How To Design A Unique Kitchen That Suits Your Family
They say that the kitchen is the heart of the family home. The kitchen has never been more popular for a room that isn’t only for cooking in, but also eating, chatting, playing and spending quality time with the family.
If you are thinking about re-designing your kitchen it is important that you are able to make it multi-purpose, functional and stylish. One of the best things about designing your own kitchen is that you can make it unique to you and your family, incorporating your nuances and making it a space that works for everyone.
Designing a new kitchen for you and your family can be a little daunting, but if you are attempting it, the most important factor is planning.
The first thing that you should think about is exactly what you want your kitchen to do. Are you mainly concerned with cooking? Do you want to be able to eat in there as well? Play? Do you have pets that need to be accommodated? Do the kids need somewhere to do their homework, or change out of muddy clothes? The list is endless!
Make a list of the most important functions that you need your kitchen to perform, and then try to list them in order of importance. What are you prepared to compromise on and what not?
Now think about how you are going to incorporate these into your kitchen. What do you need? Think about:
- Work surfaces
- White goods
- Kitchen island
- Underfloor heating
- Breakfast bar
- Utility room
- Pet feeding spaces
- Incorporating technology
- Lighting – remember that you need to be able to see well to be able to cook properly but won’t necessarily want bright light if you are entertaining, for example.
Now draw a floor plan and try to see how you can fit what you need in.
This can seem quite daunting and some people feel that they would prefer to pass this over to a bespoke kitchen designer at this point.
A kitchen designer will be able to help you to draw a scale drawing. Start off by marking in the aspects that you cannot move – such as the doors, radiators, water points, stairs, steps, etc. Now comes the fun bit – trying to work out the layout of your new kitchen!
If you are a creative person, finding design ideas for how to incorporate everything that you want in your kitchen can be a source of fun and interest. However, if you’re not that way minded, a kitchen designer would be able to help you with this. They might have design ideas and knowledge of the latest trends and technology which are available to you.
At this point, you should start thinking also about what kind of style you want for your kitchen. Do you want old and rustic looking? Modern and minimalist? Country-style? Scandinavian looking? Shabby chic?
You should also think about other factors, such as:
- Does it need to be childproof or pet proof?
- What other activities do you want to do in the kitchen?
- Do you want to entertain there?
- How much natural light is there?
- What colour scheme are you keen on?
- Do you want a fitted kitchen or self-standing units?
At this point, if you are still designing your kitchen without any outside help, it is definitely worth spending some time looking at what kitchen designers are doing at the moment. Even if you don’t get inspired, it is good to see what options there are – and you never know, you might see something that you love and want to include in your design.
Now that you have the big things sorted, you can start looking at more detail. Now consider aspects such as:
- The style and colour of the splashback (or, indeed if you want one)
- What appliances you want, where to put them and how you want them to look
- Flooring – do you want tiles, floorboards, laminate, concrete, rubber, etc.
- Lampshade or bulb types
- Window dressings – do you want curtains, a blind? Remember that kitchens can produce a fair amount of moisture so your window dressings would need to be able to withstand this.
If you are planning on making any structural changes such as knocking down walls or extending, it is recommended that you speak to an architect before you start, as well as check whether you need to apply for planning permission.
Getting a new kitchen is an exciting (but often daunting) prospect. Being involved in, or indeed, responsible for its design can also be both exciting and daunting. However, there is help out there at every stage of the process. So, don’t be afraid to ask for help in the aspects that you don’t feel so confident with, plan it properly and you will find that you get the kitchen that suits you and your family’s needs.