Helpful Hints When Designing Your New Kitchen

Choosing Between a Scullery or a Pantry: What Works Best for Your Kitchen

The kitchen is unquestionably one of the most challenging and expensive areas in your home to improve.Having professional advice from an experienced specialist kitchen designer will lower your stress levels throughout the process and may ultimately prevent you from making costly mistakes.

Uppermost to consider are your lifestyle and your family’s needs.

Are you a busy six-person household or an empty nester? Are you an apartment dweller or someone who prefers mess hidden away from view? Is this your forever home or a stepping stone to the home of your dreams? Whether it’s a beach batch or a grand home, are you a gourmet cook or the king of microwave cooking?

The needs you have for your new kitchen and your lifestyle should be considered when designing it.

And let’s not ignore your budget. Does it include the kitchen cabinetry, benchtops, appliances, and the necessary trades? Your kitchen needs to be designed to meet your needs, requirements, and budget.

A skilled designer will not only provide fresh kitchen ideas to help you achieve the kitchen of your dreams, but they will also offer advice on the best materials, products, and hardware that will maximize your budget. This guidance can potentially save you thousands of pounds and prevent unnecessary heartache compared to attempting to do it all yourself.

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The Architecture of Your Home – Is It Modern, Traditional, 70’s or Mixture of Eras?

While your kitchen will reflect your personality, you will need to work with the style and architecture of your home.

This doesn’t mean using lime green and orange in your 70s home or a provincial kitchen in your period cottage. It’s about adding a link between the old and the new.

Many traditional homes throughout New Zealand have had stunning extensions that may include a contemporary kitchen with wood overlay flooring or exposed aggregate concrete flooring. However, they may have added subway tiles, a freestanding stove, a Butler’s sink, and marble-look benchtops to create a link and relationship with the original architecture of their home.

Modern homes can still have a traditional look in their kitchens, and old homes can have a modern and sleek design. There are no strict rules, but you want a design that stands the test of time and is easy to clean and care for.

Lighting and Electrical

To create a relaxing space to enjoy, natural light is essential. Opening up the design of your new kitchen by using reflective surfaces for your cabinetry or a light splashback will bounce light back into the room if natural light is lacking.

Adding LED strip lighting under wall cabinetry can provide ambient task lighting to your preparation areas and can also serve as an accent during the evening.

Darker colours will absorb light, so using lighter colour choices will open up and lighten your space. Pendants and dimmers on downlights create beautiful mood lighting when you are entertaining.

Toe kick lighting and strip lights under the breakfast bar create a special effect for entertaining at night.

Power outlet placement can also help with the flow of your new kitchen. If you are considering adding a study nook or a dedicated study area, ensure there is an easy-to-reach power outlet for charging. If your outlets have single plugs, it is advisable to change them to doubles for more power options.

Also, consider the actual power outlet covers, as they are available in a selection of stunning finishes that can blend with your splashback color.

Consult with both your designer and your electrician for expert, professional advice on achieving functional task lighting, convenience for multi-use kitchen areas, and stunning effects to create the most beautiful new kitchens.

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The splashback and painting may be the last step in your kitchen renovation, but that doesn’t mean waiting until the end to think about these crucial elements, although you will have a better idea of the overall look once the cabinetry and worktops are installed.

However, a kitchen’s splashback can make the most amazing statement that needs careful consideration.

Glass splashbacks eliminate grout lines, are hygienic, and look amazing, and seamless, and the colour choices are endless, and imagery can be used to backdrop your stunning kitchen.

Splashbacks add light, depth, and texture to the look of your new kitchen.

Tiles are making a popular resurgence and can be an affordable option if you are working on a budget.

Perhaps you want to introduce patterns like herringbone, mosaic, geometric, or a particular colour with patchwork, or simply go for a simple white subway tile with contrasting grout.

Glass and tiles are the two most popular options to make a statement, but there are more options to choose from, including laminam, stainless steel, engineered stone surfaces, or granite that can be used as splashbacks.

The splashback area must be fire retardant behind your cooktop, so keep this in mind when choosing your final splashback finish and check this with your supplier before installation.

Bar Back

This is the panelling under the breakfast bar that faces out into your living area.

This can be in an accent material or colour, as this is an area that is well away from the task area, a wide range of materials can be suitable, including coloured panels, bricks, tiles, engineered stones, patterned panels, copper panelling, etc. Talk to your designer so you can be aware of all the different options for your stunning bar back.

Choosing colours

A coherent fusion of colour and finishes is a delicate line to tread. Going overboard with colour is a mistake often made when designing your new kitchen.

You have so many opportunities to layer colour and texture with a neutral base kitchen by using art, appliances, bar stools, and feature crockery, greenery, timber, or ply shelving.

With so many colourful small appliances, you can have a neutral kitchen but change the overall look without an enormous financial commitment.

If you do need that injection of colour, think about maybe painting a feature wall or using colour in your splashback.

When choosing your finishes, lay samples together along with your favourite using a mood board to help coordinate the colours and finishes for your new kitchen.

With modern technology, a 3D rendered picture of your future kitchen might be exactly what you need to visualise the final kitchen finishes. Discuss this with your design expert.

Finally, have fun designing your new kitchen. It’s not an everyday task for most people, but to interior designers and specialist kitchen designers, it is. Find someone you trust and enjoy the process. Love where you live and enjoy your new kitchen – you deserve it!