The free diy home improvement guide with answers to your questions on a wide range of do it yourself projects.

 

Planning Your Kitchen - Layout

Designing your layout

Making an accurate representation of what your new kitchen will look like is the most important step in the start of your kitchen fitting job. If you get things wrong at this stage it could mean huge delays further down the line.

Measuring

kitchen layoutThe first thing to do is measure your kitchen area and plot this accurately onto plotting paper. You could also take advantage of the many online applications which will draw the details for you. Note the position of the services, doors and windows either leaving them where they are for simplicity or in the new positions if you are planning on changing things around. Start positioning cupboard units, appliances, sinks within the kitchen drawing taking care to use the correct measurements of each unit. Measure the length of worktop required.

As you begin to do this you will likely need to adjust the position of the electrical points, water and gas feeds as you go.

Take into consideration the ease of use of your kitchen. The perfect layout is usually regarded as one which allows access to sink, cooker and fridge within a couple of steps. Any regular user of a kitchen will know that these three areas are used most often in any kitchen. This easy layout is known as the “perfect triangle”.

Common layout designs are as follows:

Corridor/galley:

A long room with cupboards on each side. Allow at least 1200mm between each row of units to allow front opening appliances to be used easily. If you can't allow this you may need to have units on one side only.

L-Shaped:

Useful in narrow rooms where you cannot put units on opposite sides.

U-Shaped:

Allows easy access to all parts of the kitchen and allows for the perfect triangle of sink, cooker and fridge.

Island:

You need a large room for this as you still need the 1200mm between unit openings. The island can be used as a preparation area or even as a breakfast bar. It is also the perfect way to separate a kitchen from an eating area.

Design Services

If all this feels a little scary then take advantage of design offers from large retailers. Most will come to your home (or you can take measurements to them in-store) and make a design for you based on their own units and appliances. This will then allow you to buy the units to install yourself. They will also give you a breakdown of the costs and fitting which will help you judge your own budget.

Once you are completely happy with the layout, order the units and appliances. Expect waiting times of up to 8 weeks for some designs, even from DIY stores.