In the past, kitchens were often closed off from the rest of the home. This provided a separation of the work areas from the living areas, giving staff an area to prepare meals without disrupting the rest of the household and lending more privacy by closing off a typically noisy area of the home.
In the past, in some cultures and households, dining was a more formal affair. In recent years, this way of life has largely given way to a more casual, open, and inclusive way of living.
Families often dine at the kitchen island, and for many, the kitchen is ground zero for entertaining. It is a place to connect at the end of the day, a place to discover, and a place that many things get accomplished beyond everyday cooking. From catching up with friends to kids getting their homework done, the kitchen is truly the heartbeat of the home.
Why Choose An open-Concept Kitchen?
Open-concept kitchen layouts are chosen for a range of reasons. It opens up the floor space, which can be highly desirable, especially if your home has a small footprint. For instance, if you have two smaller rooms on the main floor, you can remove the wall and create a much larger space with more possibilities.
An open kitchen design extends the living space, allowing for more conversation, collaboration, and interaction. It helps parents keep a closer eye on their children while they play and it allows you to extend your interior design, creating a fluidity and flow from other areas of the home.
Things To Consider With An Open Kitchen Design
One of the first things you need to consider when designing an open kitchen is the design of the rest of your home. For instance, having a stark white living area and a dark kitchen won’t provide the flow you want to create a seamless design. The kitchen design should flow easily from your interior design.
Colors And Finishes
Ideally, you should choose complementary paint colors, tile, and flooring materials that will make the floorplan look like one big space. This could mean extending the flooring materials from the living room or choosing flooring materials in a color that complements the rest of the space.
Finishes such as stains, trim, hardware and fixtures should coordinate. If it isn’t possible to match these items, they may need to be switched out to create a more cohesive look.
If you are removing walls or closets to create an open kitchen, keep in mind that there will be no flooring in these areas and different flooring in the dining room, for instance. If this is the case, you may need to consider replacing all of the flooring.
Case Study: Sides – Sunnyview
This kitchen remodel transformed a tiny, closed-in kitchen into a bright and airy open-concept design. We removed two walls and opened up the space to the dining and living room, incorporating the old formal dining room into the new kitchen design. The result was an award-winning design that provided a growing family with the extra room they needed to accommodate their lifestyle.
Innovations Happening With Open Kitchen Spaces
The popularity of the open kitchen design has spurred a great deal of innovation in appliances, fixtures, electronics, and other kitchen conveniences.
Modern appliances are being reshaped to fit these spaces. For instance, instead of having an overhead exhaust hood fan, ranges could instead have a down-draft that pulls the air down and out instead of up and out. This means that you won’t have to put a hood fan on your island and can maintain a clean, clear, and unobstructed view of the rest of the space.
Built-in refrigerator and freezer drawers can be incorporated into the island or cabinetry to maximize space and blend the conveniences you want into your kitchen and cabinetry design.
Switches, outlets, and electronics can also be placed into the island or countertop as opposed to placing them on the wall, cleaning up the sightlines and maintaining design cohesion.
Ambient lighting can be placed in recesses, below cabinets or above the island to add interest or highlight features.
An air switch for your garbage disposal is a design-friendly alternative as well. Air switches are non-electrical and mount easily to the sink or countertop, eliminating the need for another wall switch.
These are just a handful of ways in which your dated, enclosed kitchen can be transformed into the open kitchen design of your dreams. For more inspiration or to learn how we can help, reach out today.