Open kitchens: tips and ideas for successful kitchen design
Open kitchen on the living room, it’s the trend of the moment! Which design, which plan for this type of room? Should we opt for a kitchen bar or an island? Another solution to open this room is the semi-open kitchen with a glass roof. Complete file to help you with the design and decoration of this type of kitchen.
In the open kitchen (or living kitchen), the walls are completely or partially knocked down. This living room thus becomes open to the rest of the house, usually the living room or dining room. It is in this aspect that its advantage over closed kitchens lies. As the term suggests, the open kitchen abolishes the separations with the rest of the house.
The open kitchen, overlooking the living room or entrance, in addition to being friendly, is also a guarantee of newfound brightness.
The absence of walls allows a diffusion of light that can completely change the appearance of your home. Sometimes equipped with a central island, the open kitchen allows you to easily optimize the space. Because it is an integral part of the rest of the house, its layout must be perfectly thought out to avoid nuisances and make it a decorative asset.
Is the open kitchen for you? Advantages and Disadvantages
A kitchen where preparing a meal and continuing a discussion would no longer be a dilemma, it is often a desire! But do you really have to give up your good old kitchen?
Let’s go for it, the open kitchen is made for you if:
- The preparation of the meals is for you a moment of conviviality and exchange. The open kitchen has been thought for you. The absence of partitions guarantees you long hours of debate spared by the dazzling arrival of this unbearable parasitic thought: “Damn, the roast!”. That’s the promise of the open kitchen: everything at your fingertips, everything within reach.
- You like the American style show. For you, cooking is not just about satisfying your vital needs. Cooking is an art in which you excel and you want to make this talent public. The open kitchen guarantees you “Oh!” and “Ah!” for every slice of salmon skillfully gilded on the cooking plate of your central island.
- As a parent, you like to keep an eye on what your kids are doing and also prefer a family dynamic during meal preparation time.
On the other hand, forget the open kitchen if:
- You consider that what happens in the kitchen should stay in the kitchen. For you, it is a sacred place where everything happens and nothing comes out. Except the meal, of course!
- The smell of cooking scares you. The fumes of vegetable soup held by the living room curtains: very little for you!
- You like the effect of surprise. Your secret recipes must remain secret, and the idea of sharing the trick of your favorite bouillabaisse with anyone makes you sweat.
- The open kitchen often opens onto the living room but not only. The breakthrough it allows to other rooms could bother some people.
It is also important to know that an open kitchen, American-style, requires a great deal of attention to storage, cleanliness, good odor management with an efficient extractor hood … Whenever possible, invest in quality appliances that, above all, do not make noise! Avoid at all costs to transform the living room into a kitchen! No more displays of pots and pans, noodle packets or the multi-function food processor visible from the sofa. These are the mistakes most often made.
How to design an open kitchen?
You must respect the functional triangle around which the use of the kitchen revolves: food preparation, cooking, washing. Provide sufficient space for comfortable working and convenient storage. The dishwasher cupboard will be close to the washing area and the condiments will be next to the cooking area. In short, organize the kitchen so that you have what you use most often on hand and store what is only used occasionally. Avoid, for example, the multi-function food processor that takes up all the space on the work surface when you only grate carrots once a month!
How to create an open kitchen with separation?
You want to visually delimit the kitchen space without partitioning it? The bar will be your ally to separate the kitchen from the living room. Whether it’s an L or I plan, or simply a bar that you add, you’ll get a smooth transition between the two spaces while offering you a practical element. The bar can be used as an additional worktop or even as a convivial dining area. A central island can also be used as a visual separation.
The fully open kitchen doesn’t completely convince you? Nothing prevents you from opting for an in-between with a separate but still open kitchen! The solution? A canopy that partitions the room while letting in the light. It will reduce the noise from the kitchen and also protect the living room from odors while providing the cook with less insulation than with a partition wall.
The canopy is also a real decorative asset with many finishes available to suit your style: black, white, wood… It can close the entire kitchen with a glass door as well or a sliding door, a simple side or even be installed above a piece of kitchen furniture. Enough to meet all your needs!
How to fit out a small open kitchen?
When the kitchen is small, opening it to the living room can be very practical! This will make the kitchen less cramped and more pleasant. On the other hand, it will have to be all the more organized to prevent it from invading the rest of the room. Furniture with lots of storage space (using the wall to ceiling area, for example), preferably closed, should be preferred.
It will also be preferable to adopt an appliance integrated into the kitchen to save space and functionality. Do you need a dining area? Then adopt a bar that will serve as a space divider, a work surface and a table for meals. Forget the kitchen island, which requires more circulation space.
Kitchen open to the living room: how to harmonize these two spaces?
Make sure that the kitchen can be forgotten and that it is not the “focus” of the living room. Use a light and mobile partitioning (sliding or folding panel, curtain, blind, Japanese wall) to be able to modulate the visibility of the kitchen and think about colors and light management.
In the event of a mess, think of the many camouflage tricks, such as the bar counter behind which the sink is hidden, the furniture on the counter that closes with a metal curtain, which makes it possible to hide the appliances with a simple gesture, or the breakfast cupboard with the kettle, the toaster and the coffee machine.
Finally, avoiding sharp breaks in the cladding ensures visual unity between the kitchen area and the rest of the living room. Ideally, ceramic floors should be reserved for the area likely to receive water or grease splashes: around the sink and the plate/oven area. If there is parquet in the kitchen area, it is preferable to opt for a low-soiling, varnish type finish.
If you choose tile, make sure it matches the living room flooring in color, geometry and texture. An Epoxy (resin) floor, for example, has a very contemporary look and can be installed in the living room as well as in the kitchen. It is also very easy to maintain.