29 Nov How to achieve a quality fitted kitchen and layout
The kitchen is often called the hub of the home, a functional room used for cooking and cleaning. However, in more recent years kitchens have become more versatile, a room for entertaining, relaxing as well as cooking.
As a multifunctional space, careful consideration should go into the layout of your kitchen design. A professionally designed kitchen will allow you to move around the room with ease and efficiency.
The kitchen Working Triangle
The most used elements in your kitchen are the fridge, cooker and sink. A good kitchen layout will allow you to move between these elements with minimal effort. The layout should also provide enough space for you to work in the kitchen alongside other people. A well thought out kitchen triangle means you won’t be knocking into each other and running laps around a poorly designed kitchen.
An example of the working triangle can be seen in this fitted kitchen in Long Eaton, Nottingham.
Kitchens have become multifunctional with more people choosing to use their kitchen as an entertainment area. With this in mind, a good kitchen design should provide an open and inviting space that can be used for entertaining and cooking simultaneously. A great way to achieve this is to add a kitchen island with seating. A kitchen island creates a space where friends and family can relax and socialize alongside the working kitchen area.
The kitchen island is a good example of how guests can join you in the kitchen without encumbering the use of the working triangle.
An example of a kitchen island can be seen in this fitted kitchen in Long Eaton, Nottingham.
A well thought through cupboard layout is another way to ensure you have an easy to use and functional kitchen. Organise your kitchen cupboards to how you use the space. Decide which items in your kitchen are frequently used, and then locate them in easy to reach places. Similarly, situate commonly used items near to each other so you can fetch them with minimal effort.
Colours and finishes
Now you have the perfect kitchen layout it’s time to choose the colour and finishes. Colours are a personal choice and a chance to express your taste and personality. So which finish should you choose, matt or gloss? Don’t be half-hearted in your reply. The cabinet finish you choose can create a dramatically different look regardless of the material the cabinets are made from.
High Gloss Finish
High gloss is back in vogue. Gloss kitchen cabinet doors have a shiny finish that reflects light. This is one of the main reasons that gloss kitchens, especially white gloss kitchens, are so popular. A gloss finish is more suited to a contemporary-style kitchen with flat cabinet fronts than for a traditional-style kitchen. By reflecting light, the shiny finish of gloss cabinet fronts helps make spaces feel bigger and more open. Hence, this makes gloss-finish cabinets an excellent choice for small kitchen spaces.
If you are considering a darker colour for your kitchen, then another great reason for choosing a high gloss finish is that it’s easy to clean. As a result, this makes it a winner for homeowners with a young family. Dark colours normally absorb light from a room, but with a high gloss finish, this is not as much of a worry. The shiny surface will reflect light back into the kitchen. The paler the colour the higher the reflection of light, this is why white is the most popular colour for gloss kitchens.
Matt finish cabinets don’t reflect as much light and therefore have a flat appearance. With this in mind, a matt finish is the perfect choice for more traditional-style or country-style kitchen cabinets that have shaker style doors. A gloss finish is too shiny and modern looking for traditional style kitchens. However, a matt finish also looks good on contemporary-style kitchens and appears to be growing in popularity. In fact, in Europe, matt finish cabinet fronts are now more popular than gloss.
An advantage of matt-finish cabinet fronts is the fact that fingerprints, scratches and other imperfections are far less noticeable than on gloss-finish fronts. This is due to the lack of light reflecting off the surface and therefore makes any marks less noticeable.
The colour of matt-finish cabinets can look more consistent than gloss ones. This is because there is no reflection of light to make some areas of the cabinet fronts look brighter or darker than others.
Notice how the matt surface of the kitchen island has a consistent colour. Whereas the shiny gloss grey cabinet doors are reflecting the light.
Gloss and Matt finishes-Fitted kitchen-Long Eaton, Nottingham.
Once you’ve chosen your cabinets, the next big decision is which worktops to pair them with. You could create a sense of contrast by adding a lighter shade of worktop to dark cabinets, and likewise pairing dark worktops with a lighter shade of cabinet. Alternatively, you could go for a smooth feel by pairing lighter cabinets with pale worktops. This combination can make a smaller more compact kitchen feel more spacious.
There is a huge range of styles and finishes available for kitchen worktops. The most popular choice of materials is laminate, stone or Corian.
Laminate Kitchen worktops
Laminate worktops allow you to enjoy the stylish and sophisticated look of a timber or stone but for a fraction of the price. The next generation in laminate worktops give you all the performance you need and can take whatever your family throws at them. They are stain resistant, can withstand heat to 180 degrees and durable to scratches.
Qulaity laminate kitchen wortop – solid wood finish, fitted kitchen – Long Eaton, Nottingham
Stone Kitchen Worktops
There are few kitchen features more stunning than a natural stone worktop. Granite and marble are the two headline acts in this category, and both offer a timeless elegance that is very hard to match with other options.
Granite is highly durable and can withstand a lot of punishment. Not only is it stylish, but it will also last for the life of your home. However, it needs to be sealed to ensure it stays resistant to stains. It’s heavy and therefore difficult to install. Unfortunately, granite is also quite expensive.
However, it’s not as expensive as marble, which is the priciest option on the list. Marble looks spectacular and can add a touch of luxurious opulence to any kitchen. It’s strong and durable and will stand the test of time, plus it offers unique colour variations for individuality.
Like granite, marble also requires regular sealing and is quite heavy, which makes it difficult to install. However, if you’re looking for a top-of-the-line kitchen worktop, you can’t go past granite or marble.
Corian (Engineered stone) Kitchen Worktops
Along with laminate, Corian is one of the most popular kitchen worktop surfaces on the market. There is a wide range of different Corian options available, made from natural materials that are combined with silicon or resin. Corian worktops are worth considering for a number of reasons. They offer the same attractive looks like natural stone but with the added benefit of being less porous than the real thing, meaning less maintenance is required. They also provide a sturdy, durable surface that stands up well to everyday wear and tear, and come in a wide range of colours and effects.
To top it off, the fact that they’re made from crushed rock rather than large slabs like granite makes Corian options more affordable and they have a smaller carbon footprint.