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Easy Ways to Update your Kitchen

By Sarah Doolan
The kitchen really is the heart of a home, and given how much time we spend there each and every day, it needs to be functional and feel a little bit special.

While a full kitchen renovation can be costly and time-consuming, there are lots of simple ways to update a tired kitchen that don’t require getting out the sledgehammer — or taking out a second mortgage. We’re talking freshly painted cabinet doors, some new light fittings or door handles and hardworking storage.

1. Paint everything

We say this often, but paint can be such an amazing tool for changing the look and feel of a room. When it comes to kitchens, the cabinets, walls, trims, splashback, even floors can be painted — the trick is to select the right finish. For Virginia’s kitchen, the team chose a high-wearing enamel paint for the trims, an easy-clean semi-gloss for the cabinet doors and a low-sheen paint for walls.

Don’t forget to do your prep work, too. A light sand and scrub followed by a coat of primer will ensure an even finish and a longer lasting result.

2. Makeover your pantry

Keep your pantry contents easily accessible using a range of storage options. Decant dry goods into clear, labelled containers and group like items together, such as grains, spices, condiments and so on. Baskets are good for loose items like potatoes and onions, while tubs will keep kids’ snacks in order. Use racks and brackets on the back of the door to hold spices, paper towel, aprons, dustpans and brooms.

3. Replace handles and fixtures

This quick and easy trick will instantly refresh and elevate the look of your kitchen. Simply unscrew your existing kitchen doorknobs and drawer pulls and replace with something to suit your new aesthetic. Installing a new sink, tapware or statement pendant will require a little more skill, but the results will be equally effective.

4. Update your appliances

If your kitchen is getting on in years, chances are your appliances aren’t functioning as well as they could. Upgrading to a newer model with multiple functions will be life-changing — think an oven that cleans itself! Or a rangehood so silent you forget it’s on. The same goes for small appliances like toasters, kettles and mixers. Look for matching sets in an attractive colour or finish, so they can double as decorative accessories on the bench.

5. Create a signature nook

Many kitchens have a tricky corner that doesn’t really serve a purpose, so why not utilise this space for a specific need? In Virginia’s kitchen, a corner of the benchtop is now a dedicated display area for her baked goods.

Take this idea and tailor it to you. If you’re a keen gardener, create a spot for your potted herbs and compost scraps. If you enjoy an evening tipple, a bar area with spirits and decanters will come in handy. And busy families might benefit from a breakfast corner, with all the supplies set out for a stress-free morning.


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