Kitchen layouts

Your kitchen layout is probably the most important design aspect of your kitchen. It’s the layout that influences how easy it is to prepare meals, cook, wash up or entertain. If you’re building your home from scratch or doing major renovations, you have the opportunity to choose just about any layout you want. If you’re installing a new kitchen into a pre-built space you’ll have to work within the shape and size of the room you have available. Here are six well-known, tried-and-tested kitchen layouts.

An in line, or one-wall kitchen is often used in a small space like an open plan flat.

Pros

This design keeps the prep, cooking and clean up areas within easy reach of one another.

Cons

The fridge, stove and sink can take up a lot of room, leaving less space for prep surfaces.

Solutions

A kitchen table will increase prep space, as would an island which has the benefit of storage.

*Image source: kitchens.com

The galley kitchen is a great design for serious cooks and is used in most restaurants where high output of meals is a priority. It’s a long, narrow space with work surfaces, storage and cabinetry on parallel walls.

Pros

This is an efficient design for meal preparation and cooking.

Cons

The kitchen is can be dark, poky and cut off from the rest of the house.

Solutions

Turn one wall of cabinetry into a long island. This retains the worktop space and storage while creating an open plan atmosphere. Big windows either at the end of the kitchen or over the sink area will illuminate the area.

*Image source: kitchens.com

The U shaped kitchen is shaped like a square U. It has three legs of cabinetry and counters.

Pros

This is an efficient design for one cook as the prep, cooking and cleaning stations are all within easy reach.

Cons

The U shaped kitchen tends to be small, and accommodating more than one cook can be a problem. Depending on the size of the space, it can be difficult to fit in a kitchen table or island.

Solutions

Design one leg of the “U” as a peninsula (a section of kitchen that’s made up of counter and storage space rather than walls and overhead cupboards).  Adding seating to the peninsula will create an area for eating and socialising, replacing the need for a kitchen table. If there is room, consider redesigning the U shape into an L shaped kitchen with an island.

*Image source: kitchens.com

The G shaped kitchen has three sides (like the U shaped kitchen) and an additional leg, which can be designed either at a right angle or an obtuse one. Ideally, this leg should be a peninsula that will create an open-plan design rather than closing off the space.

Pros

This kitchen offers prep room, storage space and works for multiple cooks. The peninsula can also be used as a breakfast bar/kitchen table.

Cons

If it’s not well planned, the design can close off the kitchen from the rest of the space.

Solutions

Make the fourth leg a peninsula for a sense of space.

*Image source: kitchens.com

The L shaped kitchen is ideal for entertaining guests or being the heart of a family home. As its name suggests, the L shaped kitchen has two legs at a 90° angle. The legs can be as long or short as the kitchen space allows.

Pros

The natural open plan design allows for a free flow in and out of the kitchen, creating a social environment.

Cons

Cooks face away from guests and family while they’re busy preparing and cooking meals.

Solutions

An island with a cooktop allows cooks to socialise with family and guests. Seating on the opposite side of the island creates a social space for people to sit and interact with what’s happening in the kitchen.

*Image source: kitchens.com

 

Island kitchens are usually a highly efficient layout, especially for homes in which the kitchen is the centre of entertainment and social activity. A kitchen island can be designed as part of an L shape, U shape or galley kitchen.

Pros

Island kitchens create a sense of space with their open plan design. They also present a great social and entertaining opportunity if they include a cooktop and seating.

Cons

Walking around an island when entering and exiting a kitchen can be a problem.

Solutions

Design your kitchen so that you can walk directly to the areas you use the most, such as the fridge and sink, without having to navigate the island.

*Image sources: kitchens.com