A great layout is key to getting the most from a new kitchen, says Kya deLongchamps
Described by Terence Conran as the ultimate domestic trophy, the design of our homes today radiates not from isolated, formal living spaces but from the engine, the heart — it all starts in the kitchen.
We seem to have settled on some key new ingredients in our fit-outs, and this is because they just work so well. Deep drawers, recessed plinths, the polite tug of soft close, high-heat performance materials, and visible quality as standard.
A great layout that follows the strengths of the space, plus perfect installation, can make a mid-range kitchen look twice its worth. Simplicity and symmetry are crucial; increasingly, wall-hung cabinets are being replaced with sophisticated runs of floor units, providing a strong horizontal glide that improves the perceived spaciousness of the room.
The restrained use of on-counter cabinets give a pleasing counterpoint and welcome back to the pantry cupboard, a superb standalone with valuable cubic metres of storage.
If the kitchen is expected to perform a multiplicity of roles, providing two dining positions and leading through to your main living space, let a dedicated designer zone the room for flow and function.
Islands and peninsulas take working weight off the perimeter of the kitchen and will in some cases form the primary hub.
Where the budget allows, the wine cabinet, the pastry area, that second sink for food prep, and a nudge of Bluetooth technology are in-vogue add-ons.
Styling is the truly enjoyable moment, where you reference an aesthetic that resonates with you and your family. Installing glittering new appliances and hanging those doors and details on a superb floor-plan, that’s something to really celebrate.
Eclectic, contemporary, and traditional kitchens can wear subtle changes in cabinetry and materials, shrugging off the matchy-matchy restraint of the late 20th century.
Different timbers, use of glass doors over all blind cabinets, a block of colour — all lift your island from a sea of well-behaved neutrals. Adhere to a stylistic theme and seize that space as yours.