For this month’s design blog, we are featuring exotic quartzite countertops, open shelving, the microwave drawer, adventurous pendant lighting and beautiful backsplashes – elements of a dream kitchen. These small touches add great details and incredible warmth to any home.

EXOTIC QUARTZITE COUNTERTOPS

Quartzite (not to be confused with quartz, the man-made alternative) is a wonderfully eye-catching option when designing your new kitchen. This naturally occurring stone is extremely durable and dependable, only requiring an application of moisture sealant once a year. The natural imperfections in the stone create movement and unique beauty in a room. Choosing an exotic dark variant of quartzite will give your kitchen a look that hides messes well, but there are also many dazzling brighter, streaked compositions to be selected from. If you enjoy the look of marble, but want to take things further, go with quartzite.

OPEN SHELVING

Installing stylish open shelving into your kitchen gives you the opportunity to create a charming and fresh attitude across the whole room. In addition to amplifying the size of your the space, you can get creative with the organization of dishes and cookware by shape, color and size.

Another great plus of open shelving is that it presents a welcoming vibe, showing to visitors and friends that this is a place where guests are entertained and fed, and who doesn’t like to be fed?

See Example 1

See Example 2

THE MICROWAVE DRAWER

Besides the obvious aesthetic benefits of keeping the trusty microwave tidily tucked into your drawers and lower cabinets, there are many more advantages to discuss. Foremost, using the microwave is much more convenient with the whole process near your waistline. Periodic stirring during cooking becomes a breeze, as does checking on your meal. Add these to the sleek new brushed metal designs and auto-opening/closing mechanics, and you may consider the microwave drawer as a wonderful option for your new kitchen.

See Example

ADVENTUROUS PENDANT LIGHTING

The lighting above your kitchen island is a wonderful spot to jazz things up visually, or to solidify a rustic or classic flavor. From lithe geometric pendants to old-world Edison bulbs to quirky, interesting glasswork …or even a little bit of all three! You have a blank canvas to tie the kitchen together in fun ways. Use the opportunity to contrast against other features of the space for a fully fleshed out personal style. We also offer a valuable tip from the pros: odd-numbered pendant lighting tends to have more visual interest than even-numbered.

See Example

BEAUTIFUL BACKSPLASHES

Choosing a backsplash with personality is a chance to really play against your lighting, countertops, and cabinets to seal the look of the space. Pristine custom subway tile and custom colored grout adds a clean organized look. Reclaimed wood or brick provides a rustic feel, and for the exotic flair, we suggest a dazzling Moroccan tile, or shimmering layered strips of reflective tile.

See Example