Everyone uses the kitchen. Whether they're getting a glass of water or preparing a meal, the kitchen is a space where people naturally go. But is your kitchen a "social space?" These days, it can be tricky for people living under the same roof to spend any real time together. Between sports, social events, school, and technology there isn't often a firm reason for everyone to gather.
That can all change when you make your kitchen a welcoming space. Everyone from your family to your guests will love spending time there-and so will you. It's the perfect way to bring people together, without making the interactions seem like a requirement.
Make it cozy: If you want people to enjoy spending time in your kitchen, make the space welcoming rather than stark. Replace your old kitchen table with a breakfast bar where people can sit as you're preparing meals. You could also incorporate a comfy couch or chaise lounge into the overall design, giving people a more welcoming place to perch. Hang interesting artwork, leave out a bowl of fruit, and set out throw pillows to make the space seem more accessible. If people are comfortable in your kitchen, they will spend a lot more time there.
Give the room a view: No one enjoys spending their time looking at brick walls. Rather than having guests stare at your cabinets while they eat, position tables and chairs in a way that draws the eye to something interesting. If you have a large window, utilize it so people can see what is happening beyond your home. You could also position the seating area to face an opening to another room in your home. Additionally, pops of color go a long way. Evoke personality in a way that makes people flock to the space. It doesn't take much to add some fun. If you don't want to paint your walls a striking color, consider adding an interesting backsplash behind your sink or colorful hardware on your cabinets.
Dress Up Your Cabinets and Drawers: Love the wardrobe you give to your cabinets and drawers and ensure your guests love them too. There are a variety of ways you can dress up these nooks and crannies in your kitchen-and it will make a big statement. Use track lighting beneath your cabinets to light up your countertops. Install beautiful, wooden drawer organizers that give your spoons and forks their own special place. You can even utilize a Hafele non-slip mat to keep in-drawer items in place every time you open and close your drawers.
Let there be light. No one likes sitting in a dark, dingy space. Whether you're hoping your children come do homework while you prepare meals, or you want guests to keep you company during a dinner party, brighten up your kitchen. An easy way to do this is to utilize 2016's white hot trend. Painting your walls bright white (with a pop of color added in somewhere) or adding white appliances will do quite a bit to add a little light to the kitchen area. Mirrors do a lovely job of reflecting that brightness, and you can find decorative mirrors at any home store. You can also try different window treatments like curtains, blinds, and even shutters to see what lets in the right amount of light at different times of day. Finally, if you have the patience and the budget, don't be afraid to open up a wall, combining your kitchen with the next room in your home.
Incorporate technology. Technology is a big draw in today's society. Luckily, kitchens are the perfect space to embrace this trend. You can add a small television on the countertop that faces the seating area. If you don't want a television to constantly draw attention, you may be able to install it inside a cabinet. You can also incorporate a Docking Drawer charging outlet in an underused kitchen drawer ensuring smartphones, tablets, and even laptops can charge up nearby, but out of sight. People like being near their technology, even if they aren't using it. Rather than trying to ban technology from the space you're trying to make more social, embrace the trend in a way that works for your family.
Kitchens are a great space for socializing. That being said, they're often under appreciated when it comes to the overall flow and design of your home. When you stop treating your kitchen as a "pit stop" your family will stop treating it like one!