The kitchen is arguably the most complex room in any house. Countless elements need to come together in just the right way for the space to look good and work great. If your kitchen isn’t serving you as well as it should, then it might be time for a renovation. This is an exciting project that can finally turn your ideas into reality. However, it can also prove to be overwhelming once you start to grapple with all of the details. To make it a little bit easier we spoke to Brad from SF Kitchen Renovations about proper kitchen design. Consider the following:
1. Room to Move
Several people may use the kitchen simultaneously. You need to give them ample space to move around so that they can finish their tasks without bumping into each other. They should be able to walk around effortlessly through paths that are at least 3 feet wide. Expand it to 4 feet or more if the family likes to gather here. This can be a challenge if there is an island or a table in the middle of the room. Make the necessary adjustments. If the cabinet doors are banging on chairs or appliances, then you will have to add space as well.
2. Occupant Safety
There are many hazards in a kitchen including wet spots, hot items, and sharp objects. As much as possible, these should be placed at the far side of the room to keep them away from the kids. Put commonly used things like the refrigerator near the entrance so that people can pop in and out quickly. The sink, stove, and knives should be a few steps further such that only those who need these will reach them. Have a plumber fix leaks or clogs so that you can have a fresh start without any headaches.
3. Item Heights
The standard height for counters should work well for most households. However, outliers might feel uncomfortable with the setup. They might have to bend too much if they are tall, for example. Some would need this elevated or lowered to fit their needs. The height of the hanging cabinets might also require adjustment if homeowners can’t reach well into them. There should be less spills and breakage after the change. If the microwave will have its own section in the cabinetry, then this could be placed a bit higher than the counter height for ease of control and food retrieval.
4. Logical Proximity
Kitchen tasks are long but available time is short. Anything that can make the work go faster is always a good thing. Perhaps the kitchen renovation is the chance to make the layout more logical based on how people go about their chores. For example, a sizeable trash bin could be placed under the sink for food wrappers and other waste. Breakfast staples like cereals, oats, and bowls could be stored near the table or the nook for easy reach. Plates, glasses, and silverware should be within arm’s length of the dishwasher or the sink. Cooking tools and spices should be near the stove.
5. Free Counter Space
There is a tendency for people to make the counters crowded with small kitchen appliances and other items. This can make the room look messy and reduce the available space for food preparation. It is crucial for you to ensure landing spaces on the sides of the stove and the refrigerator. Whenever possible, find a home for each item within the cabinets. If quick access is important, then things could be placed in open shelves instead of hidden behind cabinet doors. Ask the electrician to put outlets nearby. For smaller items that don’t need electricity, use shallow drawers with organised sections.
6. Natural and Artificial Light
It would be hard to prepare food in a dark environment. There should be ample light whether you are cooking lunch or dinner. Natural light is the best form of illumination but some kitchens don’t get much of it. See if it is possible to enlarge the current window or punch out another one on an outside wall. Maybe trimming the branches of a tree behind the window could also let more light inside. Make sure that there are lights above the counter so you can see what you are chopping and mixing. Place pendant lamps on top of the island or kitchen table as well.
7. Quality Fixtures
Not all changes have to be grand or expensive to have a major impact. If you don’t have the budget to redo the whole cabinetry, then you might settle for a refacing instead. Just have the surfaces painted in your preferred hue. Fix the hinges and the tracks. See if you can replace the knobs and handles with better quality hardware. You should consider getting a nicer faucet for the sink as well if the current one is showing its age.
Plan carefully with your contractor to make the most of your budget and get the kitchen renovation results you’ll love.