How to Plan & Design Your Open Concept Kitchen
While open kitchen designs continue to be desirable by most homeowners for remodels or new builds, it takes a great deal of thought to ensure they are fully functional and livable as well as visually appealing. It also takes a great deal of experience in home and kitchen design, as well as a track record of helping countless families realize their dream kitchen to know what works and what doesn’t. At Villane Building & Development, we’ve done this more than a time or two, so this guide is meant to help you plan and design the open concept kitchen of your dreams.
While open kitchen designs can make the space more inviting, it’s imperative to think about the layout and how you will live in and use the space. For renovations, moving load-bearing walls can be expensive, as can the need to move concealed important plumbing, electric and ductwork. Custom-built homes provide more flexibility but cannot overlook the need for a classic work triangle for a smooth flow between sink, stove, and refrigerator.
For example, a linear galley kitchen maximizes exterior wall use for a sink, cabinets, prep areas, and appliances. They are often teamed with a kitchen island directly opposite to provide additional counter, work, storage and seating space among other uses. This can visually and physically mark off the kitchen zone from the rest of the room and help keep the work area safely separate.
L-shaped and U-shaped open kitchen layouts can maximize separation and maintain a classic work triangle while still being an open concept with and without an island. Islands can become crucial elements to each of these general open kitchen layouts as the divider between the kitchen and living areas. It can also define the division between the prep and eating or gathering area with one side of an island designated for seating and the other for serving or preparation.
Space is never without limits whether it’s a new build or a remodel, so homeowners must make sure there’s enough room around an island to maneuver without encroaching too much on the living space. Continuous flooring across the living and open kitchen spaces can provide a sense of unity while making the overall space seem bigger. Kitchen lighting zone control as well as cooktop, sink or other appliance integration to the island are common approaches to open kitchens, but they require careful planning.
There are quite a few practical and aesthetic considerations for a successful open kitchen design. To truly integrate it into a larger space, homeowners must have a defined idea on how they prefer to live and move through a space.
Having a partner like Villane Building & Development that has deep experience in open kitchen designs can bring together all of a homeowner’s needs with the practical, aesthetic and safety aspects that must be considered. This enables the homeowner to have the support to create a design that works harmoniously with the adjoining areas while meeting a family’s lifestyle needs.