Kitchen Confidential

by - June 03, 2016

No matter how lived in the living room is, there’s one part of the home where families gather to download and debrief on the day’s events. No wonder the kitchen is dubbed the heart of the home. But these days it is so much more.

Kitchen by IKEA
“We’re seeing larger kitchens that consider the needs of all the users in the space,” says Freedom Kitchens design manager Jenny O’Connell. “There’s more emphasis on open workspaces, multiple ovens and storage maximisation inthe form of butler’s pantries.”

The rise and rise of open-plan living has moved the kitchen firmly into the centre of the house — with the living, dining and outdoor areas positioned around it. So instead of being away from the action, the home chef is now connected with the rest of the family and the island bench or breakfast bar doubles as a gathering spot for friends and family.

Choose your style

Whether it’s country, modern, classic, coastal, industrial or vintage, the style you choose for your kitchen will dictate everything from layout to appliance choices. But if you can’t choose, don’t panic. Winning Appliances CEO David Woollcott says a mix and match approach can work.

A modern kitchen with a mismatched twist from this year's series of House Rules
The rise of the “kaleidoscope kitchen” is an emerging trend and one that suits many families.

“The kaleidoscope kitchen embraces a mix-and-match approach by incorporating different colours, brands and trends,” he says. “This open-minded approach to kitchen design transcends from Australia’s relaxed, down-to-earth lifestyle.”

“Blending old with new provides a greatdeal of flexibility, and is an excellent choice for homeowners who don’t want to confine themselves to a single style,” says Jenny O’Connell.

Designer finish

One of the most prominent features of your kitchen is the benchtop. Jenna Susetio, a contestant on The Block turned kitchen designer for The Good Guys, says the right benchtop really adds wow factor.

“From laminate to stone there are plenty of things to consider when chooosing your bench,” she says. “Consider using different heights, contrasting colours or varying textures for visual impact.”

A classic style kitchen from this year's series of House Rules

Think before you buy

Before buying appliances think about the space you have available. “Space is at a premium for many households, so finding ingenious ways of doing more with less is often at the top of most agendas,” says The Good Guys’ Julie Hanover. “There has been a rise in inclusions such as innovative storage solutions, eat-in-dining benches and mirrored splashbacks to create the illusion of space.”

First published Home Magazine, The Daily Telegraph, 15 November 2015

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