This L-shaped kitchen makes excellent use of space. It is easy to work in since the work triangle can be easily established. Open shelving prevents a small kitchen from looking too busy, while banks of cabinets look stunning in a large kitchen as well as providing an abundance of storage. A table and chairs fits neatly into the kitchen, while still zoning it off from the rest of the room. Whatever the size of your kitchen, the beauty of the L-shaped layout lies in its simplicity and flexibility, the ease with which it can be adapted to suit practical requirements and different design tastes. Don't be afraid to use darker colours and patterns in your kitchen. Deep colours are warming so often work well in larger kitchens.
Inject refined rustic style into your kitchen with painted wooden cabinetry. In a traditional space, use painted wood to co-ordinate kitchen cabinets with walls and architectural features; in a contemporary scheme, to soften the sharp edges of minimalist design. Go for a mid to deep grey shade, like this one, as it oozes easy elegance and sophistication. Where space isn't an issue an L-shape ending with a central island unit provides informal dining space for the family or a place to chat with friends over coffee. Keep the cooking and kitchen chores tightly together in an L and let the rest of a large room be given over to family life. Add personality and character with quirky signage and curios. Lack of size does not have to mean lack of style.
How do I control the flow of people in a kitchen? The workspace may be crucial, but the movement of people around the kitchen space as a whole also needs careful thought. The main aims are to keep children away from danger spots and stop guests from getting in your way. Look at placing the fridge at the threshold so children can access drinks and snacks without straying into your path. In open-plan spaces, make sure the route through from the entrance to the garden is unobstructed and think about how best to direct your guests to seating areas. An island can act as a useful shield for the cook – position bar stools along the opposite side to give guests a place to perch at a safe distance. ‘in a large space, consider using two islands to create multiple-flow possibilities,' says Graham Barnard, MD of Matrix Kitchens.
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