If you want an effortlessly modern, functional kitchen then look no further – open plan kitchens are what you need! Find out all about them below.
For many of us, the kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where everyone gathers after a taxing day, regroups and connects with each other, sharing stories of their day. For many, the kitchen has become the place where you entertain and socialise. Which means more and more people are seeking a kitchen that reflects their modern lifestyle, with a social space for entertaining and socialising. Enter, open plan kitchens. Yes, the space that combines cooking, entertaining and dining all in one place. But, how do you truly achieve a modern open plan kitchen?
When it’s time to makeover your kitchen, you may want to go for an open plan kitchen, but how do you do it? Whilst a kitchen designer may assist you, you should have a vision of your new kitchen before it’s fitted. So, to do that, you need to understand what the features of an open plan kitchen is. We’ve teamed up with leading designers Roman Kitchens, who make kitchens in Essex, to outline to you what truly makes an open plan kitchen. We’ll cover everything from layout to design features, to help you distinguish what makes a brilliant open plan kitchen. Let’s begin…
Open plan kitchens are fairly self-explanatory. It’s a space that includes your kitchen and dining room in one place – sometimes even a seating / sofa area. The idea is to create a space that is well and truly social, so all the visitors to your house can enjoy your company whilst you prep food and they dine / sit and have a drink. Open plan kitchens don’t have to be just modern. Yes, you can style your kitchen however you want, be it shaker or classic, an open plan kitchen is simply about the space you create with your newly designed kitchen.
The first thing to consider when imagining your open plan kitchen is the layout. Open plan means spacious, because you need to include the kitchen and another room (say, a dining room) in the same place. So, look at the space you have to hand, you may need to consider a smaller dining table (maybe a round one?), to utilise the smaller space you have available. Most larger open plan kitchens have an island unit, to create a social / prep space – where food and drinks can be made and enjoyed. Island units are a great way to create a centre piece for a larger kitchen, as well as incorporate more storage solutions into the room. Island units are a great place to entertain, and many kitchen designers aim to extend the space of the island unit to make room for furniture, as can be seen in the image above.
When it comes to designing an open plan kitchen, many kitchen experts will first liaise with the client, about which style they want. Modern, classic and shaker kitchens (for example), all have very different looks and feels to them. So, when creating an open plan space, it’s essential to decide on the style of the kitchen beforehand. The features of a modern kitchen, emphasise a space that is functional. Some designers choose to use Rotpunkt kitchens, a German kitchen specialist, to create a modern look. Their materials and handle-less cabinet designs help achieve a modern look. As for classic, the inclusion of beautiful handles and a lot of wood features helps imitate the classic feel. Shaker kitchens are bold and full of colour, a sort of mixture between both modern and classic. All of these kitchens work as open plan, all you need to do is consider the layout, features and furniture you use before you begin designing. So, it’s all down to your own taste.
An open plan kitchen doesn’t have to be just devoted to dinning and cooking, it can be the marriage of almost any other room in the house (probably not the bathroom or bedroom however). Many use their open plan kitchens as a way to bring together their lounge and kitchen into one space (to make it much more sociable). And a few people have created a space that combines their home office and kitchen in one place. Again, it’s up to you to convey to your designer what you want your open plan kitchen for. They may have some recommendations for features to include.
An open plan kitchen is a truly social space, so you need to have the right furniture to truly achieve the spacious style. So, many use their island units as breakfast bars, which means you’ll need some swanky stools to sit on. As for the dinning table, you can go as big or as small as you want, dependent on the space you have available. Finally, a sofa is a great addition to an open plan kitchen, it adds another element of sociability to the space. If you’ve got the room, then the more the merrier! The more seating you have, to more sociable your kitchen will feel, and that is the true aim of an open plan space – to create a social space. Just don’t over clutter your home.
That’s all you need to know about open plan kitchens! If you’re looking for an open plan design in your new kitchen, then make sure you have a clear vision of the space. Decide what elements you want to include, what style and an expert kitchen designer will be able to help you achieve the rest. Remember, above all else, open plan kitchens are sociable places. They’re open, spacious and inviting for guests and family, so make them so! The right open plan design can work for any space of any size, you just need the right designer to help you through the process!