Cooking with family and friends seems like it would be the ultimate stress-relief activity. Open a couple of bottles of nice wine, lay out your beautiful ingredients, and chat while everyone is busy doing their part to put together a gorgeous and memorable dinner.
If your current kitchen design is too cozy for multiple cooks, creating a plan to accommodate more than one person at a time will help this busy area of your home feel welcoming.
An accessible or universal kitchen
If your family or guests are multi-generational or require specific accommodations, you may want to consider adding these features to your design:
Levers or faucet handles may be out of reach for kids or people who have challenges with mobility. They are also more sanitary; you can turn on the faucet to wash your hands without spreading a germy mess to more surfaces.
Non-traditional countertop heights
Most kitchen countertops are 36 inches from the ground, but people who are tall or who cook while seated may prefer a countertop surface that is higher or lower than the standard. You don’t have to commit your entire kitchen to a non-standard height; talk to your designer about incorporating varying heights in your kitchen plan.
Pull-out cabinet shelves
This simple feature makes reaching items in the back of a deep or large cabinet easy. Getting down on the ground to reach a large pot stored in the back of a low cabinet or climbing onto a step stool to reach items in the back of an upper cabinet creates an unnecessary hazard.
A social kitchen
You may not need room for many helpers in the kitchen, but it’s great to have someone to talk to while you prepare a culinary masterpiece. Make sure your guests and the people you live with have a place to relax and set their beverage while they keep you company in the kitchen.
Consider an island
Even a small kitchen may be able to accommodate an island. This on-trend kitchen addition gives you extra storage space and offers non-cooks a place to stand without getting in the way. Kitchen islands can match the rest of the room perfectly or they can offer a welcome pop of color, injecting life into your space.
If you have room, adding a small bench or a cople of stools makes guests feel welcome. Counter-height stools that coordinate with the rest of the kitchen design make the space feel finished. Think about seating that you can put away to keep the space clear and clutter free if your kitchen is small.
The kitchen doesn’t have to be a room where cooks go to fix everyone’s food alone. Being cut off from the party (or family) isn’t fun, so if you want an accessible and social kitchen, be sure to let your designer know that having company while you cook is a high priority.