Written by John Williams
We all love our kitchens, and so we should. Without overstating their role in our lives, the kitchen is the single-most important room in the home, not only helping to nourish us on a daily basis, but also acting as the social hub of the family and the focal point of activity when entertaining.
It’s no surprise, therefore, that when it comes to replacing it, we spend an inordinate amount of time on our devices researching, long evenings sitting on the sofa buried in brochures and magazines, and countless lost weekends in the car driving to every conceivable showroom, poring over everything from taps to tiles, and sinks to splashbacks.
However, over and above the mammoth task of whittling down the myriad options of its constituent parts, the fundamental decision you have to get right is settling on a kitchen design that’s going to work well for you and your family. Without good design, everything else is just a collection of stuff, says Kitchens By Design’s, Richard Cripps. And he’s right.
“Your kitchen is going to outlive any trends that are currently floating around, so you need to think carefully about that. My advice is to un-follow fashion. Don’t get too caught up in trends that are happening right now,” he says. “Focus on the design. Design is your single-most important consideration. Get the design right and everything else will usually fall into place – so it’s vitally important to engage a designer that fully understands your specific circumstances.”
At it’s two Auckland-based showrooms, Kitchens By Design has six qualified designers that not only have the relevant skills and experience in designing kitchens, but also have a current and comprehensive knowledge of products, hardware and materials.
“Classic design lines, whether they’re traditional or modern will stand the test of time,” says Cripps. “That doesn’t necessarily mean you have to go with an un-interesting or boring design – just be mindful that you’ll probably be looking at your new kitchen every day for the next 15 years.”
“If you want to have a bit of fun with the design and the colour, choose parts of the kitchen that can easily be changed out in years to come – pendant lighting, tapware, drawer and cupboard handles, etc – but at the same time choose carefully the big ticket items, such as your benchtops and cabinetry style.”
No matter what stage of life you’re at – a young couple with no kids yet, forty something’s with a couple of teenagers in tow, or empty nesters contemplating retirement – things are going to change. So, when you’re weighing up the wants and needs for your new kitchen, don’t get too bogged down agonising over the latest appliances, benchtop materials or fancy tiles, go and talk to a qualified designer who will help to future-proof your kitchen for what life will look like at the end of the next decade.