Design & DIY

6 upgrades for your dream cottage kitchen

A great, functional kitchen is something that everyone always dreams of, even if they don’t cook. As a hub of activity, entertainment, and good food, the kitchen at your cottage is often the place you hang out the most when not outside, and should ideally be a cozy reflection of your style and personality. It’s where you go to start your day and later spend time with friends and family, but what if your ol’ lakeside cottage isn’t exactly up to date? We know that renovations don’t come cheap, but it’s always good to have dreams.

When your time comes, here are some lovely ideas for rejuvenating your cottage kitchen.

Install butcher block countertops

New countertops are a big change and depending on how much counter space you have it can be wildly expensive for the most coveted materials like quartz, granite and soapstone. For the cottage, we suggest bringing in the warmth of wood and going for a full wood countertop. Obviously, depending on the type of wood you choose the prices can vary quite a bit, but with installation you gain a gorgeous, rustic focal point and a giant, fully functional cutting board that runs across your kitchen. Bonus: this can be a DIY project.

Add a view

Since the main objective of having a cottage is exploring the outdoors, it would be a shame if you couldn’t see all that nature from the inside as well. Of course, the dreamiest cottage kitchens have wide open spaces full of windows bursting with natural light, but that look isn’t always attainable. If you don’t have a door near your kitchen that takes you outside, why not introduce a large window that blurs the lines between outside and in? A large rectangular window over an eating area or a picture-perfect window above the sink are the two that come to mind.

Revitalize your appliances

Since this is a dream kitchen, we could say that you would buy all new appliances, but the reality carries a hefty price tag. For a modern but recycled vibe, why not get creative with your old clunky appliances and make them look good as new. With a little chalkboard paint, your entire fridge can be made into a family check-in centre, a place for seasonal messages or grocery lists. Alternatively, choosing paint in the colour of your choice gives you a custom fridge that you would otherwise only find in black, white or stainless steel. We have also seen magnetic contact paper in either wood grain or stainless steel that can adhere to any of your major kitchen appliances (fridge, stove, dishwasher, microwave).

If you do have the budget for new appliances, one of your best bets for ensuring cottage serenity is an ultra-quiet dishwasher. And because you’re often away from the cottager for a week at a time, choose a dishwasher with anti-leak protection so you’ll never have to worry about coming back to a catastrophe.

Invest in a farmhouse sink

Every country kitchen could use a farmhouse sink, but even if yours isn’t exactly country, this large-basined beauty is a favourite among all interior styles. A crisp new sink can have the same visual effect as sprucing up something large like the floors, ceilings, or an appliance—for a fraction of the price.

Take on the cabinets

There is really nothing heavier, darker or more choppy in a kitchen than a full set of ugly, outdated cabinets. That said, cabinets and cupboards are often very expensive to replace, and it isn’t always necessary. Bad quality is bad quality, but if you have sturdy doors that are just a little too worn for your liking, there are plenty of projects to make them look better or completely different. Many kitchens are turning to open shelving, glass inserts, or adhering beadboard, but a simple coat of paint and change of hardware can make a world of difference.

Fake it

Don’t have natural, exposed beams among 15′ ceilings? Fake it. The traditional authentic cabin, cottage or lodge almost always has those gorgeous wood beams and it’s a look that never really gets old. By placing beams across the room horizontally or arranging them around the outer edges, it can make the room appear taller and larger. For kitchens that don’t have any additional headspace, a ceiling covered with wood planks or repurposed tin is equally as stunning.