"Brass offers a classic and timeless look while still feeling bold and contemporary," says Amy Biller Switzer, marketing manager at Emtek and Schaub. "We will see that continue into 2020." The finish blends nicely with most kitchen design styles, but we especially love the look of brass hardware against dark, moody cabinetry or a polished brass faucet that acts as a shiny focal point in a neutral kitchen. 
When the goal is rustic simplicity, there's no need to spend tons on custom cabinetry and granite counters. Paint transformed oak cabinets, bought off the rack at Lowe's and topped with Ikea's birch slabs, while the same white semigloss brightened stools from Walmart. An old tablecloth was used as a skirt for the farmhouse sink, and classic glass cannisters, also Walmart finds, were used for storage instead of upper cabinets.
You can remove walls and cabinetry if you have the space and the budget to do it. You can even combine this space with the dining room for one large, unified area, instead of having a bar or tall wall separate the two. If you live in a condo, check building codes to make sure you can knock out walls. Also, consult with a contractor, as they could recognize that the wall is connected to a supporting beam.
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In a well-designed kitchen, lighting serves various functions. For example, an overhead fixture brightens up the overall space, while sconces illuminate specific tasks. "For kitchens, there’s definitely been an uptick in pendants for use over islands," says Ashley Fothergill, creative director at Mitzi and Hudson Valley Lighting. "Sconces are in demand, too, for lighting the washing of dishes in the sink or as an accent along a backsplash behind the stove."
Maintaining your existing plumbing is an excellent way to reduce costs. You can still invest in new appliances, sinks and faucets as long as you install them in the current plumbing positions. If your remodeling design requires the installation of new pipes or you're changing your kitchen's floor plan, be prepared to pay a plumber for labor and the necessary plumbing parts.
Energy Star-rated Appliances – Are certified as energy-efficient. Although they often cost more upfront, homeowners benefit from lower utility bills, longer lifespans, and many states offer residential rebates and incentives to help make your home more resourceful. Look for this certification when purchasing your dishwasher, freezer, fridge, and even lights. Average cost: $300 to $3,000.
Task Lighting: Under-cabinet lighting should be on your must-do list, since cabinets create such dark work areas. And since you’re remodeling, there won’t be a better time to hard-wire your lights. (Here’s more about under-cabinet lights.) Plan for at least two fixtures per task area to eliminate shadows. Pendant lights are good for islands and other counters without low cabinets. Recessed lights and track lights work well over sinks and general prep areas with no cabinets overhead.
When remodeling a kitchen, most homeowners begin with their kitchen cabinets. After all, cabinets significantly impact the kitchen's overall first impression. Those that are dated or damaged can leave future buyers underwhelmed, even if the kitchen has immense potential. On average, you can expect to pay between $3,000–$8,000, depending on whether or not you choose custom cabinets.

The color of your kitchen can entice you to get in there and cook or, order out as much as possible. However, you can change your kitchen color without painting the entire room a new color. Consider including a colorful or patterned accent wall in your kitchen. This is an easy paint project that will take a shorter time to complete, as opposed to painting the entire room. It’s also a good way to test a color you love and see if it works in the space.
We're really digging the alternating black and gray stained wood cabinets in this deVOL kitchen. The varied tones (plus texture) adds interest to a neutral space. The sandy beige walls keep things neutral but warms thing a little more than a crisp white or super light gray. The shearling chair cover warms up, too, and the interior window creates flow and spreads the light.
If you’re thinking about updating appliances or adding new ones, a kitchen remodel is the perfect time to do so, as your cabinet design will be built around your appliance specs. New appliances can give your kitchen a fresh look, but it’s important to choose the right appliances for your needs. If you don’t spend a lot of time in the kitchen, standard appliances might be sufficient. If you enjoy cooking, baking and entertaining, top-of-the-line appliances may be essential.
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