Design is right at the heart of Kettle Co Kitchens. Our MD, Dale Williams, studied design before founding the business, and our team all have expertise in not just planning and fitting kitchens but also in ensuring every kitchen matches the individual needs of our customers.
It’s not just about ensuring that your dream kitchen looks gorgeous; there are some important factors to consider in terms of layout too. After all you want to make sure that your new kitchen fits your lifestyle, reflects who you are – and that there’s easy (and safe) access to all the bits and pieces you need when you’re preparing meals for family and friends. During our time as kitchen designers and fitters we’ve been asked to work with our customers on all sorts of ideas but here are a few tips to consider.
Is everything where you need it? We’re all so busy these days that the last thing we want is to waste time searching for equipment or where we put our favourite paring knife, serving dish or food product. So, in an ideal kitchen, for example, breakfast bowls and cereals ideally should be near your table, breakfast bar or kitchen island. Crockery storage and your bin should be near the dishwasher, which in turn, should be near the sink. You might also want your mugs, cups and saucers, teas and coffees close to where you plan to plug in your kettle or have a boiling water tap.
If you are planning on incorporating your hob on a kitchen island, then you might want to include a small prep sink, so that you don’t have to walk across your kitchen with pans of boiling water to reach your main sink. This is also very useful if there’s more than one of you working in the kitchen at the same time.
From a safety aspect, it’s important to ensure that your cooking area isn’t the main thoroughfare in your kitchen, especially if it leads out to the garden. Obviously, you don’t want anyone, especially children, catching pan handles as they pass by. Neither do you want to have to keep moving out of the way to allow people to get past you.
Colour me beautiful…
We all have our favourite colours and ideas for colour schemes but when choosing these for your new kitchen, you’ll want to ensure the end result gives the right ‘feel’. This is sometimes difficult to quantify but natural light plays an important part in this – and looking at how this works with your kitchen is a good guide. For example, if you have a kitchen dinner that opens onto the garden, with your dining area near the door and your kitchen further into the room, light coloured kitchen cabinets will reflect the light, making the space feel larger. If you have a large bright kitchen, then darker colours can make the room feel cosier.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that if your kitchen has similar colour themes to the rest of your home, it will make the flow of your home more cohesive. This can be done very simply, with lighting, areas of colour and cabinetry that reflect colours in other rooms, matching tone flooring, tiles or splashbacks -and soft furnishings such as chairs, sofas thrown and cushions, if you have a chill out area in your kitchen.
To gloss or not to gloss…
High gloss kitchens have been popular in recent years but new finishes, such as Matte or Super Matte are hotly tipped by designers for combining sheer good looks with practicability. Super Matte is anti-fingerprint, so is perfect for a busy, family kitchen, and both look fabulous with metallic, concrete/stone or wood effect finishes. If you are still yearning for that sleek, glossy look, then natural wood can be used very effectively within the design to create texture and warmth, such as flooring, worktops or other elements. This can be highlighted with chunky wooden chopping boards or fruit bowls, driftwood artwork, wooden picture frames or wooden pot plants.
Mind the gap…
We’ll take care of all the details when planning your kitchen but sometimes there are some minor, but nonetheless important, details to take into consideration. You might have a small gap to fill, which could be turned into a useful and handy place to store trays. Also, think about the height of your upper cabinets, if there is to be a gap between the top of these and your ceiling then it needs to be large enough for you to be able to get to in order to clean them. Alternatively, you might opt for cabinets that fit from floor to ceiling to avoid this chore and also to make the most of storage space.
Another point to consider is to ensure everything is at the right height. If you are opting for stacking fitting ovens, then they’ll obviously need to be at the correct height for safely removing hot dishes. If you have children, then you might want to incorporate a low cupboard for their cups and bowls so that they can easily reach them if they want to. This avoids the risk of them climbing onto worktops to reach what they need.
Also make sure to discuss how many electrical points you might need and where you’d like them to go. If you’re planning on having a kitchen island, don’t forget that you might need some there too, especially if you are incorporating a hob or fridge. If you want to keep your phone or tablet nearby when you’re in your kitchen then you’ll find it useful to have at least one electrical point that includes a USB port for your charger.
Planning your kitchen lighting needs to be done early on. Lighting under or in cabinets are important for when you are cooking but don’t forget about ambient lighting. You might want to include dimmer switches and there are hundreds of styles of light fittings, from pendants to wall lights and recessed spotlights.
A great personality…
Yes, even a kitchen has a personality and you can decide what you want that to be! Whether that’s choosing kitchen wall paint colours, creating a gallery wall or placing small decorative items, pots of herbs or holiday memorabilia on your window ledges. Gorgeous scented candles, glass bowls of pebbles or glass buttons, family photos or maybe a shelf of colourful (or vintage) cookery books – whatever you choose, your personal touches will turn your kitchen from a purely functioning room to a place where you, your family and friends will love to gather.
Ready to start planning plan your dream kitchen? The first step is to book a consultation with our team in our St Austell or Plymouth showroom and they’ll be delighted to help get the ball rolling. We look forward to hearing from you.