Kitchen Layout and Design.

The Art of Kitchen Design and Layout.

Since the layout is the first step in kitchen design, this article will not go into the features or finishes.

With a new build, the position of the kitchen relative to the rest of the house is already contemporary, however a kitchen refurbishment in an old dwelling has more to consider. Often, I find that since you will be spending a substantial amount of money you will want to consider:

  • whether additional alterations will enhance the flow and function of the greater home
  • whether the present kitchen is connected to the rest of the house and functions as part of the whole

We recommend consulting an interior spatial designer to look at the flow and function of the house when considering any improvements or add-on rooms. They will get an immediate feel for what is working and what is not. We have often repositioned the kitchen in the house if this enhancement adds substantial extra benefits and value to the home. At the least, an entirely closed off kitchen may benefit by removing one wall or part thereof creating an open plan counter to the adjoining rooms.

Now let us consider the various layouts of the actual kitchen area:

  • The L shape:
  • The U shape:
  • The Peninsula:
  • The Single Wall:
  • The Gallery
  • The Island

The L-shaped Kitchen Layout:

An efficient and practical layout suitable for small and large spaces. Easy to incorporate the workflow triangle. Open plan L-shaped kitchens work well for incorporating seating areas and are ideal for entertaining guests.

The U-shaped Layout:

Consists of cabinetry on three adjacent walls and provides ample work surface and storage. The challenge can be to ensure the workspaces are close enough to be efficient.

Consider open shelving to break up cabinets and glass doors with lighting inside to break up wall cabinets.

The Peninsula Kitchen Layout:

A type of Island layout except that the island is connected to either the wall or to cabinets. It adds additional storage and workspace. It offers a great space for entertainment in the kitchen as well.

The Single Wall Layout:

This layout has limited functionality and the workspace is limited. Consider using the height of the wall to make full use of space for storage. The flow will work best with the fridge on one end and the basin on the other with the cooker in the middle. Consider putting the washing machine in the bathroom and getting smaller appliances.

Gallery Kitchen Layout:

This consists of cabinets running parallel on two opposite walls. It is suitable for small kitchens and cost effective. Galley kitchens work well when you have a door leading to the garden on one end or seating on the other. If there is enough space between the two parallel walls, seating or an island can work down the middle of the layout or at either end of the galley kitchen.

The Island Kitchen Layout:

This layout is great for entertaining in and provides additional workspace, storage or just an area for a homework zone. The island area is the ideal area for installing pendant lighting.

Whatever type of layout you choose, the workflow within the kitchen is especially important. This is referred to as the work triangle. The triangle is formed between the fridge, the basin, and the stove.

Tips and Common Mistakes:

Tips No 1: Common Mistakes to Avoid:

  1. Walkways that are not wide enough, making doors and drawers difficult to open. We recommend a minimum of 1200 mm wherever possible.
  2. Do not place the fridge in the centre of the triangle. This disrupts the flow in the kitchen.
  3. Insufficient worktop space beside the cooking and washing area.

Tip No 2: Optimizing Space in Small Kitchens:

  1. Merging the dining table and the kitchen island allows you to have a dual-purpose surface.
  2. Custom-made covers for hot plates or chopping boards that can be fitted over the sink area allow you to optimize this area when not in use.
  3. The ‘splash back’ area may be utilized for narrow hanging items
  4. Trollies or a kitchen cart can be used for storing oils and daily used condiments, while the top of the trolly can be used for a food processing area.

Tip No 3: Choosing the Right Appliances:

  1. If you do bake at home, the right level oven would be a must have.
  2. The cooker hood ought to be placed at the recommended distance above the cooker to suction properly.
  3. The built-in refrigerator is highly sought after, keeping the kitchen minimalistic and always looking impeccable and orderly.

Tip No 4: Choosing the right Accessories and Sanitaryware:

  1. Consider cup and bowl organizers for drawers instead of stacking them, also pot and pan organizers and cutlery drawer organizers. The cooking utensil drawer should be near to the range on either the right or left depending on your hand preference and the serving and eating cutlery drawer closer to the dining area.
  2.  Pop-up sockets for charging phones can also be purchased.
  3. The kitchen sink comes in many forms – it is recommended to go for an undermount sink over a top mount sink as it reduces the amount of water lying around after washing your dishes and adds depth.
  1. Lighting should be installed above kitchen surfaces to avoid shadows.
  2. Strip lights underneath overhung cabinets would light up the kitchen tops evenly and create a soothing ambience.
  3. Strip lights inside the cabinets enhance the visual impact of your kitchen

If you have any questions or would like help with your kitchen design project, send me an email here.  I am always happy to help!

One thought on “Kitchen Layout and Design.

  1. Hi Jeannot
    Your page looks great!
    Perhaps do something about the font colour in this comment section. I can hardly read what I am writing 🙂

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