I’ve just been visiting a new house that a friend is buying -she wanted some ideas on how to plan the kitchen as its a bit of a strange shape. Also, the space is on two levels with awkward corners which makes it difficult to fit cabinets. It will need a lot of creative thought to come up with a good solution!
It got me thinking about the most important principles of kitchen design and here are my top tips:
1. Choose a simple classic design that won’t date. A kitchen is a big investment-glossy, neon coloured cabinets are popular now but I doubt they will still be in vogue when you come to sell in five years time. Also, you are more likely to tire of a design which is too off the wall.
2. Consider the style of the property and decoration of adjacent rooms- even if you yearn for a very modern, minimalist kitchen it will look odd if the living area next to it is more traditional. Your existing possessions will also need to fit in with the new design unless you are planning on changing all your kitchen accessories
3. Decide on whether you want a fitted or unfitted kitchen. Unfitted kitchens suit older properties but are not considered as practical
4. If you are on a tight budget choose cheap cabinets and add wow-factor with accessories, i.e. good quality wooden worktops, glass splash backs, bespoke handles
5. Go for low maintenance materials and styles, which are easy to clean and don’t collect dust. Freestanding kitchens require greater maintenance than fitted.
6. Carefully research the pros and cons of worktop materials before making a final choice and match the worktop sample to an actual cupboard door to make sure that the colours look good together. (Don’t just rely on photos of your cupboard doors)
7. Its important to get the lighting right in a kitchen. Types of lighting can be split into:Task- usually concealed under eye level cabinets. General-usually provided by ceiling spotlights. Accent- provided by spotlights if you want to highlight a particular design feature.
8. If you have decided on a fitted kitchen, it looks better if the appliances are concealed in cupboards so that the whole area looks streamlined and its easier to keep clean as there are no gaps where dust collects. (unless you have a lovely Smeg fridge!)
9.Most efficient layout of the 3 main appliances in the kitchen, the fridge, cooker/hob, and sink is within an imaginary triangle -see diagram below
10. Last but not least, it is worth splashing out on a good kitchen fitter as a cheap kitchen will look much more expensive if fitted properly!