Kitchen painting ideas
Give your busiest room a new look.
You probably paint your kitchen more often than some other rooms because of the high-traffic daily use and the spatters and spills that mar the walls. Since you spend more time in the kitchen than in some other rooms, you usually have two goals when painting: a welcoming decorating scheme and a durability that is easy to maintain. Here are some kitchen painting ideas that will help you achieve both of your aims.
Preparing Your Kitchen
The key to successful painting in the kitchen, like the bathroom, is good preparation. By the time either room needs painting walls and ceilings also need cleaned with a good de-greaser. To avoid visible drips, begin as always by washing from the bottoms of the walls to their tops. Clean the ceiling last. You should paint over drip marks. But a good scrub job means less paint in the long run.
Choosing Your Decor
If you're due for a change in décor, there are several ways to try out a new look. If you have magazine pictures of a new look that you think you like, tape them up where they can be seen from every door connecting to the kitchen. Do the same with paint chips. If you plan a definite change in color, it may be worth buying the small color-sample jars offered by paint manufacturers, and paint part of a wall or creating your own giant paint chip by putting the sample paint on a piece of paper or cardboard.
Before you make any decisions, some pretending is in order. Paint is a wonderfully-creative medium for changing the look of a room, but you would like to be fairly sure the new look is one you can live with for a while. The best way to test this out is to pretend you are a stranger in your own home. Tell yourself you are on a house tour and come into the kitchen from each connecting door so that you see the room from as many angles as possible. Do this on a bright day, a dark day and at night, so you see the room in as many ways as possible. This reduces the chance that your distinctive dark-blue focus wall will look black under artificial light or that your new-look bright borders will jump out at you on sunny days.
Another way to make the decision for change is to draw a floor plan of your room on a 9-by-12-inch piece of paper and try out colors in small swatches the way decorators do. Measurements don't have to be measured exactly to the last half-inch. Around the floor plan, arrange your paint chips and fabric or paper swatches. This may seem like a far cry from your actual kitchen, but this kind of planning helps you focus on how everything will look together.
Several general decorating principles will help you make positive choices:
- A small room tends to look larger if painted a single neutral or light color.
- Painting one wall a contrasting or darker complementary color moves that wall visually closer. This can make a large room seem cozier.
- Use one shade of paint for walls in the cooking area and a lighter or darker shade of the same color to define a pantry or breakfast nook. Tie the two areas together by painting your woodwork all the same color or by using the cooking-area shade in the breakfast nook and vice versa.
- Pull a visually-confusing room together by choosing a third shade for all the woodwork.
- Lower a high ceiling visually by using a border, either painted or paper.
- Durable surface is very important in a kitchen. Whatever your décor, it looks its best when stains, spills and finger marks can be easily removed. Finishes more durable than flat-wall paint usually cost a bit more.
- Explore your choices with the advice from a paint-store worker. The personnel should be able to explain the differences between different gloss finishes and make the square-foot coverage printed on the can more applicable to your project.
Before you decide on your added touches like a focal wall, a different treatment for your back splash and under-cupboard spaces, decorative stamping, striping or borders, review what else will be occupying your kitchen. Also decide what decorations you will continue to have in your kitchen. Once you have decided what these items are, you will know how much other decorating you need.
Paint stores offer wonderful decorative options like stamps, stencils, textured rollers and amazing glazes. If you want an all-paint room, get tips on equipment and techniques for borders, stripes and allover decorating. Usually you'll need extra masking tape and a little practice on another surface.