KITCHENS: DESIGNING AND DECORATING THEM

Kitchens are a quite a special place in our homes. Probably, for most of us, the heart of it. So, as special as they are, we should keep in mind some important things when we are designing or decorating them.

Because I’ve been studying about decoration and interior design this past year I was astonished of how little attention we usually pay to this spot in our houses. Usually we end up spending much more on expensive fabrics, furniture and technology.

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First of all we should think about how we operate in the kitchen. Is it only a place to cook? But to eat too? Do we suddenly end up using it as a working space?

How do we move here? How do we put things in the counter tops? Am I tall or short? Am I right or left handed? So many things pop up when discussing about kitchens!

  • Storage: refrigerator, food…
  • Wet zone: the sink, dish washer, waste bin…
  • Preparation of food: hob, oven, cutting and chopping…
  • Serving: eating, tableware, cutlery…

There is kind of an agreement between interior decorators and architects that the best ergonomic way to set up this place is based on a triangle, the ergonomic kitchen triangle: (Refrigerator / Hob / Sink)

KitchenWorkTriangle

Some things to keep in mind:

  • Island: this is a good alternative when you use your kitchen as a place to eat too. The island could be where you cut and chop food, but at the same time where you eat. Also it is a good barrier between your kitchen and the rest of the area when you have an open space.
  • If you like to party and prepare big dinners for family and friends you could maybe consider having two dish washers instead of one. So there is always something clean to use.
  • Consider having rounded ends for countertops instead of squared ones. Otherwise you’ll usually end up hurting your hips.
  • Be sure to have enough power sockets, you will need them. Just be sure that they are not near any wet zone.
  • If you enjoy cooking you could maybe consider adding a sound system to the place.
  • Best sinks are always made of metal. They last longer and don’t absorb any kind of food or smell. Consider having one with a good depth where you are able to put a saucepan inside and wash it with no problem.

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VENTILATION

It’s a very important thing to review. You don’t want to end up smelling the scent of food you ate yesterday don’t you? Buy a good extractor, don’t save money on this. Consider also where the fresh air comes from (windows / doors).

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LIGHTING

A kitchen is a place where must be able to come in at any hour and use it without any problem. Whether it’s a 3am glass of water, breakfast early in the morning or cooking late with no natural light. Consider having more than one lighting circuit and try to add dimmers, they are always good, specially at night.

There are different types of light you’ll need:

  • Ambient Light: this will help you go around the place even when you are not cooking or using it.
  • Task Light: put it over areas where you’ll be cutting and washing.
  • Accent Light: good to highlight some areas. Avoid putting it on top of hot zones, such as a hobs or ovens.
  • Decorating Light: if you want to add a special design or create an atmosphere with a pendant light or chandelier.

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Pictures where taken from: houseandgarden.co.uk  If you are looking for more inspiration visit their site! Really good for decoration projects.

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