The kitchen is possibly the most important space in your home. When everybody’s busy living their own lives, meal times are often the only times that families really get to be together. Your kitchen is also often where you will do the majority of your entertaining, and where your kids will learn important lessons about cooking and food.
If you’re redesigning your kitchen you’ll want to create a space that allows for all of these things, while at the same time being practical. Plus you’ll want it to be a room that looks and feels great to be in!
Make It Open And Inviting
If you are wanting to create a kitchen that is open and inviting to guests and family alike, it can be a really good idea to make your kitchen open plan and incorporate your living and dining rooms into the space.
There are a few reasons for doing this:
- It’s more sociable. If your kitchen and living areas are in the same room, it means that you can cook and chat at the same time! Much nicer than disappearing out to the kitchen every so often and leaving your guests to fend for themselves.
- Less risk of spillage. By serving up food in the same room as you’ve cooked it, you’re at much less risk of spilling your food everywhere en route.
- You can multitask more easily. If you have kids it seems the second you stop watching them, they do something to injure themselves or damage something! By having your kids set up to play in the kitchen, you can keep an eye on them while you get on with the things that you need to be getting on with.
Another great thing about an open plan kitchen is if your home is quite small, it makes it appear larger. Rather than having a small living room, kitchen and dining room you’ll have one large airy room that creates a feeling of space. Your kitchen renovation project becomes not only an opportunity to create a nice kitchen, but to transform your entire home.
Include The Kids
When you’re planning out your kitchen a little thought can turn it into a place that your little ones will really enjoy.
For example, if you get a small table for your children to sit at you’ll find that they automatically join you in the kitchen so you can enjoy more time together.
You can also use your kitchen as an educational experience. For young children you could incorporate a toy kitchen somewhere inside the real one so that your child can emulate what you are doing. For older children you can think about stocking your kitchen with things that will teach them about cooking and food preparation in an accessible way - for example be sure to have lots of cake-making equipment.
When you are designing your kitchen you have the opportunity to make it the room of your dreams! Think carefully about where you place your appliances and work surfaces, and your room will become a dream to use.
For example, you won’t want your sink to be all the way across the room from where you cook as cooking often requires water. Likewise, you don’t want your fridge too far from the cooking area either.
When choosing your countertops you’ll need to be mindful of budget, and of the fact that a kitchen that is being inhabited by children is likely to get spilled on! Bear this in mind and don’t choose any porous material for your worktops, or if you do, ensure that they are properly sealed.
You can use the design of your kitchen to encourage the behaviors that you want to see in your children. For example, if you place the healthy snacks in drawers or on surfaces that they can easily access you can encourage healthy eating! It also means that you can stop the endless requests for food, as your child will know where they can go to get the foods that they are allowed.
A kitchen can be a source of playful communication within the family. For example, fridge magnets in the shape of letters can be a fun way to leave each other little notes. They encourage reading and spelling for your kids, too.
Another great addition to a family kitchen is a blackboard. This also encourages communication within the family, means that your kids have a designated area that they can draw (better than on the walls!) and it’s a great place to record things to remember and shopping lists.