Literally every owner planning to renovate a kitchen space is faced with the problem of choosing finishing materials for the walls. The inevitability of a dilemma is associated with the specific functionality of the kitchen room – high humidity, constant changes in temperature conditions, the presence of soot and drops of hot fat in the air. Despite the growing popularity of using sufficiently powerful hoods, the walls in the kitchens of our compatriots are often exposed to various destructive factors. The good news for all homeowners looking to renovate a kitchen space is that there are enough materials to enhance the individuality of the interior and maintain an attractive appearance after all the above negative factors. But you still have to make a choice. In order to make it easier for you to navigate in the variety of finishing materials, we have created a selection of current design projects for kitchen premises, in the design of which we used the most popular surface finishing tools today..
Requirements for finishing materials of the kitchen area
Obviously, the choice of finishing materials is influenced primarily by the style of interior decoration and the basics of zoning the premises for the working and dining segment. But due to the functional features, the specific microclimate of the kitchen premises, there are also operational criteria for finishing materials:
- resistance to high humidity, hot water splashes;
- preservation of its original appearance after exposure to high temperatures, drops of hot fat and soot;
- ease of maintenance, which implies the possibility of cleaning surfaces (using cleaning agents) with subsequent preservation «commodity» type of finishing material;
- high level of hygiene – no tendency to accumulate and multiply harmful microorganisms.
In the kitchen spaces of our compatriots, you can most often see the use of ceramic tiles or mosaics, painting and wallpapering the walls. Cladding with wall panels, decorative plastering are also used. Of course, most often finishing materials are combined within the functional areas of the kitchen area – the main factor of separation is the presence of a working and dining area. It is the combination of finishing tools for certain functional segments of the kitchen that allows you to achieve the maximum effect and the ratio of decorative and technological parameters.
Ceramic tiles in the kitchen space
Ceramic tiles and mosaics are among the most popular materials for cladding kitchen surfaces. When decorating a kitchen apron, ceramics becomes simply an indispensable cladding tool. This finishing material owes its incredible popularity to the following technological and decorative properties:
- the ability to tolerate high temperatures;
- resistance to moisture, hot fat and other harmful factors;
- ease of care, the ability to use cleaning products;
- a wealth of colors and textures, variations on the size of tiles and their configuration;
- excellent compatibility with other finishing materials.
Conventionally, all ceramic tiles can be divided into the following types:
- textured (textured);
Anyone who plans to renovate the kitchen will be able to find a suitable option for ceramic tiles, which will not only perfectly protect the walls of the kitchen from various factors of influence, but also become an organic element of the interior. A lot of ready-made collections are on sale widely, which include organically selected materials for cladding floors, walls, a kitchen apron – there are decorative elements, various panels, borders, moldings and baseboards.
It is difficult to meet a kitchen design project in which all wall surfaces would be tiled. Nevertheless, in the modern interior of the kitchen, ceramics are most often found as decoration for the apron or wall of the work area. With the help of ceramic tiles or mosaics, you can decorate the entire surface above the kitchen working area (the sector for placing the sink and the hob or stove), making it an accent wall using color or texture.
Painting kitchen walls
For many of our compatriots, painting kitchen walls is becoming the most optimal finishing option, primarily due to the affordable cost of materials and the ability to independently carry out all the work. The ability to find the right shade by mixing colors is also an advantage of this finish. But it is important to understand that this method of wall decoration requires a lot of preparation – you need to have perfectly flat and smooth surfaces for painting..
Waterproof and washable paint is suitable for kitchen spaces. As for the color palette, the choice of options is diverse. Typically, designers and their customers use shades of the same color, different in brightness, to highlight the eating area and the working segment. But you can also use fundamentally different colors – a bright, colorful tone for the dining area, pastel – for the work.
When choosing the color of paint for decorating the walls of the kitchen, remember that cool colors – all shades of blue, green and their variations contribute to a decrease in appetite. But the tones of red, orange – will awaken not only positive emotions and adrenaline, but also the feeling of hunger. Of course, the choice of color palette for wall decoration will directly depend on the range of kitchen facades. If your kitchen set is presented in a bright tone, then it is better to choose a light, neutral palette for decoration. And vice versa – for a furniture ensemble that is neutral in color, the colorful design of the vertical surfaces of the room will be an excellent companion..
Choosing between glossy and matte paint, it is important to understand that surfaces with a slight sheen look great and are even visually capable of increasing the scale of the room, they are perfectly cleanable and do not collect dust. But on such walls, the slightest irregularities of surfaces are perfectly visible. If you are not sure of the ideality of the grinding of the walls, then it is better to give preference to semi-matt and matte paints..
The mainstream of modern kitchen design projects is the use of black paint to decorate one wall. Such a surface becomes a kind of communication base for household members. On a dark surface, you can leave messages to each other, write down recipes or simply post photos, children’s drawings, postcards and magnets brought from travel.
The choice of wallpaper for the kitchen
Beautiful and properly selected wallpapers can decorate any interior, including the kitchen one. But it is important to choose the right type of this finishing material that will correspond to the operational characteristics of the kitchen space. Obviously, ordinary paper wallpaper is not a suitable option for a room with constant temperature changes, high levels of humidity and the risk of surface contamination. Experts recommend using the following types of wallpaper for pasting kitchen walls:
1.Vinyl – the top layer of such a finishing material is made of polyvinyl chloride, which is able to protect the walls from various mechanical influences and all kinds of pollution. Vinyl wallpaper is strong and durable enough (as far as this concept is generally applicable to wallpaper). In turn, this type of wallpaper is subdivided according to the type of production into those made on the basis of foamed vinyl and with the use of hot stamping. Foamed vinyl has a very dense texture and is able to perfectly hide small imperfections in the smoothness of surfaces.
Embossed wallpaper can be presented in the form of compact vinyl – they perfectly imitate stone, brickwork, plaster and even leather. Silk-screened wallpapers have a pleasant shine and smooth surfaces. If you can use any kind of vinyl wallpaper to decorate the dining area of the kitchen space, then for pasting the working segment it is better to give preference to battles with chemical embossing. Such wallpaper has sufficient strength and resistance to cleaning agents that are usually used for damp cleaning of the kitchen..
2.Non-woven – these wallpapers are very similar in their technological properties to vinyl products. The main difference is not paper, but non-woven base. In our country, non-woven wallpaper for painting is especially popular – they perfectly hide the uneven surfaces. In addition, the interior of the kitchen with similar wallpaper can be changed just by repainting the walls in a different shade..
3.Glass cloth or wallpaper with fiberglass – such products are highly durable. This type of wallpaper is also most often used for painting and has a number of advantages that are inherent in both vinyl and non-woven wallpaper..
Decorative plaster as a finishing material
Decorative plaster includes various finishing mixtures containing, in addition to the main components, various composite and binders – the smallest fractions of natural stones, cotton or flax fibers. Thanks to a wide range of color and texture solutions, designers and their customers are able to bring to life a wide variety of ideas for decorating the kitchen space..
Composite mixtures with the addition of stone chips have particular strength, durability and original appearance. For a kitchen room prone to high pollution, silicate types of decorative plaster are more suitable..
Conventionally, all types of decorative plaster can be divided into mixtures on a water and anhydrous basis. For finishing the kitchen space, it is better to give preference to water mixtures – such materials do not have a chemical odor (neither during application, nor after drying).
If you choose decorative plaster for finishing kitchen walls, then the surfaces will need to be prepared. As in the case of preparing for painting, the walls will need to be leveled, plastered, sanded and primed. A pleasant moment when choosing this finish is the fact that the process of applying the plaster directly does not imply the presence of special skills and can be done by the owners of the kitchen on their own.
Cladding kitchen walls with panels
Wall panels are available in a variety of materials. One of the cheapest and easiest in terms of installation options are plastic panels. At the moment, this type of material is not popular, but it is still used in some cases and is mainly combined with other types of finishes. Plastic panels are able to withstand moisture and temperature extremes. But the strength and durability of this facing material is poor. The environmental friendliness of raw materials is also not taken into account. But a wide range of color and texture solutions will delight the modern buyer.
Recently, wood panels for wall cladding have been in great demand. Some types of natural material are practically not subjected to processing and integration of protective equipment. But any owner understands that it is impossible to do without treatment with antiseptics and protective varnishes of wooden panels, which are to become protection for a kitchen apron. Nothing brings warmth and coziness to the interior of a room like the use of natural wood grain. And it is completely impossible to imagine an eco-style or country style without wood trim..
Textured wall panels can transform any, even the most trivial kitchen interior. Embossed surfaces will look great in the dining area of the kitchen space. For a greater effect of visual perception of texture, such surfaces must be well illuminated..
Decorative stone to create an original kitchen interior
Among designers all over the world, including Russian, decorative stone is very popular as a finishing material for various premises. The kitchen space is no exception. Simplistically, we can say that decorative stone consists of sand, concrete, clay and gypsum. Artificial material can perfectly imitate various types of natural stone, but at the same time have the following advantages:
- decorative stone is much lighter than natural, which greatly facilitates the process of delivery and installation;
- sufficiently high strength qualities, longevity;
- environmental friendliness of the material;
- lack of tendency to mold, multiplication of fungal bacteria;
- ease of care.
When choosing a decorative stone for the kitchen (as a room with a sufficiently high humidity), a material with moisture-repellent properties should be preferred. Otherwise, you will have to periodically spend time and money on coating surfaces with special compounds..
It makes sense to use decorative stone as a facing material for all walls only in a very spacious room and when choosing a light color scheme. Small kitchen space, such a finish can «swallow up» and visually reduce it even more. Artificial stone is excellent in metered use – as an accent wall decoration.
Artificial stone can be perfectly combined with other finishing materials. But it is important to understand that not every type of finish will look harmonious if it does not fit into the design stylistically. Romantic wallpaper prints and stone surfaces will look odd in the same space. But with wood, neutral paint or wall decoration with decorative plaster, this type of finish will look organic.
If a fireplace is installed in the dining area of your fairly spacious kitchen (it does not matter whether it is active or just imitating a hearth), then facing surfaces with artificial stone will become the logical and most optimal finishing option. A combination of stone and fire, albeit artificial, will help to achieve an amazing, comfortable and cozy atmosphere..
Glass and metal in modern kitchen design
Of course, such specific (and expensive) materials as glass and metal are used for finishing kitchen surfaces in dosage and mainly for facing the apron. Excellent technological properties, including resistance to moisture and temperature extremes, hot grease droplets and the tolerance of chemical cleaning agents, make stainless steel and glass plates an excellent way to protect walls in the kitchen work area.
Stainless steel as a backsplash cladding looks very modern, perfectly combined with chrome elements of household appliances. For modern style and high-tech, steel plates will be an excellent addition to surface finishes, not to mention reliable protection of walls in the most stressed sectors – the location of the sink and stove (hob). But it is important to understand that on the apron, finished with a sheet of stainless steel, any dirt is perfectly visible, even traces of water drops and fingerprints.
Recently, in modern design projects, you can often find the use of a large sheet of stainless steel as a decoration for an entire wall (albeit a small one). Such a surface can be used as an exhibition wall, a base for placing a collection of magnets, leaving notes for household members and posting recipes and shopping lists..
Tempered glass can withstand the highest temperatures, is easy to care for and comes in a variety of colors. On glass plates used for facing kitchen aprons, it is possible to apply photo printing (this, however, significantly increases the cost of finishing). With the help of glass trim, you can create a color accent in the interior of the kitchen space. In addition, glass surfaces with a slight glossy shine contribute to the visual expansion of the space..
Brickwork as part of the decoration of the kitchen
Brick walls have become an integral part of the interior of premises with various functional loads for many stylistic directions. Obtaining brickwork as an option for wall decoration can be done in several ways – using wall panels, special wallpaper. But the simplest and ultimately effective method is the absence of plaster on an ordinary brick wall. Of course, for a kitchen space specific from the point of view of the microclimate, it is necessary to treat the brick walls with special sprays and varnishes, which create a protective layer against the effects of moisture and drops of hot fat..
«Afford» the design of all walls in the form of brickwork can only be a very spacious room, decorated in a loft style. As a rule, brick is used as an accent – color and texture. You can combine this type of wall decoration with both painting and pasting surfaces with plain wallpaper..
One of the options for decorating a brick wall is painting with moisture-resistant paint. If you paint in part, you can achieve the effect of an aged surface. This finish will look great in a kitchen decorated in shabby chic, vintage and even retro style. Regular painting in a light tone will become a harmonious element of the interior, made in almost any style.