Sunday, 1 February 2009

Old-Fashioned Family Kitchen

So you've finally decided to take the plunge and redesign your kitchen. Before you take your hatchet to your door frames or rip up the flooring, you'll need a thorough plan of what and how you'd like to reinvent the home's most valuable room. While contemporary kitchens may be ideal for the trendy thirty-something, a cozier, old-fashioned kitchen design is ideal for almost any home.

First things first: you must consider what aged style kitchen is right for your home. The general rule of thumb is to consider safety first; many styles are not conducive to homes with children or pets. Secondly, estimate the functionality of the style. A busy chef might need more space than some vintage remodeling allows. Finally, choose a style that fits the first two criteria and is aesthetically pleasing; chances are, your home improvements will increase your home's overall worth.

1950's: Vintage and Inviting

The 1950's kitchen designs epitomize the "comfort" kitchen. The color scheme includes soft, light colors such as pale blues, yellows and neutrals. Since most homes were much smaller, the colors are inviting, bright and open up smaller spaces. Contrarily, the cabinet knobs in this vintage d├ęcor were typically adorned with dark finishes. A focal point of any 50's design, however, includes properly showcasing your odds and ends. Everything from cookbooks, vases and empty milk jugs to even a classic bread box was put on display in open cabinetry units.

Tip: Put a modern twist on this design in your own home and include authentic pop art that emerged during this decade.

1960's: Swinging With Style

Known mostly for Woodstock and Vietnam, this decade's color scheme is quite different from the previous decade. Many homes featured bright blues, deep reds and vibrant yellows, often on tiling that surrounded the waist-high, wall-mounted oven unit. Home hardware typically included either tin cabinetry and matching cabinet handles or oil rubbed wooden cabinets that nicely complemented the influx of stainless steel appliances.

Tip: As a tribute to the beginning of rock and roll, add an mp3 player unit and of course, add songs from legends such as Johnny Cash, Pink Floyd, The Doors, Janis Joplin, The Who and Bob Marley.

1970's: Progressive and Comfortable

This decade ushered in the hippie culture, the civil rights movement and the landing on the moon. As for design elements, the 1970's featured a relaxed feel, similar to that of the 1950's. However, colors were either more muted or the brightest colors in the spectrum. Designs often resulted in entirely white or neutral colored kitchens (including the floor!) with contrasting shockingly bright bedrooms and living rooms. And did we mention animal print? That's right. During this decade, bean bag chairs and shag rugs in faux animal print was the grooviest accessory. Kitchen cabinet knobs and cabinetry were primarily wood accented by bold tiling on the backsplash and walls between countertops and shelving units.

Tip: Accessorize by placing various sized candles around the kitchen-- it adds instant ambiance and is less tacky than the ubiquitous lava lamp.

1980's: Big and Bold

Believe it or not, many stylistic elements of today's modern kitchens include a few features that popped up during this decade. Wallpaper was preferred over wall paint, but the cabinetry was quite modern for the time. Made of dark wood, these cabinets are accented with dark stone (often granite) countertops and French country cabinet knobs in rich finishes such as oil rubbed bronze or antiqued chrome. Additionally, many 1980's light fixtures are similar to today's contemporary models that create a focal point in your kitchen. The dramatic lighting combined with the dark countertops and dark wood created a striking, bold kitchen.

Tip: Install a single hanging light fixture or recessed can lighting to create the desired effect. As a bonus, add a dimmer switch to vary the intensity level in your kitchen.

Amanda works for Your Home Supply (YHS) the definitive website for home improvement tools, and gardening supplies. Your Home Supply offers a wide range of home hardware and kitchen cabinet hardware products to help customers with decorative accessories for the home. Visit them now at

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