Considerations When Planning A kitchen
The boring measuring up is done and the layout has been decided. Now it’s time to plan your new kitchen! The exciting part is about to begin! There are many things you need to consider before getting the installation team in to make it into reality.
The first thing you need to consider is what type of flooring do you want? This will be the initial task that you or the design team will have to do once the old kitchen has been stripped out in readiness for the new one.
Pros: Warm, homely, can match an overall colour scheme. Affordable and slip resistant.
Cons: Collects dirt and mould easily. Harder to clean as food and bits can easily stick into the carpet. Prone to staining if something is spilt on it.
Pros: Easy on the eye, durable, long-lasting if well maintained, lots of colours to choose from to fit overall theme, easier to clean.
Cons: Can be expensive, can be susceptible to water or fire damage, water and spills need to be cleaned immediately as it can become slippery.
Pros: Beautiful, durable, fire resistant and long lasting.
Cons: Cold on feet, expensive, heavy and needs strong sub-floor, underneath collects dirt easily.
Pros: Huge variety of colours and designs, easy to install and clean. Can be laid on uneven surfaces, affordable.
Cons: Can damage easily, slippery when wet, can be hard to maintain.
Pros: Easy to install, affordable, comes in many ranges of colours and styles. This can be laid over old flooring.
Cons: Hard to re-finish if damaged
Pros: Inexpensive, durable and soft on the feet. Stain resistant, low maintenance and easy to install.
Cons: Prone to tearing and denting, can collect mildew easily, can be slippery when wet.
Pros: Environmentally friendly, easy to install with a range of colours and patterns, Affordable.
Cons: Must be sealed, not as durable or easy to clean
The kitchen is the hottest room in the house and needs a good, efficient ventilation system in order to get rid of heat, steam, smoke and other gases emitted during cooking. It is also a vital health and safety consideration, especially if you have children.
The humble window
This is one of the most natural ventilation systems and already a part of your property anyway. It may be advisable when considering placing your cooker near a window so any gases can quickly blow outside. Make sure that it can be opened easily and wide enough to be effective. Opening a window whilst cooking can also prevent the build up of condensation on your walls, thus stopping the growth of mould. Howeve,r if you are not fortunate enough to have a good window in your kitchen, or is not sufficient for the size of the room, it may be worth considering other options.
Cookers with Range Hoods
Some cookers come with a range hood, which is placed above the stove. They force rising air outside the room in one go and can also be mounted on the wall too. They filter out pollutants and eliminate odour too.
These sit high on your kitchen wall and suck up rising hot air and smoke. Depending on what type it either sends it straight outside or filters it into cooler air and blows it back into the kitchen. These are effective if you have high walls and only a small window.
These help with kitchens which are prone to mould and dampness in the walls and floors. They suck the moisture out of the air, preventing wallpaper from peeling and fungus developing. These will also help to discourage insects, which thrive on dampness from entering your home.
This is a good way of keeping the air fresh in your kitchen, by controlling the air quality and filtering out heat, moisture and pollutants which emanate from your appliances.
3. Kitchen Units
These are one of the most important features of any kitchen and the fulcrum of your kitchen activities. There are of course, hundreds and hundreds of different designs to choose from, but like with everything else it is important to choose one which suits you and your kitchen.
A basic set of kitchen units tend to comprise of the following:
Sink and base unit
Two base units with drawers
Two wall units, doors and two shelves
Housing unit for oven
(N.B this is just a yardstick to measure by)
Size and accessibility
One of the most important things about kitchen units is both their size and accessibility. It is no use having them sohigh that you need a ladder to reach them, nor is it advisable to locate them where anything can obstruct their doors. When measuring your kitchen space initially it is important that you take into account the opening circles of doors on kitchen units so they can fully open and close without obstruction.
One way to combat this problem is to install units with adjustable legs. This is also useful if your floor is slightly uneven.
When planning your kitchen it is important to take into account how tall you and your household is and how accessible you want each cupboard to be.
Your chosen material for the units could fit in with an overall colour scheme for your new kitchen or you may need strong, durable ones if they are to store lots of items and be constantly in use.
The joy of timber
Real timber is a beautiful material of which to make kitchen units with because of its availability in different grains, colours and thicknesses. They also offer a homely, comfortable look to your kitchen.
To give your kitchen a more modern look, veneer units are a good alternative. This is a wooden finish, which is applied to chipboard or MDF.
This is a reproduction of timber, with the advantage of being able to be painted different colours to suit a theme. These are similar to veneers in that they are applied to MDF or chipboard.
A cheaper alternative, vinyl can also be used for your kitchen units. These are moulded onto MDF panels and finished in a range of styles and colours.
Keep the work triangle of the kitchen -the three crucial points of the kitchen- cooker, sink and refrigeration as small and convenient as possible, to allow you to move quickly between each. It is also advisable to create a worktop between the cooker and sink for food preparation and somewhere to place pots which are to be used, such as pans for preparation and plates to serve on.
Planning for the future
It is also important to plan for your changing needs. If you are thinking of starting a family then it may be important to take this account when laying things out. A high cupboard to store chemicals and matches etc is essential if there are children in your household, while an uncluttered kitchen with a small working triangle may be something to consider if you and your household are in more advanced years.
http://www.diydoctor.org.uk/projects/planning_a_kitchen.htm#Quality of kitchen units: