Thinking about renovating your kitchen but can’t quite decide which layout design will work best for the space?
Sometimes it can be tricky to imagine your kitchen design any other way but there are several kitchen design layouts that are quite common in Australian designed homes.
The evolution of the kitchen had transformed rapidly over the years. From what was one an area confined to the back of the house, the kitchen has become the central meeting place for family and friends to gather, cook, work and socialise. It’s still the work horse of the home, but it’s an area that is now celebrated and very much on show. As such, a kitchen’s design needs to be functional and aesthetically pleasing in order to create a space to be proud of that is enjoyable to cook in.
So how do you decide which kitchen design layout with work the best for your kitchen when there are so many different types? Well, that’s where our guide below comes in handy. We have the answers your questions!
Before you start renovating your kitchen read up on these common kitchen designs to get some inspiration and determine which layout will best suit your space and your family’s needs.
The Work Triangle
You have probably heard the phrase ‘work triangle’ used loosely in kitchen lingo but what does it actually mean?
This magical term refers to the ‘efficiency and ergonomics’ of a kitchen in regard to the ideal distances and positioning of the elements within a kitchen. This includes the amount of space required between the cooking appliances, refrigerator and the sink. This ‘triangle’ worked fine for kitchens back in the day, however, our needs have changed over the years so the ‘working triangle’ concept has needed to evolve somewhat. There has been a marked increase in the number of appliances housed in a modern-day kitchen from 3 to 6. Generally these include:
- Cook Top
Being able to adequately accommodate all of these additional appliances has meant the ‘working triangle’ has had to progress in its design a little. For example, today’s modern kitchen designs may incorporate two overlapping triangles, or replace the triangle with a square.
Regardless of the number of appliances a kitchen may have, the key to a successful kitchen design relies on the following critical elements: * Allow for efficient work flow * Ensure minimal distances to travel when utilising the space * Have adequate counter space close to all appliances * Have an adequate number of power points to run all of your appliances
Selecting one of the kitchen layouts below, (or combining some of the elements from each), will produce a kitchen that is both attractive and functional.
Single Wall or Straight Kitchen
The single-wall or straight kitchen combines cooking, washing and storage zones which are housed in a single row of cabinets, usually against a wall. This basic kitchen layout design is ideal for: apartments, units or small homes with limited space. If space permits, a small kitchen island can be introduced which can be used to separate the kitchen from the living area. In smaller spaces an island on castors is a good idea as it offers flexibility to move it around if required.
Galley or 2 Walled Kitchen
Galley kitchen designs are also ideal for residences with limited space. This kitchen design features a central walkway between two rows of cabinets. The work triangle is clearly apparent in this kitchen layout. In addition, a breakfast bar can also be easily accommodated on one row of cabinets. A galley kitchen, is efficient in terms of food preparation, however, in some instances may have to double as a thoroughfare, which can make the kitchen inefficient if other bodies have to pass by while cooking.
L Shaped Kitchen
This kitchen design works well for an area that needs to utilise the corner of the room. An island bench or dining room table can be easily accommodated in the space.
L-Shaped kitchen designs are ideal for an area that has more room than the straight kitchen and galley kitchen allows. An L-shape is also good as it allows 2 or more people to work in the kitchen at the same time. It this design is suited to a larger room, equipment can be grouped conveniently without the need to travel too far between centres.
L Shaped Kitchen with an Island
A very popular configuration. This style of kitchen offers a bit more design flexibility as shapes can be created using the ‘island’. For example, a bar for occasional meals can be added. This design makes for a great entertainers kitchen as it allows guests to sit outside the work zone but still enjoy the cooking aromas and to chat to the chef while they work.
The U Shaped Kitchen
A very flexible kitchen design solution. This kitchen area is arranged as the name suggests, comprising of cabinets on three sides of the room. The U-Shaped kitchen design is ideal for areas where space is not a constraint.
It can be the most efficient in terms of reducing the amount of distance required to reach and work between the various elements. The sink is usually located at the centre of the U, with the fridge, pantry and cooking appliances on either side.
The U Shaped Kitchen with Variation
This kitchen layout allows for variation and commonly incorporates elements of the traditional u-shaped kitchen along with a galley kitchen. A walkway is still integrated in the design and cabinetry is situated on all four sides.
U-Shaped variation kitchen designs are ideal for areas where space is not a constraint and that extra storage is required. If space permits, the addition of an island bench to the kitchen will increase bench space and cut down on the distance between storage and/or cooking facilities and the benchtop.
G Shaped Kitchen
A G shaped kitchen offers ample cupboard storage It also allows for extra bench space when there is isn’t enough space for an actual island. However, this shape an enclose the work space somewhat and may cause a congestion if more than two people work in it.
Open Plan Kitchen
Open plan kitchen designs are ideal for areas where the space is not a constraint and you want to encourage an overall ‘open plan’ feeling.
This style layout creates a larger open plan design by adjoining with another room such as the dining or lounge. This design can also accommodate a breakfast bar on two sides of the zone.
‘Wet’ Kitchen or Outdoor Kitchen
A concept that has been popular in Asia, a wet' kitchen can also be found in homes across Australia. We see more often in Aussie homes that the second kitchen has become an extension of the home as an outdoor / barbecue kitchen. If considering an outdoor kitchen it’s worth nothing that you will need to check the building codes and Australian standards and ensure compliance with the legal requirements.
Kitchen Refresh Ideas
Not quite ready to renovate yet? Here are some quick fixes to update and refresh your kitchen. No demolition required! Just by simply updating small items such as kitchen tapware, cabinetry handles or pendant lighting can give your kitchen a new lease if life. Also, a portable kitchen island is a great solution for an open-plan or straight walled kitchen as they offer design flexibility. The multi-purpose islands below can be wheeled to any desired location such as to one side of a kitchen when not in use or to the garden for outdoor entertaining.
Whatever your kitchen design choice, kitchen lighting will play a major role in not only the ambiance of your kitchen, but how easy it is to work in your kitchen. Each kitchen work station will require adequate task lighting in order to perform the given kitchen duty. By following these kitchen design principles, your kitchen really will come to life and have a heartbeat all of its own!
You are now equipped with an overview of the most popular kitchen design layouts and some great new design ideas. Often kitchens can be fitted in quite unusual areas, there is generally a fit for all and a successful design solution to every space.
Image Credits: bowerarchitecture.com.au | granite.dot.ph | homedesigning.com | dustjacket-attic.com | tustov.com | sipfon.org | uhome.us | buatmodalnikah.com | insideoutmagazine.com.au
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