Many people shy away from the idea of a custom kitchen because they believe that the costs involved with its design and installation will be too prohibitive. Custom kitchens are not just designed showpieces and major selling points in homes, however; they also allow homeowners to optimize their space to suit their particular needs, effectively making their kitchens more efficient, and more enjoyable to spend time in. When one considers the many advantages of a custom kitchen, the investment proves to be well worth the initial costs that are involved.
When beginning to design your new kitchen space, do the necessary research ahead of time in order to identify your needs and wants, and then consult with a designer, a contractor, or both. It is advisable to enter these meetings with an idea of your price range, and with suggestions or ideas for the space. An expert in design and/or installation can then work with you and your ideas in order to help create a space that meets your requirements and stays within your projected budget.
When planning your custom kitchen, remember three basic guidelines: Design, function, and quality. The ideal kitchen space will combine these elements to create a space that is seamlessly comfortable and efficient.
Two major design, function, and quality components to any custom kitchen, and also two of the most expensive components, are the cabinets, and the optional island. Custom kitchen cabinets must be attractive, sturdy, spacious, and well-positioned. They are most often made of hardwoods, such as oak or maple, and somewhat lower-end cabinets will frequently be made of pine. They can be simple or complex in design. Many kitchen design centers and even some home hardware stores will have display areas where customers can identify the styles and materials that they would prefer for their own cabinets, and also for their custom kitchen island.
Custom kitchen islands add dimension to any room, making the space in the middle of the room a functional area. An island can be as simple as extra counter space, with bar stools for kitchen lounging or casual snacking. Frequently, especially in custom kitchen settings, the island will also be a cooking or cleaning station, with the inclusion of a stove range and oven, kitchen sink, or dishwasher. To optimize the space further, the area above the island can be used for hanging wine glasses or cooking utensils, and will often feature a light that specifically illuminates the island’s surface.
Regardless of the style that you eventually choose, the cabinets and islands that are installed in your kitchen must ultimately be practical and reliable. Ensure that all parts, such as hinges, handles, rollers, and so forth, are of a high enough quality that they will be able to sustain heavy use and daily wear and tear. If your kitchen island is to contain a sink, stovetop, or any other appliance, ensure that they are installed according to all safety standards, and if you are installing any electrics on your own, consult with an electrician to be sure that you have planned or completed the installation properly.
One final point that makes custom kitchens the ideal option for new and old homes is the opportunity to take responsibility for the environment by planning a kitchen with green-minded elements. If you have a part in the planning, you can ensure that only the most energy-efficient appliances and lighting fixtures are installed, making you an active participant in the global effort to conserve valuable resources, and ultimately saving you money.
With so many reasons to consider designing a custom kitchen for your home, why not begin to make the plans now? Even if you are not planning on making any of the changes, the sooner you begin planning, the clearer your concepts will be.