Over the decades, the kitchen has been the room to perform the task of making food. Harking back to it being the workplace of the servant, it evolved to being the room of the 1950s housewife to create great-smelling bakes and delicious roasts. However, it’s not – until the last few years – been a place for family and friends to gather, sit and spend quality time together, it’s been about utensils, bubbling pans and piles of washing up.
Times have changed and modern families want to relax in the kitchen; it really has become the heart of the home and with that a cosy and welcoming feel is needed. If this winter you want to create this but don’t know where to start, here’s some great ideas which will make everyone glow but not break the bank.
Wood; lots of it and make it chunky
Recent kitchen design has seen sleek lines and shiny surfaces in design brochures and for many they wouldn’t have it any other way. To create a slightly more soft, rounded and cosy feel though, wood is the way to go. Beautiful to see, warm to the touch and creates its own history as the patina builds, a cosy winter wood wonderland can be done on the smallest of budgets. Don’t think you have to go to the expense of a new kitchen; think accessories and find chunky second hand dining tables, big walnut chopping boards and if you can stretch to it, replace stainless steel worktops with stunning wooden ones.
Bar stools have dominated kitchen seating design for many years; the cool American diner look where toast is eaten whilst perched upon high. They are often not the most comfortable way to sit though and certainly not aimed at those wanting to relax or lie down to have a read of the Sunday newspapers! The answer is soft, plush seating such as a corner sofa, a coffee table with wing-back armchairs or the current on-trend banquette suite which is a fixed to the wall, wooden-framed piece with soft, sofa cushions. Great to line a dining table up against.
Splashback tilesTiny changes, big effects
If you are on a really tight budget, think subtle accessories. Fresh flowers make any space feel loving and cosy and are always a romantic visual message to see every day. Large, wooden, chunky letters are very on-trend and you can buy a small number to spell a meaningful word for the windowsill as well as enhancing the warm, wood feel of the room. If you can’t stretch to the replacement of the splashback, tile stickers are available in an incredible range of colours and designs. In just one afternoon, you can turn the chill of stainless steel or the look of dowdy, old tiles you dread seeing each day into a part of the kitchen that looks as warm and inviting to the eye as does a slice of just out of the oven pie to the nose.