by Andi Hook, Hook & Hook Renovations –
Designing the “Heart of the Home” takes lots of effort, but in the end it’s worth it!
Let’s start with the overall look you want to achieve; I always do 2D and 3D plans for my clients so they can see what their space will look and feel like in real-time. Some of the questions I like to ask are:
- Do you want simple shaker doors or something with more detail?
- Crown moldings?
- Inlay cabinetry or European-style full overlay?
- Do you want painted or wood?
- Do you want all the cabinets the same colour, or perhaps the island/peninsula should be a different colour?
Walk around the space and think about where you like to do certain things, for example:
- Do you want counter space beside your fridge, or would you prefer a pantry?
- Would you like a built-in microwave or over the range? Another option to consider is in the base cabinets?
- Who does most of the cooking?
- Do you entertain a lot?
- Do you have kids that like to do their homework at the island?
- Do you have dogs? And if so, would you like to incorporate a drawer in the toe kick for their food and water dishes, and a nice deep drawer for their food storage?
You should always have a good working triangle in your kitchen. For instance, the distance between your sink to your fridge shouldn’t be longer then nine feet or closer than four feet. Without the proper spacing your kitchen will be far less functional and restrictions can cause issues such as:
- Not enough prep space;
- No landing area for hot dishes; and
- Less room for more than two cooks at a time.
Pantries are a huge asset in any kitchen. They offer storage for food, dishes and small appliances. I prefer a pantry with doors on top and drawers below. However, not everyone wants drawers, so pull outs behind the doors is another great option. Remember: when it comes to these decisions it’s all about your preferences and the convenience it provides you in your kitchen.
Drawers for lower (base) cabinets are part of every kitchen I design. You can make them as deep or shallow as you want and in them you can store your plates, bowls and glassware, pots and pans. You can also customize the drawers to fit containers filled with your favorite baking supplies!
Lighting is another important factor to be considered. You’ll need plenty of light in your kitchen for the gloomy winter days and evenings. Pot lights are great options for general lighting applications. Once your general lighting has been decided you can add under-counter task lighting, a pendant over the sink, the island or peninsula. This is where you can have some fun with the lighting design and add that much needed “bling” to your space!
The possibilities are endless, and the process can be overwhelming for most people. You’re not alone! A professional kitchen designer can help you achieve the perfect kitchen for you.