Planning your new kitchen can be a huge, but very rewarding task. There are plenty of elements you need to consider at every stage. One of the first things you’ll have to do will be to plan the general layout of the kitchen. As one of the most useful rooms in the house it’s very important to get this base stage right, or you’ll risk lots of frustration and inconvenience in the future.
1. Consider the Kitchen Triangle
When you’re planning your kitchen you will probably hear experts refer to the sink, oven and fridge as the ‘kitchen triangle’. This is because it’s the area of greatest activity that requires careful planning and unobstructed access. Out of the three, the sink typically sees the most activity and it should have easy access to the hob and to the fridge, as well as your counter top workstations.
Obviously, your sink needs to be in a place which can allow for plumbing. Sometimes, however, because of the placement of the pipes, kitchens are designed with the sinks in a poor location. If this is the case in your kitchen, consider hiring a plumber to relocate the plumbing to give you a few more options with the layout.
The total of all the lines in your kitchen triangle should not be less than 2.5m or greater than about 7.5m. If the work triangle is too small, people will be tripping over each other; if it’s too large, food preparation will get awfully tiring.
2. Optimise Storage Space
Kitchen storage is one of the most important storage considerations in your own. Generally, people have a lot of things they need to keep in their kitchens and each one of those things will need somewhere to be kept.
This is more tricky than other rooms in the house as items you might want to keep in the kitchen – think food processors or large pots and pans – can be very large an awkwardly shaped . Finding a home for your appliances while keeping them easily accessible can be a real task.
Built-ins can be expensive and the overall size of the storage area may be limited. One very common design mistake is not including enough storage. Almost every kitchen is guilty of wasting space. This can be minimised with adequate planning and forethought.
If your kitchen is small, consider installing extra-long upper cabinets with moulding for extra storage space. Always install cabinets over the refrigerator. Not utilising this area is a waste of storage space for large or less often used kitchen items. Finally, install shelves across the backs of the lower kitchen cabinet. This could add up to 4 square feet of storage space.
3. Never Too Much Counter Space
Planning counter space can be difficult if you’ve not designed a kitchen before. As a general rule, you probably need more of it than you think you do. Considering all the kitchen activities that require a countertop, as well as appliances that will live there permanently. Think about maximising kitchen countertop space by adding an island or breakfast bar to an L-shaped kitchen.
4. Ventilate Your Space
Your new kitchen is going to be a haven of cooking smells, steaming kettles and burning toast. Think, have you ever walked into someone’s home and smelled last night’s fish lingering in the air? You probably didn’t remember much else about their kitchen. Bad smells can steal the show and condensation can cause lots of problems down the line.
Always have a cooker hood above your hob. This is an easy way improve the quality of your indoor air and also help keep your kitchen cleaner. It also helps to extend the life of your appliances.
Although it can be a substantial investment, a good ventilation system will make life easier and more pleasant, especially if your kitchen opens to a living area or family room.
5. Don’t Forget Your Recycling!
As recycling has become more prevalent, planning your rubbish disposal in a kitchen is no longer just space for a pedal bin. You’ll save yourself a lot of time down the line – as well as making recycling more commonplace for the whole family – by incorporating a space for sorting rubbish in your kitchen.