You love your custom kitchen cabinets and your coordinating tile floor, but let's face it -- the dishwasher planted smack in the middle of it interrupts the flow. Whether you have a semi-integrated dishwasher with its controls on the outside of the door or a fully integrated dishwasher with its controls on the inside, there are solutions for hiding both. Here are some clever ways to make your dishwasher disappear into your kitchen décor.
Appliance paint is the least expensive way to make your dishwasher blend into your kitchen cabinetry, but it's also tricky to do well. The key is to make sure you first apply a primer that works to bond with the existing surface. This will give you a nice, smooth surface to work with. Appliance paint is available in many different colors to help blend in with cabinetry, or you can opt for stainless steel to match other high-end appliances.
Another low-cost option is to get a readymade panel that fits your dishwasher door. These panels come in a variety of stock sizes to fit a wide array of dishwasher models and they're available in typical kitchen colors like white, black, almond, bisque and, of course, stainless steel. This is a great way to visually upgrade a less expensive model of dishwasher.
If you're lucky, your dishwasher will fit under your counter and behind your existing cabinets without having to do any fancy framing. The tricky part about this is that the dimensions of the dishwasher have to fit the size of your existing cabinets. A situation where this might work is when you're replacing your cabinets or your dishwasher and can choose models and styles that work in tandem.
If you can't find a stock panel to cover up your dishwasher front that meshes well with your kitchen, you can always try to make your own out of cabinet doors that coordinate with your existing cabinets and attach it to your dishwasher front. You may only want to attempt this if you have some carpentry skills, because you'll have to fill in the gaps around the cabinet doors with coordinating woodwork. If you lack the particular DIY skills, find a local handyman or cabinetmaker to do the job for you. If you shop around, you can probably find a good deal.
Custom cabinets are the most expensive of all the options, but if you have a little room to splurge, or you're trying to outfit a high-end kitchen, you'll probably be happiest with the results. A woodworker can help you design a solution that will blend right in with your existing cabinetry. A great option is to style a single door that looks like a pair of cabinets but opens as one piece.
HowStuffWorks shows you how to organize your fridge and which food to put on the top, middle and bottom shelves and in the fridge door.
- "Dishwashers for consumers." Energystar.gov. September 22, 2011.http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=find_a_product.showProductGroup&pgw_code=DW
- "How to hide your fridge and dishwasher." Hollywoodbathrooms.com.au. August 18, 2011.http://www.hollywoodbathrooms.com.au/articles/kitchen-renovations/how-to-hide-your-fridge-and-dishwasher/
- Lepisto, Christine. "Dishwasher vs Handwashing: the Winner." Treehugger.com. August 13, 2005. http://www.treehugger.com/files/2005/08/dishwasher_vs_h.php