9th November 2015
The kitchen is truly the heart of the home. Not only is it a place where food is prepared, cooked and eaten but it is also a place for relaxing, socialising, helping the kids with homework or plugging in your laptop to check emails while you have your morning coffee…
Basically, everything and anything goes down in the kitchen nowadays, so your kitchen needs to be prepared! Much like a soldier going into battle, your kitchen should be armed, ready and well-stocked for any possibility…
You can spruce up your kitchen by adding new tiles or painting it a new glossy new colour which livens up even the most aged of cupboards. By opting for a lighter colour, you will create the illusion of more light and space. Alternatively you might want to add in a window which will give you more natural light, more ventilation and offers you a moment of calm in the midst of the crazy cooking process!
Perhaps you are thinking about upgrading your furniture by buying a new table and chairs. Consider where you want your guests to sit, if there is enough room for them to manoeuvre in between the chairs and the wall as there is nothing worse than people having to suck in their Christmas dinner tummy to try and un-wedge themselves from the corner and of course that it is close enough to your prep area so you can easily transition from making meals to eating them.
There are several kitchen layout options to choose from. You need to bear in mind the function of your kitchen to decide on a layout that will work best for you.
A one-walled kitchen keeps everything light and spacious, making it the perfect choice for a small property (and is indeed often found in new builds). The only problem is you are working along one straight line, which may be tricky if your food prep area is on one side of the wall and your oven at the other side.
L-shaped kitchens incorporate a peninsula in their layout. This is often a feature of smaller houses and maximises space by providing a few extra metres for chopping veggies or enough space to contain all your ingredients for baking a delicious cake!
Galley kitchens or corridor kitchens are so named as they are long and narrow with storage on opposite walls. Their name comes from the galley on a ship, train or aircraft, so you know this kitchen means business! Everything is in one place and a serious cook who wants to concentrate on their culinary masterpieces would be at home here, but they don’t offer the room to allow guests to relax in and can feel very separate from the rest of the house.
A U-shaped kitchen provides optimal space in a small kitchen and can incorporate the golden triangle rule, which allows for the fridge, oven and sink within one step of each other as these are the most used areas.
If you are falling over pots and pans every time you walk into your kitchen, you need more storage space. A peninsula or island can add storage both above and below the unit and also provide extra prep and eating space and also is a place where guests can sit and chat to you while you work.
If should be noted that you should probably leave around 3 ½ feet in between the island at any other obstacles (cabinets, drawers, appliances, etc) so that doors can open and you can walk by safely and easily. Also, islands don’t close areas off like peninsulas sometimes do, which may be a nuisance if you have to walk round them when entering / leaving a room - you don’t want to feel trapped in your own kitchen!
Speaking of obstructions, do away with any doors if you can, this makes navigating the house with a hot pan of soup, your meal or numerous bags of shopping ten times easier and more efficient.
Finally, we can’t make an article about layout without talking about organisation. It goes without saying that your knife block should be next to your prep area and your cupboards with plates next to the sink for easy tidying. It may take a little planning, but you can make your kitchen work for you!
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