Step-by-Step Guide to Planning Your Perfect Kitchen
When renovating your home, choosing a new kitchen is often one of the most exciting projects you will do. However, it can also be one of the most expensive, stressful and time-consuming ones too. There’s a lot to take on board, especially for someone inexperienced, from picking out the right style to finding the right designer and agreeing the layout. No matter how tempted you are to rush into a showroom and choose a design right away, it is always best to take plenty of time to consider exactly what you want in your new space.
This can be made easier by breaking down the planning process into more manageable steps. You should think of kitchen design as a journey and give each step plenty of time before moving forward with the next one.
Whether you’re an amateur designing your first kitchen or you have done several, it is worth reading on to learn more about everything that goes into the process.
1. Assess all your needs
Start with a clear-out of all of the stuff you no longer use, so they’re not factored into your list of needs. Now, look closely at every aspect of your existing kitchen and make an extensive list of all of the things you like and dislike about it. This list could include anything from how much storage there is, where the storage is, the appliances you have and the colour of your cabinets. You will now have a list of the areas that you need to focus on retaining or improving on particular aspects.
2. Think about plumbing and electricity
Think about whether you will be using the existing plumbing for your sink and other appliances or if you will need additional pipework for changes you’d like to make. For example, if you’re planning to add a kitchen island that contains your sink, you need to ensure that all of the plumbing and electricity supplies are in place before the flooring is laid. You also need to work out where all of your appliances, big and small, are going to be and ensure you have plug points exactly where you need them to be.
3. Consider lighting options
When you are planning the lighting in your new kitchen, it is always a good idea to make sure the system is flexible, so you can regulate different areas of it independently. Secondary lighting, such as spotlights above cooking and preparation areas is useful to bring a different mood to the room and allows for precision. Consider the size of these areas and how they need to lit to avoid some surprises down the line when your kitchen is almost complete as these can be a nightmare to sort out.
4. Be Inspired
The look of your kitchen is very personal to you as an individual but it really helps to collect images online and from magazines and put them into a scrapbook or mood board. Especially making note of the surfaces, materials and accessories that you’ve seen work well together. The things you put in your scrapbook can be as simple as a pretty plate, tile, piece of furniture or scrap of fabric as they can be a starting point for choosing a theme or colour scheme for your ideal kitchen.
5. Consult a kitchen designer (like us!)
In order to get the maximum potential from your space, getting the input of a professional kitchen designer will prove invaluable. The experience and expertise a professional brings will off you plenty of simple and innovative ideas that you might not have considered yourself. They will have the most up-to-date knowledge of products, fixtures and fittings and can source them all on your behalf.
6. Set your budget
Firstly, you should always be honest about how much you can dedicate to remodelling your kitchen, so your designer can help you decide exactly what aspects you can save on and where you can invest more money. For example, open shelving is less expensive than close cupboards and low-level, pull-out storage may mean that you need fewer wall units which will save you precious costs there.
7. Call in the professionals (also like us!)
So, you’ve found your designer, chosen your layout and style and paid your deposit for your new fittings, but what happens next? You need a team to install it. It’s important to remember that the way your kitchen is installed can make a lot of difference. If you choose a bad fitter, your ideal kitchen could become your worst nightmare, but a good one will be able to make your ideal kitchen look even better than you ever imagined.
8. Choose your finishing touches
The finishing touches are what bring your kitchen together and unify the design, making it feel more coherent. These touches can be subtle like pairing a timber breakfast bar with wooden stools or upholstering your seats with fabric that ties in with your splashback. Other small details like cabinet handles can make a big difference and help transform a simple white colour scheme into something really special.