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Kitchen Island Decor: 8 Styling Tips and Tricks

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Today I am sharing 8 styling tips for kitchen island decor that will elevate the look and feel of the hardest working room in your home, the kitchen!

I love to have a well decorated home and the kitchen is no exception. The kitchen is so hard to decorate because it needs to be a workhorse so you can adequately feed your family.

I have talked about how to decorate kitchen counters and a lot of the same concepts work for the island but in a different way. Check out my favorite ways to decorate your kitchen island below!

A kitchen with an island with a wood top, a blue large range and white counters.
Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Kitchen Island Decor

There are a few key concepts when decorating your kitchen island. You want it to be beautiful but at the same time it needs to be functional.

This is the perfect place to create a space where form meets function.

Clear the Clutter

This might be the most important tip, clear the clutter. Go through all the mail, the kids papers from school and toss what you don’t need, take care of what needs to be taken care of and clear that paper away from your island!

My family knows that if they leave something on my kitchen counters it has a life of maybe 2/3 days before I will toss it so they need to take care of it or I will.

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

I am a bit of a minimalist when it comes to my kitchen. I typically like to display items that are functional but in a pretty way.

Use Pretty Woven Baskets or Tray to Corral Items

Trays and baskets are perfect for gathering items that create a vignette. A pretty plant or vase of flowers, a candle, and maybe a fruit basket work perfectly in a tray.

What’s also great about this is that if you need to move it so you can food prep it’s all in one place and easy to move to another spot while you cook.

An island with a basket that has two books and a bowl of oranges and a vase of white flowers.
Source: Practical Perfection

Dress Up Everyday Kitchen Items

The idea here is to take your soap and lotion holder and buy something beautiful to keep them in. That cup holding all your wooden spoons, put them in a gorgeous vase instead.

Taking the functional items that you need in a kitchen and putting them in something beautiful is the perfect marriage of form and function.

A fall kitchen with white cabinets and counters and bar stools.
Source: Curated Interior

There are a ton of beautiful aspects of this kitchen but notice the pretty hand soap pump. I love the amber bottle, perfect to pair with the fall decor. The vintage look also gives it a stylish look.

Show Off Food in a Beautiful Way

It’s the kitchen so why not show off your food! Having and elevated fruit bowl or a cake stand with yummy desserts is a great way to show off your food while having it look beautiful too.

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

Add Fresh Flowers or Plants

This is a must in my kitchen. I have plants and flowers all year round. What’s great is they don’t have to be real plants and flowers, you can always go artificial and no one will know!

A cream kitchen with a double wall oven and large hood vent with a white vase of green eucalyptus on the island.
Source: Kelley Nan

Use a Pretty Vase

Whether it’s for your wooden spoons or your flowers having a stunning vase to display your items is a great way to elevate the look of your kitchen island.

A colorful kitchen with fruit on a cake plate and a blue and white pitcher with colorful flowers.
Source: Casa Watkins Living

There is a lot to love about this kitchen but please focus your attention on the gorgeous blue and white pitcher they are using as a flower vase. Not only is the vase sculptureral but it also has a gorgeous pattern.

Have a Sweet Smelling Candle Nearby

I don’t know about you but some of the things I cook in my kitchen have lingering odors. Like bacon, I cannot stand having my kitchen smell like bacon for days.

I do open a window but in the middle of winter when that is not practical I will light a sweet smelling candle and get rid of those lingering food odors.

An island with a white vase with white flowers, a green candle, and a basket holding a plant.
Source: Kelley Nan

Decorate for Holidays and Seasons

This is a big one. Change out your flowers for the seasons. Add some holiday decor for Halloween, Christmas, or Easter.

You spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking for holidays why not have a beautiful space to work in.

A fall vignette on my marble counters and a view of the breakfast nook behind.

This photo is of my kitchen in the autumn. I use a cutting board to display several fall decor items and they can easily be moved to another location if I need to the space for food prep.

A view of my coffee bar from the center of my kitchen.

In my Christmas kitchen I display lots of pops of red since it’s very black and white. Here I used a tray with fairy lights and neutral decor. Again, it can be removed easily for displaying food for a party.

Kitchen Island Decor FAQ’s

What do you decorate a kitchen island with?

You can decorate your island with anything you want! A great way to do it though is with kitchen items that you use regularly and can display in a beautiful manner.

I like to add plants or flowers as well as fruit to give a freshness and alive feel to your kitchen. Kitchens can be so cold and sterile so by adding these things you can really make your kitchen feel softer and more cozy.

Where should I put things on my kitchen island?

If you have a sink on your island then make sure you have nice-looking soap and lotion dispensers next to it. You can add a tray of decor behind the sink as well if you have the room.

If you have a range in your island then add a pretty vase to hold cooking utensils next to it for an added touch of functional decor.

If you have no sink or range then you can add decor in the center in a basket or tray or even by itself.

How do you style a kitchen island tray?

One general rule of thumb is to stick with items in odd numbers. Also, you should vary the heights of items on your tray.

A good thing to add to a tray is a plant or bouquet of flowers and a candle. A fruit bowl is also a wonderful thing to add to give your island life.

Other Kitchen Posts You Might Like:

A black and white kitchen with a wood cutting board on the island with veggies ready to be cut.
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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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