Whether you have a large or small kitchen design, an enclosed kitchen or a great room, the foundation for any kitchen design is the layout.  Today’s kitchens are more than just a place to store food and cook.  They are multi-purpose spaces that combine traditional food-related activities with a more modern, casual approach to cooking, dining, and entertaining.

Gone are the days when one person prepared the meals in an enclosed room, and then carried the food to a separate, formal dining room.  While some homes still function this way, most have an open plan set up where cooking, clean up, dining, and entertaining all happen in one space.  With so much taking place in this one busy room, designing an effective kitchen design layout and planning the workflow throughout the kitchen becomes ever more important.

Kitchen design with recessed lights

Why is the kitchen layout important?

Layout and workflow impact how effectively your kitchen will function and the scale of your kitchen remodel by defining where you will put every element of your new kitchen design.  Creating the right workflow for you may even require knocking down a wall, moving a doorway, or changing plumbing around, which all affect your project timeline and budget.  These decisions are an essential first step in planning your kitchen remodel.  Get your layout right, and your new space will be a pleasant room that enhances everyday life.  Get it wrong, and you could find yourself regretting your design choices.

Kitchen design with dark granite countertop

If you are planning a kitchen remodel, now is the perfect time to get your layout right.  Our Lansing, MI showroom is a great place to get started, by talking to our kitchen design experts and browsing our extensive kitchen displays.  Before you visit us, here are a few tips to help you evaluate your kitchen layout requirements.

What are your kitchen design requirements?

Every home is unique, and every homeowner’s requirements are different.  Start by identifying how you plan to use your kitchen, what you like and do not like about your existing layout, and what your top priorities are in a kitchen remodel.  Ask yourself these kitchen design questions to determine your requirements:

  • How much space do you have and what is the shape of your room?
  • Which rooms are adjacent to the kitchen and is there scope to remove a wall if this will better suit your requirements?
  • How often do you cook, and do you host parties or large family gatherings?
  • Do you anticipate more than one person preparing food at the same time?
  • Do your existing appliances, sink, and other fixtures make sense in their current location or do they need to be moved?
  • Do you plan to add more appliances, such as an additional dishwasher or oven?
  • What other activities are a top priority for your family in the kitchen, e.g., studying, crafts, pets, or music/television/gaming?
Kitchen design with large island

Your answers to these questions will help formulate a picture of your new kitchen and what the layout needs to include.  This will assist your kitchen remodeling expert in getting to know you and your space.  From this assessment, they can help you define the “work zones” required in your new kitchen design, where to position appliances, how many sinks to include and where, what type of seating to incorporate, how much storage and what types of specialized storage accessories, and more. It will also help identify whether you should include customized zones such as a “pet corner” to allow your pet’s food, water, and bed to be stored without getting underfoot in the cooking area, or a study/work zone with a desk and charging station.

White kitchen design

Tips for Creating a Kitchen Layout

Once you have created this picture of your requirements, consider how you will achieve your goals in logical work zones that allow for an easy flow of traffic through the kitchen.  Here are a few tips:

  • Group appliances according to functionality and place them near other related items, for example the dishwasher near the sink.
  • Consider having two food prep/cleanup areas if you have a large kitchen and plan to have more than one chef at work simultaneously.
  • Utilize your island to separate out kitchen work zones and help the flow of traffic through the room. The island is particularly useful in creating distinct zones for food prep/cooking and dining/entertaining, as you can work on one side while guests sit on the other side.
  • Consider creating a separate area that is “kid-friendly” with space for homework and hobbies, and with easy access to a snack/beverage station away from the work zones.
  • A separate beverage or coffee station away from the cooking area comes in handy when guests are around.
Kitchen design with beverage bar

Creating clear work zones in a well-organized layout is key to an efficient and organized kitchen and will significantly enhance your enjoyment of your new kitchen.  Let our kitchen design gallery inspire you, and then talk to our design experts to create the ideal layout for your next kitchen remodel!