Creating kitchen workflow in your designs

Written by Douglas Ross in Renovating

A kitchen with four bar chairs placed in front of a timber and white marble kitchen island that reflects a healthy kitchen workflow.

All hail the mighty triangle!

If you thought the Illuminati were fans of the triangle, just talk to a kitchen designer. They can’t stop talking about triangles because the mighty triad is key to creating kitchen workflow in your designs.

The kitchen workflow triangle for your designs

The above picture explains it all. Your kitchen design should always have workflow as a priority, but what does kitchen workflow mean?

Creating workflow in your kitchen is different for every homeowner, as everybody cooks different meals, uses different utensils and has different family types and sizes. There is no such thing as one-size-fits-all.

This is why the triangle is the perfect base from which all designs of a kitchen can be made.

As long as the line of sight and use is maintained between the fridge, the stove and the sink (the three most-used and central parts of a kitchen) then the rest of the kitchen’s design can follow suit.

5 Things to consider to create smooth kitchen workflow

1. Your living situation. Who is living in and using the house?

If you are a large young family, with kids needing help with homework and a Labrador barking for his dinner at 6pm every night, then creating large kitchen island designs around which the family can congregate transforms your kitchen into the hub of the home and allows you to multitask.

A young, professional couple with no kids may not need large kitchen island designs, but instead prefer to use an L-shaped layout for their kitchen design to monopolise on less space.

2. Who uses your kitchen. Design a kitchen for you, not any potential future owners in 10 years time. Most people will enter a home they have just bought with an intention to renovate the kitchen to suit their owns tastes and usage patterns, so it is important that you design your kitchen for who lives in it now.

Secondly, who cooks? If there is only one chef in the house, target your kitchen designs towards that cook. If there are more than one, you need to have conversations with them about how they like to use a kitchen.

A small U-shaped kitchen design

This kitchen cannot have multiple entries, but ensures flow by not placing appliances opposite one another in a tight space.

3. How do you cook? What do you like to cook, when do you like to cook it and how do you like to cook? Your cooking patterns are unlikely to change drastically, even if you set yourself up with a gigantic modern kitchen.

It is more likely that if you often like to keep things simple and put together a fresh wrap with smoked salmon, then you will probably keep doing this regardless of your 6-burner stove. For this reason, consider the extent of storage you need, how you use your kitchen (do you keep a pantry stacked and plan your meals each week or are things always a bit threadbare but you put great meals together at the last minute?) and when you cook (do you come home very late and need to put together a meal that might wake others?) to decide where workstations are etc.  

4. Where the light is. Be aware of where your windows are and your doors. They are key to both inviting pivotal natural light into your kitchen as well as managing the flow your kitchen.

Kids that often trample in through the laundry door with soccer shoes may be kept out of the kitchen during dinner time if they don’t have immediate access to the kitchen.

5. Where are the exits? Make sure there are at least two exits/entry points to your kitchen. This may not always be possible for small kitchens in apartments, but multiple entry points should otherwise be a priority for creating circulation in how people use your kitchen. This is especially important when it comes time to entertain.

Got the kitchen sorted, but tearing your hair out with the bathroom? Find more renovation trends for 2018 here.