1. THE TRIANGLE
As much as is practical, stick to the principle of the working triangle, positioning the sink, hob and fridge in a triangular formation, just a few steps apart.
2. WORK SURFACE
One thing you can rarely have enough of when you’re cooking! Try and plan the kitchen to maximise the amount of free work surface. Try and plan for a clutter free work surface that’s easy to keep clean. Think about what kind of work surface will be practical for you not simply based on how it looks but on how it will suit your lifestyle. For example: While natural wood work surfaces look fantastic when installed, do you have the time and patience to keep it looking good?
3. THE IDEAL
Think about how you would like to cook (not necessarily how you cook in the kitchen you have now), and how you would access to your most commonly used utensils. List the items in order of importance to you, then plan around this ideal. If you’re a casual cook the layout may not be as important, but if you do a lot of cooking it’s important to get the layout absolutely right – you’ll be spending a lot of time living with the result.
Think not only about how you store things, but also how you access them. Drawers are more efficient and easy to access than deep cupboards. There are a wide selection of pull-out units/drawers that will not only help utilise space but make it much easier to access items. Think about using the full height of cupboards – not only the depth and width.
5. AVOID OVERCROWDING
Try not to over-cram in as many standard kitchen units as possible. Think about the storage you need and try and think how you can fit everything in without filling the whole space with cabinets – it will only make the space feel cramped. For example: a cabinet at eye level with open shelves will feel less imposing than a cabinet with solid doors, but if dust is a problem perhaps framed glass doors could be the answer? It’s important to think about what you will need to hand, and what you don’t use so often.
Difficult to access, but well worth using the space. This is where having a specialised pull-out corner unit could prove well worth the investment. If there was one space-saving item I would recommend most, it would be this!