Manufacturing concrete countertops requires a lot of energy, and cement production pollutes more than most processes. Some redeeming environmental qualities of concrete, however, are that recycled materials such as fly ash and glass can be included in the concrete mix for texture and variety, and concrete can be recycled into aggregate at the end of its usable life. When coloring concrete for countertops, be sure nontoxic, natural pigments are mixed into the concrete rather than applying surface stains. Concrete looks exotic and unusual, it`s heat- and scratch-resistant, and new treatments help eliminate cracking and diminish porosity.
The biggest issue people seem to come across in their kitchen is space. They run out of counter space when cooking or get frustrated when there is no place to put new dishes. This needs to be the first plan set in motion when working on a small kitchen design plan. You will want to make sure you have enough counter space in your design. You can never have enough counter space since they are used for so many things from storing food and appliances to food preparations. If you plan to eat on your counter or if you have a bar, then you will need more space than what you have. You can maximize counter space by installing an island. It gives you storage and extra counter space. A good kitchen cabinet design is helpful in maximizing storage space. Mixers, bowls and items used less frequently can be stored in cabinets.
While many homeowners reserve tile for floors and backsplashes, tile countertops can be an excellent—and affordable—option. Ceramic tile is impervious to heat and water, and when properly glazed, it won`t stain. Proper sealant helps ensure grout won`t discolor or stain, and large-format tiles cover a lot of area with minimal grout lines. Still most popular out west, ceramic tile is a solid option worth a second look.
One thing to consider having in a small kitchen is a small island. An island does not have to be very big and can still be accommodating. An island can probably be a little more beneficial to you. The top of it can be used as a working space, while the cabinets below can be used as a storage place. You can keep kitchen utensils in the drawers. The cabinets on an island can be used to store your pots and pans. Cabinets or even hooks can be hung up on the sides of the kitchen island to make for better storage place and convenience. Lighting will have to be sufficient enough if you decide to have a small kitchen island in your kitchen space. Lighting should not be too bright or too dim for you to work in.
Winter decorating is all about the holidays. Red, greens, and blues, even though they have little to do with the frozen tundra outside, are all important colors for this style. You can use a white, blue back drop, although you don`t want to create a space which is too washed out. One way to do a true winter themed décor is to use glass, crystal, and other translucent pieces. Translucency gives the boring plain white and blue colors, an added dimension, adding light and its spectrum to the beauty of the space.
Lighting can play a big role in the way your kitchen space can appear in size. A small kitchen does not need fluorescent lights as they can depress a small kitchen. Any lighting that can be put up under wall cupboards will not make the room appear too bright or too small. Lighting should blend in with your colors and overall décor to give the room a good contrast.
The basic designs for kitchen cabinets are usually just plain and simple ones with round handles. This will be a perfect look for country style kitchens. Others having a more modern looking kitchen go with plain designs with a strong paint color. The more classy designs can add details such as side frames, carvings, or even paintings in them while having chic vintage handles.
Laminate countertops are made of plastic-coated synthetics. The pieces are cut to size and finished on the ends. Originally, all laminate countertops were manufactured with high-VOC papers and adhesives, but healthier laminates are available today. To protect IAQ, choose laminate countertops certified by Greenguard as being made from low-emitting materials that use formaldehyde-free paper and low or nontoxic glues. Laminates are easy to clean, inexpensive and available in the widest range of colors of any countertop material. Among the drawbacks, scratches and chips are almost impossible to repair, seams are visible from the start and distinctive front-edge options can be expensive. Also, laminate countertops have a relatively short life span (15 to 20 years) and can`t be recycled.
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