We definitely recommend thinking about your choice of appliances early, if not from the beginning, of the process. Please note, this is also where our product experts have the experience and expertise to be able to help you – and we can work with your architect or designer to develop the best outcomes.
Note, we don’t necessarily recommend buying them from the get-go – but we’d certainly advise having a very solid idea of what gadgets you will buy. Not only will it have a big impact on your renovation design, since appliances will make up a fair amount of the cost of your new kitchen, then for budgeting purposes it’s good to make your selection early.
Style or Functionality
Going back to basics in this context will really help: firstly, what are your expectations for this renovation? Are you more interested in style or achieving a certain kind of functionality?
If your answer is “style”, what do you have in mind? Something country-styled perhaps or a more classic look … or maybe a streamlined modernist aesthetic? You’ll obviously want the appliances to integrate with that vision.
Would you prefer to make a bolder statement with your appliances – or integrate them behind your cabinetry, to create smooth, uniform lines throughout the kitchen?
And while considering your options – have in mind how they will combine with other details such as flooring, benchtops and backsplashes to make a complete style statement.
On the other hand, if functionality is more important to you – try to establish exactly in your mind what it is you didn’t like about the old kitchen that you want to rectify … (and by the same token, keep in mind things you do like and want to retain while updating everything else!).
Do you like to cook – and you’re finding the current set-up constrictive and inconvenient? If you’re looking to expand the potential and scope of your cooking, maybe you might want to look toward changing up your technology.
For example, combi-steam ovens are becoming increasingly popular for the professional results they afford. Meanwhile, gas remains a firm favourite because of its power, flexibility and precision – however remember you have to factor in the additional costs of a gas connection. You can find buying guides for some of your cooking options – including combi-steamers and cooktops – on our blog!
Having that clear sense of your preferred appliances will help you make important choices about things like the layout of your kitchen. The sheer size of contemporary appliances alone means you will be planning a lot of decisions around them.
With that early sense of the appliances in mind, you can then start working out a basic layout for the available space – figuring out how the pieces of the puzzle might fit together. Practicalities are also obviously important here – you don’t want a kitchen that looks great but is inconvenient. If it helps you to visualise it – try sketching your ideal configuration out on paper.
The Kitchen Work Triangle
In this regard, one of the important decisions will be the arrangement of the pivotal trio of sink, fridge and cooktop/oven.
Everything needs to be relatively easy to access – giving you enough room to move between them, without giving you too far to travel. Wide walkways are a good idea to keep in mind – a width of 40 inches is recommended as a good rule of thumb. Meanwhile, it’s always advisable to give yourself a healthy amount of landing space on each side of the cooktop and fridge. One of your considerations will therefore be the size of your appliances relative to the available space you have for your renovation.
We’ll go into more detail about planning your space in our second renovation blog, coming up in a couple of weeks – stay tuned!