When you are remodelling your kitchen trying to come up with a design, you need to think about how the kitchen will actually be used. When building our new house, one area we spent a lot of time focusing on was the kitchen. We designed the kitchen ourselves and even built it (IKEA’s finest 🙂 ).
If you’re always spending time in your kitchen and always cooking, your needs will be different to someone who spends little time in their kitchen and is regularly eating out. If you have a family, it’s important that you design a kitchen that works for them, and there are a lot of ways to do that.
Below we discuss several things to consider when it comes to designing a new kitchen for your home.
The countertop is one of the first things you should take the time to consider for your kitchen. There are many types of materials to consider, each with pros and cons, be it durability, cost or simply the look. From natural products like stone, quartz or wood to manufactured materials like laminate or tiled, there are plenty of options to consider.
For us, the visual aspect of the countertop was important, but top of the list was the practicality. It needed to be easy to clean and maintain, and extremely durable. Our choice was a laminate countertop but we wanted it to look like quartz.
If you want the wood effect, you can get some nice laminate worktops. Stainless steel and natural quartz are also good option, while granite worktops are also popular although very much at the higher end of the price scale. It wipes clean so easily and it’s very hard wearing, so you shouldn’t need to replace it for a long while.
Another increasingly popular design feature when it comes to kitchen design is the backsplash. For many this will just involve the area behind your hob, although there is the potential to look at other areas like the wall surrounding your kitchen sink or worktops as well.
Tiles are extremely popular for a splashback and this is what we opted for. Tiles are easy wiped clean although your grout can potentially get dirty so it’s worth considering a darker grout for a backsplash in the kitchen.
Other backsplash options to consider can include brick, stainless steel or stone, while the company DIY Splashbacks provides a huge variety of coloured and designer splashbacks and well worth checking out.
The floors in a family kitchen get a lot of wear and tear because you have kids running back and forth and there are likely to be a lot of spillages. So, you need a floor that can withstand all of that and is easy to clean.
Wooden floors are increasingly popular for kitchens, as are tiles. Other materials to consider include laminate flooring or polished concrete which can provide a real sense of luxury and grandeur for your kitchen.
We opted for a wood effect tile floor in our kitchen and went with a herringbone design. This design has become a real feature in both the kitchen and main living space and certainly attracts plenty of conversation when visitors enter the house.
People don’t think that much about cleaning the doors on their kitchen cabinets, but they collect a lot of grease from cooking, especially the ones that are close to the stove top. If you don’t clean them off regularly, it can be unhygienic and your kitchen may have a constant smell of grease.
When you are cleaning your cabinets, it’s a lot easier if they are simple styles, so keep this in mind when making your decision. Ornate cabinets might look great, but they have lots of small nooks and crannies that you need to get into.
But if you have a simple slab front cabinet or even a glass door, you can easily wipe it down. These styles are more universal anyway, so they never go out of fashion, but the more ornate styles may be unfashionable in the next year or two.
Your Kitchen Sink
Choosing the right sink is important if you want your kitchen to be easy clean. A tiny sink means that washing up takes a lot longer, so try to go for a bigger bowl that you can easily fit all of the dirty plates and pans in.
If you want to make cleaning up extra quick, and you have a large kitchen, you should consider a double sink or a deeper sink like the popular Belfast sink! If you opt for a double sink like we did, you can use one to soak things while you are still cooking, and when you are done, two people can wash up at the same time so you get finished in half the time.
Integrated sinks are good as well because you can wipe messes from the surfaces straight into the sink.
Plinth Vacuum Systems
If you want to cut down on cleaning time, you should consider installing a plinth vacuum system in your kitchen. Instead of getting on your hands and needs with a dustpan and brush, you can just sweep everything into it and it will be sucked away. It makes the whole cleaning up process a lot quicker and it’s easier to stay on top of it because it only takes a second to give the kitchen a quick sweep.
Good storage makes life a lot easier when you are trying to tidy and keep your kitchen clean, so when you are designing your kitchen, always make storage a priority.
One of the best ways to maximise your storage is to make sure that you buy custom kitchen units. It’s usually cheaper to buy the standard sizes, but they may not fit the shape of your kitchen very well and there will be a lot of small gaps that get wasted.
If you go to a kitchen designer and have them measure the room, they will be able to create a kitchen design that makes good use of every last piece of space in the kitchen.
Putting peg boards and hooks up on the wall is a great storage trick as well. Instead of wasting drawer space for pots and pans, you can simply hang them up near the stove. It’s quicker to put everything away and you have more storage space in the kitchen as well.
Got Something to Add?
Have you recently designed or installed a new kitchen for your home? Let us know your top tips by commenting below.
Until next time, thanks for reading.
Helen, Nial and Lewis.