This kitchen photo is taken directly off the Ikea Website from the 2009 catalog. It’s a nice looking kitchen, but it sort of screams “Ikea”–which you want to avoid if you don’t want to look like you live in a cookie cutter home. There are a few things you can do to take advantage of the economy of the Ikea cabinets without making it look like it came from the harbinger of meatballs.
-Take a look over at the NKBA guidelines for kitchen layouts. Not only will this help you stay up to code, but it provides standards for space use, work triangles and safety issues which you may not have considered. I cannot recommend this enough.
-Carefully plan your kitchen based on these guidelines and the space you have available. Use an architectural scale to draw out the floor plan and elevations and review the NKBA standards again to make sure everything is in compliance.
-Order just the wall and base cabinets from Ikea.
-Even though the frosted glass wall cabinets from Ikea look modern, they are a dead giveaway.
-Source drawer pulls elsewhere. These drawer pulls over at Remodelista are a good start.
-Use Silestone, Corian or another solid surface for countertops instead of the Ikea offerings.
-Order your sink and faucets from a local plumbing supply or use this site to locate an economical alternative.
-Use a real floor option, such as tile or real wood. Avoid the laminate floor options available at Ikea.
-Avoid using the Ikea branded appliances.
With that said, Ikea cabinets are the best thing you can buy for the money, and unless you’re on a Bulthaup budget, I’d recommend them hands down.