Kitchen wisdom

Private Property South Africa
Lea Jacobs

For many, the kitchen is the most essential room in the home, a place where families gather around the table to chat about the day’s events and share some good-old-fashioned family time.

In many ways, open-plan living has completely changed the way we view kitchens. Cooking has become a far more social activity and the days of slaving over a hot stove behind closed doors have, to a large extent, become a thing of the past.

Kitchens in newer homes have been designed with living spaces in mind – the room has become bigger in order to accommodate friends and family and very often features additional space for entertaining. Forget the old melamine look, these types of kitchens have become showpieces and generally follow the design trend of the home concerned – and guess what, gorgeous kitchens help to sell homes faster.

The great renovate

The location and functionality of this area is vital, and is regarded by many as the most important room in the home. Buyers of older homes that feature small kitchens will often start planning to alter the space even before they have signed the offer to purchase.

Kitchens need to be functional as well as beautiful, which is why the design and layout are so important. While the style may be of great importance, the wants and needs of the chef must also be taken into consideration. Cooking is hard work and the job can become that little bit more challenging if the kitchen is poorly laid out. Big kitchens may look fantastic, but cooking can be a nightmare if the distance between essential kitchen features such as the hob, fridge and sink is too great.

The space in any kitchen, big or small, needs to be utilised to its full potential. Ideally, work-tops should not be cluttered with gadgets – they should rather stored in cupboards. And while we are talking about cupboard space, it’s worth noting that many modern kitchens feature far more drawers than cupboards. Deep drawers are ideal for storing items such as pots and pans, oven dishes, plastic containers, and the like.


Sculleries have also started to play a more important role. Having an open-plan kitchen with the sink in full view of visitors means that everything has to look spotless – even after you’ve cooked a meal for 10 guests. An area that is out of sight, which contains a space to stack dirty dishes and houses the dishwasher, has become a must-have in many homes.

Don’t forget to plan ventilation. There’s nothing worse than having cooking smells permeate the home. Again open-plan living can aggravate this problem and in many cases an extractor fan is a must.

And here’s perhaps the most important piece of advice we can give you regards the expertise needed to design and kit out the perfect kitchen: a reputable kitchen design company not only has the right tools for creating the ideal look, they are also generally experts in functional kitchen design and will build something that isn’t just beautiful, but practical too.

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