Planning A Smart Kitchen Design
A Smart Kitchen has one of two features. It can either utilize smart technology or its layout is designed in such a way that it efficiently maximizes the use of the kitchen space. Although both can be mutually exclusive from each other, they rarely are. A smart kitchen design is one that focuses on utility and ergonomics, which smart technology can take to the next level.
Designing a smart kitchen takes careful, professional planning and proper execution. Here are a couple things to consider:
Know the 5 Zones
On average, a person walks to and from the kitchen table more than 30 times a day, opens and closes drawers more than 80, and does more than 50 activities—such as slicing, frying, seasoning—in their kitchen? These numbers are due to repetitive actions caused by disorganization and lack of strategic placement. Smart kitchen design prevents such instances from happening by implementing the 5 Zones.
The 5 Zones refer to specific areas in the kitchen that, when properly configured, organize the kitchen space in a way that is efficient, effective, and saves time. They are (1) food storage, (2) food preparation, (3) pots and pans, (4) cleaning and waste, and (5) china and cutlery.
Food Storage is pretty self-explanatory; it’s the area where all the food is meant to be stored when not being cooked, prepped, or eating. Refrigerators and freezers can be found in this area, which should—ideally—be situated right next to the Food Preparation zone. This zone includes your kitchen counters—for chopping, peeling, etc.—stove, microwaves, and small electrical appliances. Any cabinets or drawers in this area should contain mixing bowls, chopping boards, spatulas, or seasonings.
Pots & Pans deserve a zone of their own, as they make up most of the loose items found in the kitchen (not including food). This area should be located right next to the food preparation zone since it contains pans, pots, and everything you need to cook. Next to pots and pans but separate from the food prep zone is Cleaning & Waste, which—as you might have guessed—has the dishwasher, sink, waste bin, and household cleaning implements (usually kept under the sink).
Lastly, China & Cutlery is kept separate from the utensils used in food preparation and pots and pans. This zone is reserved for the actual cutlery you use to serve food. You do not want individual utensils like bread knives or fish forks getting in the way during cooking. Chinaware should also be safely stored during food prep, and should only be taken out once everything is ready to be served. This is mostly to keep everything safe and sanitary.
Conduct Thorough Research & Request Professional Consultation
The idea of smart technology in the kitchen is an exciting one, especially since it promises to revolutionize the way homeowners interact with their kitchen. But before you start investing in smart kitchen appliances, you should speak to a professional home remodeler or design build firm about your options—factoring in the age, shape, makeup, and layout of your current kitchen. Industry experts are the best people to guide you in designing a smart kitchen that fulfills your personal preferences without compromising your kitchen’s integrity—or your budget.
Request a 3D Design
Once you have a rough idea about what you want to do, a design build firm should be able to turn your concept into a physical 3D design plan. Most experienced professionals will give their clients several versions of the blueprint. However, as they’re limited to paper sketches, requesting changes in the layout or color—even just minor changes—will take time to replicate.
With a 3D design, you can easily run through variations and make minor adjustments without needing to redraw the whole thing. You’ll also have a better vision of the final design regarding how well it translates into an actual, physical room (rather than just a sketch or picture). A
A well-designed kitchen is all about integration and space efficiency. Food processors, chopping boards, frying pans, cutlery—they should all be where they’re needed the most, and they should all be easily accessible. Smart kitchen appliances are all about utilizing smart technology to increase the effectiveness of common kitchen installments.