Kitchen Renovation Inspiration

Farm House or Modern Kitchen?
Find Ideas and Inspiration for Your Next Home Renovation

So you are ready to renovate but looking for some inspiration for what (and maybe what not) to do with your home? There are plenty of places to find inspiration for your project – online, in print and even in the real world.


Where to find ideas and inspiration for your home renovations

Websites and blogs – Websites like this one can give you lots of ideas on how to transform your home and practical advice on how to do it too. Many design websites will have articles forecasting trends for the coming year.

Pinterest and Instagram – Social media is a gold mine when you are looking for inspiration for anything and it’s no different when it comes to home renovations. Image-heavy sites Pinterest and Instagram are really good sources – from high-end homes of your dreams to DIY ideas these sites have you covered. Set up your own private board on Pinterest to collect your ideas together for reference during your planning.

Magazines – If you want to take inspiration from your favourite celebrity, then you might want to browse some gossip magazines. These often give you a glimpse into the lavish homes of the rich and famous and while you might not be able to afford the real things, you could take ideas and recreate them in a way that aligns with your budget.

TV reno shows – It is hard to turn on the TV these days without finding some kinds of renovation show. There are lots of ideas and tips to be had. Watching a local show like Grand Designs NZ or The Block can be a good idea as you’ll be more likely to find the building materials or items supplied locally.

Historical home bathroom renovation

Property listings and open homes – Want to see what other people in your area are doing with their homes or what people in the multi-million dollar homes on Auckland’s waterfront have chosen for their decor? Browse the property listings either online on sites like TradeMe or in print with the Property Press. You could even take it a step further and visit some local open homes to see if anything sparks your imagination. Just remember you usually have to give some details to the real estate agent so you might be contacted for feedback later.


Renovation Inspiration North Shore Auckland -

All around you – Sometimes the smallest thing can spark inspiration. Maybe it’s the colour of the wall in your favourite coffee shop or a cushion you see in an op shop. Or maybe it’s the natural surroundings of your local park. Look around wherever you go and you might find inspiration in the strangest place.


What might be trending in interior design when you are ready to renovate your home?

Some trends come and go really quickly while some build slowly before and then stick around for a while, varying a little along the way. Here are a few long-term trends that are worth looking into.


Colour trends

Bathroom Wall Colour - Modern Blue Trendy

While neutral tones of white, off-white and grey are perennially popular, choosing colour either on all the walls or in accent pieces like furniture, tiles or splashbacks, artwork and accessories is also popular. Pinks and greens and dramatic blues have all gained traction in recent years.

If you are wondering what the colour of the moment is then colour experts Pantone and Dulux both release colours of the year each year. In Dulux’s case they usually release three or four colour palettes that reflect where they think design trends are heading that year.

In recent years, Pantone has chosen green, coral, blue and oranges for its colour of the year.  Dulux has focused on palettes like dusky greens and earth tones that ground and balance – making the home a sanctuary in an otherwise busy world.


Eco-friendly building options

photovoltaic panels on NZ roof


With climate change becoming an ever-bigger topic of conversation, the focus on eco-friendly building has become stronger. While some eco-friendly building practices like straw bale and daub walls are still left to the very dedicated builder, other practices are much easier to incorporate. You can easily install:

  • Energy-efficient lightbulbs – think LEDs that last much longer than traditional bulbs
  • Retrofit double glazing for extra warmth and less noise
  • Solar panels – for hot water heating and power
  • Better insulation – look for eco-friendly options like Earthwool glasswool.
  • Rainwater collection tanks – to reuse for your garden

Learn more

Solar Panels

Water Conservation

The government’s Smarter Homes website and the NZ Green Building Council have lots of useful information and ideas for eco-friendly building on their websites.


Natural building materials

Modern bathroom with stone tiles


The trend towards eco-friendly building and phasing out plastics and man-made materials is also making its way to interior design. In 2019 the London Design Fair, named Sustainability as one of its themes of the year and its material of the year was biomaterials – objects made from what might otherwise be waste byproducts of other things like corn husks and seaweed.

Choose timber, marble and stone for flooring and benchtops in kitchens and bathrooms or furniture and decor objects like rugs, cushions and lamps that are made from natural materials like organic cotton, jute or plant fibres. Natural materials are great for mixing and matching so feel free to use plenty of them.

Upcycling is also a big trend – and can make your renovations more cost-effective. Choosing older solid wood furniture and giving it a makeover to suit your chosen decor gives an old piece new life and gives you a quality piece of furniture. Reclaimed timber is also a good choice for flooring or exterior cladding and garden features.


Kitchen Renovations

White Kitchen Interior with Island, Sink, Cabinets, and Hardwood Floors in New Luxury Home


Kitchens are one of our favourite rooms to renovate and are a place where you can really add value to your home.

Open plan living means kitchens really are the heart of the home but it also means the room is on show all the time. This has led to a trend for sleekness in kitchens. Plenty of storage so things can be kept out of sight, handle-less cabinets, especially up high, so as not to spoil clean lines and a walk-in scullery so that dirty dishes and other appliances can be stored away from the main kitchen, are all options for sleek and stylish kitchens.

Colour is also making a comeback in kitchens but instead of the whole kitchen being one colour think coordinating cabinets, brightly coloured splashbacks, dark countertops and tiles.

Beautiful classic wood kitchen with hardwood floor.


Outdoor rooms

Outdoor Spaces - House of the Year - NZ Proud - Wellington / Wairarapa 2020 - Renovation

Take your deck to the next level with an outdoor room. Pizza ovens, built-in BBQs, outdoor fireplaces and lighting all make your outdoor space usable all year round. And with stylish louvre roofs and screens you can create a trendy outdoor room for ultimate indoor/outdoor flow.

In keeping with green and natural themes, living walls have become popular – a more natural way to bring privacy to parts of your section.


Making use of all the space

Attic conversion - additional bathroom

In many homes there is a bit of space that no one can quite figure out what to do with. Maybe it is a window seating area, or a nook under the stairs or even an unused large entranceway space or garage. Converting those spaces to be useful is a great way of adding value to your home and making it suit you better. With the Covid-19 pandemic encouraging more people to work from home, dedicated workspaces fitted into otherwise unused spaces are now popular. Or why not turn it into a cosy reading area or hobby space. Garage conversions make use of dead space on a bigger scale by providing room for home offices, gyms or even a teenage hangout or man cave.


Smart home automation

Home Automation - Home theatre - Living room with projector screen, gray couch and black coffee table

A few years ago, turning your lights on and off by voice command or controlling your alarm while overseas on holiday might have been something you only saw in movies or in very fancy homes. But today thanks to Alexa, Google Nest and other automation systems you too can open the curtains without even getting out of bed.

It’s likely that these types of systems are only going to get cleverer as time goes on, so future-proofing your home by including automation in your renovations is a great idea.


Incorporating trends into your home renovations

When you start looking at all the trends you might find things a bit overwhelming. Some things might be a bit out there – you really might not agree that pineapples on your walls and gold taps are the way to go – so remember that just because something is trendy it doesn’t mean you have to like it! 

Use trends as a conversation starter with your designer or architect or with your partner or family if you are decorating yourself. Then fit the trends with your style, the style of your property and your budget and work from there. You might want to set up a mood board – either digitally or on paper – to help you sort through your ideas.

If you want to try colours in your home but aren’t sure you want to take the plunge with a fully painted house, pick one room or just a feature wall on which to express yourself.

Feature Wall - Close-up of patterned wallpaper in retro interior

Or use accessories to add colour against neutral walls and flooring. Using accessories lets you change your mind if you decide the colour doesn’t quite work or even change things up with the seasons for a new look every few months.

Home resale value after alterations

And remember resale. If you are thinking of selling in the not too distant future then sometimes it pays to be less trendy and more realistic in your renovations. Stick with timeless colour palettes that will appeal to lots of people or make your trendy choices in fixtures and furnishings that can be removed and taken with you.

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