It’s the heart of the home, so make sure it’s a space that’s suited to your family’s lifestyle. Here are five ways to customise your kitchen
You’ve heard it before, but it doesn’t make it any less true; the kitchen is the heart of the home. This may be especially true for Kiwis. With a penchant for entertaining and a love for cooking, our homes are designed to make the kitchen a hub of activity.
Functionality is the key to a successful kitchen and with open-plan layouts becoming the popular choice, you’ll want to make sure your new kitchen not only suits your living needs and budget but also reflects your style. Here’s how to customise your kitchen to work for you:
The layout of your kitchen will partly be determined by the size and layout of your home, but it should also be influenced by how you intend to use the space. It’s a good idea to outline your living, entertaining and cooking habits. Ask yourself; is this a space purely just for cooking, or do you need it to be a space where people can work, sit and hang out at?
A line kitchen is a great solution for small spaces. It runs along a single wall, which makes it a great choice for apartments or baches where space is at a premium. Because of its simple, no-fuss design, line kitchens are easily incorporated into an open-plan space.
Another layout well suited to open-plan living is the L-shaped kitchen. As the name suggests, one side is longer than the other. It offers more bench space and with the addition of an island, creates the perfect kitchen for entertaining.
For those who want their kitchen to be more for cooking and not an entertaining space, a galley kitchen ticks this box. This layout features benchtops that run parallel to each other. It’s an incredibly functional layout, which is why it’s used in most restaurants, because everything is in easy reach.
And for busy households that require plenty of bench space and ample storage; the U-shaped layout is the way to go.
Once you have decided on your kitchen layout, you can further customise your kitchen by adding (if your layout allows for it) an island. Kitchen islands are ideal for entertaining as they provide an extra surface to serve at, allowing the kitchen bench to remain the work station.
But don’t just think of islands as a more solid table. They’re also a great way to add more storage in your kitchen, possibly provide the space for a wine fridge and an extra sink.
Customise your island further through design choices. If you’re looking to make it a feature, consider wrapping your bench down each side in a waterfall effect. Think about inset lighting under the breakfast bar and material and colour choice.
Choosing the right kitchen bench will come down to look, level of maintenance and budget. PlaceMakers Kitchens offers a few different options: engineered stone, laminate and solid surface.
Engineered stone is the most common type of natural stone for benchtops. They’re known for their strength and durability, and their slightly higher price point. Engineered stone has a sleek, contemporary look, which suits a modern interior style. It’s the ideal material to create a waterfall edge on a kitchen island.
Solid surfaces, such as Primestone Solid Surface available at PlaceMakers, give a seamless finish with no visible joins. It’s similar in appearance to stone, however, it’s warm to the touch and at the cheaper end of the scale.
Laminate is the least expensive option but comes with the widest range of colours and textures. From solid colours to timber looks to stone-type designs, as well as the option for matt or gloss, laminate is an incredibly versatile option.
Whilst the benchtop, cabinetry and island are the major players in the kitchen, it’s the smaller areas, such as the splashback, where you can really add some personality. Here is the perfect small canvas to put your style stamp on the space.
Keep it simple and classic with a white subway tile look. Or, make it the main event and add a bold dose of colour and texture. The splashback is normally quite a small area of the kitchen, therefore you can go bold without the worry of over-doing it.
Think about shape, style and finish. If you’re wanting a neutral look that’s different from the norm, try a textured tile in a neutral shade. Want to go bold? What about wrapping your benchtop up the wall and pairing it with a rich wall colour?
Drawers and cabinetry:
Here’s where function comes in to play. An important part about customising your kitchen to your needs is ensuring you have enough storage to suit your lifestyle. PlaceMakers offer award-winning Hettich Atira soft close drawers and cupboards, which can be customised with cutlery and storage inserts, making them the ideal choice for a new kitchen.
Consider how many cabinets you will need, where you can put them in your kitchen layout and whether you want them to have a seamless design, or have handles.