Consider these five elements when planning your kitchen
We use our kitchens for all sorts of things – food preparation, cooking, storage, cleaning, and dining. So consider the space and these five elements when you’re planning your kitchen.
Food preparation areas need to be clean, spacious, and well-lit. Our GoodHome Berberis worktops are specifically designed to be durable and easy to clean, making them the perfect work surface for busy kitchens. We recommend that a preparation area for one person is at least 90cm wide and lit with bright task lighting. Or, why not use something like our Tasuke integrated cabinet light? It can quickly adjust between task lighting and warmer, more atmospheric accent lighting.
Appliances like ovens and microwaves can be installed in a number of ways. We have options that can be built-in to a base cabinet or ones which can be banked in vertical or horizontal larder cabinets. Try to keep cooking appliances grouped together. They should also be away from wet areas and with adequate space around them (30cm for hobs, 40cm for ovens) to give you enough space to set down hot pans or oven trays.
Storage is crucial in a busy kitchen – with so many different items to put away. From cutlery to spices, everything needs to have a place where it fits, is easy to access when you need it, and easy to organise. Our Caraway cabinets, Soto drawers and Pebre internal storage ranges are all designed to give you maximum flexibility. You can even use them to create clear zones that are specifically designed to store the things you need.
Once you have your dream kitchen, the last thing you want to do is spend every waking minute cleaning it. That’s why our products are designed to make your life easier. First off, give yourself somewhere to put cleaning supplies – our Pebre under-sink drawer and Datil sink caddy are both perfect for this. Many products in our ranges have easy to clean features – like rubber aerators on our tap that let you just wipe limescale off as it forms. Finally, make use of our innovative Kora bins range to help you sort waste without taking up too much space.
If you have enough space, breakfast bars and islands are a great way to integrate a dining area into your kitchen. Make your kitchen more of a social hub by putting your hob on the island so you can chat and cook. Accent lighting and plug sockets in the island are ideal for getting homework done and charging up those all-important appliances. And, when it comes to dining, bar stools create a pop-up space for speedy suppers or why not leave enough space for a dining table?
Carry on reading to find out how you can design a kitchen around these 5 areas...
Picking the perfect appliances
Appliances are big purchases that can take up a lot of space, so it’s worth considering all your options before deciding what to buy and where to put it.
Ovens & microwaves
In modern kitchens, grouping multiple microwaves, ovens, or a combination of both together is becoming a more and more popular option. Whether you want to bank them horizontally or vertically, it can help declutter worktop space and keep things at eye level.
If you’re banking them vertically, ensure you don’t put the microwave or oven so high that it can’t be easily accessed. Placing it at the right height can be much easier to use, but if it’s too high for the shortest person in the house it can become a serious hazard.
Ideally, your hob should be placed near your oven, so all cooking can be kept to one area.
Hoods can be a great focal point for a kitchen, and recent developments mean that a big hood doesn’t necessarily mean a noisy one. There’s an array of available style options, whether you want your hood to be hidden away, or something to be admired.
If you cook with gas, your hood will need to be positioned at least 760mm above your hob. The restriction is only 650mm for electric hobs, but neither are inconsiderable, so make sure it’s accounted for in your plans.
Dishwashers & washing machines
Try to keep dishwashers and washing machines together with the sink, creating an easy-to-plumb ‘wet area’ to save money on piping and other fixtures. If you have space elsewhere in the home, many people like to keep the washing machine separate to reduce clutter in the kitchen.
More and more kitchens have built-in dishwashers now, as it keeps everything looking clean, clutter-free, and can even help reduce noise.
Fridges & freezers
New fridge freezers on the market come with an array of useful features and can even be built into your kitchen to create a sleek finish, making the whole setup easier to clean.
Planning your kitchen with the right space for tasks
When you design your kitchen, it’s important to ensure adequate space around cooking appliances, sinks and preparation areas.
Placing your cooking appliances:
- Ensure there’s 30cm of unused space around hobs (40cm for ovens) so there’s enough space to set down hot pans or trays
- Make sure there’s adequate air extraction above and around cooking surfaces
Placing your sink
- Try to not place the sink on any worktop shorter than 1m
- Allow at least 30cm of worktop space on either side of the sink
Creating your preparation areas
- A preparation area for a single person should be a minimum of 90cm wide
- If more than one person is cooking, and you don’t have space for multiple 90cm-wide spaces, a consolidated 150cm-wide area will also work
Selecting your seating
Unless you plan to only use your kitchen for cooking, you’ll want to bring some sort of seating in the room. It takes a little planning to make sure that the seating is practical without cluttering or crowding your space. When planning it, consider:
Available space: Can you comfortably fit a table in the room, or would a breakfast bar or extended worktop be more suitable? If you’re unsure, try mapping it out on the floor to make sure you’ll have enough space to walk around safely. If you’re putting bar stools at a breakfast bar, try to leave at least 15cm between each stool, and consider how they’ll be stored when choosing the design.
Desired use: Will the seating area be for dining, working or both? For dining, think about where you’ll put placemats, coasters and décor – both when it’s in use and not in use. Consider including sockets nearby so people can charge laptops or phones whilst they sit.
Number of users: How many people are in the household? Will you have people over for dinner? If only a small amount of people will regularly sit at the table, but you want to keep the option of group dinners open, consider investing in folding chairs and an extending table to keep your space flexible.
It’s also worth considering what other things you will use your kitchen for, and what semi-permanent furniture it might need or include.
Do you iron clothes, or dry laundry in the kitchen? Consider where ironing boards and clothes airers will go. Do you need highchairs, or a safety gate? All these things have a footprint, so consider them from the offset to help keep your kitchen clean, clear and safe.
Making the most of your sink space
Taking time to make sure your sink area is efficient and functional can make washing up and cleaning your kitchen a whole lot easier.
With innovative products like our Pebre under-sink pull-out storage, cloths, brushes and cleaning tools can be neatly tidied away to keep worktops clear and easy to wipe down. By combining it with our Sonchus cabinet liner to protect against spills, the space beneath your sink can quickly become the cleaning cupboard dreams are made of!
Our Datil sink caddy is great for keeping washing up brushes, liquid, and a cloth on hand and in one place. Additionally, our Datil sink mat and washing up bowls can help protect your sink from marks and scratches when you’re washing up.
We also have complete one box solutions for creating the ultimate efficient sink space with our Romesco smart-space sink. With clever integrated accessories it’s easy to create a flexible and multi-functional work area within the sink bowl so you can save your worktop space.