Increasingly, the kitchen is the most popular room in the house. It is no longer just the place where food is stored and prepared, it has become the focal point of home life. Kitchens used to be isolated from the rest of the house with walls and doors. Today, however, in both new homes and older-style remodels, you can see the kitchen from the living room, the family room, or both. Since the kitchen is constantly in view, kitchen decoration is an important part of home decoration.

Some kitchens are treated as completely separate areas in view. Others are carefully decorated to blend in with adjoining spaces. In both cases, kitchen wall treatments are key to decorating this busy room. Paint is still a popular choice, but the range of “kitchen” colors has skyrocketed. Cornflower blue, butter yellow, bright reds, and vivid greens are commonly used as the basis for Tuscan or French country kitchen decorating themes. Wallpaper options run the gamut from contemporary designs to American style. Additionally, slate, saltillo, and ceramic tiles once used exclusively on the floors are being used on the walls to add texture and visual interest.

Part of decorating a kitchen is creating an organized space. Whether you have a specific decorating theme or not, you’ll want to think about which kitchen accessories stay on the countertop and which are hidden away in cabinets and drawers. Many cooks find that a tall cylindrical container to hold frequently used cookware keeps them from frantically rummaging through drawers. Appliances that are used regularly, such as toasters and electric can openers, are a good choice for countertop placement, although most can be mounted under tall cabinets.

Major appliance manufacturers recognize that their merchandise is an important visual element in any kitchen. Instead of just offering a choice between white, black, gold, or green, they produce an incredible variety of “looks.” From gleaming stainless steel to 1950s retro looks to standard white, you can choose refrigerators and ranges to match your kitchen decor. Some manufacturers can even help you match your appliances to your countertops for a seamless look.

As with any room in the house, it’s the little touches that bring the look of your kitchen together. Choose a “bold” color (usually in contrast to your walls) for window treatments and a rug. A tiled sink backsplash in this shade will add a little more pizzazz. Don’t be afraid to add decorations to your kitchen walls. Framed family photos, or even a collection of cookie cutters will add personality and warmth.

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