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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  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Blue and White Kitchen

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

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Green and Gray Kitchen

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

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Yellow and Beige Kitchen

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

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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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