Prioritize the Functionality of the Space
photo: Plan Forward
Kitchens are all about function. You need the space to cook and prep for meals, of course, but think about how else you want your kitchen to function. Is it going to be a place for entertaining? What about a space where the whole family can eat breakfast together? Or where you can help out with homework while watching TV? If you want your kitchen to be a catch-all space or an entertainment hub, you’ll need to incorporate all of that into your design. You might want to think about things like whether you’ll have a kitchen island or peninsula if you need additional seating, and what kind of flexibility you need in the space. You can make a list of all the ways you want to use your kitchen, and what requirements to add into your design.
Consider the Flow with European Style Cabinets
photo: Home Sphere
Designers call it the “work triangle” — it’s the distance between your stove, refrigerator and sink. This space can make or break the workflow of your kitchen! You will need to move between those three points often throughout the day, and any obstacles can cause major disruption. For example, if your stove and sink are too far apart from each other, you might find yourself running back and forth with hot dishes or pots full of water too frequently. You want to have all the features your kitchen needs, but also have them laid out in a way that’s functional and easy to use.
Optimize Your Storage Solutions
photo: Golden Home
Not having enough storage is usually the number one complaint about a kitchen. With European style cabinets, you can get a lot of storage out of your kitchen. These cabinets are frameless, which means they can accommodate more bulky objects and can easily be outfitted with extra drawers, racks or storage solutions. The key to bettering your storage in your dream kitchen is planning on smart solutions. You can create an appliance garage with retractable doors to hide away small appliances, add a large pantry with lots of pull-out drawers, or outfit your kitchen island to store pots and pans.
Think about the items that you use most frequently and where they should be kept. For example, if you do a lot of cooking at home you might want to make sure your spice rack is right near the stove. You can have a pull-out drawer outfitted with a spice rack, or build on into your Euro cabinet door. Get creative and you can find a place for everything!
Let There Be Light
photo: Euro Cucina USA
The amount of light in your kitchen is an important step that shouldn’t be overlooked. Make sure your kitchen is outfitted with the necessary electrical components to handle three types of light: general lighting, task lighting and accent lighting. General lighting is what will provide the most light throughout your kitchen. It can be something like recessed pot lights across the ceiling, or a lighting fixture over an island or table. Task lighting is the light that will help you perform specific tasks, like cooking. Under-cabinet lights are a great idea for task lighting. You can install LED lights under your Euro style cabinets to provide extra lighting on the countertops and cook spaces. Finally, accent lighting is a bit of extra light that adds to the overall design of your kitchen, like a stylish pendant light. Light can also be used to make your kitchen look and feel spacious and bright, so smaller kitchens can benefit from bringing in as much light as possible.
Pick the Right Appliances
photo: Inspired Kitchen Design
When you’re planning the layout of your dream kitchen, you have to keep all your appliances in mind. Don’t leave it until the last minute! If you plan on cooking a lot, you might want a spacious six-burner stove or cooktop. An appliance of that size will require more space in your layout. You’ll also need to plan for a gas or electric stove, and where it can be installed in your kitchen, and whether or not you’re going to add a range hood. The same goes for your other appliances: do you want a counter-depth fridge that aligns with your European style cabinets for a more streamlined look? Do you want to have built-it appliances that can be hidden behind your cabinet doors? Once you decide on your kitchen’s needs, you can start to plan how your appliances will work with your design.
Choose the Best Materials
What’s a dream kitchen without a luxurious countertop? The materials you choose for your countertops will not only make your kitchen look good, but can also improve the longevity of your kitchen. A durable quality material that won’t damage easily will stand the test of time and increase the time between renovations. Quartz cabinets are some of the most resistant countertops you can choose as they are non-porous and heat resistant, and it also is one of the most desirable materials thanks to its natural beauty. Granite is also extremely durable but will require re-sealing every year to keep it stain-free.
You should also use the best materials for your European style cabinets. Natural hardwood is durable and sturdy and isn’t likely to warp or lose its shape over time. You can also opt for laminate, which is incredibly durable, easy to clean and is more lightweight. Your choice of finish on your Euro cabinets is important too: a shiny gloss coat can brighten the room easily, while a matte finish can look striking but may require more frequent cleaning.
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