Common Kitchen Design Mistakes To Avoid
As one of Hampshire’s most well-established kitchen companies, our designers have seen it all. In fact, they’re regularly called to help replace kitchens that make some of the most basic kitchen design mistakes you can imagine!
Whether you’re thinking of working with us, or going it alone with your design, we don’t want you to fall victim to those kinds of potentially expensive errors. So, these are some of the mistakes common in kitchen design and how you can avoid them.
Underestimating the need for storage
The first common kitchen design mistake we see a lot involves the creation of an absolutely beautiful-looking space… that lacks anywhere near enough room to store everything!
And when you think about it, that just doesn’t work at all. A kitchen is, first and foremost, a practical space. We’re all for style, but you need some substance, too. Leaving enough cupboard and wall space for your pots, pans, crockery, cutlery, food, counter-top appliances, quirky little gadgets, and some decorative elements can leave you a lot to think about. Thankfully, our blog on how to make the most of smaller kitchen spaces has plenty of ideas – and they work if you’ve got a larger kitchen space, too!
Not leaving enough practical space
The need for practicality also extends to the most basic elements of kitchen usage. It’s no good having a beautiful space with enough storage for every item and foodstuff, but nowhere practical to chop food, mix ingredients, cook, plus wash items and leave them to drip-dry. Add in that fact that in some kitchens you’ll also want somewhere to eat, relax and socialise. Not factoring in all of these things and weighing up their importance to you before you start designing, is another common kitchen design mistake to avoid.
Going for a ‘flavour of the year’ design that dates easily
A brand-new kitchen is a big commitment, not to mention an expensive one. The last thing you want is a space that looks funky and fresh now but looks out of date just a year or two down the line!
While it is perfectly possible to bring in modern kitchen design ideas, we like to fuse them with a classic finish that gives the space a timeless look.
For instance, the industrial look is a firm favourite with a lot of our customers because a brush-metal finish on your worktops and breakfast stools is never going to go out of fashion. The same goes if you’re designing a kitchen space around the theme of a specific season. Regardless of what’s popular, these evergreen looks will always look great.
However, if you decide to design it around a particular era instead, that could be a mistake. You might find that 70s-style kitchen that was so en-vogue when you had the idea ends up looking like something you’d rather see on TV than prepare a TV dinner in yourself. Likewise with duck egg blue kitchens, which were all the rage a few years ago but have quickly dated. Take our advice: think ahead and don’t leave yourself with more expensive changes to make a few years later.
Not factoring in the working triangle
We first mentioned the ‘golden triangle’ in our blog on how to plan your ideal kitchen. So it just makes sense that ignoring it would be one of those mistakes not to do when designing a kitchen.
The theory behind the kitchen triangle is that the locations of your fridge, sink and cooker should form the three points of a triangle. This helps with flow as you move from food prep to cooking to clearing up afterwards, and also allows for more than one person to be in the space at a time doing different things. Ignore this approach with your design, and you’re likely to have people walking into each other, or end up falling over yourself as you try to cook food in the same space where you have the dishes piling up. Definitely not a good idea.
Not going big enough on the lighting
The kitchen is typically the heart of the home, so it makes sense that you’d want it to feel warm, inviting and bright – any time of the day or night. One of our favourite aspects of kitchen design is that there are several different ways to achieve this.
Low-level lighting, when used correctly in the right places, can come together to brighten the spaces you need it to – from your food prep space to your eating area. Alternatively, you may want to go for a single source of light, as you would in other rooms in the house. If so, then pendant or strip lighting can both be equally effective depending on the style of kitchen you prefer.
Whatever you prefer, make sure you avoid the common kitchen design mistake of not giving your kitchen enough light – you’ll be grateful for it down the line.
Forgetting to use the vertical space
This kitchen design mistake to easily avoid goes back to the piece on storage above – but you’d be amazed how many old, tired kitchens we see that don’t fully consider the vertical space.
There are different trains of thought on this. One is that your wall cupboards should extend as far upwards as possible in order to maximise internal storage space for food and crockery. The other is that the area on top of the cabinets can also be incredibly helpful for storing the larger appliances you may pull out in certain seasons or on special occasions.
Either way, the important thing is that you give some consideration to how you’ll use the vertical space and factor that into your design. The same is true with things like spice racks, magnetic knife strips, and internal shelving.
Deciding against getting professional help
We love a little Sunday DIY as much as anyone, but there’s a big difference between adding an extra shelf to a cupboard or fitting a bin to the inside of an under-sink door, and singlehandedly tackling a complete kitchen redesign.
It’s not just about aesthetics and the practicalities of kitchen design that we’ve mentioned above, either. A kitchen is chock-full of behind-the-scenes systems like electrics, plumbing and even ventilation, and putting a drill in the wrong place or fitting the wrong part, could have potentially expensive (and even dangerous!) consequences.
When it comes to these areas, we’d always suggest seeking the aid of expert tradespeople who know what they’re doing. Not doing is one of the most common kitchen design mistakes around – and also one of the most avoidable.
Helping you design your dream kitchen
Alternatively, if you decide to work with us to craft your dream kitchen project, we’ll get in touch with the right tradespeople for you – and make sure wherever possible that the entire project runs to timescales that match your needs.
Take a look at our Warsash kitchen transformation for an idea of how we go about making things easy at every stage of the design journey, then get in touch with us about the changes you’d like made to your space.