No space, limited budget or a clash of opinions?
No problem, the experts are on hand to help
Compiled by Gabriella Bennett
Q. What should we consider when creating a kitchen from two rooms?
“If your new kitchen is being created from two rooms, regardless of shape, what will your space’s needs be? If you want a television area, perhaps a ‘modern dresser’ area can merge the kitchen and living space together. Write a list of the individual zones within the overall larger space and then decide how much room to allocate to each. Also think about the number of people using the space. You need to allow approximately 1.2 metres between a kitchen counter and dining table so that people can walk between the two, and to allow space for the dining chairs when people are sitting.”
Shaun Dunbar, Kitchens by JS Geddes
Q. What are the latest options for kitchen lighting?
“Kitchen unit lighting is no longer limited to under unit lights – almost every part of your new kitchen can now be illuminated internally by LED lighting. Warendorf go one step further and wire discreet lighting into the units to switch on conveniently when you open a drawer or a door.
Additionally, Warendorf LED under-unit lighting and shelf lighting can be dimmed by remote control to create different levels of illumination.”
Alan Craighead, Craighead & Woolf
Q. How can we combine safety and style?
“Safety issues in kitchens often revolve around the problem of main thoroughfares interfering with working areas. Keep your ovens (and other cooking items) in the working areas, and items for passers-by (drinks fridges/sinks/snack cupboards) out of the working area. This sets out different, designated spaces in your kitchen and gives scope for design features while minimising the risk of burns. In other words, always try to keep non-workers out of working areas.”
David Harrison, Clive Christian
Q. How can we make a contemporary looking kitchen last forever?
“Simple is better. The more new trends or latest fashions you incorporate into a living space, the more quickly it will become dated. This may be acceptable in a living room or bedroom as these can be redesigned at a fairly low cost, but a kitchen is always one of the larger expenses in your home. To achieve a timeless yet contemporary look, I would recommend some feature panels or inverted colour schemes, but don’t go too modern unless you are looking to replace your kitchen in the next 10 years.
Everyone would like a contemporary looking kitchen but how do we keep it looking timeless for as long as possible? There are a few options. Bauformat has achieved this by producing a coloured rail system which allows a customer to have a simple matt or gloss kitchen with over 20 colours of rails to choose from. As styles change, the rail can be changed to suit the current trend with minimum cost, revamping your kitchen or giving it a whole new twist.”
Joe Franchi, Pieve Interiors
Q. What are the biggest trends currently coming to the fore?
Neutral shades are the most popular colour choice for worktops at the moment, with Silestone Blanco Zeus leading the way for Cosentino. These neutral tones are being mixed with wood to add warmth to a kitchen design. Grey is increasing in popularity, and customers are also starting to experiment more with marble-effect worktops, especially in more neutral colour palettes, to bring individuality to their kitchen.”
Laura Davie, Cosentino UK
Q. We’re considering an open-plan kitchen – how can we keep noise to a minimum?
“The types of materials that are chosen to use as surface finishes will have a big impact on how sound travels around the open-plan space. Materials such as vinyl flooring and wooden worktops will help dampen noise because they do not reflect sounds as much as harder surfaces, like polished porcelain floor tiles and granite worktops.”
Jennifer Myszker, Palazzo Kitchens
Q. What new ways are there to store cleaning products?
“Products are easy to store in pull-out drawers fitted into the base units next to the sink, if you wish to keep them away from the waste bin system.
Another option is a utility-type unit that has racks on the back of the door installed within a tall cupboard. Clients can choose the height and the width of the unit, starting from the mid height of 1460mm to the tallest unit of 2170mm. Available in several widths, these allows plenty of space for mops and hoovers.”
Veronika Hyblova, Selan Design
Q. What traditional and modern options do we have for storing dry food?
“Dry food needs to be easy to access on a daily basis, so there are various mechanisms that work well for base or tall units. Base dry storage units come in various sizes with corner carousels, kidney corner units, and pull out baskets being the most popular.
Our favourite unit is the 900mm wide storage centre we like to call ‘the magic larder’. This larder has solid bottom shelves with wire sides which swing individually and when moved reveal extra shallow shelves behind. With wire racks on back of the doors, this unit takes care of spices, dry food and still have space for bottles at the bottom. One unit does plenty!”
Veronika Hyblova, Selan Design