Upgrading your kitchen is a lot like buying a new car . . . we're not always in the market, but we're always looking.
A good kitchen can not only serve as a great tool to bring together a delicious meal, but perhaps more importantly it can bring your guests and parties to the whole next level!
Here are a few different layouts to explore for whatever type of home or lifestyle you're looking to build (or reimagine).
1) The One Wall Kitchen Motto: I like my kitchens how I like my chocolate -- hidden.
Commonly found in narrow houses, lofts and studio apartments, the one-wall kitchen is great for those of us not looking to make the kitchen the focal-point of the home. While counter-space can be a hot commodity in these layouts, the one wall kitchen can be useful for anyone looking to maintain an open floor plan and entertain as many as possible for a night in.
2) The Galley Kitchen Motto: Get the ****** out of my kitchen.
This is a great layout for those of us who consider ourselves "efficient cookers." If you find yourself bouncing between oven, range, microwave etc. without missing a beat, the Galley Kitchen is perfect for you. With the two parallel walls, you can easily use both counter and appliance seemingly at the same time. One of the large downfalls however, is limited standing room and a closed off appearance. While they're great for efficiency they're not ideal for your social butterflies. The Galley is great for lone-wolf cooks who need their space.
3) The U Shape Kitchen
Motto: Feel free to look, but please keep your arms and legs outside the exhibit at all times.
The U-Shape kitchen is another single-cooker kitchen. Much like the One Wall and the Galley, it's design is suited for a cook who needs his/her own space rather than welcoming all the guests into their lair.
One downside to this layout is that depending on where you like your sink, it can be difficult to get it next to your dishwasher with the limited wall space. The nice benefit to The U-Shape, is the approachability it presents while allowing foot traffic to flow outside of the cooking area. You can move around and do your thing with a clear line in the sand. I like to call this layout The Lion's Denâ€¦hence the motto.
4) The U Shape Kitchen with Island Motto: Why don't I cook, clean and entertain . . . and you can take care of the dog.
For the social cookers who are also likely to freshen up the hors d'oeuvres selection every few minutes. This layout allows you to either put your stove on the island and use the perimeter as pure counter space, or to use the island as a seating area. Great for those chatty cooks who like to entertain while they cook and toss their guests some snacks.
5) The G Shape Kitchen Motto: I can rest when I'm dead . . . or when this party is over. I'll likely do both.
The U-Shape kitchen with a small dose of steroids, a lot like installing a turbo system on an award winning race-horse.
This layout is for those cooks who need to maximize every inch of kitchen space and entertain. Rather than having a gap in between your island and counter, this layout adjoins the two for that little bit more surface space. Very efficient and still allowing you to throw some food to the seals every once in a while.
5) The L Shape Kitchen Motto: Keep going, I'm listening!
As traditional as it gets. The L-shape is good for multi-cook homes or for cooks willing to welcome guests into their domain for chatter or wine (likely the latter). The only downside to the L-shape is without the island, you will be facing away from the action while you cook/cut/drink begrudgingly by the sink.Â You also lose a bit of counter space, for standing room. The L-shape is a versatile layout which will look best in your loft homes, but can easily be rocked in any style of home. But be prepared to be hovered over.
5) The L Shape Kitchen with Island Motto: Face to island: "Of course, please tell me about your son's gold medal!" Back to island: *restrained angry mumbling*
Take the L-Shape and give it a bit more accessibility, and you've got your L-Shape with Island. With the island, you're able to use a bit more counter space, and have some quicker access to the rest of the home. This layout is great for those of us cooks who want to engage with guests a bit more, while maintaining a safe-zone for any emotional escape you may need. You've got a decent amount of counter space and the ability to cook/entertain on the island. This is a good layout again for those of us who are in a multi-cook home.
Use this as a guide when choosing your next kitchen, and drop us a line for any hidden gems/tips/secrets you've found useful in your kitchen layout!
All kitchen layout images courtesy of kitchens.com, a great resource for design and product information. Check them out here: