The Keys to a Functional Kitchen Design
Does last week's Thanksgiving dinner have you re-thinking the functionality of your kitchen design? If you found yourself firing up the grill out back to try and get a few of your side dishes done on time, or too many cooks in the kitchen, but only because there wasn't enough room for the three people doing the cooking, it might be time to create a more functional kitchen design. Before you start, though, consider these three key factors which can make all the different in a practical, usable kitchen.
Consider how you use the space. Before you fall in love with a kitchen design in a showroom, think about the way you're most likely to use your kitchen so you get what you need out of it. If you're the family hostess, putting on everything from holiday dinners, to bridal showers, to birthday parties on a regular basis, your kitchen will be much different from someone who prefers to order takeout six out of seven nights a week. If you're the former, you might want to forgo some cabinet storage in favor of a double oven, or even borrow space from another room in order to create a kitchen that's large enough to meet your needs. Opening up an enclosed kitchen can also make the job of hostess much more fun, since you'll get to be part of the action while you work.
Think about how you work. Before you commit to a kitchen design, it's important to consider the way you cook. Think about the appliances you use most often--if they're large and heavy, have your kitchen designer install a counter-level "appliance garage" so you can easily slide them out as needed. Are you the type that gets everything out of the refrigerator and pantry before you cook, and then puts it all away when you're finished, or do you take things out one at a time, as you need them? If you relate more to the latter, a large prep space that's close to the refrigerator will help you work more efficiently. Regardless of your cooking style, talk to your kitchen design about dividing your kitchen into workstations instead of the classic kitchen triangle, which can help your space work more effectively.
Don't forget the details. Besides planning for important things like ample storage space and properly sized appliances, there are also important details to think about which can make just as big of an impact on the functionality of your kitchen. If your kitchen doesn't get much natural light, for example, installing under-cabinet lighting can be a lifesaver. Even your countertops can improve or detract from the usability of your kitchen. Avid cooks might be wise to avoid porous surfaces like marble and light-colored granite, which can stain easily if exposed to water or fluids. Stain resistant materials like engineered stone, or ones that can be easily refinished, like butcher block, might make more sense.
Want to learn more about how you can create the most functional kitchen for your home? Get in touch with Divine Design Build, or stop into our showroom at 180 Linden St. in Wellesley, Mass.