Once functional utility spaces that were hidden away, kitchens, have now become the heart of so many of our homes.
While it is essential it retains its functionality, a kitchen needs to be beautifully designed and carefully thought through. Regardless of whether it’s being a show-piece or the family hub of the home – you need to plan it properly as it is very easy, with so much choice of fittings, taps, gadgets, doors, worktops, etc. for costs to quickly accumulate. To help, here are some practical insights into what to look out for.
1. Avoid ‘free’ design services – Why?
These services are not free, they earn their money by selling you as many kitchen units and appliances as possible. They generally don’t even visit your house so they fail to understand the practical functionality of your kitchen and this tends to be the reason why you end up spending so much money! An independent professional architect will design a kitchen that is right for you, your home, and your budget. They will also help you find the right people to build and install the kitchen, giving you the best and most cost-effective result.
2. The layout is key.
Whether you’re wanting to add value to your property, or truly make the kitchen the heart of your home, the layout is key. It’s crucial to think through the circulation and look at how people will move to and from, around and within the kitchen space. Perhaps think about a kitchen island or a peninsular but getting the size right is crucial. When guests come round – they generally know to stay to one side of the island, letting you prepare food and still chat without them being in the way. This can not only help with the circulation but can also make an open plan area more comfortable by defining the ‘kitchen zone’ from other zones.
When it comes to appliances and utensils, work out what you will regularly use, and stick to your guns! Kitchen companies love to sell you a gadget, but it always appears that the new ‘latest thing’ is always that one object that ends up being obsolete or fades with time. In order to keep your kitchen (and wallet) clean and simple – avoid clutter and pointless utensils.
3. Make sure it’s right for you!
And finally, my last piece of advice is to make sure it’s right for you! You need to question how the kitchen works, and if it’s right for you. Whether the style is very minimal, contemporary, or classic, the principles of functionality, circulations, and arrangements need to work effectively for you. Too often people are seduced by a particular style and wrongly think that this will be the key to a great kitchen so make sure you sit down with your architect and draw up the plans together in a design visit.
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