Your selection of flooring will affect every other element in the kitchen design. Today, your choices for flooring are nearly endless, from ceramic tile to hardwood to stone.
Vinyl is one of the least expensive ways to go when choosing your flooring. Vinyl can be right for you if you cook alot and want an easy to maintain floor. Also, with today’s vinyls, which are available in sheets, tiles or planks, you’re not limited to a few colors. Instead, today’s vinyl flooring comes in a huge variety of colors, patterns, and trendy designs. Also, many high-end styles impressively mimick the look and textures of popular materials such as real stone, ceramic tile and wood. You have an almost endless variety of colors and styles to choose from.
Wood or hardwood flooring like oak is also an excellent choice when selecting your kitchen floor. Wood flooring is any product manufactured from timber that is designed for use as flooring. Wood is a common choice as a flooring material due to its environmental profile, durability, and restorability. It is popular today, feels good underfoot and creates a warm look. Today’s prefinished wood floors withstand heavy traffic and water stains.
Laminates are also a good bet and are wanting the look of wood, tile or stone but don’t want the price that comes with the higher end flooring. Laminate flooring is a multi-layer synthetic flooring product fused together with a lamination process. Laminate flooring simulates wood or stone with a photographic applique layer under a clear protective layer. Some styles are even water resistant. A floating laminate floor system can also be a snap to install.
Ceramic tile is a great choice for kitchens and bathrooms because it’s easy to clean and doesn’t harbor germs. Ceramic tiles are thin slabs of clay or other inorganic materials, hardened by oven firing and usually coated with some kind of glaze. Ceramic tile is ideal when you want the toughest flooring, you like the look of stone and you want low maintenance. With many styles of ceramic tile flooring to choose from, you’re sure to find a selection that’s perfect for your project.
Stone is also a great choice for kitchen flooring. It is easy to maintain and it won’t date but will improve with age. Stone is also very traditional and will work with any design scheme as your interior fashions change over the years. Getting the basics right will make your life easier in the long term. The colors tend to be neutral and each stone is unique and can create different looks.
Cork flooring is a product made from the bark of the cork oak tree, a material which is ground, processed into sheets and baked in a kiln to produce tiles that serve as flooring. Offering easy maintenance, sound absorption, warmth, and comfort underfoot, cork is a smart, eco-friendly flooring choice for many of today’s homeowners. Cork flooring is ideal when you want a softer floor than wood or tile and you want slip-resistance.
Kitchen lighting can also affect the way the room looks and feels. The single most important concept in creating a good lighting plan for the kitchen is to use an array of different types of lighting — ambient, task and accent.
Ambient lighting — also called general lighting — provides overall illumination for a room like a kitchen. It is intended to create a uniform light level throughout the space, independent of any special lighting that may be needed in targeted areas of the kitchen.
Targeted to a particular area of a kitchen, task lighting is intended to illuminate a specific function. It is particularly appropriate for kitchen counters where food is prepared.
Also called highlighting, accent lighting draws attention to a particular object. For example, accent lighting can be placed beneath kitchen cabinets to highlight the cabinets. This lighting can also add extra task lighting to the work spaces beneath the cabinets.
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