The family home is where the best memories are made: whether it’s laughter, tears, excitement or anxiety it happens here. And, whether it’s a birthday celebration, a quiet coffee with a dear friend or simply listening to your child read while you prepare the evening meal, many of these treasured memories are made in the kitchen. That’s why family homes need family kitchens. Kitchens that are intensely functional (i.e. enough room for a few adults as well as a budding young chef or two), as well as stylish and beautiful.
In today’s busy family life, the kitchen needs to be more than a food prep area. Casual entertaining has become the norm, and many families gather in the kitchen to socialize and relax. Of course, your new kitchen will have to fit inside your given space, and it needs to reflect your personal preferences and suit your lifestyle, however, here are a few tips to think about when planning your family kitchen layout:
Before you put pen to paper to begin sketching out your remodel, take the time to think about what you want to get out of your new kitchen. Talk to each family member that will be using the space and get their ideas. Taking the time to plan your kitchen is something you won’t ever regret.
Here are a few things we recommend putting some thought into before going ahead with a reno;
- how many people will need to use the space at one time
- is space required for children’s homework etc?
- do you plan to have family meals in the kitchen?
- are pets eating or sleeping in the kitchen area?
- is a walk-in pantry/appliance storage area neccesary?
- size and number of white-goods to be included – fridge/bar fridge/freezer/dishwasher/microwave
Keep it simple
Family life is busy and often hectic, so it pays to keep your layout simple. Allow plenty of walking area to prevent congestion, particularly if you have little people who’ll be in the kitchen when you are. Not only is this intensely practical, but it’s necessary to maintain a safe working environment.
Include an Island
Island benches have become very popular in many homes because they provide a place where family members can sit and chat while the meal is being prepared. As well as being perfect for the casual entertainer, they also provide a lot of extra storage area and another food prep surface as well.
It’s impossible to have too much storage in the genuine family kitchen. Apart from all the regular paraphernalia that goes along with cooking, try and include some storage space for appliances. Why not include a space for all those other bits and pieces that seem to end up in the kitchen! A walk-in pantry with full height shelving is fantastic for your food items. Installing a shelf that is too high for comfortable reach can be used to store items that you only use ‘once in a blue moon’. Take time to research storage ideas and visit kitchen showrooms to get tips on maximizing your storage space: a cleverly designed kitchen uses every spare inch!
If your family kitchen is like most, it will get well used. That’s why it’s important to think carefully about the materials you use in its construction. Your kitchen needs to be stylish and modern as well as intensely practical. It’s wise to pick a hard-wearing bench-top surface that will meet the demands of your lifestyle. Not too mention choosing good quality hardware (hinges, door handles etc) that stand the rigors of family life!
At Wonderful Kitchens, we love designing and installing family kitchens. For more information on designing your family kitchen call us today on (02) 9972 2988 and chat to one of our team members.