Kitchen Design Planning Tips
There many things to consider when you start your project of kitchen design renovation. Below are some of the most important things to remember when taking on such a large project.
The biggest thing to remember when you first start planning your new kitchen design is function. To eliminate wasted steps is crucial. If not planned correctly you may find yourself crossing the kitchen multiple times because things are not laid out correctly and things are never quite where you need them to be. Think about how your family uses the space. The layout should be designed around the traffic pattern of typical use. Providing wide walkways is ideal for not making your kitchen feel cramped. When you provide and plan for wider walkways, you open up the design. Another important thing to think about is outlet placements. Placing them along the back splash or on the island is good so you will have electricity where you need it.
This is very important when designing a kitchen. Getting help from a kitchen designer, such as we have here at Kitchen Cabinet Worx, can mean simple tips and tricks to make a lower budget look like a high budget. With a smaller budget or if money is tight, prioritize what is most important to you. Keeping the stove and sink in the same location will cut down on cost in plumbing, demolitions, drywall and flooring expense as it is very expensive to move. Investing in key pieces is an important thing as the you can save in other areas. Research different materials for counter tops and see how you can achieve the same look for less. Another way to cut cost is choosing less expensive hardware without sacrificing the look you want.
It is pertinent to be able to have enough room to open and close the cabinets and appliances without scratches or injuries. To ensure you have enough space, walk around the door and corners to get a feel of the current size. It is wise to keep the appliances away from corners. Make sure the doors open in a functional way as to not bang into one another.
Making Room for Storage
This is the biggest mistake people make in the planning stage. You should use every nook and cranny. One idea is to use tall overhead cabinets that go to the ceiling. It helps, also, to cut down on cleaning and dust collection. Deep drawers for pots and pans are also good to make access to them easier. Consider storage for appliances that take up precious counter space.
One of our own kitchen designers can help you determine exactly how much space you need. For example, a busy cook needs ample counter space. There needs to be at least 15 inches around the cook top, sink and refrigerator.
One of the most popular materials to use is quartz. It is man-made and the manufacturers have managed to capture the look of natural stone without all the maintenance. Quartz is a non-porous surface made from resin and quartz.
Natural stone is still in demand. Fabricators now offer a lifetime sealant for granite counter tops. It is applied before your counter tops are installed. They also use a soapy sponge to apply.
Other natural stone choices are: Marble, Slate and Soapstone. There is also a renewed interest in maple butcher blocks. It adds warmth and beauty to the kitchen and I also functional and practical.
Design of the Island
Islands are so popular that it is hard to imagine a kitchen without one. Times have changed from having a basic island. Now some popular things that can be included in the island are: refrigerators, storage, sinks and cook tops. Really, the sky is the limit. It is all about what is right for you and your family based on your needs for your kitchen.
Islands have become the central social spot in the kitchen. People congregate there to help prepare meals, eat, do homework and socialize in general.
The island can be designed as a separate piece of furniture. What is popular is having a different color on the island, that is different from the cabinets. It gives it its own unique style. You can even use different door styles and finishes as well.
This is important as it not only protects the wall from water and food damage, but it also ties the whole kitchen together. It is practical, yet aesthetically pleasing to the eye. You should pick this along with the counter tops as you want them to complement each other.
For adults, 15 inches, about counter top level is a good microwave height for adults. For children, below the counter top may be safer and more suitable.
Think about the Shorter People
A good idea is to put kid’s favorite dishes and snack food on shelves where they can reach.
There seems to be never enough lighting in the kitchen. Under cabinet lights are nice because they shine on the counter tops. Lighting needs to be positioned to fall in front of you, not behind you as this causes a shadow. Above lighting creates ambiance. Dimmers are also a good thing to have to adjust the lighting in the room.
Filling Big Pots for Cooking
A swing out tap near the cook top that fills up pots where you heat them is such a practical and great idea. Another option is to install an extra long hose attachment on the main faucet that can reach near the cook top so you can fill up your pot close to where you are cooking.
A working triangle is a triangle between the refrigerator, stove and sink. Below are several examples based on the shape of your kitchen.
If there was only one tip I could give you about choosing flooring it is this; avoid stone or ceramic floors. Not only will a plate shatter in seconds if it is dropped, but it can also hurt your back to be on such a hard floor, especially if you are in the kitchen cooking a lot.
Glass doors on cabinets, fancy range hoods that are wood or metal can really attract the eye. An elaborate island or back splash can be a good focal point as well. The reason to have a focal point is to create uniqueness and keep it interesting. You only need to pick one, though. Too much bling in the kitchen can create too much eye stimulation.
Paint Colors and Use of Color
Wall color is an important choice in the overall look of the kitchen. If you use a darker color it makes the space look less inviting. The dark color will shrink the look of the room size in already small spaces. Soft shades on cabinets and natural light is good to visually expand the room. For example, doing a beachy, coastal look, using white, gray and blue can make the space feel light and airy. You also can use brighter colors if the overall look of the kitchen is not overstimulating.
In summary, I have touched on many key points to think about before and during a kitchen renovation. Of course, there are more things that I didn’t discuss that are important as well. Use this list as a starting point to go from and don’t get too overwhelmed. This is supposed to be a fun project! Best wishes designing the kitchen of your dreams.