When designing a kitchen, it’s easy to focus on just the aesthetics. For example, you might settle on a colour scheme and choose appliances to match a chosen colour scheme rather than starting with appliances best suited for your lifestyle.
The way a kitchen looks is important, it’s a room you’re going to spend a significant amount of time in. However, just as integral as aesthetics is how it feels. This is why we recommend that you think about the practicalities first, and the aesthetics of your kitchen second.
Luckily, there are a variety of choices so there is no need for your style to be sacrificed for your practical needs and choosing an architect to help deliver your design will support your kitchen requirements that much more.
In this article, we look at things that are worth thinking about when designing a practical and consumer-centric kitchen.
Do you want a dedicated cooking space or a more multi-purpose room?
Before you start choosing appliances, it is worth thinking about how you are going to use the room. It’s worth asking yourself questions such as how you would like to use the space and who will be using it.
From there, you can start forming ideas of how you would like your kitchen to perform and be able to start designing around your lifestyle. Asking yourself these questions early on can make a huge difference to how much you ultimately enjoy your finished kitchen.
Do you have any mobility needs?
Mobility needs are integral for those that require them.. For example, wheelchair users may need lower counters with space to dock their chairs while cooking.
Other needs require additional thought. For example, a dishwasher door with a horizontal hinge takes up a good amount of floor space while open so having an alternative solution is necessary. This can make it difficult to access cupboards above it, or even to access the dishwasher itself if side-access is blocked or if the user finds it hard to bend over the racks.
Similarly, pull-out cupboards, while great space-savers, can be tricky to manoeuvre for those with joint issues.
There are plenty of small solutions which can make a huge difference mobility-wise. Think about what’s comfortable for you and what you need to make your kitchen as user-friendly as possible.
Do you need space for cooking?
Cooking should be fun and a slapdash approach often yields delicious results.
However, if you are a bit less meticulous, it might be worth getting a kitchen that can withstand rough treatment and is easy to clean.
You can get really specific with the fixtures and fittings of your kitchen and it’s worth doing so if you want them to stand the test of time. Do your research and dive deep into what’s available.
For example, oak countertops are very popular but not all oak countertops are the same. Oak harvested in the UK takes varnish beautifully, making it a dream to wipe clean. However, oak harvested in the Black Sea region is typically 15% denser and harder than traditional oak, making it the ideal choice for people who like to really put their kitchens through their paces.
Work out exactly what you need, and then take a deep dive into the world of kitchen suppliers. As we keep saying, any need can be accommodated – you just need to know what you’re looking for.
Start with practical, end with beautiful
The practical approach to kitchen design doesn’t mean you have to end up with a utilitarian kitchen.
However, it does mean that the beautiful kitchen you end up with is more than just a pretty façade.
Fitting your aesthetic needs around your practical needs rather than vice versa means that your kitchen will not only be beautiful, it will also be a dream to use for years to come.
If you’re looking to renovate your kitchen If you aren’t sure what you need or if your needs can be accommodated get in touch with us so we can help advise on your project.