Pros: Laminate is at the low end of the price range for countertops, is scratch- and stain-resistant, and comes in a tremendous range of colors. It’s also easy to install, making it a viable DIY option for the handy crowd. 

Cons: Because laminate countertops are created by layering pieces of plywood and plastic, edges can chip off easily, and the surface can even melt if too much heat is applied directly.
Pros: Laminate is at the low end of the price range for countertops, is scratch- and stain-resistant, and comes in a tremendous range of colors. It’s also easy to install, making it a viable DIY option for the handy crowd. Cons: Because laminate countertops are created by layering pieces of plywood and plastic, edges can chip off easily, and the surface can even melt if too much heat is applied directly.
The entire kitchen wall by Lignum Cabinets is made from laminates and features functional peg board-like shelving above the sink, allowing it to be customized to the homeowner's needs.
The entire kitchen wall by Lignum Cabinets is made from laminates and features functional peg board-like shelving above the sink, allowing it to be customized to the homeowner's needs.
A green laminate countertop by Abet Laminati is surrounded by Norman Foster’s Emeco 20-06 counter stools at the island in the kitchen, which has an integrated Frigidaire induction range, Faber Cylindra Isola range hood, Blomberg dishwasher, Fisher & Paykel fridge, and flat-grain fir plywood cabinets by Portland craftsman Doug Chamblin.
A green laminate countertop by Abet Laminati is surrounded by Norman Foster’s Emeco 20-06 counter stools at the island in the kitchen, which has an integrated Frigidaire induction range, Faber Cylindra Isola range hood, Blomberg dishwasher, Fisher & Paykel fridge, and flat-grain fir plywood cabinets by Portland craftsman Doug Chamblin.
The design of this Australian houseboat features a soft, modern color palette. Here, light sage laminate kitchen cabinets are paired with leather recessed pulls.
The design of this Australian houseboat features a soft, modern color palette. Here, light sage laminate kitchen cabinets are paired with leather recessed pulls.
The budget was nearly as tight as the space in this cheerful renovation of a 516-square-foot flat in Bratislava. The centerpiece of Lukáš Kordík’s new kitchen is the cabinetry surrounding the sink, a feat he managed by altering the facing and pulls of an off-the-rack Ikea system. The laminate offers a good punch of blue, and in modernist fashion, Kordík forwent door handles in favor of cutouts. “I wanted the kitchen to be one simple block of color without any additional design,” he says.
The budget was nearly as tight as the space in this cheerful renovation of a 516-square-foot flat in Bratislava. The centerpiece of Lukáš Kordík’s new kitchen is the cabinetry surrounding the sink, a feat he managed by altering the facing and pulls of an off-the-rack Ikea system. The laminate offers a good punch of blue, and in modernist fashion, Kordík forwent door handles in favor of cutouts. “I wanted the kitchen to be one simple block of color without any additional design,” he says.
The kitchen was the only room to get a full renovation, so Dine invested in a sleek Bulthaup b3 kitchen system designed by Chris Tosdevin of Bulthaup’s Santa Monica, California, showroom. The stainless-steel workspace and slate-gray laminate countertop and cabinets jibe with the house’s minimalist aesthetic while affording a nice contrast with the overriding whiteness. Perhaps more importantly, though, the hardworking dark surfaces hide dirt and wear far better than lighter hues.
The kitchen was the only room to get a full renovation, so Dine invested in a sleek Bulthaup b3 kitchen system designed by Chris Tosdevin of Bulthaup’s Santa Monica, California, showroom. The stainless-steel workspace and slate-gray laminate countertop and cabinets jibe with the house’s minimalist aesthetic while affording a nice contrast with the overriding whiteness. Perhaps more importantly, though, the hardworking dark surfaces hide dirt and wear far better than lighter hues.
Architect Nahoko Ueda and the homeowners chose a Space Theory kitchen with a combination of white laminate and walnut cabinetry.
Architect Nahoko Ueda and the homeowners chose a Space Theory kitchen with a combination of white laminate and walnut cabinetry.
Competing grains of laminated pine panels enliven the stairs.
Competing grains of laminated pine panels enliven the stairs.
Laminated-MDF cabinetry helps to hide clutter in the kitchen.
Laminated-MDF cabinetry helps to hide clutter in the kitchen.
A narrow spice rack pulls out from the cabinetry and offers efficient storage in the kitchen.
A narrow spice rack pulls out from the cabinetry and offers efficient storage in the kitchen.
The building is kept low to the ground, so you can step directly from the house into the garden.
The building is kept low to the ground, so you can step directly from the house into the garden.
This remodeled kitchen features Silestone countertops and backsplashes paired wood cabinetry with laminates.
This remodeled kitchen features Silestone countertops and backsplashes paired wood cabinetry with laminates.
This light, airy, state-of-the-art kitchen sits at the front of the home, looking into the living area. Gaggenau appliances pair with a dramatic, stainless-steel oven hood. A bright yellow wall sculpture by Brad Howe channels the sun, adding visual interest, while white Corian countertops keeps the space feeling sleek.
This light, airy, state-of-the-art kitchen sits at the front of the home, looking into the living area. Gaggenau appliances pair with a dramatic, stainless-steel oven hood. A bright yellow wall sculpture by Brad Howe channels the sun, adding visual interest, while white Corian countertops keeps the space feeling sleek.
Cubicco’s prefab houses, like the Cabana Beach model, are built with laminated veneer lumber, an engineered material that uses up to 90 percent of a tree—compared to typical wood timbers that use only 60 to 70 percent. Modules can be disassembled if the owners relocate.
Cubicco’s prefab houses, like the Cabana Beach model, are built with laminated veneer lumber, an engineered material that uses up to 90 percent of a tree—compared to typical wood timbers that use only 60 to 70 percent. Modules can be disassembled if the owners relocate.
The first phase of the project involved opening up the kitchen to the living spaces, and connecting the rooms.
The first phase of the project involved opening up the kitchen to the living spaces, and connecting the rooms.
Laminated tongue-and-groove decking by Lock-Deck was used for the second-level floor. The durable material is sturdy enough to span long distances without joists, maximizing headroom in the first-floor living room.
Laminated tongue-and-groove decking by Lock-Deck was used for the second-level floor. The durable material is sturdy enough to span long distances without joists, maximizing headroom in the first-floor living room.
White laminate cabinets are the perfect solution to keep costs down for the small, open kitchen in this Madrid apartment.
White laminate cabinets are the perfect solution to keep costs down for the small, open kitchen in this Madrid apartment.
Natalie and Lauren opted for high-quality finishes to ensure the kitchen would stand up to many years of use.
Natalie and Lauren opted for high-quality finishes to ensure the kitchen would stand up to many years of use.
Windows upstairs offer views of the woods that can be seen from the beds.
Windows upstairs offer views of the woods that can be seen from the beds.
The kitchen displays cabinetry painted a shade of deep green accented by rose-gold hardware. The couple sourced the cabinetry for free from an ad on Craigslist. Beyond, a sliding barn door ($80) leads to the bathroom.
The kitchen displays cabinetry painted a shade of deep green accented by rose-gold hardware. The couple sourced the cabinetry for free from an ad on Craigslist. Beyond, a sliding barn door ($80) leads to the bathroom.
The kitchen appliances are by Mora and the sink is by Franke.
The kitchen appliances are by Mora and the sink is by Franke.
A kitchen, complete with a small dining area, allows guests to reverse roles and host the hosts. The blue Muuto Unfold light accents against the otherwise black and white space; the chairs are Hay Copenhague bar stools.
A kitchen, complete with a small dining area, allows guests to reverse roles and host the hosts. The blue Muuto Unfold light accents against the otherwise black and white space; the chairs are Hay Copenhague bar stools.
"Imbuia wood has a rich texture that contrasts with the floor and gives character to the surroundings," adds the firm.
"Imbuia wood has a rich texture that contrasts with the floor and gives character to the surroundings," adds the firm.
The birch cooler has details such as genuine leather handles and dovetail joinery.
The birch cooler has details such as genuine leather handles and dovetail joinery.
A folding bench chair pulls out to be extra table seating — though the table itself is mobile, too, able to be shifted to a second wall mount to act as a work space when Kyle craves a change of scenery.
A folding bench chair pulls out to be extra table seating — though the table itself is mobile, too, able to be shifted to a second wall mount to act as a work space when Kyle craves a change of scenery.
The kitchen maintains all its original midcentury charm.
The kitchen maintains all its original midcentury charm.
The dining table is paired with N01 dining chairs by Nendo for Fritz Hansen. The chairs are assembled from 23 wooden pieces.
The dining table is paired with N01 dining chairs by Nendo for Fritz Hansen. The chairs are assembled from 23 wooden pieces.
For now, the second sleeping loft functions as a closet.
For now, the second sleeping loft functions as a closet.
The kitchen features a Trinity Tile backsplash as well as Formica plastic laminate counters and cabinets.
The kitchen features a Trinity Tile backsplash as well as Formica plastic laminate counters and cabinets.
Polished concrete floors provides beneficial thermal mass in wintertime.
Polished concrete floors provides beneficial thermal mass in wintertime.
Charrier chose not to use upper cabinets to give the kitchen a versatile, furniture-like feeling. The black-painted wood island is topped with compact laminate countertops.
Charrier chose not to use upper cabinets to give the kitchen a versatile, furniture-like feeling. The black-painted wood island is topped with compact laminate countertops.
“The clients desired a maintenance-free, year-round home using the ultimate in ‘green’ building methodologies,” Mulvena says. The staircase is an example of the construction’s mindset: it is made from the leftover laminated veneer lumber used on the roof.
“The clients desired a maintenance-free, year-round home using the ultimate in ‘green’ building methodologies,” Mulvena says. The staircase is an example of the construction’s mindset: it is made from the leftover laminated veneer lumber used on the roof.

3,416 more photos