Five Inspiring Photos to Break You Out of Your Design Rut

So many of us get stuck in ruts. Life ruts, relationship ruts, career ruts, but most importantly (clearly), design ruts. You see the same interiors over and over, or get used to using a ladder for just one reason, or seeing a kitchen that is all too typical. Sometimes, all it takes is a visual “punch” to bring you back to life and get your creative juices flowing again. Even if these photos don’t represent ideas you’d incorporate into your own kitchen or bathroom, they’re bound to shake up your day a little, and spring you on your way towards a freer, less inhibited aesthetic.

Ladder with pots and pans hanging on it in the kitchen

Ladders are for climbing and reaching high places…right? This ultra simple metal ladder doubles as a pan holder. Simply buy some S-shaped hooks and you’ll have an instant storage unit. What a beautiful, rustic way to display your cast iron pots and pans.

Ladder in a bathroom using closet for storage

All too often we see shoes and accessories stored together with clothing. In this bathroom, storage space that would normally be reserved for toiletries, extra linens, and cleaning products make way for accessories. Simply unhinge cabinet doors and cover with a coat of glossy white paint for a clean, boutique feel.

Nautical themed kitchen inside of an Airstream trailer

This is an Airstream trailer. How freaking awesome, right? The “kitchen” is tiny – it actually consists of one burner, a convection microwave, and a teeny-tiny sink. But, it’s brought to life with it’s all white look, and pop of contrast in the graphic wallpaper. Also, if you’ve got a tiny space, a theme might be handy. This Airstream is nautical themed, so furnishing it in accordance, down to the porthole window, makes a small space light, airy, and fun.

Bathroom with multiple round mirrors hanging

Can’t find the perfect mirror for your vanity? We love that this modern, minimalist vanity was paired with simple mirrors of various sizes, arranged haphazardly but still stylishly on the wall. You can also achieve a similar look by pairing mirrors with different frames, some modern, some more ornate. Think a gallery photo wall, but with mirrors instead. The key is to not look too done!

Bathroom with chalkboard paint, pastel rug, and paintings hanging

Lastly, there are so many elements in this bathroom that I wouldn’t normally think of putting in a bathroom, but somehow it works. First, the rug. A little random, but you have to admit that it’s so much chicer than those terry bath mats that come in pastel colors. Also, the black chalkboard paint. It’s sometimes too much to paint an entire bathroom black, so you’ll notice 90% of the walls are covered with hanging photos, prints, and paintings. They predominantly have white backgrounds, which makes for a lovely contrast, and echoes the white toilet and sink.

Did these photos “disrupt” your design aesthetic and get you out of that rut? Share your most inspirational ideas below.

(Photos via Design Sponge, Design Sponge, Apartment Therapy)

This post entitled Five Inspiring Photos to Break You Out of Your Design Rut is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen and bathroom cabinets on the internet.

Under Cabinet Lighting Part 2: Must-Read Tips for Installation

Last week, we sang the praises of under cabinet lighting. It instantly brightens your kitchen, saves your fingers from being chopped along with the vegetables, and is an inexpensive way to update your space, whether owned or rented. Once you’ve selected a type of under cabinet lighting to use (we covered halogen, fluorescent, and xenon), here’s what you need to know to install them.
Installing Under Cabinet Lighting

Plug n’ Play

Many models available today are designed to be plugged right in. Simply plug into an outlet. No hard wiring necessary! If you are not comfortable with working with circuit wiring, tools, or do not have access to this area, stick with this option. If you rent, it’s best to stick with this option as well.

Hard Wiring

This option is usually more attractive because there are no exposed wires hanging down, plus there can be a dedicated wall switch that controls your new under cabinet/task lighting. This approach can be done at home, but takes someone with a bit more experience. If you are not familiar at all with wiring, call on a professional electrician.

  • Tools you will need include: a drill, a keyhole saw, a ruler, and cable clamps.
  • Your base cabinets are where wires will be run through and hidden, so the plastic sheathed cables you are using could be bumping into pots and pans and other items you store there. To be safe, always run the cables through a protective outer layer, such as a flexible steel conduit (commonly called “flex.”)
  • 120 volts of power from your power source will have to be allocated for these new lights. Make sure do you not overload an existing circuit. If you’ve never located the power source in your home before, it is best to call in an electrician to help with this part.
  • After lights are installed, DO NOT store perishable items or oils in the cabinets directly above the lights. Depending on the type of light you install, they could heat up very quickly.
  • Consider installing lights that have low, medium, high settings or installing a separate dimmer switch to control heat output, especially during the summer.

If you are not at all intimidated by this process so far, read onward for step by step instructions and photos of DIY under cabinet installation. Be sure to reserve a weekend afternoon for this project.

This post entitled Under Cabinet Lighting Part 2: Must-Read Tips for Installation is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet.

Four Small Kitchen Design Ideas You Shouldn’t Miss

Although 2012 trends are to larger kitchens, some homes simply don’t have the space for a large gathering space in the kitchen area. City apartments can have a space as small as 7 feet by 10 feet, condos often have a galley kitchen or a wall with kitchen cabinets, while in some suburbs, a 10 by 13 foot space is small for a kitchen. Whatever your space limitations, make the most of the kitchen you do have with these ideas for utilizing every corner of a tiny kitchen.

Make it Tall

Look using all of the space in your small kitchen, floor to ceiling. Order extra-tall cabinets that reach all the way to the ceiling. Remove any drop or faux ceilings in a small kitchen. Not only will it give you extra storage space, but it will also open up the room for an airy feel. Think tall and skinny when it comes to appliances as well. In a truly tiny apartment-style kitchen, use a tall and narrow refrigerator, a narrow stove stovetop with only two burners, and a narrow dishwasher, if you have the space. Think small for the sink as well. A single bowl, deep sink can hold a large pot to fill or many dirty dishes. Paired with a gooseneck, pull-out faucet, the sink can be versatile with a small footprint.

Add an Island

If you have a small kitchen with a little more space, consider an island. Even a small island can make a kitchen more workable by providing an eating area and more storage. Islands don’t need to take up lots of room; consider a triangular or round island with a small footprint.

Organize

Make use of every bit of space in your small kitchen. For example, look at hanging pots and pans for an attractive display that saves space. Also consider pullout shelves and organizers in cabinets and drawers. Utilizing every bit of space in a cabinet makes a small kitchen more functional. Consider extra-deep countertops to give you more workspace without significantly affecting traffic flow. Consider a table that can fold down out of the way when it is not being used.

Lighten it Up

Use light wisely in a small kitchen to make the space brighter and to give the illusion of size. Consider under-cabinet halogen or LED lights to add space-creating light to countertops. If there is any way to add an exterior window to the room, do so. If not, consider a solar tube to bring natural light into the room.

This post entitled Four Small Kitchen Design Ideas You Shouldn’t Miss is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet. Check out their large selection of KraftMaid Cabinets.

4 Ideas to Get the Most Out Of Your Small Kitchen

Although 2012 trends are to larger kitchens, some homes simply don’t have the space for a large gathering space in the kitchen area. City apartments can have a space as small as 7 feet by 10 feet, condos often have a galley kitchen or a wall with kitchen cabinets, while in some suburbs, a 10 by 13 foot space is small for a kitchen. Whatever your space limitations, make the most of the kitchen you do have with these ideas for utilizing every corner of a tiny kitchen.

Make it Tall

Look using all of the space in your small kitchen, floor to ceiling. Order extra-tall cabinets that reach all the way to the ceiling. Remove any drop or faux ceilings in a small kitchen. Not only will it give you extra storage space, but it will also open up the room for an airy feel. Think tall and skinny when it comes to appliances as well. In a truly tiny apartment-style kitchen, use a tall and narrow refrigerator, a narrow stove stovetop with only two burners, and a narrow dishwasher, if you have the space. Think small for the sink as well. A single bowl, deep sink can hold a large pot to fill or many dirty dishes. Paired with a gooseneck, pull-out faucet, the sink can be versatile with a small footprint.

Add an Island

If you have a small kitchen with a little more space, consider an island. Even a small island can make a kitchen more workable by providing an eating area and more storage. Islands don’t need to take up lots of room; consider a triangular or round island with a small footprint.

Organize

Make use of every bit of space in your small kitchen. For example, look at hanging pots and pans for an attractive display that saves space. Also consider pullout shelves and organizers in cabinets and drawers. Utilizing every bit of space in a cabinet makes a small kitchen more functional. Consider extra-deep countertops to give you more workspace without significantly affecting traffic flow. Using a table that folds down is a great idea for your small kitchen to create a space for you to eat on and it folds down out of the way when not being used.

Lighten it Up

Use light wisely in a small kitchen to make the space brighter and to give the illusion of size. Consider under-cabinet halogen or LED lights to add space-creating light to countertops. If there is any way to add an exterior window to the room, do so. If not, consider a solar tube to bring natural light into the room.

This post entitled 4 Ideas to Get the Most Out Of Your Small Kitchen is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet. Check out their large selection of KraftMaid Cabinets.

Utilize The Work Triangle When Planning Your Kitchen

Kitchen Work TriangleKitchen design needs to reflect your taste as a homeowner as well as make your work easier; you need to design your kitchen based on your wants and needs. Weighing out the importance of functionality and style will ensure that your kitchen cabinets are placed effectively without compromising the style. Utilizing the “work triangle” guideline will make the placement planning much easier.

The “work triangle” refers to the distance between the stove, refrigerator, and the sink. These three appliances are the most utilized; whether you are whipping up a quick snack or preparing a five course meal, having the “work triangle” strategically located will make these tasks simpler. You will no longer have to run around the kitchen in order to get the job done.

Once your “work triangle” is in place you can incorporate your kitchen cabinets in between and around the area. Many home owners like to place drawer base cabinets next to the range, to house their pots and pans. Another staple for many is having the dishwasher next to the sink and the garbage receptacle cabinet on the other side of the sink.

Remember that your kitchen’s primary function is for cooking and serving meals, although we do tend to utilize the space as an entertaining area. Design your kitchen with simplifying your life in mind, then fill in the blanks with your own personal touch!

This post entitled Utilize The Work Triangle When Planning Your Kitchen is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet. Check out their large selection of KraftMaid Cabinets.

5 Items To Keep In Your Kitchen

Everyone knows what belongs in a kitchen.  Almost every kitchen contains similar items in their respective kitchen cabinets.  Here is a short list of items that should be in everyone’s kitchen cabinets.
Hanging Racks

1: Hanging Racks

Not every kitchen has it, but most should.  Many people jam their pots and pans into small cabinets.  It’s always a pain to retrieve a large pot that is stuck underneath 3 smaller pots.  Using a hanging rack not only looks nice it also saves a ton of space.
Mounted Hooks

2: Mounted Hooks

Hooks are very important in the kitchen.  Mounted hooks made for hand towels are a tremendous help.  You never have to go rummaging through a junk draw trying to find a towel or oven mitt.  This can save you valuable time when cooking.
Glass Cabinets

3: Glass Cabinets

Using one or two all glass cabinets is a great way to open up the room and store your goods at the same time.  Light flows through the glass cabinet making the room feel more airy and open.  Glass is also easier to keep clean and sanitary.
First-Aid Kit

4: First-Aid Kit

A necessity in a kitchen, the first-aid kit isn’t as prevalent today.  Unfortunately there are many injuries in the kitchen and having the basics should be a priority.  Display it and make it a fashion statement.
Step Ladder

5: Step Ladder

If you have utilized your space properly you will surely need a step ladder.  Make a draw for a fold up step ladder otherwise it will take up too much space just lying around somewhere.

If you have all of these 5 normally overlooked items in your kitchen you most certainly have a functional kitchen.  These items aren’t the most important but all have a specific purpose and can make your life much easier.

Did you have all of the above items? Did we miss something? Let us know!

This post entitled 5 Items To Keep In Your Kitchen is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet. Check out their large selection of KraftMaid Cabinets.

How to Save Money Without Compromising Your Design

Free 3D Kitchen Design4 300x139 How to Save Money Without Compromising Your Design

Investing in your kitchen can become very expensive, but it doesn’t have to.  Regardless of your budget you can make simple adjustments to ensure you do not over spend.  If you are working with a kitchen designer, chances are they have shown you what they believe will work best in your floor plan; however, their options may be more expensive.  Continue working with the designer to lower your costs, and you can follow these guidelines to select alternatives without compromising your style.

When you submit your measurements to a designer, more often than not, they will use a Lazy Susan cabinet in the corner.  This is an excellent cabinet for storage reasons, but it is also almost double the price of a base blind corner cabinet.  By swapping the two you will save yourself that extra bit of money that can be used for more imperative aspects of the kitchen.

Drawer base cabinets are sought out by many home owners because they feel they need a place to put their pots and pans; while this is very understandable, it is not budget friendly.  All base cabinets come with at least one drawer on top, and the bigger cabinets come with two.  Purchasing a separate, all drawer, cabinet can run you hundreds of dollars over budget, so purchase a standard base cabinet in the same size.

The truth is, the beauty is in the details, but those details are also not necessary if you are looking to spend as little as possible.  Crown moldings, roll out trays, and trash can accessories are perfect add on’s in the kitchen, but they can add up very quickly.  Keep your kitchen simple to stay within your allotted number.

Once you have received your first proposal back from the kitchen designer, work with him/her to get your cost under control if you seem to have gone over budget.  By following these simple guidelines, you will be able to eliminate unnecessary costs without compromising the style and functionality of your room.

This post entitled How to Save Money Without Compromising Your Design is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet. Check out their large selection of KraftMaid Cabinets.

When To Use Roll Out Trays Or Drawer Base Cabinets

roll out trays 276x300 When To Use Roll Out Trays Or Drawer Base CabinetsRoll out trays and drawer base cabinets serve the same function, or do they?  They both extend out of the cabinet making it easier for us homeowners to find exactly what we are looking for without having to rummage through endless groceries or dinnerware.  They both come in a variety of sizes, enabling kitchen designers to incorporate them into virtually any floor space.  However, it is a common misconception that drawer base cabinets and roll out trays are interchangeable.

A roll out tray is simply an accessory that can be added into a standard cabinet; this accessory can be utilized in both base and wall cabinets.  It is simply a shelf that can be pulled out, making the entire tray accessible.  Many individuals place one or two roll out trays in particular cabinets that they know they are going to store nonperishable food in; this accessory helps keep the cabinet organized.

Drawer base cabinets are self explanatory; they are a base cabinet with no doors, just drawers.  These are most commonly used for pots and pans.  The deep drawers are the perfect size to store all of your favorite cookware.

Customers looking to save money and stay within budget may think that they can swap a drawer base cabinet for the less expensive roll out tray accessory.  This may work if you are looking to hold glasses, cereal, or canned goods, but it is not going to be ideal for storing your crocpot.

Being as roll out trays are an accessory that need to be installed into an existing base cabinet, you are going to loose anywhere from 1-3″ of storage space per shelf.  This may cause a problem when you are looking to put your pots and pans away.

While it is understandable how the similarities between the two can seem much more prevalent than they are; it is imperative that consumers are educated about the difference.  Dollar signs can not be the deciding factor because you may wind up compromising functionality in the process.

This post entitled When To Use Roll Out Trays Or Drawer Base Cabinets is a post from the Kitchen Cabinet Kings Blog. Kitchen Cabinet Kings is one of the largest distributors of kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets on the internet. Check out their large selection of KraftMaid Cabinets.