There has been a gradual shift in our lifestyle, and to accommodate this shift, kitchen designs have also evolved over time. Post the Covid-19 pandemic; many people were forced to spend a lot of time at home. Due to the lockdown, eating out or ordering in was not an option for some time, and many people began cooking at home. Due to that reason, there was an interest in optimizing home kitchens to make them more efficient and user-friendly.
Kitchen islands have many advantages and can help make the kitchen a more versatile and aesthetically pleasing space. It also helps to have extra storage and more counter space to better prepare meals.
What Is A Kitchen Island
A kitchen island is an additional counter in the kitchen that may be separate from the rest of the kitchen or may follow the theme of the kitchen. It has many advantages and disadvantages, and people may choose to get it in their kitchen depending on the space that they have available as well as how much they use the kitchen.
It also depends on whether you have children and how much time you spend in the kitchen, as well as your budget. A kitchen island is a wonderful addition to your kitchen, provided you follow all the correct guidelines when investing in one. Kitchen islands don’t come cheap; therefore, you must make sure that you don’t make any mistakes in their design. A poorly designed kitchen island is just as good as not having one altogether as it Is completely useless and gets in the way otherwise.
Advantages Of A Kitchen Island
Here are all the reasons kitchen islands are a great addition to your kitchen if the space and your budget allow it.
Extra Storage Space
Who doesn’t love extra storage space in the kitchen? A kitchen island allows the addition of more cabinets and more shelves to put all your non-everyday use essentials such as stand mixers, hand blenders, tea sets, and even cookbooks that you want to pull out on occasion.
The extra counter space can be used to place a coffee machine or a countertop oven and is just an added bonus in the kitchen. Nobody says no to extra storage space in the kitchen because you can never have enough.
Space For More Amenities
There is more space to add more kitchen amenities such as an additional sink, a microwave drawer, or a stove. It helps to have these so you can do simple and clean cooking here rather than making a mess in the entire kitchen. Dirty dishes can pile up in your main sink, while the additional one be used for hand washing or rinsing the salad. The cooktop can be used for tossing pasta or pancakes in the morning, while you can use the main stove to slow cook a brisket.
Extra Seating Is An Added Bonus
Kitchens don’t usually have seating; the person cooking is by themselves preparing a meal to serve to the rest of the family. It helps to have seating around the island where the rest of the family can sit and give company to the person cooking. It is also a great way to entertain guests who want to be there and help while you’re in the kitchen.
Having extra seating helps when you have guests over as there is plenty of room to sit and get comfortable.
An Extra Sink Is Beneficial
Extra sinks can be installed in the kitchen island. This allows you to use your main kitchen to pile all the dirty dishes to do at the end of the day and leaves your extra sink available for additional and cleaner use. if this is your main sink, having it on the kitchen island allows you to have a better view of the house while doing something as boring as washing the dishes.
Creates Definition In An Open Style Home
Having a kitchen island is a great way to demarcate the kitchen and separate it from the rest of the house in an open-style home. There is no need for a wall or a barrier as placing a kitchen island creates a beautiful and subtle definition.
Is Excellent For Children
If you have children, having a kitchen island has many advantages.
- You can cook and keep an eye on the children
- They can bring their homework to the counter, and you can help them as you are preparing meals in the kitchen
- They can help you prepare snacks in the kitchen
- It’s a great place to hang out together for an evening snack
- Amenities placed on the kitchen island can be operated independently by children so they can prepare their own meals when they need to
- You can make a little pantry within the kitchen island that stores snacks and easy-to-make meals
- Adding refrigerated drawers to the kitchen island is a great way for the children to store ingredients to whip up a healthy salad or make a sandwich whenever they want
Disadvantages of a Kitchen Island
While a kitchen island may work for some people, it might not be suited for other houses. Here are some disadvantages of a kitchen island:
The Wrong Size Can Be a Big Obstruction
A kitchen island, while meant to make life easy in the kitchen, can be an absolute disaster if it is the wrong size. Rather than making cooking more efficient, it can end up being a complete hindrance in the kitchen. It is too large and bulky. It can obstruct the pathway. If it is not creating a work triangle where everything is within close proximity, then it can become a big nuisance.
Can Make A Small Kitchen Look Even More Constricted
Installing a kitchen island in a kitchen space that is already small is a terrible idea. While countertops and cabinets are important, what is even more important is space to walk around in the kitchen. If you feel squashed against the wall or two people cannot work together in the kitchen, it can start to feel stuffy and congested. It is not a pleasant work environment to be in.
Requires Special Wiring and Plumbing
It can be an expensive investment, and if you plan on adding extra amenities then you would require special wiring and plumbing to go through them. it is also difficult to add vents to the island, and all the extra work can be quite costly.
Kitchen Island Design Mistakes
Here are some kitchen island design mistakes that can wreck the purpose of your kitchen island. A kitchen island is meant to assist with cooking and adds versatility to your kitchen to allow it to serve as a cooking, dining, and lounging spot. Messing up the design would defeat the entire purpose of the kitchen island, and you would much rather not have a bulky object obstructing your kitchen than have it. Here are some mistakes you should watch out for when looking to build your kitchen.
Not Making the Island According To the Correct Dimensions
The biggest mistake that you can make is not making your kitchen island the correct size. Many people make an island that is too wide to have a big impact on the kitchen. This is a very inconvenient design as it is impossible to reach the middle of the kitchen island while cooking. It should ideally be no deeper than 1400 mm from front to back. The length of the island depends on available space in your kitchen but should ideally measure at least 2200 mm.
Not Incorporating Storage Space within Your Kitchen Island
Your kitchen island should be designed to include shelves and cabinets within it to increase storage space. Who wouldn’t want extra storage in the kitchen? Adding bar stools to your kitchen island makes for an excellent make-shift dining table and is a great way to save space. It can also just be an area where you can have breakfast or evening snacks. Your kitchen island should blend well with the entire theme of your kitchen and should not look like an obstacle in the way. Adding utility to the kitchen island along with the great design of your kitchen island can enhance the overall feel of your kitchen.
A well-designed island should be able to provide space for food preparation, storage, cooking, and socialization all in one.
There Is Too Little Space around the Island
The size of your kitchen island is important. You must remember to account for walkways around the kitchen island. If the overall size of your kitchen is small and your kitchen island is too big, then there might be too little space between the island and your wall units, and the room will get too cramped up. Similarly, a kitchen island that is too small may have decreased utility and might not serve its purpose.
Not Including a Breakfast Bar
Having a breakfast bar is excellent as it allows you to prepare breakfast and spend time with the family rather than feeling isolated and away from all the morning chatter. It is also a great way to entertain guests when you’re hosting so that you feel like you’re a part of everything. Breakfast bars add versatility to your kitchen and allow you to dish out meals from pot to plate without the added hassle of setting the dining table first.
Your Kitchen Island Is Too Dimly Lit
One of the most important aspects to consider when designing your kitchen is to ensure there is plenty of daylight in this room. No matter how small your kitchen is, it will appear bigger and brighter in the day time. This is the first place that the whole family typically meets in the morning, and it would not be pleasant to hang out in a place that is gloomy or dimly lit as you begin your day.
Pendant lights are great to be placed on top of the kitchen island, or you may opt for task lighting to be used during the night.
You Forgot To Include Electric Points in Your Kitchen Island
We are all dependent on technology nowadays, especially since the Covid 19 pandemic. Almost everyone has experienced working from home at some point; therefore, you definitely do not want to forget to include electric points in your kitchen island to plug in your phone or laptop chargers while preparing a meal in the kitchen.
You can also use these to plug in a kitchen appliance or place your coffee machine on the kitchen island as well.
Not Paying Attention to the Location of the Kitchen Island
The location of the kitchen island is very important. You must respect the kitchen work triangle distance. This is formed by ensuring there is adequate distance between the cooktop, the refrigerator, and the sink. Ideally, this distance should measure between 4 to 9 feet, and there should be no obstacles in the way of the person or person’s cooking.
Kitchens are the most important rooms in a house, and they are the heart of every home. Without a functional kitchen, you cannot essentially move into a house. Everyone has their own preference when it comes to how they want their kitchen to look. Choosing whether to build a kitchen island or not is entirely one’s own choice, but there are some important considerations that you must keep in mind when building one. Making these mistakes can cause your kitchen island to be a complete waste. These mistakes must be avoided. Kitchen islands are expensive, so you can’t just tear them down and build a new one. Make sure to get it right the first time so that it lasts you a long time!