During the last fifty years, most designers were building on three types of kitchen layouts: the L-shaped kitchen, the U-shaped kitchen and the gallery kitchen. The gallery layout was very suitable for small kitchens. All these three layouts had one thing in common: the work triangle concept. They all placed the three main kitchen components (the refrigerator, the stove and the sink) in a triangular position.
Another research study conducted more recently showed that the trends have changed. Nowadays, most women are working outside the house. Men started get involved in the cooking process. Most people use semi-prepared food and need to store about 800 items. These conclusions led to new trends in kitchen designs to respond to the changes in house working trends.
Modern kitchen layouts focus on multiple working centres. The standard designs don't allow for more than one person to be working in the kitchen. In order to allow multiple work stations inside the kitchen, designers have come up with the idea of an island layout. In this layout, the counter top is placed in the middle, thus providing up to four small work stations. These can turn into major work stations if you add an extra sink or set the cook top into the island.
However, you can make more work stations even without an island, by placing the cook top and the microwave oven in opposite parts of the sink. This way you can make counter space for two people to cook food each at one appliance.
Floor styles include sheet vinyl, ceramic tiles and wood. The old linoleum is definitely out of fashion. Sheet vinyl, however, is a popular choice for moderately priced kitchens. Ceramic tiling is more popular for high-end kitchens, while wood floors are becoming popular in both moderate and high priced kitchens.
Sinks come in a wide range of materials and shapes: solid surface, stainless steel, cast iron or plastic, top-mounted or under-mounted, single-bowled, double-bowled, shallow or deep. They also vary in finishes: brushed nickel, chrome, stainless steel or polished brass. You should choose the model that responds to your needs but also fits your price range.
Cabinets come in two styles: the European style (with no frames) and front-framed. They can be ordered from cabinet makers or stock supplies. They can be built from various types of wood, have different door styles and finish options. They also vary in the construction quality so you should be very careful when you choose them.
You can choose from a wide range of counter tops available on the market. Solid surface or granite countertops are very resistant, but also very expensive. Tiles and laminates tops are still attractive, but less expensive and allow a do-it-yourself approach.
The first choice you will have to make is whether you prefer a built-in or free-standing style, as this is a decision that will affect the whole kitchen design. The refrigerators can be either side-by-side or units and have top or bottom mounted freezers. Other choices involve smooth-top or halogen cook tops, microwave ovens, trash compactors, down-draft vents and range hoods.
Measure your kitchen carefully before making any decisions. If you're unsure, you can browse online catalogues for ideas or visit home design showrooms. Some home design websites feature applications that allow you to build your furniture from the grounds. However, a customized kitchen layout is more likely to suit your needs rather than a standard kitchen set.
Types of Kitchen Layout
Single Line Layout- places all of the kitchen components in a single line against a straight wall. Components like the sink and stove are best situated in the middle of the single line layout to prevent having to walk from one end of the kitchen to the other while working.
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