The kitchen island is for many families the heart of the kitchen. It’s an informal place where they get together to have a cup of coffee or talk about the day ahead. For many, it’s also the perfect spot to drop the shopping bags and the keys when they arrive home from the shops.
The importance of color and material when it comes to kitchen islands
Not all kitchen islands are alike though. The color and the type of material you choose for your kitchen island can make a huge difference to the ambiance it projects and to its longevity and functionality. Let’s take a closer look.
The best colors for a kitchen island
An interesting phenomenon is that many people no longer believe you have to paint the kitchen island the same color as the kitchen cabinets and other kitchen furniture. While there are good reasons to use matching colors, a totally different color can change the whole ambiance of the kitchen.
Many homeowners like to use a fairly light color for the wall cabinets and then combine it with a darker color for the island. You can either use a noticeably darker shade of the same color or a completely different color (of a darker shade) for the island.
An example of the first approach would be to use a dark brown for the kitchen island and a light-er brown for the wall cabinets. If you prefer the second approach, why not opt for light cream for the wall cabinets and navy, dark blue, or black for the island cabinet while using the same coun-tertop color and material everywhere? The countertops will tie things together while the different cabinet colors will add the necessary variety.
A survey carried out by Kitchen Trends earlier this year showed that 41% of homeowners prefer a contrasting color for their kitchen island when they renovate while 59% prefer the same or a very similar color.
Blue was the most popular choice with 27% of respondents opting for this color. Gray was also very popular with 20% preferring this option. Other popular choices were white and black.
The best kitchen island materials
When it comes to choosing the perfect material for your kitchen island there are many options on the market. Some of them are renowned for their natural beauty while others are virtually inde-structible. A few claim to be both but they might be too expensive for most of us.
Granite. If you like your kitchen to be ultra-modern and your kitchen island surface able to with-stand heat and wear-and-tear then this option should be high on your list. Granite offers timeless beauty combined with a shiny texture that is easy to clean and scratch-resistant. It’s not one of the cheapest materials though, so prepare your bank manager for a bit of a shock.
Quartz. This option is currently becoming very popular. Homeowners like the fact that it’s not porous, so it needs less maintenance than granite. It comes in a wide selection of colors and looks fairly similar to granite and marble, yet it’s much more resistant to coffee, oil, wine, or simi-lar stains than untreated granite.
Beware though, if it gets chipped or scratched you will need a professional to fix the damage.
Laminate. If your budget can’t accommodate more expensive options, laminate is a perfect choice. Modern laminate surfaces can be made to resemble quarts or stainless steel, yet they cost much less. It’s also quite easy to install and nowadays comes in a variety of exciting new patterns and colors. Laminate is also surprisingly tough and resists heat and stains remarkably well. Just don’t use a sharp nice to cut things directly on a laminate surface because you will damage it.
Wood. Beating the beauty and warmth of a genuine wooden top will always be hard. From the warm tones to the unique texture, it gives any kitchen a more natural, warmer ambiance. Yes, it might need more upkeep than many other materials, but as long as you occasionally apply a coat of mineral oil you can quite easily keep the surface in prime condition for a long time. Plus it’s quite easy to sand away the odd knife scratch.