What's cooking?

What's cooking?

Nothing could be worse than completing a long and expensive project and at the end, realising that you have overlooked the kitchen. The journey to build an ideal kitchen requires a lot of careful thinking keeping in mind your wants, needs, likes and inspiration.
To start with, simply outline certain points to lay out your perfect kitchen.

Know your home. If you are renovating your kitchen, make yourself familiar with the basic structural, plumbing, electrical and mechanical layout of your home.

Make note of which direction your windows face and how much light floods the room. This is especially important if you are looking to lower electricity usage for an energy-efficient space. We all use the kitchen differently but for the most part, there are three standardised functions in the kitchen: storage, preparation and cooking. This is better known as the kitchen work triangle, where storage is the refrigerator and utility, preparation is the main kitchen sink and cooking is the stove.

Let us break down the use of a kitchen into stages, determining what zones are needed and how each relates to one another.

Storage
Food: dry and fresh goods
Dishware: plates, serving
Cookware: pots, pans, bakingGlass: drinking

Preparation
Fresh wash or sinks are used to wash vegetables. This should be close to the refrigerator and a main work surface.

Garbage close to the areas below cooking, cook top, baking
Microwave: If you use a microwave oven on a regular basis chances are you are heating or reheating food that is stored in the refrigerator.

Placing it close to food storage works well for convenience.

Cleaning: Wash station or dish washer for easy unloading of dishes. Plan to place your dishware storage at the feet of your dish washer.

Different views are strictly based on personal preference. Consider what your new kitchen would look like from every conceivable angle. Do not forget what views you would like to see from inside.

Ask yourself these questions:

Are you the type of person who would like to see an outside view while washing dishes or cutting vegetables?

Do you like to have a full view of your children and the TV in the adjacent family room while you are using the cook-top?

Do you want your island to be the focal point?

A kitchen is more than a cooking space: it is the hub of the home. Emphasise on the social aspect of the kitchen room by building a kitchen island or a breakfast bar. This will make your kitchen a sociable place to be in. Don’t ignore the shape of the kitchen room. For smaller kitchens, use a single-line or the two way gallery layout. An L-shape will leave one corner of your kitchen free, while kitchen islands suit those with ample space.

Lighting
Kitchen lighting should not be left until last. The lights should not be too bright or too soft. You should consider more than one type of kitchen lighting, such as overhead, illuminated shelves or under-cabinet lights.

A popular trend is to create an open plan kitchen; but open plan isn’t always best. If you have children or want a space free of cooking smells, consider the importance of a separate kitchen room. When planning your dream kitchen, take into account the number of kitchen appliances it will house. Televisions, blenders and chargers all need access to electricity.

Avoid unsightly cables and consider hidden floor sockets for televisions and kitchen islands. It seems like efficient use of space to put cupboards and cabinets overhead; but toppling on a chair to get to your spice rack is not ideal. When installing overhead storage, make sure you can reach it.

If you are not blessed with a huge kitchen, don’t despair. There are a lot of tricks you can use to give the feeling of more space in your kitchen, no matter what size it is.

Cluttered worktops and things on the floor only make a kitchen feel smaller so try and find a place for everything. Put appliances that are not used daily away. If you normally store kitchen utensils on the work-top, find wall hooks to put them on instead. Play a trick on the eyes by using large tiles in a small kitchen.

These instantly make the room look bigger as the visual is not broken up by lines of grouting.

Combine theses with glossy tiles that help throw light around the kitchen space. For a cheap and easy way to give the illusion of more space in your kitchen, bounce light around the room with a few strategically placed mirrors opposite windows.
Add depth to your kitchen by using glass cabinets to display crockery and glasses. The line of the wall will appear further away, giving the kitchen a light and airy feel.

If you’ve got the budget and a suitable house, consider knocking down a wall to make your kitchen a part of the lounge.

The open style kitchen will make both rooms feel bigger. Curtains cut out space making your kitchen look smaller. If you are worried about privacy, try using window film.
A light coloured floor will help your kitchen seem larger, whether you are using laminate or tiles.

Just as mirrors bounce light around the room, so will stainless steel. Invest in a stainless steel  chimney or just use accents like toasters, kettles or storage jars. Whether you have got a contemporary kitchen or traditional one of the few must have pieces of kitchen furniture is the extendable kitchen table which is probably the most functional and practical piece of kitchen furniture. You can invest in folding, wall hung, bar style or other dining options for small kitchens. Choosing a kitchen table in high gloss white lacquer, chrome or glass will visually stretch the small kitchen space too.

This year has also seen unexpected flashes of colours and bold shapes in kitchen design. Colourful paint, tiles or brick splashes add punch to an otherwise monochromatic space. Vivid blues, oranges and coral are particularly popular. The idea is to make the space fun and unique, but not obnoxious, so be careful to self-edit, if you find the color and shapes taking over.

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