Oftentimes our remodel customers come to us with Pinterest boards of ideas, but no idea on where to actually start the process. So we wanted to give you a few tips to make planning just as easy as dreaming. Read on to learn how to define your dream kitchen!
If you haven’t already, think about how you use your kitchen most. Are you a master chef that enjoys cooking and eating your meals at home, or are you most likely to enjoy family dinners at your favorite local restaurants? It’s important for us as designers to understand what you want and need out of your space because our responses and designs for each of these circumstances will be completely different.
For instance, if we were designing a kitchen from scratch for a family that eats 2-3 meals at home on a daily basis, we might suggest a dual-island design with a separate formal dining space for dinners. One island might include a large single-basin sink with an interchangeable cutting board & produce strainer, dishwasher, and waste management system. While the other island is used more for baking, weekly food prep, and seating. Having a separate formal dining space in your home allows the chef in your household to take a break from all their hard work in the kitchen after a long day, but by providing seating on one of the islands, quick meals like breakfast and lunch can be served and cleaned up with ease.
On the other hand, designing a kitchen for empty-nesters, or families that tend to pick from their favorite local spots looks very different. In this instance, we would probably suggest keeping it simple with a one-wall kitchen design with an island for quick meals and a natural gathering spot for entertaining.
In either case, we would want to start by defining what your wants and needs are for your new/renovated space. One way we do this is by breaking down the general zones of a kitchen. From there, we can choose which ones best apply to your lifestyle to give you a kitchen that not only looks beautiful, but also functions for your family on a daily basis as well.
So let’s start by breaking down the zones of a general kitchen and what those zones might include or look like.
- Large island
- Ample counter space next to sink, and all appliances
Image Credit: Magnolia – The Ivy House
- Stove, Microwave, Oven
- Butler’s pantry
- Well-utilized cabinetry
- Cabinetry storage solutions
- Coffee/Tea bar
- Beverage bar
- Butler’s pantry
Image Credit: Magnolia – The Safe Gamble House
- Eat-in kitchen/dining nook
Image Credit: Magnolia – The Mountain House
- Waste management system
- Cleaning supplies
Image Credit: Magnolia – The Copp House
The most basic kitchens have a preparation zone and a cooking zone, and a not-so-defined cleaning zone (hello, exposed trash cans?!). Open concept kitchens also tend to have a consuming zone. But the most functional of kitchens make good use of all six zones. Typically your space will determine what extras we can include, or what we might have to leave out. We always start with the necessities like your range, refrigerator, and sink since those are the non-negotiables of a kitchen, and are often times the items that stay put in a renovation if we are not moving plumbing or electrical. These items determine what we can do with cabinetry sizes, and configurations, door and drawer options, as well as the overall aesthetic of your kitchen.
After we’ve established what zones are most important to you, and what you would like to include in your new space, we’ll get to work on designing! Picking out flooring, cabinet finishes and doorstyles, countertops, and a backsplash will help you visualize what your space will actually look like.
To get started on dreaming up your new kitchen, make a list of things you like and don’t like about your current kitchen, use the list of zones from above to determine your wants and needs for your new space, and go ahead and take a look at our design packages to see if there’s a style that stands out to you! Keep in mind that everything in our design packages is completely customizable to you and your space, and we can even start from scratch if you want! However, narrowing down a style or colors you like, as well as establishing a budget before meeting with your designer will help the process go a little smoother and will help us determine the best products for your project.
When you’re ready to get started on your project, feel free to stop in the store, give us a call, or fill out the questionnaire under the “Design Process” tab on our website to let us know a little bit more about your project. We can’t wait to hear what you’ve got dreamed up!!