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Merillat - Kitchen Design

Buying an Island

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At the heart of your cooking space; these multi-functional kitchen assets can enhance both utility and design. 

What You Need to Know About Kitchen Islands

Kitchen islands complete the kitchen triangle for number of kitchen shapes, to make work stations much more efficient. It is a value-add for a kitchen remodel. It makes clean-up faster, food prep easier, and socializing effortless. An island adds counter and storage space where you need it.

Islands can be outfitted with appliances, sinks, additional cabinets, open shelving, and seating for entertaining family and friends. Such utility is the reason builders and designers say an island offers you more kitchen value for the amount of spend. 

Considerations in Size

When deciding on an island, it is important to consider traffic flow. You may want as much counter space as possible, but remember to leave at least 48 in. of aisle space to allow clearance for doors, people, or pets. Also, keep in mind adding extra room at the oven door. Removing hot pans and dishes from the oven can be difficult and very dangerous if not given enough aisle space.

It is possible to leave too much space for a kitchen island. Going over 60 inches is a bit too excessive, because it defeats the purpose of efficiency in the kitchen. You shouldn’t have to take more than four steps to access your island from your kitchen counters.

The length of a kitchen island usually depends on the number of seats you’d like to add, or the amount of storage. Allow 24 in. of space for each stool or seat. With this rule into place, an island that seats three ends up being about 6ft. long. To keep shoes from scuffing the cabinetry, leave a depth for seating at least 18 in. under the counter. 

Choosing Your Style

Regardless of the size of the island that you choose, it’s a great way to add some style to your kitchen. It may seem simple, but there is so much you can do with a kitchen island aesthetically.

You can choose open shelving for your island ends to use as displays. Accents, Corbels, or decorative legs can add adornment and completely change the style. Lighting above the island is also a very essential consideration; it should enhance both the style and functionality of your island.

You can also use an island to bring contrast into a kitchen by choosing a completely different finish color for the island cabinets; or a different counter-top material.

Talk to a designer at your local Merillat Dealer today, to see what your island options are. Even if you’re not interested in a complete kitchen remodel, or you don’t have the budget at this time to do a complete remodel; an island can add significant value to your kitchen and home.

When posting this blog last month, we asked our readers what about Kitchen Islands in their home. Here are the results from the questionnaire (May 2017):


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