BACKSPLASH

An attractive backsplash can add charm and make your space feel larger at the same time. Consider using mirrors on the backsplash for a bit of sparkle or painting it to add a punch of color. To enhance style and protect the backsplash from splatters, cover painted areas with frosted glass that has a glossy polished side. Light colored ceramic or stone tiles are more expensive, but if you’re in the mood to splurge, they really add a wow factor to your kitchen. To create even more impact, install them on the diagonal rather than simply striaght up and down. This will also make the space seem larger. Stainless steel is also a great backsplash option, as it bounces so much light and is easy to clean.

FLOORING

Cork can lighten and soften the look and feel of a small room with its texture and is easy to maintain, comfortable to stand on and noise-resistant. Cork floors are also eco-friendly, come in tons of colors and can easily be installed in tiles or sheets. If your local flooring company doesn’t carry cork, search online. You’ll be amazed at the selection.

APPLIANCES

An increasing number of kitchens are being designed with two undercounter refigerators, instead of one large one, which can visually overwhelm a small kitchen, and 18-in (as opposed to the standard 24-in.) dishwashers and microwave drawers. These appliances are great investments, adding great style and functionality.

ISLANDS

Most people think they don’t have room for and island, but chances are they do. You generally only need 30 in. between counters and the island to comfortably pass through. If you can’t put in a real island, use a kitchen rolling cart with pullout shelves and a wooden top; this multifunctional piece can serve as an island/workstation, a storage area and a small table.