A timeless kitchen is what you need if you’re tired of periodic remodeling.
A timeless kitchen will NOT look dated or tired, or look like yesterday’s trend and technology.
Everyday someone comes out with a new product or design that the advertisers insist you absolutely need.
Appliance technology is always being improved and that new improvement also comes with a new swanky look.
It seems like colors and styles are trendy one year and outdated the next therefore without a timeless kitchen we will all get caught in the never-ending circle of remodeling, and that’s expensive.
Every room of the house is vulnerable to the remodeling craze but the kitchen is the most susceptible. Kitchen remodeling is the most expensive and remodeled part of the house. It is the one room of your house that will also increase the value of your home and most of the investment will be recouped when sold. Additionally, dated kitchens do not sell a house. Potential buyers are hesitant about the additional expense. Why? Because they feel they have to!
On average, homeowners report that a kitchen remodel costs $20,556. A smaller project between $10,000 and $15,000 may include painting walls, re-facing cabinets, upgrading the sink, and installing a tile backsplash.
Outdated kitchens have a dingy, unpleasant feeling. They are usually remodeled every 20 years or so. This cycle keeps the home improvement businesses making money while the cost can weigh heavy on the homeowner. Many times it may seem like a homeowner is finally getting caught up with remodeling debt and it’s time to do it again. Keeping up the resale value creates a sacrifice of vacations and other places this money could be used.
But what if I told you that periodic kitchen remodeling was an expense you would never have to deal with? You could save a ton of money, help protect the environment, not add to landfills, and have a beautiful timeless kitchen that will last forever.
Save Money & the Environment With a Timeless Kitchen
You can say good-bye to remodeling your kitchen with a Vintage, Classic, or Retro, (whatever you prefer to call it) Timeless Kitchen.
The short answer is to match your kitchen to the period and style of the architecture of the house.
Once your kitchen is brought back to the age of your house it will remain a timeless classic.
A vintage or retro kitchen will never be “out of date or out of style” again.
It will be cool, interesting, and fun, as a result your guests will remember it and tell others about it – believe me.
The goal here is to make your kitchen interesting.
When someone visits your home an interesting kitchen will stick in their mind. It can be classic and timeless or trendy. Both are impressive. Old kitchens have some quirks and that’s the best thing about them –their character.
If it is trendy with the latest colors and high-tech appliances like out of a decorating magazine, your guests will be impressed but this is not what you want because in 20 years you will relive the expense of another remodel.
A vintage restored kitchen is classic and will surely impress your guests and will last a lifetime. The money you would spend periodically can be used for something else.
A Timeless Kitchen Looks Like it’s Always Been Part of the House.
The timeless kitchen should be true to the period and style of the architecture.
When you see the outside of your house, your inner senses sets you up to expect an interior that relates to the exterior. You may not think so but your mind does. If your house is traditional and your interior is modern, this creates an internal mental conflict. Your mind experiences the same problem if the exterior and interior match but the kitchen does not.
The best way to achieve a timeless kitchen is to restore your kitchen to the date of your house. Yes this is the extreme and great if you are a purist. For those that cannot do a full restoration there are other options.
If your house was built in the 1800’s it would be difficult to create a historically accurate kitchen although it CAN be done and it would be extremely impressive. Remember though that this 19th century kitchen experienced an evolution of remodeling just as kitchens today so you may be best choosing a later period.
I chose a 1920-30’s kitchen for my 1910 Victorian for at the time it was better for me to modify the existing cabinets instead of tearing them out for free standing furniture.
Kitchens built during the early to mid 20th century are relatively easy to restore. The latest kitchen I would restore would be that from the 1970’s.
What if I have a house from the 1980’s?
Although the 1980’s had their coco brown period, this style is not yet classic or timeless. Wait another 10 years or so until the style can become classic. Another option is to follow the style of the house. If it is Colonial try to make the kitchen more true to the style and period. To do this right you need to hide anything contemporary and show off the period items
To accomplish a timeless kitchen one thing you must never ever do is to create an open kitchen floor plan. Here are 11 Reasons Against the Open Floor Plan.
8 Steps to Make a Timeless Kitchen
Period appliances, cabinets, sink & faucet, counter top, floor, walls, lighting, table & chairs are the 8 topics you will need to focus on to produce a period timeless kitchen.
The following is a collection of articles written mostly by “The Old House Journal” magazine on these eight topics. This material differs depending on the period of your kitchen and cannot all be explained here or I would be writing a book for each decade of kitchens. My best advice is to work from old photos doing a search online for “1930’s kitchen” for example. Old photos or ads are best so you don’t duplicate someone’s restoration mistakes or short-comings.
1 – Kitchen Appliances
- Hide or cover your microwave and other small appliances. Unless they are antiques, they are sure to date your kitchen.
- Find a period stove.
- Get a reproduction refrigerator, hide it behind a false front or make your refrigerator look like an antique icebox with our DIY instructions.
The following are articles that will SURELY help you. Some great timeless kitchen photos too.
2 – Kitchen Cabinets & Hardware for a Timeless Kitchen
For a timeless kitchen, cabinets must be period style. For an early 1900’s look, cabinets should have face-mounted kitchen cabinet doors. Crown Point Cabinetry makes a nice style but their overall kitchen’s are NOT period. They have some flavor but not nearly enough.
Understand that before 1927 most kitchens except for the very trendy did NOT have built in cabinets. There was only free standing furniture. Built-in’s were in the pantry. Crown Point took the cabinet style from the pantry and brought it into the kitchen. This is fine but not authentic. It depends on how far you would like to go with this.
3 – A Sink & Faucet for a Timeless Kitchen
There are many reproduction and salvaged sinks available. This is another focal point of your timeless kitchen. A period looking faucet is also important. Remember that there was a separate hot and color faucet until 1945 when mixers were introduced to combine the two.
4 – Timeless Kitchen Counter tops
This is where most people fail. Avoid the trendy granite tops.
5 – Flooring for a Timeless Kitchen
6 – Walls and Wainscoting for a Timeless Kitchen
The sanitary kitchen did not arrive until around 1910. Walls were dark wood wainscot before they were painted white. Colorful wallpaper was popular in the 1940-50’s. This information is covered in the other links.
7 – Lighting for a Timeless Kitchen
Try to resist recessed or track lighting.
8 – Timeless Kitchen Tables & Chairs
This is the easy one. No need to explain this.
My advice is stick to the basics. Let your kitchen be what it was meant to be – the original design, colors, and style. Protect the landfills and environment and save money. Have a period kitchen.
Other Kitchen Articles:
I know that this is a lot of reading to do but you need to do it right and research as many articles as you can.
A timeless kitchen will save you lots of money in the long run and be a joy to have. Do your research!
After reading all these articles you may want to subscribe to The Old House Journal here.