Designing a Better Kitchen

Installing a new kitchen ranks as one of the most popular home remodeling tasks, and it’s easy to understand why. Choosing high-end appliances and custom cabinetry is exciting. However, in the emphasis on designing a visually appealing space, many people forget these five essential elements of kitchen design:  

  • The Kitchen Triangle
    Many people consider the kitchen to be the heart of the home. It’s where food is prepared and, in many instances, where meals are eaten. The shape of your kitchen is less important than adhering to the principle of the kitchen triangle. The sink, refrigerator and cook top should form a triangle with no more than six feet between each element. Conforming to the kitchen triangle produces the most efficient arrangement possible for food preparation and serving.
  • Sufficient Storage
    Your kitchen should also include enough storage to accommodate small appliances, dishes and food. This may mean including extra cabinets for pots and pans, installing a pantry for food or extra countertop space for appliances like mixers and coffee makers. Consider future needs as well as present usage in planning for kitchen storage. If you’re not sure, it’s better to err on the side of more storage rather than less. Custom cabinetry is more expensive but may be a better choice in the long run because it uses space more efficiently.
  • It’s Electric
    Back in the day, the only kitchen appliances that required electricity were a toaster and perhaps a coffee pot. Today, microwave ovens, blenders, crock pots and electric knives all compete for electric outlet space with coffee makers and toaster ovens. Ensure that your kitchen contains enough electrical outlets to accommodate all your appliances. You should also ensure the circuits that serve kitchen outlets can handle the electrical load.
  • Taking Out the Trash
    No one likes to think about trash. However, planning a space for proper storage of trash and recycling receptacles is essential to maintaining a sanitary kitchen environment. Trash and recycling receptacles should be easy to access and store out of sight. If you plan to compost your organic trash, the composting receptacle should also be close to the kitchen but far enough away to prevent unpleasant odors from drifting in.
  • Proper lighting
    Proper lighting is frequently overlooked in kitchen design. However, task lighting is a necessity over kitchen workspaces such as the stove, countertops and the sink. Proper kitchen lighting should fall in front rather than behind so that you can see what you’re doing while prepping food, cooking or washing up after a meal.

Considering these five essential elements will ensure that your kitchen is functional as well as beautiful.