitchen fresh and on-trend. Lampshades are easy to change as is tableware that’s on display, table runners and place settings, chairs and bar stools, even window coverings. All a lot less expensive than a whole new kitchen!