Measure the space you have available, mapping out the wall and floor space including window and door openings.
Start by taking the following critical measurements:
- Floor to ceiling
- Wall to wall (on walls with doors and windows, break this up to measure corner to door frame for example)
- Door frame to ceiling
- Floor to window and window to ceiling
- Door width
- Window width
Mark all these measurements on your drawing and include position of electrical switches and outlets as well as gas connection if necessary.
Designing a kitchen takes careful consideration. It is worth the time and effort to follow these steps to ensure that the kitchen you end up with meets your every need.
Focus your mind by answering these preliminary questions:
- How many people live in the home?
- Who does most of the cooking?
- What other than food preparation will the kitchen be used for?
- Do you entertain often?
- Do you want an open-plan kitchen that is integrated with the other living areas?
- What is the natural lighting of the space like?
- How much storage will you need (do you do daily, weekly or monthly food shopping)?
- What appliances need to be catered for?
Choose the kitchen layout that works best in your space and for your needs.
Consider the ‘work triangle’ of your kitchen; how the flow between the cooking, storage and washing areas of your kitchen i.e. stove, fridge and sink will work.
Common kitchen plans include:
- One Wall Kitchen
This layout works well in open-plan studio apartments, or homes where there is not much space available. This kitchen plan has all cabinets and appliances fixed on a single wall.
- Galley Kitchen
This kitchen has cabinets and appliances fixed on opposite facing walls, or has an island positioned parallel to a one-wall kitchen. Either plan is ideal for space saving and works well in homes where the kitchen connects two other living areas.
- G-Shaped Kitchen
- L-shaped Kitchen
A practical kitchen layout that utilises two adjoining walls, popular in open-plan living areas. Can suit small and large spaces, if corner units are designed to be easily accessible and practical.
- U-Shaped Kitchen
Also called a horseshoe kitchen layout, this plan utilises three walls for cabinets and appliances or can be created by adding an island to an L-shaped kitchen. This is a very popular kitchen plan as it allows for efficient workflow.
- Island Kitchen
A kitchen island can be added to any of the above kitchen layouts. Whether designed to add valuable storage, additional counter space, or an eat-in area, the kitchen island can transform any kitchen but be sure you have adequate space to include this feature.
- Peninsula Kitchen
A peninsula kitchen is created when you connect a kitchen island to a L-shaped kitchen.
Download our helpful kitchen plan tools
Go through this helpful checklist to make sure you have considered everything in your kitchen design:
- How many people will be working in your kitchen at the same time?
- Does your kitchen need to cater for any special needs, i.e. do counter heights need to be adjusted or do you need to accommodate wheelchair access?
- Do you have enough storage space? Give careful consideration to:
- Loose appliances such as food processors, steamers, air fryers
- Big pots and pans
- Do you have enough counter space? You will need adequate counter space between appliances and the sink for example.
- Do your corners allow for easy drawer and door opening?
- Where are your handles going to be positioned? Make sure they will not open and hit your appliances such as refrigerators and cookers.
- Do you have adequate lighting, especially above the cooker and sink areas?
- Do you have under cabinet lighting above your food prep areas?
- Have you positioned your microwave in a convenient safe area i.e. not too low or high for unloading hot dishes?
- Do you have enough electrical outlets and are correctly placed?
- Does your kitchen allow for through-traffic to pass around your working triangle?
- Does your kitchen have good ventilation? Ideally, a kitchen should have windows that open and allow for through ventilation? You may require an extractor fan to assist if this is not the case.
- Where will your kitchen waste or rubbish be thrown, is this catered for in a convenient hygienic manner?