If you’re thinking of reorganising or remodelling your kitchen, then the first decision is getting the layout right. Most kitchen layouts rely on the work triangle between the sink, the cooking area and the refrigerator. That being said, modern kitchen design is all about workflow, and keeping the route between your preparation area, your cooking area and your clean up area direct and uncluttered. Today’s kitchens are all about work zones and utilising space in the most efficient way.
Whether your taste in kitchen styles is traditional or contemporary, the first decision you need to make is how you’ll optimise the available space based on the way you typically use it. Will only one cook be using the kitchen? Do you typically gather around the kitchen table as a family or do you entertain regularly? All those decisions will impact on the style of layout you choose.
Typically, kitchen cabinets are arranged in a galley configuration for small and lean kitchens, an L shape for medium spaces or a horseshoe configuration for a large kitchen/diner. The clever addition of a peninsula island can add more worktop space to an L-shaped layout. Kitchen islands are enduringly popular but be careful that you have enough clearance space to place one at the centre of your kitchen.
Try and keep a sense of proportion when choosing your appliances. You might have fallen in love with that huge American-style fridge but if it sticks out into the room and overwhelms the other appliances, you may need to find something smaller. Floor to ceiling storage cupboards are increasingly popular in kitchen layouts, giving you plenty of space to store small appliances, leaving your worktops sleek and uncluttered. Finally, whatever layout you decide on, ensure there’s a clear electrical map and adequate sockets for built-in and small appliances where you need them.
Organise storage where it’s most useful: for example, with large pan drawers underneath your built-in hob and clever cupboard storage for mixing bowls plus a hidden drawer for peelers, graters and other utensils in your preparation zone. Being clear on your kitchen work zones will help you to organise storage and provide at least three feet of clear and uninterrupted worktop above for preparation.
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to designing your dream kitchen, and any good kitchen designer will help you to accommodate your ideal choice of cabinets and appliances. Pay attention to your work zones and the balance between storage and preparation and you’ll create a kitchen style that works perfectly for you.