In contrast to the past, where kitchens were primarily used for cooking, modern kitchens are multi-purpose areas where we not only want to cook but also eat and work, watch television, listen to the news, and hang out with family and friends. In many households, the kitchen has essentially taken on the role of the ‘heart’ or central gathering place.
Creating the right core for each household requires meticulous preparation, with designers taking the time to understand the wishes and needs of each family in order to construct the most effective system possible. For those who are planning to build a new, people-friendly kitchen, some of these design suggestions will help it to become the gathering place of the house?
Look at an open plan design
An open-plan design is one of the most effective ways to create a convivial kitchen, and it is one of the most popular ways to accomplish this goal. Combining the kitchen with an adjoining living room or dining area can instantly increase the available space and open up a plethora of design options for you.
An open-plan space also means you can watch the kids, entertain friends or chat with your partner while you or they cook.
When properly designed, an open-plan layout can also ensure that the kitchen is easily – and safely – accessible to other members of the household, even when someone is preparing food there. The fact that others can enter the kitchen and open the refrigerator or a cupboard without getting under the cook’s feet, for example, makes it a much more sociable environment.
Invest in an island or plan a peninsula
Providing you have the necessary space, a kitchen island can be a very friendly feature, and it has proven to be particularly popular as a gathering spot for the entire family.
The fact that an island’s design can be customized at the planning stage to suit how you want to use it is another advantage. Growing families will benefit from a unit with different-height worktops or an adjoining table — a lower table can be utilized for breakfast, dining, doing homework, or simply enjoying a cup of tea and a conversation. Alternatively, you might choose to leave the surface of your island uncluttered and use the extra worktop area for baking or serving food.
Another option is to incorporate a sink or stovetop on an island, which allows you to cook while looking out into the room. Combining this with a seating area on the other side can be useful for educating your children about food while you cook using a recipe book stand, conversing with friends or family while you prepare a meal, or simply as an extra space where others can pursue their own interests while still immersed in daily family activities.
Peninsulas have many of the same advantages as islands, but they are also ideal for much smaller spaces where an island would be inconvenient or impossible to accommodate. They are excellent for adding visual clarity to a room as well as distinguishing between different portions of the room that will be used for cooking, dining, and lounging. In situations where you wish to keep your guests or family close by while keeping them away from the kitchen, this can be incredibly handy.
This is why many homeowners install a breakfast bar on the far side of a peninsula, with casual bar chairs beneath it, to get this look. When properly designed, this can be utilized for a variety of purposes, much like the island, including casual dining space, a place to have a glass of wine and a chat or to work on a computer, and a surface on which food can be served swiftly and easily.
Cool and casual seating
In addition to peninsulas, which have already been suggested as a fantastic way to increase workstation space in the kitchen, adding a casual breakfast bar or small adjacent table is also a smart option. In spite of the fact that you have a separate dining space, it is still beneficial to have a seating area in the kitchen.
A small number of stools, however, will instantly transform a room into something more functional and sociable, since they will provide a place to do schoolwork, a place to talk on the phone, or a place for friends to linger while you cook.
Lighten and brighten
No one wants to spend their time in a gloomy and dreary kitchen, which may seem like a simple point to make. When it comes to creating an inviting kitchen that people want to spend time in, having a well-lit area can go a long way towards attaining this goal.
First and foremost, make every effort to let in as much natural light as possible. The removal of a wall, or at least part one, and the installation of skylights or glazed bifold doors are examples of what can be done, as is simply ensuring that existing windows are not cluttered or obstructed.
Choose the correct sort and amount of kitchen lights to illuminate the space, and you may make the space even more welcoming by installing bright and warm-colored kitchen doors and worktops, rather than darker tones.
Lastly, strategically positioned mirrors that reflect the light from the kitchen can make a significant but very affordable contribution to creating a bright and welcome atmosphere.
It is critical that your kitchen is easily accessible if you want it to become the center of your home. Generally speaking, this means that it should be ‘clutter-free,‘ so that members of the home may use it comfortably. When people want to sit down at the countertop to have a drink of wine or something to eat, they should not have to compete with microwaves, saucepans, or the dishes from the night before.
A kitchen that is clear of clutter is also more appealing, which encourages people to spend more time in it. To attain this level of tranquility and tidiness, it is essential to have a sufficient and appropriate amount of storage space. They should also be easy to use — so that people will actually utilize them.
In this case, a skilled kitchen designer will ask the correct questions during the planning process and will be able to determine exactly what your space will require in order to remain effortlessly organized and thus inviting over time.