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5 things to avoid when designing a kitchen

Johannes van Graan Johannes van Graan
Greenwich Design and Extension by Urbanist Architecture Modern
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Urbanist Architecture, a RIBA-chartered practice, is the professional bringing us today’s inspirational piece. For this London-based professional, UK planning law and residential architecture has been at the forefront of its daily operations for over a decade. And Urbanist Architecture is not showing any signs of slowing down, as evidenced by its growing portfolio detailing a rich collection of residential extensions, renovations, conversions, and newly built houses and flats. 

For today’s piece, we tackle some of the most common design errors encountered while breathing new life into the heart of every home: the kitchen. Yes, when done correctly, a kitchen renovation can improve a household’s function and boost a house’s value, yet while contemplating those worlds of colours, patterns and furnishings, one must remember never to put finishes before a function. 

Let’s look at 5 of the most common kitchen design mistakes to avoid which, thankfully, the experts over at Urbanist Architecture managed to sidestep quite stylishly…  

Mistake 1: Overlooking the work triangle

Smart kitchen and dining area by Urbanist Architecture Modern Metal
Urbanist Architecture

Smart kitchen and dining area

Urbanist Architecture

Any kitchen is, first and foremost, a working zone. That places a lot of importance on the location of your stove, sink, and refrigerator, which make up the three points in the work triangle. Remember to allocate enough space (about 1.2—2.7 m) between each point and keep their paths clear of any appliances, cabinets, or trash cans. 

Mistake 2: Not accounting for adequate storage

Everything from your spice jars to crockery pieces need to be placed and stored in such a way that it doesn’t add to a cluttered look. We know the temptation can be great to keep adding to the list, but keep the less-is-more look in mind to avoid overcrowding your brand new kitchen.

Mistake 3: Neglecting ventilation

Smart kitchen and dining area Minimalist dining room by Urbanist Architecture Minimalist Wood Wood effect
Urbanist Architecture

Smart kitchen and dining area

Urbanist Architecture

Proper ventilation is crucial for any space dealing with scents and hot surfaces. And while we do love the delicious scent of freshly baked bread, you don’t want the rest of the house to smell what’s going on in your cooking zone. 

Invest in a suitable ventilation system that is competent when it comes to capturing impurities, circulating air, and keeping your kitchen clean. If possible, avoid reasonably priced products that only re-circulate the flow of air while use loads of energy. Keep searching for the perfect solution that’ll keep the noise levels and energy use to a minimum.

Mistake 4: Skimping on lighting

Open-plan living area Modern living room by Urbanist Architecture Modern Wood Wood effect
Urbanist Architecture

Open-plan living area

Urbanist Architecture

Your kitchen deserves lighting for a functional use as well as a visually pleasing aesthetic ambience. 

For prepping food, you’re going to need more direct, brighter lighting. Spotlights concealed under wall cabinets and in the ceiling are still the most popular, practical choice. And remember that they can be grouped according to tasks and installed with dimmer switches. 

For more sociable areas in your kitchen, go with living-room style lighting: pendants add a more focal light source and create striking ambience, and so do table lamps placed on a sideboard or on a countertop in a corner.

Mistake 5: Not sticking to your budget

Even if you’ve planned your kitchen renovation down to the last drawer knob, keep in mind that unforeseen costs are bound to pop up. The easiest easy way to avoid over-spending is by sticking to an inventory list and ensuring it accounts for both furniture and contents. And don’t spend money on impractical items that wear and tear quickly and will need to be replaced soon. For instance, if you dream about a solid wood worktop, yet you tend to cook a lot and have small children that could damage and stain it, maybe consider a laminate wood-effect worktop which could be more cost efficient plus work out more durable for your needs.

We feel this is the appropriate time to recommend these 5 tips to help you create more storage space at home.  

Are you planning on giving your kitchen a fresh new look? Tell us all about it...
Whitton Drive by GK Architects Ltd Modern

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