Is the Kitchen becoming the new Lounge?
Kitchens just used to be a place to prepare and cook the family meal. Nowadays the kitchen has turned into a social room, with TV’s, sofas and gadgets adorn.
It now appears that the kitchen has become the main hub of the house, and no longer just a place to prepare food.
The new trend of the kitchen island has opened up the space to allow people to talk more easily and openly. Family activity now takes place around the kitchen island, while it has also doubled up as a work space / study area.
With people thinking differently about their kitchens and what they want them used for, consumers now want a lot more than the basics in kitchen design.
There seems to be more coffee shops popping up on every street corner more than ever, which shows how popular it is becoming to get our caffeine fix. This is why it comes as no surprise that integrated coffee machines are being designed into kitchen plans. Why leave the comfort of your own home when you can simply flick a switch and have an instant barista style coffee in your robe and slippers. The inclusion of coffee machines and sofas into kitchens have made the kitchen the new social room, almost replicating the atmosphere of a cosy café where you would catch up with a friend while having a coffee.
The new design trend of the Quooker boiling water tap, that delivers instant boiling water, now replaces the kettle, this again creates more space and keeps appliances out of the way, keeping surfaces looking clean and tidy.
TV’s and sofas are no longer confined to the lounge, but have now made an appearance into kitchens. The introduction of sofa’s into kitchens allows people to now relax in their kitchen, read a book or watch their favourite TV programme.
More technology has crept its way into the kitchen area, as well as TV’s, sound systems – used for entertaining, laptops/ tablets used for work and play and more digital kitchen appliances than ever before.
Kitchen designers are saying that the function of the kitchen has changed, that they now represent the ‘heart of the home’, while this title would have easily been given to the lounge before.
Kitchen appliances are being disguised into kitchen cupboards to keep the aesthetics of the room, by using integrated appliances. By keeping appliances and cookware hidden, it creates the illusion that you are not in a kitchen, but a family room.
Cooker hoods are no longer plain and practical, but a striking focal point, that look more like a beautiful lighting feature, sited over the hob and dining table. The ultimate combination of style and technology is a downdraft hood, which is certain to become a talking point in the kitchen. It is neatly hidden away below the
work surface when not in use, and only pops up when is needed, to save space and keep the aesthetics of the work surface.
Kitchens are now becoming larger, with the fact that people want more space in this area of their home to be used for entertaining and making their guests appreciate all the space. The inclusion of lighting is now being used more for mood setting in the kitchen than being able to see whether your food is cooked.
LED down lights, stylish cooker hoods and mood lighting can change the ambience of the kitchen, from practical preparation space to a chill out or entertainment area, lighting in kitchens are now used to create atmosphere for social gatherings etc.
The kitchen has definitely become a different place in the home to what it was many years ago, but one thing is certain when it comes to kitchens; it will always be a place to eat, talk, work and play.