Never mind the look, feel the storage!
Planning for storage must be a key element of creating a new kitchen!
It is vital to start thinking of storage in a new kitchen right from the start of the planning process. All too often kitchens are planned in terms of how they’ll fit into the room and what they will look like, with the storage aspect of planning taking second place.
This is wrong.
From the start the kitchen planner should be asking the prospective buyer questions like how many people live in the house, particulars of their lifestyle, how will the kitchen be used, will it be part of an open plan living area. Answers to questions like this will tell the planner what needs to be stored – goods for babies and kids, pet food are just two examples.
Any good kitchen planner will not be thinking terms of a series of boxes with fancy fronts and tops, rather they should be thinking about the placement of “functional cabinets” where each unit must be internally designed to fulfil a specific storage function much like a dishwasher, oven or fridge all have specific functions. Then, to optimise ease of operation in the kitchen, these functional cabinets should be allocated positions according to the natural zones of activity. So, for instance, beneath the sink will be storage systems for cleaning materials and waste disposal. Pans and cooking containers will be near the hob etc.
Furthermore each unit should be planned for ease of use. Fixed shelves in base units are something of the past. All drawers and pull-outs should move out to the user effortlessly and on a full extension basis so access to items at the very back is easy and does not require moving other items first. Clever units like those in corners, under the sink and on the wall should offer the same ease of use and access with soft close and the latest automated open/close on overhead lift systems.
Internal organisational and dividing systems in drawers means all utensils or arbitrary items are always to hand and this will allow far better storage capacity.
All of these concepts, products and systems brought together early in the planning stage have shown to afford up to 55% additional storage over a conventional kitchen and make for years of pleasurable use.