Designing a kitchen from scratch is both an exciting and challenging undertaking. If you are thinking of buying a doer upper or looking to extend your home with a kitchen extension then getting the fundamentals right is everything if you are going to love your new kitchen longterm.
First and foremost, understand your needs. Are you an occasional cook or a culinary enthusiast? The frequency and type of cooking can determine the layout and appliances you’ll need. Speaking of layout, consider the efficiency of the classic work triangle that positions the stove, sink, and refrigerator in a triangular formation. This ensures that the main areas of activity are close to each other, promoting smoother workflow.
Next, settle on a style. Whether you gravitate towards a modern, traditional, industrial, or rustic look, make sure it complements the overall vibe of your home. Cabinetry will play a significant role in both the style and functionality of your kitchen. Maximising vertical space with tall cabinets, optimising corner spaces with carousels, and considering deep drawers for pots can be beneficial.
The countertop is another critical decision. With options ranging from granite and marble to wood and laminate, consider aesthetics, durability, and maintenance when making a choice. Similarly, for flooring, it’s essential to select a durable, water-resistant option, whether it’s hardwood, tile, vinyl, or laminate.
Lighting sets the mood and functionality of the kitchen. Ensure there’s task lighting over primary work areas, ambient lighting for general illumination, and perhaps some accent lighting inside cabinets or under counters for that added flair. Don’t forget the backsplash which, apart from being a style statement, protects walls from splatters and spills.
Your choice of appliances should be both aesthetic and practical. Modern kitchens often gravitate towards built-in appliances for a sleek look. However, functionality and energy efficiency should remain top priorities.
A well-ventilated kitchen is crucial. Efficient ventilation systems prevent odors, reduce heat, and ensure a pleasant cooking experience. For those with ample space, an island or a peninsula can be an excellent addition, providing more workspace and even seating options.
The color scheme, often overlooked, can define the ambiance of the kitchen. While light shades might give a feeling of spaciousness, darker tones can create warmth and coziness. Ensure there are ample power outlets, strategically positioned, especially if you use multiple kitchen gadgets.
Lastly, sustainability and eco-friendliness are worth considering. Designate areas for recyclables and organic waste. Remember, your kitchen is a reflection of your lifestyle, and every choice should make the space both functional and a pleasure to be in.
Designing a kitchen from scratch gives you the freedom to create a space tailored to your needs and preferences. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you through the process:
Assess Your Needs
Before jumping into design aesthetics, consider your kitchen’s function.
How many people will be cooking and eating in this space?
Do you need a breakfast bar or a dining table?
Will you entertain guests often?
Do you need a lot of storage space?
This refers to the positioning of the three most used areas: the stove, sink, and refrigerator. These should form a triangle to ensure efficiency. Even if you are going to install a larger kitchen, you work triangle is important as you need to have these components in easy reach of eachother to make your cooking life much easier!
Think about creating zones for specific tasks such as prepping, cooking, baking, and cleaning. If you are an ardent chef then you want to keep things in their place such as spices.
Ensure there’s enough space between the stove and flammable materials. Also, consider the positioning of knives, pots, and electrical appliances away from children.
Choose a Style
Modern, traditional, industrial, rustic, or eclectic? Your kitchen’s style should ideally complement the rest of your home.
Cabinetry & Storage:
Utilise the vertical space. Consider cabinets that reach the ceiling to maximise storage.
Great for pots, pans, and dishes.
Use carousel or pull-out solutions for corner cabinets.
If space allows, a pantry can be invaluable for storing food items and larger kitchen equipment.
Choices include granite, quartz, marble, laminate, concrete, and wood. Each has its pros and cons in terms of aesthetics, durability, and maintenance.
Energy Star-rated appliances can save you money in the long run.
Consider built-in appliances for a streamlined look.
Bright lights over counters, the sink, and stove.
General lighting for the room. Consider pendant lights, especially over an island.
Inside glass-front cabinets or under the cabinets.
Hardwood, tile, vinyl, or laminate? Ensure it’s durable and water-resistant.
Protects walls from splatters. Tiles, glass, or metal are popular choices.
Sink & Faucets:
Consider a double sink if space allows.
Pull-down faucets are convenient for washing big pots.
Good ventilation is crucial. It helps remove cooking odours, heat, and pollutants from the cooking process.
Island or Peninsula
Great for added counter space and can also provide seating.
Light colours can make a space feel larger. However, darker shades can add warmth and coziness. For 2023 we are seeing a lot more pastel colours and painted kitchens in the Surrey area, but there is always a market for the high gloss super minimal designer kitchens too.
Make sure you have plenty, especially if you use a lot of kitchen gadgets. Pop-up outlets on the island can be beneficial.
Recycling & Waste
Designate spots for recyclables and organic waste.
Add personal touches like open shelving for decorative items, unique handles for cabinets, or a chalkboard wall for notes.
Lastly, consider hiring professionals, such as kitchen designers or architects, if it’s within your budget. They can provide valuable insights, ensure building codes are met, and generally make the process smoother.
Here at Kitchenism, we help homeowners in Surrey realise their kitchen potential and have a long history of installing high quality designer and traditional kitchens for discerning kitchen enthusiasts in the area. If you are thinking of that kitchen renovation, why not speak to our team to see how we can transform your kitchen.