Most kitchens are designed around a particular builder's template and often have a 'cookie cutter' appearance and feel. Homeowners wishing to remodel may choose to update their kitchens and give them a unique, tailor-made appeal by adding a kitchen island. The beauty of this particular choice is that it will also improve the functionality and storage space within a kitchen, as well as improving the resale value of the entire house.
The first consideration of any kitchen island remodel is space. The location and placement of the kitchen island will dictate its size and shape. Kitchen islands may be rectangular, L-shaped, or even designed to accommodate bar stools for extra seating. Homeowners should spend some time considering what needs they may have and what design features will best improve their particular kitchen ergonomics. Space should also be allowed around all sides of an island so that traffic flow within the kitchen is not impeded. Any cabinet doors or drawers should be added into the overall space requirements.
Islands may also be fitted with cooktops or sinks as part of their design. Homeowners may also wish to have at least one set of outlets installed on the island, so that any small appliances may have a convenient power source. Therefore, the feasibility of running electrical wires or plumbing fixtures to the new addition becomes another consideration early in the planning phase of the remodel. If undertaking the project themselves, homeowners should consult any building codes their state may require while in this initial planning phase. The next thing for the homeowner to consider is the type of materials to be used. If the kitchen is quite old, it may be difficult to match original fittings and color schemes. Luckily, an island need not match the established décor.
A striking design element might be to utilize other colors or materials from within the room that will contrast with the existing cabinets. Avid cooks may choose to top their islands with granite for its durability and heat-resistant qualities. Designing an island with colors or materials not used in other parts of the kitchen will make it an instant and dramatic focal point within the room. Unlike other cabinets, a kitchen island must have a finished appearance on all four sides. Faux doors and drawers may be placed on an unused side to mimic the overall design, or the homeowner may wish to apply decorative moldings or install an overhang that will accommodate seating.
A kitchen island remodel need not be complicated. An island is, at its most basic, a square or rectangular box. If no appliances or electricity are required in the design, an island is an excellent project for any beginner and does not require an exotic array of tools. Any arsenal that includes, for example, a basic set of DeWalt power tools, some simple math skills and a beginner`s knowledge of carpentry, can be the foundation for a project that will have lasting benefits and improve both the look and the value of the kitchen for many years to come.
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