Your kitchen is much more than just a place to cook. A kitchen is where relationships are developed and solidified, family members touch base, new friendships are made, and love is expressed through careful preparation of food.
Kitchen design can make the time you spend there delightful or frustrating. There are a few essential design rules to increase efficiency and enjoyment of your kitchen space.
Your kitchen must be functional. You need enough counter space to accomplish the most common tasks like chopping, dicing, grating, cutting, mixing, rolling and blending.
If you like to have company while you cook, a large central counter would be best. If all you do is warm your meals in a microwave, you may not need as much counter space. Customize to fit your individual needs.
One of the most important rules in the kitchen is to have sufficient lighting. Consider lights above the counters, under the counters and a central one in the middle of the kitchen.
The lighting will create the mood in your kitchen. It is advised that you have alternative lighting for day and night. While you are cooking, you need it to be illuminated well, and then during the meal, the lights can be dimmed a little.
Your time spent in the kitchen will be more enjoyable if you plan the traffic patterns well. Daily meal preparation should be simple and effortless without walking long distances. Visualize what tasks are involved in your usual preparation routine and then plan your kitchen layout.
There are four main kitchen layouts to choose from.
- Island Style
The L-shaped kitchen usually gives enough counter space with plenty of storage areas. It also minimizes the walking distances between the sink, refrigerator and stove.
You can use one corner of your kitchen for the dining table and chairs. It is suggested that you use cabinets that reach to the ceiling, where you can store seasonal or seldom-used items.
Try to allow as much natural light as possible to penetrate the kitchen.
A U-shaped kitchen can provide the ideal layout with an efficient working triangle. The distance between the fridge, stove and sink should not be more than 25 feet, but not less than ten feet. With the U-shaped kitchen, those three elements are divided properly and increase space needed for storage and cooking.
Galley or Parallel Kitchen
A galley or parallel kitchen is long and narrow like the galley of a ship or airplane. They usually have a sink/counter on one side and the fridge, oven and stove on the other side with a walking aisle in between. This set-up can be great if you cook alone, but not suitable for several cooks at once.
Island-style kitchens are those where the island is used not onlly for food preparation, but also for dining and storage.
These kitchens are usually larger than normal, with adequate space in the middle for the island. Islands can be fixed or portable.
For smaller areas, a folding island can also be used.
Design Your Dream Kitchen
You can create the kitchen of your dreams by considering your lifestyle and also utilizing the basic rules of kitchen design:
- Traffic Pattern