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Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen's top kitchen tips | How to add glamour to your kitchen | Kitchen design ideas | PHOTO GALLERY | Housetohome

Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen's top kitchen tips

More and more, the kitchen has become the principal room in the house, especially when it comes to socialising. It's all too easy to create a luxurious feel in reception rooms and keep the kitchen a functional space — but why should such a social space not enjoy the same design flair as the rest of the house? Kitchens are increasingly becoming more luxurious, design-led spaces, and it couldn’t be easier to step away from a purely practical design, and go for full-on glamour in your cooking area….

Traditional spotlights and strip lighting in a kitchen may have been the functional choice for years, but they're not exactly glamorous. Chandeliers are more usually associated with formal living areas and reception rooms, but there's no reason they can’t work in kitchens, too. In a kitchen diner, try hanging one over the dining table to delineate the social area from the working area. If you opt for a chandelier in your kitchen, be sure to hang it at a height where it won't be an obstacle.

For a more toned-down look, try an oversized pendant or shade. A current trend is for darker-toned shades with a copper or golden inside, which not only reflects a warmer light - something that kitchens can often lack - but a touch of metallics is a foolproof way to lend a luxe look to a room. A dimmer switch is a good option in a kitchen-diner, so you can have the light bright enough to work, but turn it down lower for convivial meals.

Rich colours and statement wallpapers have a big part to play in turning a functional kitchen scheme into a glamorous style statement in its own right. Deep jewel shades and metallic hints are a simple yet effective way of conjuring up a luxurious feel. Be aware of your space and the amount of light, though, as too many dark hues may lead to a space feeling smaller.

Metallics add a real glamour factor to interiors, and in a kitchen you have a wealth of choices — from a gleaming copper range cooker, to small and gleaming brass handles and drawer pulls. Splashbacks in an antique mirror finish lend an air of faded grandeur. There are endless options, but remember to use sparkle in small amounts, to make a bigger impact.

Those are just some of our ideas - read on for more inspiration from designer Laurence Llewelyn Bowen, on how to achieve the luxe look in your kitchen…

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Photograph by Simon Whitmore