easy ways to renovate your kitchen (including top tips from The Block)

Sep 15, 2019 | for home, general

Fans of the Nine Network’s renovation hit show The Block (which, with all the high and lows of a rollercoaster, should probably be retagged as a drama) are eagerly awaiting tonight’s latest episode where they’ll find out just what the amateur renovators/stylists have been up to this week in transforming the rundown Oslo Hotel in Melbourne’s St Kilda.

Kitchen renovation week is notoriously the hardest part of the challenge for The Block‘s contestants and the gleaming centrepiece of any renovator’s dream; the kitchen is, after all, the heart of the home. It’s usually the pinnacle of The Block too, before we find out just which couple has won when the finished properties go to auction. This means we may have to wait a little while longer to see the cutting-edge kitchens with which The Block couples come up.

But with spring in the air and thoughts turning to kitchen renovations all over the country (whether it’s to grab TV ratings or just because you’re a mere mortal who fancies sprucing up the place) there’s no reason why you can’t take some of the top tips, tricks and clever ideas with which previous The Block contestants have wowed audiences.

Last year, kitchen renovations were all about everything from cozy banquette-style seating to striking two-toned kitchen cabinetry, larger-than-life butler’s pantries to banks of high-end appliances so what has dominated kitchen renovation trends for 2019 so far and what are we likely to see The Block stars showcase in their kitchen designs?

1. concealed storage

The top requirement for homeowners these days when it comes to styling the heart of the home is tidying away all the bits and pieces of daily life behind well-designed concealed storage. If you have a butler’s pantry, or can spare part of your existing kitchen to create one, that all well and good but if you don’t, you’ll need to be looking at ways of storing your kettle, coffee maker and toaster so that they’re easy to reach when you want them – and easy to hide when you don’t.

What’s become increasingly popular and a must-have for any stylish kitchen renovation, is a beverage bar. One easy way to create this is with a BIBO water bar. At only 30W x 35D x 33H (cm), the BIBO water bar is designed to fit easily on any counter top taking up the space where the kettle used to be.

The BIBO can be plumbed in easily running the small water pipe behind kitchen cupboards, walls and ceilings, linking to a water supply anywhere in the vicinity. Unlike other instant filtration and purification, hot and cold water dispensers, the BIBO water bar does not require waste, making it incredibly versatile on where it can be positioned.

Paired with your favourite espresso machine, the BIBO water bar can be placed behind fold away kitchen doors to create a minimalistic but functional beverage bar.

2. pewter hardware

Last season, kitchen renovation trends when it came to hardware, were all about matt black or a return to 80s gold hardware. This season, while both are still popular, metal fans have moved on to the classic, industrial looks of pewter and gunmetal.

The good thing about both is that they go with every kind of kitchen renovation style, be it vintage, retro, traditional or sharply minimalist. As ever with interiors, it’s all in the detail.

3. open shelving

Having everything out on show was a hit in the 80s but, thanks to a return to Scandi style ideals, open shelves with beautiful crockery have come back into fashion. Don’t worry if all you can think of is the dust they’ll accumulate (and the inevitable extra work that entails). Embrace the pared-back, casual look with a mix of cupboards, drawers and a smattering of open shelving to show off your favourite pieces.

4. retro styling

If a corner of your home doesn’t boast a peacock chair, are you even into interiors? Fear not, a kitchen renovation does not have to include this most impractical of chair designs (unless you don’t feel the need for a fridge or cooker).

It does however, mean that if you’re a fan of 70s’ rattan, colourful appliances of the 80s or the smooth futuristic shapes of the 50s, a retro kitchen renovation is for you. Quirky, achingly cool and with mountains of personality, this look is easy to pull off.

There are plenty of rattan options available, from bar stools to that other style statement: the pendant light. And when it comes to kitchen appliances with a dash, you can’t go past a BIBO water bar. With 10 vibrant colours to chose from, there’s bound to be one that catches your eye.

5. colour pops

Pure white kitchens are so last year. The sterile look of the laboratory doesn’t stand a chance with this season’s colourful pops of rainbow brights. Be it via accent walls, upholstered kitchen bar seats or dining chairs, or even the cabinetry itself, colour is the way to go if you’re planning a kitchen renovation.

If you’re not quite brave enough to go the whole hog with the aid of a colour wheel, splash out on something that looks fancy but doesn’t cost the earth. The BIBO water bar not only comes in sleek black, stylish silver or cool white, but a whole host of zesty hues that will bring an accent colour to a basic kitchen. Plus, you’ll have filtered, purified, chilled and boiling water in an instant. Winning!

  • The Block airs Monday to Wednesday, 7.30pm, and Sunday, 7pm, Nine Network.

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