The kitchen is the heart of the home, a place to catch up with the family, open a bottle of wine and rustle up a delicious meal. So, when it comes to designing a kitchen there are so many aspects to consider in order to bring your dream to life! To give each step the consideration it needs, planning is key, and the best way to start this process is to break it down into manageable steps. This will enable you to not only eliminate stress but also avoid any costly mistakes or rushed decisions.
Here’s our advice when it comes to designing a kitchen that really works for you…
Consider your needs
Think about your daily life, and how the kitchen will accommodate your needs. Consider why your current kitchen doesn’t work for you and go from there. Is it a lack of space? Poor layout? Lack of natural light? Or perhaps it simply comes down to the decor.
If space is an issue, is it an extension that you need to consider? Whilst building work does add time and money, it might be the key to achieving your kitchen dream, so, if you have the budget, don’t rule it out. Not only will an extension allow you extra space to play with, you can also open up your home with glazing. Perhaps a kitchen extension will make room for beautiful sliding doors?
Think about how you want the new space to work, your kitchen must-haves and also the style of kitchen you want to go for. Will it be modern, minimalist and sleek, or perhaps countryside traditional?
Set a budget
Let’s be frank, kitchens are expensive. They are not a cheap fix or an ‘easy’ home improvement to make. Costs can quickly run-up, especially if you’re opting for the state of the art appliances.
A new kitchen is generally not an upgrade you’ll make all that often, so it is important to get it right and try not to cut any corners otherwise you may end up spending even more money to put it right. The most important areas of your new kitchen to invest in are:
- Worktops – always go for a premium worktop, where budget allows! You will want something that is both durable and aesthetically-pleasing. A good solid granite, quartz or real wood worktop will give your kitchen a superior finish.
- Appliances – again, you will want to go for the best your budget can allow for, as your appliances are going to be very hardworking elements in your kitchen! Invest in quality so you don’t have to replace or repair it in the near future.
- Glazing – this might not be an immediate consideration when you’re planning your kitchen, but natural light and patio doors can make an incredible difference to your space. More about this later!
- Units – don’t skimp when it comes to selecting your units! Thin, flimsy carcasses won’t stand the test of time, so invest in a thicker, better-quality cabinet. The good thing about investing in a quality unit is you can change the door design down the line if your tastes change without having to get a whole new kitchen.
Set a budget that includes both the price of the kitchen itself plus any labour, it’s also a good idea to have a 15% overspill for unexpected surprises. Get a few quotes, and always check for reviews before you invest! Top tip: create a budget spreadsheet so you can easily keep track of costs.
Plan your layout
Once you’ve got a clear idea of what it is you need from your new kitchen, alongside a budget, the fun can finally start! Planning your layout is one of the most important elements of designing a kitchen. You will of course want a layout that’s efficient and makes the most of the space available. There are certain things that will guide and affect your layout, including plumbing and heating. You will need to consider, for example, if your sink will be staying in the same place or moving, therefore, is extra pipework needed? Will you need to do any rewiring work for your appliances? Top tip: wherever you plan on housing your sink, it’s a good idea to have your washing machine and dishwasher nearby!
Upgrade your glazing
When designing your new kitchen, you will also want to think about your current glazing, and whether you can make any improvements here. If you’ve decided to extend your space, you will inevitably need to include new windows, and perhaps even introduce patio doors! This is a great chance to improve the natural light in your home and create a bright, inspiring kitchen that you’ll want to spend time in. Here’s how some of our lovely customers have used glazing to elevate their kitchen:
Framing the view with fixed glazing
Look here for major kitchen inspiration! We are loving the addition of our bespoke fixed glazing to Laura Crombie’s kitchen. It’s a fantastic way to let the light flood in and make the most of the outdoor views. The rattan decor touches add another way to bring nature into the home, and contrasting cupboards make a real statement.
Connect the home and garden with bifold doors
Bifold doors are a fantastic way to open up a wall of your home thanks to their accordion-style design. You can connect your two spaces and enjoy a seamless transition from inside to out. Ideal for those who love to entertain and spend time with the family. Allowing extra natural light into the kitchen and views of the garden, it’s no surprise that they are such a popular choice for homeowners.
Enjoy open-plan living
Perhaps one of the reasons for designing a new kitchen is because you’re opening up your home to open-plan living. Take inspiration from this breathtaking home! They installed our bespoke sliding doors to make the most of their outdoor space, connecting with the garden and enjoy a light and airy living space. Note how they’ve stuck with one main colour theme of navy to connect the three spaces, making it cohesive. Home envy? Just a little bit! Photo courtesy of Harvey Norman Architects.
It’s not just doors and windows to think about for your new kitchen, why not take inspiration from this home and install a rooflight too? It’s a great way to allow extra light into the room and not to mention a beautiful focal point. This stunning kitchen and dining room benefits from not just a pitched rooflight, but sliding doors and fixed glazing too. It’s the perfect combination for creating a bright and open living space.
A touch of French chic
French doors will always be a classic that never dates, and we think they look just wonderful on this thatched cottage extension. The curved roof allowed for fixed glazing to surround the doors, increasing the light and making for a unique project! We love the real rustic wood countertop used on the island, doesn’t it look great?
Think about floors and walls
Once you’ve made a decision on your kitchen layout, design and glazing, you will also want to finalise plans for your walls and flooring. If you’re going open plan, you may want to follow through with the flooring already used in other rooms, this will create a connection between the different spaces and is generally the best option. If open-plan isn’t on the agenda, then why not think about playing around with patterned tiles? Porcelain tiles are popular as they are robust, scratch-resistant, and can also work with underfloor heating. Stone-look tiles are another option and are increasing in popularity, but do be mindful that if you decide to opt for a real stone tile, they are quite porous and can easily stain.
When it comes to your walls, this will be determined by the units you have opted for. The kitchen isn’t the most relaxing room in the house, it’s generally buzzing with the sound of cooking, music, and good times! That’s why it’s a great room to experiment with colour and have a bit of fun. If you’ve gone with colourful units, you may want to pair this with a neutral wall and bring out more pops of colour through your accessories. Or perhaps you’ve gone for a neutral kitchen design and want to bring in colour with a blush or pale green wall? Whatever you choose, make sure you inject your personality into it and have fun.
We hope you now feel inspired to design your own kitchen! Why not check out our other home decor blogs for more home improvements inspiration including:
- How to create an eco-friendly home
- How to make your home cosy for autumn
- Open plan living; how to get it right
If you have any further questions regarding any of our glazing products, you can also contact our team by calling 01487 740044 or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.