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For all you cooks out there, the kitchen work triangle is the most important area of the kitchen as it acts as the workspace. The work triangle consists of the cooking area, food storage (including the refrigerator and any other storage racks), and the main working counter. Whether you are looking to design your new house, or re-model or renovate your existing kitchen, it is important that you keep these kitchen space maximizing tips in mind to make the most out of the time you spend in the kitchen.

Kitchen Design Ideas

The first and most important tip is that the kitchen triangle should not be so large that its three corners are way too far apart, making it difficult for you to move around to grab things, nor so close that the traffic and movement area between the three points is blocked. An ill planned kitchen can have a lot of pitfalls, which generally include:

  • Cluttered counter tops
  • Storing things in the wrong place
  • Having too many tools, utensils and appliances in the kitchen which are never used

Make sure your kitchen is free from all these pitfalls and you will enjoy cooking as much as you can.

Size of kitchen cabinets

All kitchens have cabinets to store utensils, pots and pans etc. for daily use. Most kitchen cabinets are made to a certain height, causing all the space above them to go to waste. Cabinets can be extended or extra kitchen cupboards can be installed on top of the existing ones reaching the ceiling to give extra storage space, especially to store bigger utensils, expensive dinner sets or machines which are not regularly used.

Keep the machinery mobile

Machines such as microwaves can be kept on carts and trolleys, or simply a table on wheels so it can be moved around easily. This also allows you to use the machines both inside and outside the kitchen, like in the dining room.

Keep the number of doors and windows to a minimum

Small kitchens do not need a lot of doors and windows as they take up a lot of space and can make the kitchen look crowded. Similarly, sliding doors and French doors are not recommended for small kitchens as they take up too much space. Single doors are a better option, and you can keep them fixed or swinging, according to your preference. In some kitchens, the door may also be eliminated completely to make an open kitchen, but then a very good exhaust will be needed to keep the food smell from entering the rest of the house.

Use of drop down tables

If you do not have a very large kitchen, but need to incorporate an eating area in the kitchen, a drop down table is an ideal solution. This table works just like a proper table but is basically a board which acts like the table top and is attached to a wall on one side by hinges. The free end of the drop table can be freed and propped up on a cabinet door or counter to serve as a dining table or a counter top, and can be laid flat against the wall once again when it is not in use.

Use of Built-in kitchens

Built-in kitchens give a perfect streamlined look to everything in the kitchen. All the appliances, cabinets and counters are built-into the walls of the kitchen instead of jutting out or taking up floor space.

Use of roll out shelves and baskets

Pull-out trays and drawers can be used in the kitchen instead of the usual fixed shelves used in kitchen cabinets. Mesh or wire baskets can be attached to the doors of the cabinets that pull out like drawers, making it easy for you to view the contents of these baskets when the cabinet door is opened. As the baskets are pulled into view, they make it easy for you to see and reach the items inside.

Kitchen Basket

Stack utensils properly

By properly stacking your dishes, utensils and pots and pans, you can save a lot of storage space. Small pans can be stacked inside large pans, just like bowls can be stacked one inside the other. You can also stack food storage boxes one on top of the other.

Use door organizers

They can help you use the extra space inside cabinets which would otherwise go to waste. You can use racks inside cabinet doors to place cookbooks, food wraps, rolling pins, counter cleaners, detergents and any other items which do not need a lot of space. Baskets can also be hung behind the kitchen door to store garlic, onions, potatoes or other dry vegetables.

Ceiling storage

Large kitchens which have a peninsula or island can use ceiling space above them to store pots and pans. Bar racks can also be attached to the ceiling to store bar glasses, bottles and similar items. However, with ceiling storage you have to make sure it is neat and organized all the time as a big ceiling structure is the first thing that the eye catches.

Avoid dead space

When planning your kitchen, make sure there are no dead spaces between the counters and wall cabinets. This space can be used to hold narrow shelves, horizontal or vertical to store various odds and ends.

Use dividers

Many kitchens have slender cabinets that seem to be fillers for the extra, unplanned space that may have been left unused at the time of construction. These are good for nothing if used horizontally. Instead, use dividers to leave narrow spaces for baking trays, cutting boards and serving trays, all fitting vertically.

Organize and sort your kitchen regularly

The storage spaces in your kitchen need regular sorting and cleaning. By discarding old and useless things from your kitchen, you can make space for new items. Also make sure that you keep the kitchen and counter tops clear of non-kitchen items such as toys, car keys, notebooks and pencils etc.

Use baskets

If you are looking for extra storage space in the kitchen, you can hang baskets in different parts of the kitchen, or keep them on the counter or island to store left over spoons and forks. Similarly, hooks on the door or cabinet sides can be used to hang mittens, aprons and other dishcloths etc.

So, make sure you plan your kitchen well and use these tips to act as ingenious solutions for all your kitchen design needs.