Smart Planning: 8 Kitchen Designs to Avoid

What’s looks perfect in a magazine isn’t always the best, and that is even truer for kitchen designs. You can be in awe at a design, think to yourself “that’s the kitchen I want”, you may be in for a surprise if you actually had to live with it. As far as kitchen remodel is concerned, looks are less important than function.
A lot happens in a kitchen, cooking, eating, having the kids do homework, entertaining guests…

Here are the no-no kitchen designs:

Obstructing the work triangle

The work triangle, stove-sink-fridge, needs to be free of obstacles. Since meal prep and cooking are busy times, you shouldn’t have to cross all the way from one corner to the other or go around a kitchen island. Those three elements should be close to each other.

Ignoring storage

You may want to put an island in the middle of your kitchen to take advantage of the space, so make sure that island has lots of cabinets and drawers. That is an excellent way to add storage to your kitchen, but a terrible waste of space if it’s just there to look cool.

If your kitchen is small and an island is not an option, consider ceiling-high cabinets and overhead pots and pans hanger.

Not taking lighting into account

Good lighting is key not only to see what you’re doing in the kitchen, but also to make the space look bigger or more intimate, depending on how many lights you switch on. Check these kitchen lighting design tips to get some inspiration.

Poor counter space

Insufficient counter space gets noticed easily. Take into account all the appliances that you want permanently on the counter and all the activities that will take place in the kitchen. Kids doing homework, you writing letters or reading the newspaper, prepping meals, baking, etc. If you don’t want your kitchen to look cluttered, adding adequate counter space is key. This is where a lot of people choose to add the island.

No backsplash

Trying to save a few bucks foregoing the backsplash could prove expensive in the future, when you have to take grease stains off your paint or wallpaper. There are enough options that a backsplash can compliment your design, or even become a focal point with original design.

Poor ventilation

Consider opening your kitchen to another room, adding a window, or a sliding door that goes into your backyard. Good ventilation will extend the life of your appliances and it will freshen the air more than a simple fan does. The smell of baking cookies is wonderful, but the smell of fried bacon is less so. All kitchen designs should include a range hood, as well.

Wrong island (or a design that shouldn’t have an island)

Kitchen designers recommend having a kitchen at least 8 feet deep and 12 feet long, in order to consider an island. The island itself should be 4 feet long and 2 feet deep to provide adequate working space. Think carefully of where it goes as it shouldn’t block the kitchen triangle.

Kitchen designs must survive time

Don’t go too trendy, as trends come and go. If you follow a specific style of kitchen that is popular now, you risk buying expensive appliances, doing a pricey paint job and overall having to look at something a few years later and say: “What was I thinking”? Think of how your new kitchen will integrate with the rest of the house, your lifestyle and your own taste. When in doubt, select a few kitchen designs that you like and fit your needs, weigh the pros and cons, and narrow down to the perfect one. And don’t forget that some materials are to avoid also, no matter how desperately you want them.

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