10 Ideas for Kitchen Islands

Looking for something a little out of the ordinary for your kitchen island? There’s no reason to settle for humdrum when you can have vibrant color, interesting patterns and textures, and unique shapes. From printed glass to repurposed antiques, these 10 creative ways with kitchen islands will hopefully spark your imagination.

kitchen islands1. An oversize sink. Perfect for washing large pots and pans and filling vases (or even washing a small dog), an extra-deep and extra-wide sink also makes a strong design statement. The capacious size calls to mind farmhouses and cheerful country homes, and you can play a big sink up even more with an interesting material like the soapstone shown here.

2. Bright yellow cabinets. Painting the base of your island bright buttercup yellow is a bold choice. The color is unabashedly optimistic and perfect for a room you come to first thing in the morning.

3. Printed glass. The look is created by printing an image directly onto the glass before affixing it to the island. If you’ve been searching for just the right tile or paint color for your island to no avail, this could be the ideal choice for you — the options are limitless.

4. Reclaimed timber. Cover up a bland or dated island with reclaimed wood boards on the diagonal for a rustic look. Framing the reclaimed wood with new, painted wood keeps the rustic island feeling current and helps it fit in well with a number of styles.

kitchen islands5. An angled shape. The custom green cement island in this contemporary home has a unique shape that catches the eye while maintaining a slim footprint. Too many details would clutter a look like this, so keep it simple with a gooseneck faucet and minimalist hardware.

6. A tree table. A custom island like this one, carved from natural tree limbs, is sure to become a focal point. The smooth edges and organic shapes are a welcome contrast to the sharp angles and crisp corners usually found in the kitchen; this table just begs to be gathered around.

7. Live-edge wood. Far simpler than the last example but no less striking, this island combines live-edge wood with a hand-carved, painted wood piece for a modern take.

8. Marble atop a barrel. Looking for an island solution that’s as easy on the wallet as it is big on creativity? This may be just the thing: Simply place a round marble piece atop a sturdy wine barrel for a nearly instant island. Just be aware that this may not be the best choice for households with children, unless you have a pro secure the barrel and marble to ensure they will not topple over.

kitchen islands9. Printed tile. Covering the base of your island with patterned tile, like the lovely damask design shown here, is a simple way to transform a ho-hum space into something unique and eye catching. Have a pretty wallpaper you’d love to use instead? Wallpaper can work beautifully, but you will need to have it covered with a sheet of clear acrylic to protect it from damage.

10. A repurposed antique. Consider shopping at the flea market for something unique;antique chests, cupboards and more can be transformed into one-of-a-kind islands. This piece, once a Tibetan altar, has found new life as the heart of this cozy kitchen.