It’s widely accepted that kitchens and bathrooms sell houses. They’re the two rooms where we’re likely to spend the most money, so it’s important to get it right. However, many people believe that creating a luxury kitchen is out of their budget. But it doesn’t need to be expensive; with the right planning and execution a luxury space that the whole family can enjoy is achievable, while adding value to your home in the process.
Luckily for us, the lovely people at Mayfair Granite have put together their top considerations for planning and designing the perfect kitchen. Follow these suggestions to make the most of your space…
The luxury kitchen layout
The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in the house, a place where great food is prepared, a space for entertaining friends and family and somewhere to relax in at the end of a hard day, so creating a space that is both functional and comfortable is key.
The L-shaped kitchen is one of the most popular layouts for kitchens because of its adaptability, and when combined with an island or peninsula can create a great space for entertaining. An island bench can create a dramatic focal point in the room whilst providing extra storage space and a social hub for the whole family to gather round.
An L-shaped kitchen design is a great option for open plan kitchens where the room opens out into a dining room or living room; it also maximises the floor space for families and couples to cook together without getting into each other’s way.
If space is an issue, try opting for a U-shaped kitchen design; this type of design can maximise the cabinet and worktop space in the room without compromising on design or style. U-shaped kitchen designs usually feature integrated appliances, which are great for keeping a uniform style, but standalone appliances can be used to provide a stand out feature or touch of colour to the design.
With a vast array of exciting and exotic materials to choose from when designing a kitchen, it can be a bit daunting when planning the ideal space.
The classic combination of natural stone and traditional timber cabinetry is still seen as the pinnacle of luxury by many, but with the advances in technology pushing the boundaries of design there is now a range of metallic materials to choose from including brass, copper and zinc to provide that extra wow factor.
For worktops, Mayfair Granite recommends traditional materials such as granite, quartz and marble, which provide a durable and low maintenance option that will last a lifetime. These materials can be cut into an array of shapes and sizes, providing a perfect fit in any room.
Cabinetry is the most important investment in any kitchen design, so choosing the right materials is key to creating a kitchen that will stand the test of time.
Luxury kitchen cabinets often feature high quality woods such as cherry, mahogany or walnut, which are stained with rich, dark colours to bring out the natural beauty of the wood grain. However, specialty painted and glazed finishes can also make for a luxurious kitchen. Other options include sticky sheets that can be fixed to kitchen doors, which can be found in most DIY shops and tools that give the impression of a wood effect when pulled across wet paint, available in craft shops.
Appliances can make or break a kitchen so it is important that these are taken into consideration at the same time as the rest of the design. Choose products that match the style you are going for and always shop around for the best prices.
Lighting is also an important consideration for creating the right balance of ambience and function in the kitchen. Natural light makes the space look bigger and brings the outside in, but having large windows and doors isn’t suitable for every kitchen. However, if the kitchen lacks natural light there are lots of options out there.
Pendant lights can add that wow factor to the kitchen and can create a relaxing ambience, whereas under cabinet lighting is ideal for food preparation in low light situations. For something a bit different, LED light strips are a good choice for creating dynamic lighting effects in the kitchen.
Another trick is to use mirrors to bounce light around the room- say opposite a window or near a door. The light will reflect, making the room appear bigger.
Other tips & tricks
- It’s all in the detail – if you can’t afford the best quality cupboards then don’t scrimp on the handles. Get the details right and people will assume you’ve got the quality cabinets to match.
- Buy fresh cut flowers and display them in a beautiful vase – it has showroom kitchen all over it.
- Use soft-close cupboards and drawers. You can buy soft-close tools from most DIY shops.
- Choose the right flooring; even if you can only afford vinyl flooring, there are some great, affordable designs that give the appearance of anything from country style paving slabs to warm wood effect planks. Shop around and go for the best you can afford. It might be worth asking what the ‘deal of the day’ is, or what’s available for the ‘manager’s special’. Also, flooring that has been discontinued scan usually be picked up for a fraction of the cost that it would do normally.
- Use great quality accessories – from your toaster and kettle to your coasters and tea towels. After all, the devil’s in the detail.
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What tips and tricks do you use to give the appearance of a quality space?