Kitchen Layout: the Big Picture in Kitchen Design

Is a kitchen remodel part of your plans for 2014?  If so, you may already be searching the internet for color schemes, new appliances, and kitchen cabinet styles.  Before you go any further, take a step back to look at the big picture.  The most important first step in a kitchen remodeling project is to think about your workflow and design layout.  The layout is the foundation of your kitchen renovation and will impact the scale of your project as well as where you decide to locate items within your new kitchen.  Creating the workflow you require may even mean you need to make structural changes such as moving doors or removing a wall.

Today’s trend toward open plan kitchens means most kitchen layouts must incorporate not only food preparation and clean up areas, but also entertainment, eating, and many other functions.  Before you proceed with your kitchen design, you will have to decide how much cooking you do, whether you have more than one person trying to cook at the same time, how frequently you entertain, and other functions your kitchen must fulfil.  All of these factors can influence the workflow of your kitchen and help determine the best layout for your new kitchen design.

In creating today’s “jack-of-all-trades” kitchen it is important to always remember that the primary purpose of the kitchen is still to store and prepare food.  Your new kitchen design must first of all meet your requirements for food preparation, and then incorporate your other needs such as entertaining.  One way to accommodate all of these functions in one cohesive kitchen design is by creating zones: food preparation, cleanup, eating and entertaining, and possibly a separate beverage or snack area or even a pet feeding area are all possible zones for your new kitchen layout.

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The kitchen island can play a key role in structuring these zones, as it provides a distinction between food preparation and eating/entertaining, keeping the flow of traffic in the kitchen away from the cooking area.  If you require two food preparation areas for more than one chef, the island can be an ideal place to put a separate sink and worktop, or even can accommodate a second oven, steam oven, or microwave.  The island can also provide space for eating or socializing if you include a seating area.

The possibilities for a new kitchen are endless.  With a well-constructed kitchen design you will be on your way to a kitchen that is easy to maneuver and well-organized.  Consult your design professional for more advice on how to best structure your new kitchen layout.