Modern Kitchen Ideas

The do’s, don’ts and absolute disasters of modern kitchen design

According to interior designer extraordinaire Greg Natale
Annette O'Brien

How to get modern kitchen design right is the question on every home renovator’s lips.

With so many options for layout, fixtures, appliances and finishes on the market, they help of a professional interior designer can cut to the heart of the matter and save costly wrong decisions and therefore time and money in the long run.

As one of the most expensive spaces in the home to renovate, a new kitchen is admired by all. We called on ILVE Appliances partner, leading interior designer and design author Greg Natale to share some secrets from of modern kitchen design and give some insight on how to nail modern kitchen design.

How to win at modern kitchen design

The Dos

The kitchen is the hub of the home and more often than not sits in the centre of multiple rooms. “This space should be designed holistically with other areas in mind,” says Greg. “Flow and connection should be of the utmost importance so consider how the joinery can work in this area and act as the piece to bring different rooms together.”

“Often when custom joinery is used it can feel like a piece of furniture that compliments other living spaces,” Greg suggests. “If you are unsure where to start, an island bench is a good place to explore.”

How to win at kitchen design

“Consider custom joinery for the entire space (this also is a great way to maximise storage)”

Greg Natale, ILVE Appliances partner, leading interior designer and design author
How to win at modern kitchen design

The Don’ts

“Don’t set your heart on a layout before exploring different options,” Greg warns when planning your modern kitchen design. “It can be very upsetting when you have spent big on a kitchen then soon after realise that another shape would have complemented your home much better.”

“Today, U-shape seems to be the answer, however it doesn’t have to be. Consider layouts like peninsula, galley or island bench styles for example. If space permits, butlers pantries are always an advantage to hide away items you don’t want to see day to day.”

The Disasters

“Disaster strikes when no consideration is given to the practicality of a space, a well-balanced kitchen is designed perfectly when you plan,” says Greg. “Consider how you and others (like family members) live in the space and what your needs are. I have rarely had a client who doesn’t use their kitchen and appliances in a unique and personal way compared to someone else.”

“Striking the important balance of functionality and style is so important to give your kitchen the WOW factor.”

Greg Natale
How to win at modern kitchen design
(Credit: Simon Whitbread)

The size and finish of cabinetry and appliances all need to be worked into your modern kitchen design. Mock up your design with tape on a floor to get a feel for the space and do some role playing before you commit to final plans. This can also be done in kitchen showrooms and appliance centres, who now create many of their designs on the showroom floor for customers to experience. “The design, functionality, appearance and money spent on appliances are such integral parts of the home and our daily routines that they deserve plenty of thought and consideration in the planning phase,” says Greg.

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