Kitchen is no longer a place simply meant to slave away at preparing meals. It is much more; an extension of family life. It is the place where everyone gathers and shares meals and household responsibilities. The open kitchen trend has been a popular fixture in the West for a pretty long time. With interior design, in India, amalgamating with international home decor styles, the open kitchen design too has become a trend in most major Indian cities.
Yet, modern homeowners often get stuck when choosing between traditional closed kitchen layouts or the more modern open kitchen designs that come with its own share of benefits. To help you make this tough call, here's everything you need to know about an open kitchen design.
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Pros of an Open Kitchen Design
Looking at the advantages of an open kitchen layout will help you decide if it is the right choice for your home. Here are the main reasons why many families are opting for open kitchen design, nowadays.
i. Open kitchen designs in small apartments help in resolving the issue of space crunch. Most flats in metro cities are small and rooms end up looking crowded and congested. An open kitchen breathes and suits a smaller flat such as a studio apartment or a 1-BHK.
ii. Usually opening up into the living room, the open kitchen allows you to interact with guests, without feeling left out. Now, you no longer need to miss special moments with family and friends while you are getting the dinner together.
iii. An open kitchen is usually better lit than a closed one. As you tear down one wall, you allow light from the living room windows to spill into your kitchen, thus improving luminosity.
iv. Above all, an open kitchen allows you to multitask. You can supervise your children, watch your favorite TV programs on time and talk to your spouse while preparing meals.
Looking at The Downside
i. The biggest disadvantage of an open kitchen is the clutter. The cooking space is invariably in action and messy and we seldom want our guests to catch a glimpse of that part of our home.
ii. An open kitchen design also allows for smoke and cooking odors to spill into your hallway. This can be especially disturbing if you are entertaining a colleague or a superior from work.
iii. A closed kitchen layout prevents kitchen noises from spilling into the living room. Washing dishes and pressure cooking food can create unnecessary clamor and disturb important conversations.
iv. Remodeling a closed kitchen layout into an open one will involve huge interior design costs. Breaking down the walls, installing new electrical and plumbing fittings and making shelves can prove to be a time-consuming process.
Do Open Kitchen Designs Suit Indian Homes?
The choice ultimately rests in your hands. The main influencing factor as to whether an open kitchen design will suit your home or not is to consider the kind of lifestyle you live. If you, or any of your family members, work from home, take tuition or conduct business meetings in the living room, then an open kitchen layout may prove to be more of a hindrance than an advantage.
On the other hand, if you are a young couple who like to socialize, an open kitchen would work well. A small glass shelf could separate the hall from the kitchen and act as a mini-bar or even a bookshelf. This way, you can keep your guests entertained while working in the kitchen and multitask in many ways. Before opting for an open kitchen layout, do make sure that remodeling your home will not prove more expensive than the resultant benefits.
Tips You Need to Know
If you finally made the call to go for an open kitchen design, here are some quick tips that could come handy.
a. Make sure to install an electric chimney to get rid of smoke and odors.
b. Maximize storage and minimize clutter by opting for in-built storage.
c. Put up plants near your kitchen window or make a small kitchen garden.
d. Maintain a color scheme that suits your living room so that your kitchen seamlessly integrates with the rest of the house.
e. Install some comfortable seating in your kitchen as well.
f. Invest in quiet kitchen appliances that will help reduce sound. Avoid stainless steel or glass plates.
g. A thin lace curtain or a bead curtain can help in situations where you need some privacy in the kitchen.
Now that you've got an idea on the different aspects of an open kitchen design, take decisions wisely.