Sarah Richardson's Kitchen Design Recipes

Designing a kitchen is all about blending the right ingredients. The Sarah 101 host tells HGTV Magazine what she likes to mix together to make a great space. Check out all four "recipes."

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Stacey Brandford

White and Wood Kitchen

Pipe Light Fixture + Quartz and Marble Counters
I found this cool white pipe and light-bulb fixture at a salvage shop for $300, but you could have something similar made with conduit pipe pieces from the hardware store. I used Silestone quartz along the perimeter of the kitchen, and Calacatta marble for the island for a big impact in the middle of the room.

Stacey Brandford

Herringbone Backsplash + Black-and-White Photos

The backsplash mimics the island’s wood pattern and requires about the same amount of tile as a straight installation. Gray grout accentuates the pattern and hides dirt. I love artwork in the kitchen since it’s a gathering space. These photos of bread and wine bottles are fun for their entertaining theme.

Stacey Brandford

Reclaimed Wood Island + Sink

I went with rustic reclaimed barn board on the island, plus black hardware and an oak floor. Spread out the functions in a kitchen so that as many people as possible can work at once. I like to put a sink in the island so it’s separate from the cooking and prep spaces.

Stacey Brandford

Double Ovens

Stacking the two electric ovens would have cut into the prep space, so I tucked both below the counters. One is an oven/microwave combo.

Stacey Brandford

Blue and White Kitchen

Splashes of blue, like a pretty teapot and a framed chalkboard, add a little kick to a kitchen.

Stacey Brandford

Extra Upper Cabinets + Mosaic Tile Backsplash

Double your storage space by making two rows of upper cabinets. The top ones are great for stashing bulky pieces you don’t use every day. I chose mosaic marble tiles that look sort of like bubbles. It's a splurge, but marble tiles aren’t as pricey as a solid slab.

Stacey Brandford

Labeled Canisters

Baking supplies can become a jumble in the cabinet. Invest in a set of airtight glass jars for your ingredients. They’ll look neater and stay fresh longer.

Stacey Brandford

Blue Cabinet Pulls + Speckled Quartz Counters

Blue and white always feels fresh in a kitchen. I customized IKEA Applad cabinets with vintage blue pulls to play up the palette. The counters are a combo of practical and playful. They’re white quartz flecked with shades of blue.

Stacey Brandford

Striped Floor

It has the same look as a painted wood floor, but it’s actually made up of 1-foot-by-3-foot Marmoleum panels (forboflooringna.com) installed in a striped pattern. They come in 30 colors.

Stacey Brandford

White Appliances

White appliances cost far less than stainless steel ones. And stainless appliances often have black accents, which would have distracted from the clean look of this kitchen.

Stacey Brandford

Green and Gray Kitchen

Metal stools are my go-to for a sleek space. They have a clean look and are very sturdy.

Stacey Brandford

Laminate Counters

Even though laminate is low-cost, it doesn’t feel like you’re skimping if you combine it with glossy tiles and stainless appliances. This countertop is a mix of all the room’s colors, and it’s a cinch to clean with a counter spray.

Stacey Brandford

Gooseneck Faucet + Drain-Board Sink

A gooseneck faucet not only looks cool but also makes filling large pots and doing dishes a breeze. I love a sink with a built-in drain board because it keeps water off the counters.

Stacey Brandford

Striped Glass Backsplash + Mixed Cabinet Styles

I used 3-inch-by-6-inch glass tiles in pale green and cool gray to make stripes for the backsplash. When I’m using stock cabinetry, I blend styles to fake a custom look as with these glass-front and white cabinets. For unexpected color, I hung vintage enamel pendants.

Stacey Brandford

Porcelain Floor Tiles + Green Cabinets

A natural stone floor is beautiful, but large-scale porcelain tiles have a similar look and cost a lot less. I wanted a sleek palette that’s not too monochromatic, so these painted cabinets add life.

Stacey Brandford

Yellow and Beige Kitchen

It’s important to have some breathing space in a kitchen. Open shelving gives you that airy feel.

Stacey Brandford

Super Island

This island is a real workhorse. It has lots of prep surface, a wraparound counter that seats three, deep drawers and cabinets for storage, and pantry space on the back.

Stacey Brandford

Multiple Pendants

I prefer pendants to can lights because they direct light onto the work surface. Make sure to hang enough of them. I needed three for this 9-foot island, and I added a small one over the sink.

Stacey Brandford

Commercial Range and Custom Vent Hood

The 48-inch gas range is the same kind used in commercial kitchens. You’ll need a commercial vent, too, so make sure you budget for one. They start at around $1,000. I designed a custom cover to help this one blend in with the cabinetry.

Stacey Brandford

Stone Backsplash

I chose limestone with an onyx border for the backsplash behind the stove. The pattern on the limestone sort of looks like rustic barn board.

Stacey Brandford

Yellow Paint + Hardwood Floors

Sunny yellow feels welcoming all year. I wanted to preserve this farmhouse’s 1885 charm, so I refinished the maple floors instead of replacing them with tile.

Stacey Brandford

Salvaged Elements

I love shopping at architectural salvage shops. Here I used curvy corbels for shelf supports and a carved newel post as a leg on the island.

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