Q: I’m looking for storage/work space improvement in my kitchen and am leaning toward having a kitchen island added in. How do I decide which type to add to our kitchen?
A: Kitchen islands are among the most popular items in kitchen projects. They offer versatility in style and function. You can choose to blend the island with your countertops and cabinetry or choose unique colors/countertop material to compliment and accent your space.
Kitchen islands are available in a variety of colors, sizes and materials to suit any home décor. Choose contemporary, country home style or summer kitchen styles. Look through catalogs and home decorating magazines to see the options and unique designs available. Make notes of what you like and features you need in your island.
Adding Kitchen Islands
You can add an island easily, if you have enough room. Look at several islands and get the exact dimensions of the ones you like best. Measure your kitchen; you will need to leave between forty two and forty eight inches of space around the entire island. You want to make sure you can open your refrigerator, oven and dishwasher easily.
To get the feel for how much space an island will take up, try a little experiment. Find a piece of furniture in your home that is about the size and dimensions of your island. Move this furniture into the kitchen and place it where want the island to be located. Keep it there for about a week or so to help you decide if you can live with it. If it’s too large, look for a model with smaller dimensions. Experiment with a few different sizes to find the one that feels right.
There are no rules governing the height. It’s a matter of preference and function. You need to decide what the area will be used for to determine how high to make the counter. If you will be cooking, preparing food or using a built in sink, make the height even with your other kitchen cabinets. Choose a lower height for seating with tables, or a higher counter for stool type seating.
Utilizing Kitchen Islands in Clever Ways
Consider how you will use the island. Do you need more storage space?
You have several choices for cooking, preparing food, clean up and storage.
A portable island gives you additional countertop area when you need it. These are a great alternative for smaller kitchens. You can purchase one unassembled and put it together yourself easily. Portables usually are on wheels, allowing you to move it out of the way when you need extra space.
You can purchase a moving island with a cabinet for storage space, or get one that looks like a taller table. A built in cutting board surface gives you additional space for cutting vegetables and preparing food. The most common materials used for the top are steel, tile and wood.