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How To Design A Family Friendly Kitchen

How To Design A Family Friendly Kitchen

Include Suitable Seating
Create seating areas suitable for the whole family that will work in a way that suits everyone. From formal dining areas for family meals, to breakfast bars to perch at for a snack to sofas and low tables where family members can relax and spend time together; getting the seating right is one of the key components to a great kitchen.
put cooking first
Whilst modern day kitchens fulfil a variety of roles, preparing food is their core function and should be considered first and foremost when planning a kitchen update. Ensure that there's sufficient space to prep and cook food and that there are no obstructions between the hob, sink and fridge. If you have younger children who like to get involved in cooking or baking, consider installing some lower areas of worktop or providing steps so they can reach the counter to help.
Include Enough Storage
To function as a family kitchen, storage is one thing that needs to be considered carefully. A well designed kitchen will provide sufficient storage for everyone and let the kitchen work for the whole family. Beyond storing food, crockery, cutlery and cooking utensils, think about having lower level accessible storage for smaller children and also somewhere to safely store sharp or dangerous objects. If you have young children, you might also need to include storage for toys, books and art supplies.
Think About Uses
Whilst its a phrase we've all heard before, the modern family kitchen really is the heart of the home; usually much more than simply a room in which food is prepared. The kitchen might also need to act as a dining room, a space for entertaining friends, an area for the family to hang out in or as somewhere for kids to do arts, crafts or homework. If you're planning a new kitchen, think about what you want to use the room for besides cooking. Plan appropriate space from the beginning so that the kitchen works as well as possible for your lifestyle.
Include a Place for Notices
Every family kitchen needs somewhere to keep those important reminders, invitations and letters from school so consider a magnetic board to keep everything visible and in one place. A kitchen blackboard also makes it easy for family members to leave messages or reminders for one another. For younger children, a wall or part wall painted with blackboard paint can provide a fun area to get creative without making too much mess.
Open Up Space
As the heart of the home, contemporary kitchens are much more than just somewhere to cook. Therefore shutting the kitchen off from the rest of the house isn't desirable or practical for many families. Increasingly popular is an open or semi open plan layout in which the kitchen area leads into dining and living areas for a home that feels larger, more social and better connected. Whilst the layout of your property might be something that can't be changed, removing internal stud walls is often not as big a project as many people envisage.
Define Zones
Zoning is a trend that has become increasingly popular over the last decade because it means the kitchen can serve a range of purposes without sacrificing how well it is able to do them. An area for cooking is obviously a key component, with areas for dining, relaxing, watching TV or doing homework also popular in contemporary family kitchens. Aspects such as lighting, flooring and wall decor can be used to help define the different zones in the kitchen.
Use Durable Materials
To stay looking great, a family kitchen also needs to be tough - able to withstand all the knocks and scrapes that are part of family life. Pick a hard wearing flooring material like tile or vinyl that can be easily cleaned and will resist staining from spillages and muddy shoes. Protect walls with tiling or wipeable and moisture resistant kitchen specific paint. Worktops in materials such as quartz or granite are durable and able to resist heat and staining. Wood is another option – whilst it may pick up scratches or stains these can usually be sanded out. Painted cabinets can be chipped or scratched in kitchens that take heavy abuse, so look instead for solid wood or high quality laminate.
Safety is Paramount
Safety is very important in the kitchen, particularly in a family kitchen where children will frequently be using the room. Store items like bleach and other cleaning products where young children can't get to them and use safety latches on cupboard doors. Knives and other sharp utensils should also be stored safely out of reach. Keep the area clear of toys to avoid any tripping hazards and never leave children unattended in the kitchen. If you have very young children, look at flooring materials with a texture for grip such as vinyl, which can also be a little bit softer to fall on than polished tiles.
Include Room to Grow
If you're planning a family kitchen, it's always a good idea to consider how your needs might change in the future and account for these as part of the project. Perhaps your family will grow, or you will need more room for children's friends and activities, or to entertain guests. Whilst it's obviously not possible to predict everything, thinking carefully about how your needs will change means your new kitchen will be able to serve you well for many years to come.

Published on Tuesday, 17th November am 9:32am