LESS IS MORE IN SMALL KITCHEN DESIGNS
September 27, 2023
Function over form is key for the design of a small kitchen to ensure that the kitchen functions to the best it can. This way you can get the most out of the space and allow the kitchen to flow. Our Sales Design Director Kevin Buchanan says: “Don’t be tempted to cram too much into a compact kitchen design as less is definitely more allowing a greater feeling of space. However, do utilise ‘dead’ space where possible, such as increasing the height of wall units to reach the ceiling, or reducing plinth height to gain more cabinet storage.
“Always bear in mind the regulations required when refurbishing any kitchen, and especially one where space is at a premium. Planning requires adequate turning and activity space so always be mindful that the space is practical and fit for purpose even if only one person uses it.”
To give the illusion of greater space opt for mirrored splashbacks or reflective cabinets as the reflection makes it feel more spacious.
The type of kitchen layout is restricted in smaller kitchens but the galley design tends to be the most usual for small kitchens, although U or L shaped work equally well, especially when you have flexibility to reduce the depth of furniture.
Kevin adds: “Small kitchen layouts are usually dictated by the space available and the location of walls but a talented designer will maximise that area.
“Storage is king for compact spaces as everything needs to neatly have its space to avoid clutter. Luckily contemporary kitchens have excellent solutions such as 360 carousels in Le Mans corner units, racks fitted to the backs of doors to store dry goods, fully extendable drawers with fitted interiors for spices, tin foil etc. You can even make full use of the area between the wall cabinets and the worktop with knife holders and spice racks.
“Pocket doors are the perfect way to hideaway appliances or cooking areas as they can be slide flush in beside the unit when open and then provide a sleek uniform look when closed.”
Choice of colours and materials is important so where possible opt for one colour or material and avoid contrast as that can become busy to the eye. For worktops, Kitchens International recommends seamless Corian as it has no visible joints and can be moulded not just for the worktop but also the splashback and the sink offering one long run of material and colour.
When space is at a premium, appliances can also be slimline. Ovens come in a range of heights so the 450mm multi-functional oven is a perfect choice, as is a slimline dishwasher with a width of just 450mm rather than standard 600mm. Get rid of a kettle cluttering the worktop by installing a boiling water tap where boiling, hot, cold and even sparkling can all be dispensed from one tap. Don’t take up space with free standing bins – most kitchens can accommodate a multi-bin system where recycling and compost can be accommodated under the sink.
Lighting in a smaller space can transform the look. By layering lights or utilising different types and brightness of lights for different areas, gives the illusion of greater space. Even a simple dimmer switch helps provide a layering of light. But remember that work areas should be well illuminated to avoid shadows and dark corners. Equally flooring needs to be simple and one run if possible, avoiding fussy or patterned designs.
By choosing a clever, space enhancing design will transform the area into a wow kitchen.