What kitchen appliances are you thinking of using?
This is one of the first questions any kitchen designer will ask you before starting to design your new kitchen.
These are major decisions and will effect the overall look of your new kitchen, just as much as the colour of the presses or the type of cabinet doors.The type of appliances dictate the layout and design of your kitchen.
Would you prefer freestanding or integrated appliances?
A single oven, double oven or range cooker?
Fridge and Freezer
A standard fridge freezer is usually 60cm wide, but can vary. In the standard fridge freezer, the top part is the fridge and the bottom part a freezer. These come freestanding or fully integrated. There is usually a 70/ 30 split, so the bottom door comes from the ground up to the worktop and is roughly in line with the cabinet doors and the top door is a longer door that extends to the full height of your kitchen cabinets.
Another option that comes in both integrated and freestanding is a full height tall fridge or tall freezer. These come in separate units. They have one full door and takes up the exact same space as a combined fridge/ freezer. We find people who take this option tend to use a full height integrated fridge in the kitchen often next to a larder unit and move the full height freezer into the utility room. This suits families as it provides great food storage for them.
The American fridge freezer is the ultimate freestanding option. Available with or without a water cooler and ice facility. It seems customers either love them or hate them. They come in different widths and colours, so they can easily be designed into most kitchens.
Traditionally there are 3 different kinds of dishwashers, freestanding, semi- integrated or fully- integrated. Also the more modern dishwashers can come as dish drawers.
The freestanding dishwasher is the one everyone is familiar with. Where the controls are on the front of the dishwasher.
The integrated dishwasher has a full kitchen cabinet door attached to the front. When you open the dishwasher the controls are along the top of the door.
The semi- integrated dishwasher also has a cabinet door attached, but this door only covers 3/4 of the dishwasher, leaving a visible control panel along the top.
The dish drawers are a newer product and are available in different layouts. These can come in one drawer or two drawers stacked on top of one another. Different wash settings can be used to each drawer i.e. one drawer can be washed while other drawer is being filled.
People love the idea of a range cooker. They are used a lot in traditional style kitchens. You have your oven and hob all in the one space and a design feature is often made out of a nice range cooker.
On the other hand, having an oven at eye level makes for very easy usage. The oven can be a double oven or a single oven or can even sometimes be two single ovens side by side at eye level. If this is the option you prefer then a hob also has to be placed into the kitchen design. The options they come in are electric, gas or induction hob.
Built in ovens are 60cm wide as standard. While freestanding ovens vary from 60- 120cm, with the wider range cookers coming in sizes of 90, 100, 110 and 120cm (wide).
When you have decided on your cooking options, you need to pick an extractor to remove unwanted steam and smells from your kitchen. An oven mantle is usually used above range type cookers. Kitchens with the modern look can have a stainless steel extractor or one of the various new stylish extractors that are on the market today. In the most contemporary kitchens an integrated extractor is hidden behind a cabinet door leaving it looking like a regular wall unit with no extractor visible.
Sinks and Taps
Lastly sinks and taps will need to be chosen. The type of sink you choose is usually determined by the work surface of the kitchen. Under mounted sinks are used with most stone type tops. Top mount sinks are used mostly with laminated tops. And a belfast sink are often seen in the classic traditional styles kitchens. Taps come in all shapes and sizes and functions with boiling water taps and cold water taps becoming more popular by the day.
Think of the overall look you are trying to achieve with your new kitchen, then pick appliances to suit this look. You will find lots of options for each style.