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How to Decorate Kitchen Counters

Kitchens are the heart of the home and today I will share tons of ideas and tips on how to decorate kitchen counters to make the beautiful and functional.

We spend a lot of time in the kitchen so it should be a place that we find beautiful as well as functional. I am a bit of a minimalist in my kitchen. I like to keep the clutter to a minimum so I have tons of room to spread out when I cook.

That doesn’t mean I don’t want it to be beautiful too. I just want to have a fashionable as well as functional space. Today I am going to share all my methods to create this type of space in your home.

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How to decorate kitchen counters to keep them fashionable and functional.

There are a ton of ways to have a pretty kitchen as well as a good functioning one.

Clear the Clutter

Step one is to clear off all the countertops. Wipe everything down, clean out everything (especially that toaster).

Now you have to decide what you actually have to have on the counters. What do you use every single day and is that item easily stashed inside a cabinet.

Do you have any heavy items that cannot be moved easily inside and out of a cabinet? Those items should have a home on the counter but only if you use them often.

For me, that’s my KitchenAid mixer. I use it often and it’s way too heavy for me to move around a lot. So I allow it to have real estate on my counters.

A wide view of a kiitchen with white cabinets, stainless appliances, black barstools and light hardwood floors.

Use a Tray or Basket to Create a Station

If you have items you want to have on your counter try arranging them in a tray or basket. When you do this you trick the eye into thinking that those items are just one item.

Coffee Station

One station that I think lots of people create is a coffee station. Make sure whatever type of coffee maker/espresso machine you use is pleasing to the eye.

I had an old coffee maker I recently replaced and it made a world of difference in the look of my kitchen.

Have a beautiful canister of coffee and whatever else you use corralled in a gorgeous basket or tray. It makes these everyday items easily accessible when you make coffee but also pleasing to the eye.

My coffee bar with a ceramic white pumpkin, a candle with greenery around it and on the bottom shelf is a wooden box with a fall garland and candles in it.

Cooking Station

When I say cooking station I mean items that you use often while cooking. Some examples of things I use often are spatulas, olive oil, and salt and pepper.

Get a creative vessel to hold utensils. Use a decorative pot or vase to hold all your wooden spoons. You don’t have to find something in the cooking aisle you can expand your search to other areas and find something unique.

Add Some Color

I love to change up my decor in my kitchen depending on the season or holiday. I love to add pops of red at Christmas and autumn colors in the fall.

In the spring I love to add pastel colors and in the summer tons of lemons. Not only do these colors add to the look of the space but if you add natural items like fresh flowers and real lemons you will add a wonderful smell.

A vase with pink peonies, a salt and pepper shaker with a round cuttingboard behind them against a white subway tile backsplash.

Add Warmth With Natural Textures

Texture is a tricky term, it can be something that has a different feel to it but also something that has a different look.

In a kitchen, you have lots of hard surfaces that can feel very cold. It’s a really good idea to add warm touches that will keep the room from feeling too sterile.

I love to add warmth with wood. Creating vignettes or stations with a wood tray is one way. Adding an elevated cake plate is another.

Cutting boards are a perfect way to add texture as well as function. Not only do they add warmth to the space but you can use them to cut up your food!

A wood tray with an olive oil dispenser, a whtie vase with wooden spoons and a plant.
Source: Stone Gable Blog

Bring in Nature

I love to take cues from nature to decorate my home. So depending on the season I add items you would see out in nature.

Plants are a great way to bring in nature and the added touch of green brings in some color.

Flowers are another way to bring in nature and my favorite way is to use pitchers to display flowers. It’s something different and adds an element of fun.

Depending on the light of your kitchen you might have a hard time with certain plants you add to your kitchen. There is nothing wrong with adding faux flowers and plants if you need them.

I cannot grow succulents in my home because I have so many trees that I don’t get a lot of light in the summer months when there are leaves on them. So for a time, I used faux succulents and no one was the wiser.

A vignette with a pitcher of hydrangea flowers, two stuffed birds and a candle on a cutting board on my kitchen counter with the breakfast nook in the background.

Dress Up Kitchen Items

There are certain items that everyone needs in their kitchen and use many times a day. Make sure those items are pretty.

I am speaking of things like soap and lotion dispensers or a scrub brush. Don’t use the plastic container that you bought it in at the store. Get something decorative that you like to look at.

Bring the form to the functional item.

A view of a sink with whtie cabinets, marble counters, stainless faucet and large windows above.

Show Off Food in a Beautiful Way

It is a kitchen so show off that amazing food you make! Get an elevated fruit bowl or a cake stand to show off those yummy desserts.

Get a gorgeous charcuterie board that you can use over and over. It’s worth the investment.

Bring that form and marry it with the function.

A stovetop with a gray dutch oven, a white pedestal bowl with green apples and a vase with pink flowers.
Source: The Turquoise Home

Elevate Your Kitchen Counters with Open Shelving

Open shelving has become increasingly popular. It’s a great way to display the items you use every day in a beautiful manner.

I like to style these shelves with stacked plates and bowls, drinking glasses in orderly rows, and I also like to add a touch of nature to them in the form of plants and flowers.

This is also a great place to add a bit of color. I like to see colorful bowls stacked or lined up.

Add artwork, cutting boards, or beautiful cookbooks

Accessorizing a kitchen might seem silly but it’s a great way to add beauty and style.

I like to see decorative artwork or cutting boards leaning up against the backsplash. You can even create a vignette by adding a bowl of fruit in front of them.

I also like to use cookbooks either leaning against the backsplash, stacked in a corner, or upright in a grouping. This keeps your favorite recipes close at hand while adding beauty to your space.

White marble counters with a KitchenAid mixer, white subway tile backsplash and a cutting board, candle and plant in front of it.

Pretty Dish Towels

Dish towels are a great way to add texture to your kitchen while also being a functional item.

I love any towel with a tassel and I think they look so pretty in a kitchen. You don’t have to have all pretty dish towels, I have several that are my more functional towels that I use more regularly.

To have a few that will dress up your kitchen is a great idea.

Additional Tips on How to Decorate Kitchen Counters

  • Keep your counters (and sink) clean.
  • Make your decor minimal so you have room for food prep.
  • Pretty stuff should also be functional (such as beautiful pots and pans).
  • Show off food, it is a kitchen.

Frequently Asked Questions on Kitchen Counter Decor

What should you put on your kitchen counters?

Greenery such as plants or herbs is great to have in the kitchen. Flowers are a great addition too.

Cutting boards are always good to have on the counters so they are close by when you need them. And they add texture and a touch of warmth to a utilitarian space.

Pretty dish towels or beautiful cookbooks are great to display.

Display that gorgeous food you create!

How can I decorate my kitchen countertop without clutter?

It’s important to keep the clutter in the kitchen to a minimum. Here are some ways to do that:

  • purge what you don’t need
  • only keep on the counters things that are pretty but also functional
  • keep the food prep space clear so you don’t have to move stuff all the time when you cook

What should not be placed on kitchen counters?

This is very subjective but one thing I never put on my counters is a block of knives. As a Real Estate Agent showing homes, they can be used as a weapon so I always tell my clients to keep them put away and it’s just something I have grown accustomed to.

Tupperware-type storage containers are another thing that shouldn’t be on the counter. They are often not that pretty so they should be in the fridge or in a pantry.

Other kitchen posts you might like:

A white kitchen with text overlay pin for Pinterest.

As a licensed Real Estate Agent and an avid home decorator, I strive to give my clients the very best I can when it comes to staging, selling, and decorating their homes. I have lots of experience with paint color choices and love to DIY my home so I can have everything just the way I want it. I share my ideas and projects with the world in the hopes that I can help others have their homes just the way they want as well.

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