Remodeling a kitchen can be a stressful time. It is said that a good house is defined by its kitchen. Poor choices can even lead to a lower home value. Everything from the color of the walls to the materials used for the kitchen benchtops must be chosen. A kitchen remodel should be flexible enough to change with the needs of your family while remaining attractive over ten or fifteen years. Most designers believe that it is best to start with the dominate part of the kitchen, the benchtop.
The kitchen benchtops are the first thing that you and your guests will see as you enter the room. The material, color, and durability of these kitchen fixtures will be the hallmark of your kitchen. You need to select a material and a color that is both suitable and attractive.
Laminate or Other Material?
Many people prefer to use laminated benchtops in their kitchens. This material comes in nearly every color and combination of colors to match any kitchen color scheme. High pressure laminates are made up of layers of colored paper or other decorative substances and long-lasting resins. This is then pressed into a layer of sturdy wood. The end result is a durable and decorative product that is an economical choice for kitchen benchtops.
Using laminated benchtops is often preferable to the use of stone, wood or other materials. Natural stone is a somewhat delicate materiel. Some stones are known to crack and can chip under pressure. Stone will also stain over time from food and other substances used in kitchens. Quality hardwood benchtops are very expensive. Wood requires regular oiling and sanding to maintain its good looks. Wood is also subject to water damage and surface marring from regular use. Unlike economical laminates, inexpensive stone and wooden benchtops do not maintain their good looks and smooth surfaces over time.
Pick the Perfect Color and Texture
Laminated benchtops make it easy to find the color of your dreams for your kitchen. That said, there are one or two guidelines to keep in mind. When creating a kitchen that will last the test of time, it is a good idea to select a laminate color and texture that is somewhat neutral. Remember, the benchtop is a fixture that will not often be replaced. It is far easier to repaint an accent wall than it is to remove and replace a benchtop.
For example, for a kitchen of chocolatey browns and bright teals, you might select a darker brown for your laminated surfaces and put your accent lighter browns and teals onto the walls and cupboards. Not only will it provide a wonderful visual ground, but you will have a much easier time redecorating in five years. Had you selected a non-neutral laminate, you would have a much harder time redecorating.
The texture is just as important as the color. A matte or a semi gloss provides a wonderful wearing surface. It can even mimic materials like stone or tile. Higher gloss laminate finishes provide a wonderfully shiny and ultra modern look.
Author: Sarah, who acquired a ‘fixer upper’ in 2013, and has been spending the first quarter of 2014 renovating. Her first priority was the kitchen, in which she enlisted the assistance of Adelaide City Benchtops, who helped her pick out and install the perfect kitchen bench for her Adelaide home.