Everyone loves a beautiful kitchen. Before you say faulty generalization, know this: about 96% of Brits have upgraded their kitchen at some point, splurging on average £5,219, according to confused.com. Reasons for kitchen improvement vary, but 59% of those surveyed said they want to improve its look. But look could be subjective. You can have an impeccable color scheme, intricate ceiling details, and shiny custom cabinetry but, without ample room to move around, all the luxurious embellishments are merely a mishmash of clutter.
And this leads us to a vital question. What makes an ideal kitchen? Not surprisingly, having adequate space for preparing food, dining, and entertaining tops most people’s list. However, some houses, especially older ones, come with smaller kitchens. In which case, the only practical solution to acquiring extra square meters and maximizing the area is by building an extension.
A kitchen extension is a serious home improvement project and would cost significantly more than, let’s say, repainting the walls. Be sure to plan well to save time, money, and effort. To guide you, here are five tips for designing your dream luxury kitchen extension.
Think About the Natural Light
Never underestimate the enhancing effects of natural light. Just imagine sunlight coming through large glass windows and highlighting the delicate patterns on your stone countertops or the color gradients on your hardwood floor. Natural light boosts the mood, reduces mold and mildew, and enables you to save on electrical bills.
When you are planning your extension, think about your sources of natural light. The most obvious place to start is the windows. If you are adding new ones, know where to position them, as the direction they face will affect how much light they will be picking. Skylights or sun tunnels are an option if you cannot install more windows for whatever reason. Choose a door style that maximizes the impact of natural light, like sliding glass doors, bi-fold doors, or French doors.
Go for glass front kitchen cabinets as glass reflects light which illuminates the room. If you have an enclosed kitchen, you might want to remove a few barriers in favor of an open-plan room. The layout does not only expand space but also ushers in light from other parts of the house.
Choose your colors carefully – dark colors absorb light, while bright colors reflect it. Lastly, supplement natural light with multi-layered lighting to create the right ambiance, bring depth, and highlight exquisite details. Not sure where to start? First, reach out to chartered residential architects for more advice on maximizing natural light as well as a quote.
Quality Means Longevity
When it comes to home improvement, cheaper is not always better. It is tempting to scrimp on your makeover budget buy low-priced but low-quality materials. It may sound like a brilliant idea at the time, but the impact of your decision could end up costing you more in the long run.
Poor-quality products will quickly corrode, fade, chip, break, rust, warp, and force you to spend thousands on repairs and replacements. For example, cheap laminate flooring may look as lovely as hardwood. But after a few years, it would begin to yellow, peel, or chip. Also, cheap materials could impact your indoor air quality and endanger your health. Plastics, paints, surface finishes, and adhesives contain volatile organic compounds harmful to humans and the environment.
If you are selling your property in the future and your kitchen begins to fall apart within a few years, you will be in a tight spot. You’ll have to undergo the renovation process again to give your kitchen the facelift it needs. Imagine the horror of paying for the same thing twice because you did not invest in first-rate materials from the onset. Indeed, choosing high-quality materials for your project does not only guarantee that your kitchen would look its best; it will also add value to your property.
Be Clever with Space
Do you sometimes feel you don’t have sufficient storage in the kitchen despite all the cabinets, drawers, and shelves? The problem is not lack of space but lack of planning and organization. For this reason, you should have a clear idea of what you are trying to achieve with the extension. What is your reason for building one? Is it so you can have more room for socialization? Be able to install your dream center island? Or open your kitchen to a backyard garden?
Consider the details of your extension carefully. Do you add it to the rear or side of your house? Will you access it from the main hallway or through another room? No matter what you decide, be sure that your extension is proportionate to the rest of the house.
Think of the features you already have, those you want to keep or remove, and those you wish to add. Assign a place for everything, from appliances to the breakfast bar to recipe books. The inside of your cabinet doors is potential storage space for your pots, pans, or utensils. You can mount a rack on your ceiling for hanging pants or use the extra space on your windowsills to grow an herb garden. Get bespoke furniture such as bespoke Cheshire design kitchen cabinetry, where you can fit built-in appliances. It will create a sleek, neat look in your kitchen while providing more space for storage and movement.
Kitchen extensions are expensive, but you don’t have to spend a fortune to get eco-friendly, sustainably sourced, and durable materials. Simply put, a green design is beneficial for your pocket, your health, and the environment.
Go for recycled or repurposed materials. The options available in the market will pleasantly surprise you. Consider recycled glass tiles for your countertops or backsplashes. And have you heard about paper counters? Yes, they exist – made of recycled paper mixed with chemical-free resins from shells of cashew nuts. Amazingly, they are not only beautiful but also heat and stain-resistant and exceptionally durable.
For flooring, check out cork-based products. A cork floor is resistant to spills and stains, soft and warm to the feet, and provides a cushion against slips and falls. Invest in energy-efficient appliances and light fixtures, and water-saving faucets. They are a bit pricey, but they help you save on utility bills and Mother Earth. So, it’s a win for you.
Consult an Interior Designer
While you may feel very confident about your skills after watching a series of DIYs online, consulting an interior designer is still the best way to ensure you accomplish what you want with the extension. And because you are spending a fortune on your home improvement, it is only practical you do things correctly the first time.
With the help of an experienced interior designer, you can enjoy the kitchen renovation process without a headache. Plus, many designers have exclusive access to trade only furniture, accessories, and other decors that they can incorporate into your home for a more elegant and unique touch. Most importantly, working with an expert can solidify the reputation of your home and increase its value, making your property more appealing to buyers should you sell it in the future.