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How do You Want your Kitchen to Feel/Function?

One of the most important questions we ask our clients when discussing their kitchen renovation plans is, “How do you want your kitchen to feel or function?”

You see, no two kitchens are exactly the same because no two homeowners are exactly alike. Each homeowner has a host of various needs and wants that differ from the client before them.

Often when dreaming about the perfect kitchen, homeowners get caught up in the color and style of the cabinets, countertops and backsplash they want. But choosing the right colors and materials for your kitchen should always come after you’ve decided how you want your kitchen to function. Ask yourself the following questions to determine what you really need and want in your new kitchen.

  • What’s your cooking style? Are you an everyday Rachael Ray, a Hamburger Helper extraordinaire, or the queen/king of takeout? If you’re a gourmet home chef waiting to be discovered by Andrew Zimmern, you’ll likely need a kitchen with multifunctional workspace and enough room for appliances like double ovens, five-burner range tops and perhaps an indoor grill or brick oven. You may also benefit from custom storage spaces for small appliances such as a stand mixer lift (like the one we built for a client in 2017, pictured below). If you’re more a “get in, get out of the kitchen as quick as possible” type of family cook who prefers box dinners with exact cooking instructions listed on the label, or a takeout every night kind of homeowner, you don’t need an overly functional kitchen and may want to allocate more of your renovation budget to a new master bath or to create a mudroom for your growing family.

  • Is there more than one cook in the family? In the 1920’s, a woman we’ll all be thanking for the rest of our lives named Lillian Moller Gilbreth developed the triangle kitchen layout concept, better known as the modern kitchen design. This design consists of laying out the kitchen’s three main major appliances--the oven, fridge and sink--in a way that makes a triangle if lines were drawn between the three. Most standard home kitchens are designed with this layout in mind, however a newer, more modern layout makes kitchens easier to use for families with more than one cook. The new layout is known as the work station layout. In this layout, task stations (such as cooking, prepping, and cleaning) are centered around the major appliance associated with each task and holds a landing area of at least 15 inches of adjacent countertop space.(read from source here)

  • Do you want an eat-in kitchen, or strictly a workspace? Do you plan for your family to dine most nights at an informal kitchen dining table or perhaps sitting around the island, or do you prefer a kitchen that functions as a private cooking area and sits adjacent to a formal dining room?

  • Do you want to entertain guests in your kitchen? If you plan to be the dinner hostess with the mostest, you may want a larger kitchen with an open floor plan that opens into the living room and includes plenty of seating area, such as around an island or a breakfast nook.

This transitional kitchen, a recent project by McCarley Cabinets, is designed to entertain and eat in with a large island featuring a sink, eating space and prep area parallel to the oven and stove.

Another view of this island reveals a sitting area, which further encourages guests and family members to join the host/cook in the kitchen.

  • Are you a holiday host? If your home is the designated spot for family holiday gatherings, Friendsgiving or office parties, you’ll want a kitchen in which you can both entertain and cook for the masses. You’ll also want to include small additions like a pot-filler that make cooking easier and less time-consuming.

  • Do you have pets? If you want a pet-friendly kitchen, consider choosing a more durable flooring such as laminate, stone or ceramic tile to decrease damage and to keep pets from slipping on the floors. Perhaps you’ll also want to include a built-in pet food and water bowl space that’s easily accessible to furbabies.

  • Do you have large or growing family, or an empty nest? If you’re an empty-nester, your dream kitchen may include a downsize now that you’re only cooking for one or two people. But if you’re a young family with children, you’ll want to create a kitchen that’s going to grow with your family. You’ll want plenty of space for the kids to do homework and science projects while you prepare dinner, and maybe even enough space for the kiddos to help you cook every once in a while!

This small but mighty kitchen we designed is probably most appropriate for empty-nesters or one-cook families.

  • Are you a traditionalist or modernist when it comes to kitchen appliances and gadgets? Believe it or not, some homeowners prefer to handwash their dishes; so the latest Whirlpool dishwasher may not be a high priority for them while all the latest high-tech appliances may be a must for you and your kitchen.

  • What do you want out of your kitchen island? Do you even want a kitchen island? Most new homes have some type of island or work table in the kitchen, but it’s not totally unheard of for a homeowner to exclude an island from their plans. For those who do want an island, you must decide how your island will serve your kitchen. Will it be a modern, multifunctional, multilevel island with an area for eating as well as space for a wine cooler, microwave or even a cook top?

As you can see, hashing out the details of your new kitchen includes so much more than choosing paint colors for your walls and cabinets. The good news is, with McCarley Cabinets you don’t have to make any of these decisions alone. We’ll work with you each step of the way during your kitchen renovation to insure you and your family have the kitchen that looks and works the way you want it. Give us a call now at 662-728-1533 to get started with a free project estimate.

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