Make your kitchen lighter and brighter with this one trick

28th April 2017

When planning a kitchen re-design, it’s easy to get excited over units, fittings and appliances but completely forget about daylight. This is silly really, when natural light can make a room feel bigger and brighter.

When it came to my own kitchen makeover, my builder came up with an ingenious idea to allow more light into my room. Let me show you what this trick was – along with lots of ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos of my kitchen (as I know you love them 🙂 )

When planning a kitchen re-design, it’s easy to get excited over units, fittings and appliances but completely forget about daylight. This is silly really, when natural light can make a room feel bigger and brighter. When it came to my own kitchen makeover, my builder came up with an ingenious idea to allow more light into my room. Let me show you what this trick was - along with lots of 'before' and 'after' photos of my kitchen (as I know you love them :) ) By award winning blogger and interior stylist Maxine Brady from welovehome blog

Did you know that natural daylight has a huge impact on the overall look and feel of a room? Letting more light in can transform a dark and dingy space, making it feel fresher, brighter and bigger.

Daylight is the good stuff that design-lovers lust after.

My old kitchen layout made for a dark and gloomy room.

BEFORE

How horrifying is my old kitchen? I can’t even stand to look at that extractor WHICH NEVER WORKED. The room was dark and dank. The thin metal window frames acted as a conductor, taking heat out of the room. One didn’t close properly anyway so the kitchen was so cold.

My two windows overlooked the side return of my garden – giving me a lovely view of my fence and my neighbour’s conservatory. Even though the sun creeps around my house, this room was very cold most the time.

I cannot tell you how many mornings I accidentally stepped on a slug that was crawling across the kitchen floor escaping from my overgrown garden. It was that damp in here. The windows were one of the major causes of this issue.

It had always been on my list to replace the windows as part of my kitchen redesign.

I ordered in my windows but had a small disaster. I measured one of them wrong so it was too small for one of the windows.

This is why you call in the professionals when it comes to your windows! Learn from my mistakes.

Hooray for my builder

It was my builder who was doing all the renovations on my home, who suggested I blocked up the smaller of my two windows on the side….and put in a new one at the end of my kitchen – which would frame my garden. It’s not like this idea hadn’t crossed my mind but I had thought that I had to put in a RSJ (also known as a steel support) across the back of my house. Something I thought it was out totally of my budget.

My builder explained that I didn’t have to do that. Putting in the window cost me nothing extra than a few hours labour and some bricks. What we decided to do was block in the smaller of my windows – to give me more wall space for art or shelving.

Isn’t this wall just asking for a window?

I hacked out the old windows with a fancy drill. Just look at the concentration on my face.

OMG – look away!

Blocking in one window

AFTER

The difference this strategically placed window has made to the overall feel of my kitchen is seriously insane. As you walk into the room, light floods into the space from all angles. The sunlight keeps this room warm even in winter.

I’m a big cheerleader for uPVC windows at the back of my home. Draught-proof, sturdy and safe. Now, I enjoy a lovely view over my garden when I wash up. I have more light in my kitchen, which in turn makes the space feel bigger.

After the success of this window makeover, I turned my attention to other areas of my home. In my bathroom, I replaced the window with a modern one with a thinner frame. Now this room is so much brighter – you can see the difference here in my bathroom makeover post. In my dining room, I replaced a sash window with a large glazed door. In my living room and bedroom, I restored my sash windows (and even did videos on it) so that I could dress them neatly with blinds – again letting more light into my home.

Looks like can’t stop banging on about light with all these blog posts! But at least you can see how highly I rate it when designing my own home. If you want more window ideas, I’ve found the Design Lookbook by Network VEKA so helpful. Lots of my blogging friends have talked about their own projects on there including Jen from LoveChicLiving and Kimberly from Swoonworthy.

My kitchen planning trick:

When planning your kitchen makeover, don’t discount moving a window. The impact on your room can be huge, transforming the space. In my case, I budgeted for new windows (around £800 for two windows and a back door).

My tip: When planning your kitchen, don’t just reply on your kitchen designer. Call in a few builders too, and ask what is possible with your space. They may surprise with what they suggest. A new window has revolutionised my kitchen.

 

Anyway, back to my kitchen.

This area has become one of my favourite spots in my home. I’m a dedicated indoor gardener these days – creating a mini greenhouse in my window, filling it with growing salad and fresh herbs.

Next on my list is having the garden renovated so I can enjoy an improved view over my back garden. As I write, I’ve got a decorator in to paint the back of the house to match the front. Obviously, I’m going to be blogging about that here.

Do you have any suggestions on how to make your kitchen lighter and brighter? Why not share your tips in the comments box below. I’d love to hear from you.

EXCITING NEWS: This image below has been shortlisted out by Pinterest for an award for Best Kitchen Design >>>> Don’t let it slip by – save it to your Pinterest boards for safe keeping.

  • Reply
    Anna International
    28th April 2017 at 4:49 pm

    Love this! We are moving our kitchen from a tiny underground galley to our dining room, and just yesterday our builders added a new window at the back of the house (which faces south) which has made a HUGE difference to the amount of light in the room. I literally cannot wait to be washing up in front of it! (Never thought I would be excited about washing up). So I completely agree – considering window placement and changing it up if you don’t have the light you want is so important and also, pretty easy really if you have a decent builder! Hope my kitchen turns out half as beautiful as yours, and congrats on the Pinterest shortlisting! x

  • Reply
    sharon
    30th April 2017 at 2:33 am

    Wow… loving the new kitchen, great idea moving the window. I live in Brighton and would love to know the name of the builder you use. Congrats and good luck on the Pinterest shortlisting. x

    • Reply
      WeLoveHomeBlog
      11th May 2017 at 5:10 pm

      Hey Sharon. Thanks for he kind words. My builder was John Westlake 🙂 I rate him highly

  • Reply
    Candy Pop
    12th May 2017 at 3:31 pm

    What an amazing job! Your kitchen is gorgeous – I love all the details. I hope you have a fabulous weekend. x

  • Reply
    Kimberly ~ Swoon Worthy
    12th May 2017 at 3:52 pm

    Ahhh you just can’t beat more light in a space! I adore your kitchen, it’s just fantastic and adding a new window made the world of difference! Happily, the previous owners had replaced all ours so I’ve never had to worry about it but it’s good to know that it wasn’t actually too difficult a job 🙂 xx

  • Reply
    Carole King
    12th May 2017 at 4:20 pm

    Your kitchen is inspiring. I’m not surprised Pinterest have shortlisted it. And such a cute dog too x

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    12th May 2017 at 5:24 pm

    This is such a great kitchen makeover, I love you have gone for such a different sink and tap style. It looks amazing!

  • Reply
    Geraldine
    12th May 2017 at 5:39 pm

    What a beautiful makeover. Congrats on the Pinterest shortlist.

    • Reply
      WeLoveHomeBlog
      15th May 2017 at 11:14 am

      Thank you Geraldine

  • Reply
    Fresh Design Blog
    13th May 2017 at 12:51 am

    Great tips, I totally agree. Light is so important and if you can find a way to add more natural light into a room, you’re onto a winner. Your kitchen looks fab!

  • Reply
    Stacey Sheppard
    13th May 2017 at 7:00 am

    Blimey, who would have thought that moving a window could have such a big impact. Your kitchen is just gorgeous. It looks so bright and airy now. I love all the copper accents too.

    • Reply
      WeLoveHomeBlog
      15th May 2017 at 11:13 am

      It has made a major impact on my kitchen! Love my window. Have a lovely day.

  • Reply
    KDM Shopfitting
    12th June 2017 at 1:26 pm

    This has done wonders to my kitchen! such a nicer environment to cook and clean in.

  • Reply
    Macs
    1st October 2017 at 3:59 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story and the useful tips you have featured. The kitchen looks so fabulous.

    • Reply
      WeLoveHomeBlog
      3rd October 2017 at 7:20 pm

      Thank you

  • Reply
    CAFFAHOLIC
    12th December 2017 at 6:08 pm

    so i finally made up my mind to must follow this…and luckily i did…turned out to be super awesome for my kitchen…thanks for sharing this 🙂

    • Reply
      WeLoveHomeBlog
      15th December 2017 at 2:38 pm

      Awh! That is amazing news to hear

      Maxine x

  • Reply
    House Depot USA
    3rd January 2018 at 9:44 am

    Really amazed at the design and architecture of your kitchen. your kitchen is just amazing. It’s bright and light. Amazing stuff you got there.

  • Reply
    Andrew Powell
    16th May 2018 at 6:56 am

    Your tip is really helpful for me because i want to make a beautiful lighter and brighter kitchen model. So thank you for share some helpful tips. Really I say your kitchen remodeling is very beautiful.

    • Reply
      WeLoveHomeBlog
      16th May 2018 at 10:49 am

      Thank you so much – that is lovely to hear.

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