Decorating & Design

December 3, 2008

How To Brighten Up A Boring White Kitchen

Q. My kitchen was renovated 18 months ago prior to my owning the house. Everything is white and boring — I want to add colour to spice it up! I love reds/earthy/spicy tones. What are some affordable ideas that I can use to make my kitchen exciting? Maybe a backsplash?

— A.B., Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

A. Adding a backsplash would definitely help liven up your kitchen. Machine-made porcelain or ceramic tile are the most economical choices and they come in a wide range of colours and sizes. A backsplash of soft sage-green ceramic subway tile would add some nature-inspired colour to the space and should fit within your budget. Check the hardware stores in your area for reasonably-priced tile.

You can add some earthy tones to the space by changing your current nickel hardware to something with a timeworn, handcrafted look. Choose knobs that have a slightly distressed finish and a bronze colour.

You can also add visual interest and colour with an eye-catching window treatment. Think about having a roman shade custom-made in a bold fabric that incorporates warm yet kitchen-friendly tones like red, yellow and cream. Next, replace your grey rugs with some colourful area rugs to coordinate with the window shade.

Finally, consider installing a pendant light above your sink area. The right light will add character and practical task lighting to the space.