Creating a Spanish Kitchen

Mon, 12/06/2010 - 11:02 - charlottecook

As unexpectedly early snowstorms batter large parts of the UK, reminding us that winter is well and truly here to stay for the next couple of months, who wouldn't want a quick spell in the sun over in Spain? Unfortunately, a week or two of winter sun has to come to an end sooner or later, and a return to the windy, wet, and freezing cold British Isles usually feels all the more cutting with a suntan! However, there is one way to make these winter months slightly more bearable and that's by introducing a hint of Spain into your new kitchen design. In Spain, where food rules, the kitchen is the hub of the family home, and you can replicate this warm atmosphere in your house no matter what the weather may be like outdoors. Simple design touches here and there can make a world of difference. Give your kitchen cabinets a makeover with some new doors or simply invest in some cupboard paint. Wooden kitchen cabinets look great in Spanish themed kitchens and, although solid wood is the ideal option, wood-effect paint can do the job if you're on a tight budget. Exposed wood is perfect for Spanish kitchens and not just when it comes to the cabinets. Any sort of shelves or dressers that are made from natural wood look warm and inviting and, if stacked with family cookbooks, wooden utensils, and tea towels in vibrant reds and oranges, you'll introduce a Spanish feel to your room immediately. Kitchen tiles shouldn't be too bold, as they may clash with the colour of your walls, so instead opt for warm, deep cream shades. The splash-back near your cooker is the place in which to introduce some colour in the tiling of your room. Try to pick out individual tiles that have really bold, unique patterns, such as mosaic tiles. Blue shades for the mosaic patterns on a white or cream tiled background work very effectively. For the walls, light and bright colours are the order of the day, with deep yellow a consistently popular choice. If you're having trouble imagining how your colour scheme will fit with the rest of the room, get hold of a kitchen planner to help with the visualisation. Meanwhile, if you're planning a trip to Spain, pick up a couple of brightly decorated, hand painted ceramic plates that you can mount on your kitchen walls. These can also, of course, be purchased online. The bolder the better when it comes to plates, and the bigger the better too. If you have a kitchen island, invest (if you can afford to) in a large antique lamp that can hang down from the ceiling and provide both illumination and a comforting atmosphere to your room. If you don't have a kitchen island but want to invest in a table upon which to eat family meals, traditional oak tables and chairs are an expensive yet stunning option, with ones boasting a 'distressed' look particularly effective. Designing a Spanish kitchen like this one won't cost you the world but could make all the difference to your and your family's mood as the long winter nights draw in.