The kitchen is one of the most functional parts of your home. Chances are you use your kitchen every day. Your kitchen design inspirations should come from how you use your kitchen and who uses it. The Resourceful Remodeler is here to help walk you through some of the basics of kitchen floor plans.
BEFORE YOU START YOUR KITCHEN DESIGN
As with any home improvement project, there are certain elements to keep in mind. Cost, purpose and style are all things that come into play here. You must keep in mind that if you’re remodeling or rebuilding, kitchens can be one of the more expensive home improvement upgrades you can make. When budgeting, you should allow an extra amount of time and money – about 20-percent of your total budget – for “surprises”. That being said, nearly all kitchen upgrades pay for themselves in personal satisfaction and resale value.
You should also be thinking about living without a kitchen for an extended period of time if you’re planning major renovations. Sometimes these projects can take months before you have a working kitchen again. Be sure to plan accordingly before you begin your project.
Finally, make sure you have a plan for what you want the finished product to look like. There should be a lot of planning and thought about what goes into your kitchen design. Photos are a great place to look for inspiration. Take them of kitchens you like at friends and relatives, pull them out of magazines or look at kitchen designs online.
KITCHEN DESIGN TIPS
There are a few very important things to keep in mind when drawing up your kitchen plans. It’s very different from designing and decorating any other room in the house. In kitchen design, pictures hanging on walls are replaced by cabinets and wineglass racks. Furniture is replaced by important appliances and storage space. The Resourceful Remodeler has put together a few items to help you with your basic kitchen designs.
There are three basic components to any kitchen. The sink, range and refrigerator make up some part of every single use you get out of your kitchen. They should form what’s known as the kitchen’s triangle. You should be able to draw a straight line from the center of the sink to the center of the range to the center of the refrigerator and back to the sink without crossing any counter tops or other blocks. That triangle should measure 26′ or less in total distance to maximize efficiency. Those are the three appliances used when preparing a meal which, don’t forget, is the overall purpose of the kitchen. Other appliances such as trash compactors and dishwashers are considered secondary to the main three.
You will want to try to incorporate appliances and cabinets with the structural elements in your kitchen. Those structural elements might be windows, doors, steps, etc. Structural elements might also influence your kitchen design inspirations.
Sight-lines and separation are also very important to the kitchen. Many people prefer to have open sight-lines from the kitchen to another gathering place in the house so the chef can maintain visual contact with guests while they prepare the meal. Keeping that in mind, there should also be some sense of separation between the kitchen and the rest of the house. This might be accomplished with an island, peninsula bar or a difference in ceiling heights from one space to the next.
KITCHEN CABINETS, ISLANDS AND COUNTER TOPS
The work and storage space in your kitchen is important. You want it to serve its purpose yet look presentable and stylish. It should fit the overall theme of the kitchen and still provide some visual variety. Planning this space is particularly important for small kitchen designs in order to maximize your kitchen’s use.
When planning your storage space in kitchen cabinets and drawers it’s important to take inventory of your kitchen. You’ll find you have things you rarely use and some you don’t use at all. The things you don’t use, try to get rid of. The things you use only once or twice a year like the punch bowl or turkey roaster can be relegated to other storage spaces in the house.
Visually you want your cabinets to follow the theme of the kitchen design, but it’s OK to have variety in them. Maybe your hanging cabinets have a different design than your floor-mounted cabinets. Another good place to vary this is in the cabinets around an island. It’s also encouraged to have some spaces of separation between your cabinets. Break them up with a wineglass rack, plate rack or spice shelf.
Islands can be a very beneficial part of your kitchen floor plans. As mentioned before, they can be used as a dividing feature. You might find some kitchen island designs more beneficial than others depending on what you’re looking for. They can also provide sitting room, storage, preparation space and a convenient way to hide appliances you might not want in plain sight.
Counter tops are a key component of the kitchen plans. They provide the work area for all your kitchen tasks and are the most visible part of the kitchen along with your cabinets. The look and texture should be very important to you, but so should a few other things.
Varying the heights of your counter tops can prevent a stale look in your kitchen. Having a work area that’s slightly lower than the rest of the counter top will not only provide that, but many times it can provide an advantage for the avid baker. Lower surfaces are often easier for things like rolling out dough or mixing things. It can also be ergonomically beneficial if the main chef in the house is shorter in stature.
Overall, there are many things to consider before diving into kitchen designs. We hope the Resourceful Remodeler has helped get you on the right track when planning you new kitchen designs!