Seven design features every kitchen needs

When it comes to designing your kitchen, the choices can seem endless. From benchtops and bins, to tapware and technology, there are numerous decisions to make along the way.

Within these, there are a number of essential design elements that can save space, ensure full functionality and improve your everyday experience. Here are just seven.

Integrated design

There’s nothing worse than unsightly rubbish disrupting the clean lines of your kitchen. Integrated bins remove this problem, providing a hidden spot for your waste and recycling. They can be covered by your cabinetry, allowing you to maintain a clean aesthetic.

The same approach also applies to your appliances – a dishwasher can vanish behind a cabinetry finish, while a toaster and microwave can be stored in a specific cupboard, creating more bench space and maintaining the clean look and feel of your space.

Soft-close drawers

If there are little fingers in and around your kitchen, soft-close drawers should be an essential part of your design. These mechanisms allow cabinets and drawers to close silently and smoothly, creating a safe and quiet environment. They also reduce the impact on fragile items and lessen the need for ongoing maintenance.

It’s also worth considering the design of the drawer itself – deep-set drawers are a great way to maximise on your space and are perfect for larger kitchen items like pots and pans. With a full extension, you’ll be able to access everything you need and know exactly where everything is without constant re-organisation.

Sensational splashbacks

Splashbacks have moved beyond the functional and are now firmly a design feature. The style depends completely on the aesthetic of your kitchen – for a contemporary look, you may want to introduce marble, while an industrial style might call for a metal texture. In fact, splashbacks are a great way to introduce different textural elements, using 3D tiles, glass or even raw concrete.

If you’re working with a smaller area, a window splashback can be used to create the illusion of space and introduce another vehicle for natural light.

A butler’s pantry

A butler’s pantry is set to be just as important as benchtops in new kitchens. It has moved beyond a simple storage area to now include secondary sinks, smaller appliances and new workspaces, allowing your kitchen to become a hybrid entertaining and preparation space.

Practically, this means hiding away the dishes when hosting a dinner party, keeping microwaves and toasters off your counters and having all the necessary storage space for a large grocery shop.

Study nooks

It may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about kitchen design, but a study nook can make a huge difference to your everyday experience. By installing a small desk and other complementary features within eyesight of the main space, you can watch the kids do their homework, or even work while something’s on the stove.

Overhang benchtop

The smallest of changes can make the biggest of differences – and nowhere is this more obvious in a kitchen than with an overhang benchtop. Extend your existing island bench surface out from the underneath cabinetry and suddenly you have a spot for the kids to eat or friends to sit and chat. It can also act as an informal dining space should you be cooking up a feast, or simply a place to relax with a cup of tea. We’re calling it: the overhang benchtop is the new breakfast bar.

Integrated dining table

The integrated dining table takesthe overhang benchtop one step further by introducing a space with increased legroom. It’s a space saving solution, as it removes the need for a separate dining space, while also creating the ultimate entertainer’s zone. Your guests can relax at your dining table while you cook, allowing you to maintain conversation throughout.

The versatility of an integrated table also means you can choose to introduce visual contrast with a new texture or material, or continue the existing theme, matching the benchtop or cabinetry.

Find more kitchen inspiration

Join us at the Kitchen Collective showroom to see these innovative features come to life. Our designs feature the latest materials, techniques and technology from best-in-class suppliers, in a range of different styles.

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