With many apartments and villas in the UAE now pushing 20 years old, kitchens can be notoriously out of date, verging on unattractive. After seeing a new-construction modern home with a slick designer kitchen, it can be hard to view a rental home you love, with a kitchen that lets it down, resulting in a room you just don’t want to spend any time in.
This has led to a drive to update kitchen spaces, especially as more people hang out at home than ever before. A number of interior design entrepreneurs and companies are stepping up to the plate.
Vinyl wraps for the kitchen
Creative Wrap is one such brand. The UAE company specialises in vinyl wraps and offers a full-service kitchen makeover. From doors, to worktops and splashbacks, the team can wrap it all and transform a dated kitchen into a suave and stylish space.
While that’s all well, tenants are ever aware about updating a rental home without losing their deposit. Fortunately, not only can vinyl wraps cover existing surfaces without damaging them, but wrapping a kitchen is also 75 per cent cheaper on average than a refurbishment and comes with a 10-year guarantee.
This makes it both affordable and easily transformable if your style changes over the years. Cath from Creative Wrap has seen many styles come and go and says, with wrapping, you can change your kitchen style without breaking the bank or losing your deposit, while still being able to add your own flare.
“We have seen various colours coming in and out of fashion. A few years ago, most of our clients were opting for whites and light greys, but this year it has been greens and [I’m sure] 2022 will bring new colours.”
While the wrapping is done by professionals trained to match and fit (this is not a DIY job), what happens when you are leaving and need to reverse the wrap?
Cath says: “All the services we provide are fully reversible. We provide a removal service; however, it can be done by anyone with a little time and patience.
“The only scenario where a wrap could damage the original surface is when we wrap solid wood that has a lacquer applied on top. When the wrap is removed from such surfaces, it could remove the lacquer, just as with paint. While we have done various tests successfully on solid wood treated with lacquer, we also have a carpentry service that can relacquer damaged doors to bring them back to looking like new.”
Rhiannon Downie, founder of home inspiration website HomeClubMe.com, is one of Creative Wrap’s happy customers and picked out a blue wrap for her kitchen.
“Blue features a lot throughout my home. Coupled with a fresh white brick backsplash, off-white top cabinets and gold knobs/ and door handles, the finished look is fun but sleek. I love it, it’s made such a difference to our rental villa.”
Downie suggests seeking permission from your landlord and providing them with all the information so as to get sign off, just to add an extra layer of security.
Get creative with a kitchen lamp
If investing in a wrap is still a step too far, there are more affordable ways to add a touch of chic to the kitchen without breaking the bank or requiring professional help. A side lamp can be a fun way to elevate badly lit spaces. Adding a desk or table lamp is often reserved for the living or bedroom areas, but it can also be a chic way to light up the kitchen and make it feel more homely.
The marble-based Ebarza lamp, which retails for Dh675, has a modern design and can be easily cleaned, making it be ideal for kitchen counter lighting.
If a task lamp is needed only occasionally and you’d rather move it around the space or take it to the breakfast counter or dining table, consider the HAY design portable lamp, available from Finnish Design Shop for Dh340. It comes in a range of colours and is charged up with a USB port.
Break out the goodies
Another affordable and great-looking way to update a kitchen is having things on display. Think candles, rustic chopping boards layered up, and other cooking utensils that may never be used, but will look great in the space.
Some of our current favourite kitchen goodies to display include chopping boards from H&M Home’s For the Love of Craft collection, which retail from Dh169; and Menu salt and pepper shakers (Dh335 from Amara) for a bit of Scandi-cool.
If you want to create a space to display your items without eating up too much countertop surface area, look into a shelving unit. You could even place daily-use cups or herbs on it, which will not only look great, but also end up giving you extra storage for the essentials. The black shelving unit from JYSK is small, affordable at Dh79, and attractive.
Or take a cue from chef Nicole Barua’s book, and get a large, functional storage unit and adorn it with books, utensils, wall hangings and potted plants.
Updated: July 30th 2021, 11:08 AM