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Must Have Kitchen Island Designs For Modern Homes


Many homeowners are opting to include an island in their kitchen renovation project. If your kitchen is the heart of the home, then an island is the hub of that heart where everything happens. It has an important purpose and should be designed with that in mind.

Three Main Uses For the Kitchen Island

Your island will be used for three major tasks throughout the day. Each task has its own unique needs that should be incorporated into the kitchen island design.

• Food Preparation

Meals are prepped and put together on the countertop of the island, so keep that in mind when choosing a surface material. Opt for something extremely durable and easy to keep clean. Stainless steel is great for professional-grade food prep and looks sharp in a contemporary kitchen. Any of the natural stones such as marble and granite will work and a custom poured concrete countertop is another excellent choice.

The tools that you need for food preparation and cleanup are also found in and around the kitchen island. Be sure to include plenty of deep drawers for pots, bowls and small appliances, as well as shallow organizer drawers for utensils. Make sure that placement of the island leaves plenty of clearance for your dishwasher and is well situated for movement between the sink, fridge and stove. Installing the primary or secondary sink right into the island is another great option.

• Cooking
Many people are including a stovetop range on their island as well, providing easy access and an open area for cooking. Be sure that the exhaust fan is installed properly for this location and have any eating areas raised to avoid harmful splattering and heat dangers.

Your countertop material comes into play with this function as well and should be completely heat resistant. Stone works exceptionally well and will provide a cool surface in contrast to the heat of cooking. Be sure that your island is wired well with the electrical safely and properly run up through the bottom of this permanent fixture. Portable kitchen islands do not have this option but can still serve as excellent staging areas during cooking.

• Eating and Informal Gatherings

A breakfast bar or casual seating area to one side of your kitchen island is a definite must have. With comfortable bar stools and soft lighting this area will become a favorite spot for snacking, quick meals and even entertaining overflow. Allow for plenty of space for people to gather around your island. The action is always happening in the kitchen and a well designed island will be at the center of it all.

Your island will also become a spot where paperwork, school bags, mail and other items are left, sorted or worked on. If you don’t have another area to designate for these things (like a phone desk or mini-office), include storage compartments right into the island cabinetry. Easy access drawers on the dining side of the island can be used to store miscellaneous items and open shelving works for paper storage. You can even hang small hooks for keeping purses, keys and other items handy.

Design your kitchen island to be the best it can be by taking these tasks into account. Think about your family will actually use the space. Include personalized features that will help your island to be even more functional for meal prep, cooking, eating and gathering on and around the kitchen island.

The heart of your home will be much more comfortable and flow better with a well designed island.


Cutting Edges Products For Your Modern Kitchen Remodel


Renovation projects are all about upgrading your existing space. With a kitchen remodel you're often replacing dated appliances and fixtures as well as improving the design and layout. As technologies advance and our lives become more streamlined and efficient, your kitchen can follow suit. By including some of these incredibly fresh designs and products into your kitchen remodel you can truly move into the future with style.

A New Kind of Built In

Remember when over-the-range microwaves began to show up in the stores? These small kitchen appliances were designed to save counter space while still providing the power and convenience your family needed. Now appliance manufacturers have taken that built in, off the counter idea even further making amazing headway with refrigerators, microwaves and even specialty storage items.

Have you ever been frustrated by a lack of space on the counter? Why not just add more by moving the refrigerator... down? Some big name manufacturers are introducing drawer fridges. This new design means you can install the appliance right under the counter top and access it using deep drawers, much like a bottom-mount freezer. It's efficient (because heat rises) and ultra convenient for putting items away. The biggest benefit is all of that room freed up for a pantry or, you guessed it, more counter.

The same scenario has been designed for the microwave. Instead of over the counter (which does leave you more space, but often makes for dark corners and hard to reach areas), appliance designers have come up with under the counter units. These handy units work perfectly under stove top ranges or beside, above or below a wall oven. Install them on your island and clear up a major amount of counter space, creating a more open, bright kitchen remodel.

Let your imagination go and envision what other appliances can be built in as part of the cabinetry. Wine enthusiasts have been known to install built in wine coolers, keeping all of their supplies close at hand and ready to enjoy. Any sort of units that can be installed flush with the counter and cabinets will reduce clutter and create a cleaner, more organized kitchen.

Specially Designed For Your Needs

A kitchen remodel offers you the chance to create your dream kitchen. If you love to entertain, design the room to cater to that. If you are a gourmet chef or always eat on the go, choose features and a layout that will serve those needs.

There are kitchen sinks designed for almost any need and taste - from the traditional farmhouse sink made with natural materials to state of the art shapes and forms that include the conveniences you want. The same thing applies to kitchen taps. Have a look at the latest designs and colors available and install something bold and beautiful or subtle and serene. The selection of trending products is nearly endless.

Over in the food preparation side of your kitchen the options are expanding as well. Some appliance manufacturers have been listening to consumer demands and have introduced a steam oven to prepare healthy meals for the whole family fast.


When you invest in a kitchen remodel project it only makes sense to look at the latest products and styles. Make the heart of your home beat with modern, efficient and stunningly beautiful items like under the counter microwave, drawer refrigerator or built in wine cooler. Have a look at the specially designed kitchen sinks and taps to dress up your space or the latest in culinary tools, such as the steam oven. You may not want to invest in passing trends, but when new products resonate with your lifestyle it makes sense to include them in your kitchen remodel.


How to Make Your Kitchen Remodeling Dreams Come True


Because it can be such an expensive and expansive project, kitchen remodeling is often intimidating for homeowners. But so many dream of a brighter kitchen, a larger kitchen, a more usable, modern or efficient kitchen. They need to learn how to make their kitchen remodeling dreams come true and start enjoying a more comfortable and convenient life.

Be Reasonable

If the space in your kitchen makes an island unfeasible the wise path would be to accept that fact. But if the budget allows and the rest of your floor plan makes it possible, adding in an island (or a peninsula) may still work. The trick is to be reasonable in the overall sense. You need your kitchen layout to work well for all of the activities that occur there. If you simply design for preparing the meals and leave out the room needed for clean up or consumption the area will not be as usable and practical overall.

Take your dreams to a kitchen contractor or cabinet maker and have them draw you some ideas. Make sure you let them know your rough budget numbers (so that they will not come up with wild schemes that aren't likely to happen without a lottery win) and a general layout of the balance of your home.

Be Picky

When choosing the finishes for your kitchen remodeling project it pays to be picky. Make sure that you opt for the best quality and a style and appearance you can live with for the long haul. Because of the cost and scale of kitchen renovations it does not make sense to invest in dated fixtures, flooring or cabinetry. Designing a kitchen that is in line with the latest trends only makes sense if you are prepared to live with those trends long into the future.

It's also important that the features and style you choose to install in your new kitchen have lasting appeal to potential buyers. Even if you do not plan to sell your home any time in the near future, a renovation will only increase the value of your home if the choices made are attractive for a wider audience. Strike a balance between installing what you love and sticking to more neutral options.

Be Diligent

In order to keep the costs of your kitchen remodeling project under control you will need to do some shopping around. It's important that you find a contractor you can trust and get the best deal that you can on the materials. Always be prepared to pay for quality, but always be knowledgeable about the going rate for those quality materials in order to invest wisely.

Maintain a good relationship and open communication with your contractor in order to keep abreast of any changes to the project as well. Be as flexible as possible with the schedule as any rushing will not only affect the quality but can also drive up the price.


Your kitchen remodeling project is perfectly attainable with a few key steps. Be reasonable in your planning and design for a kitchen that will truly work for your family. Be picky when opting for materials and fixtures. Steer clear of trends and always go for quality. Finally, you can keep control of the budget best by doing your homework, talking to your contractor and keeping an open mind about the schedule. In the end, all of the work for your renovation project will be worth it as you enjoy your dream kitchen.


Expert Design Tips for Your Kitchen Renovation | Part 1


Renovating and updating the kitchen is a worthwhile project to tackle, considering it will almost always raise the value of your home and make your day-to-day life better. With more space, a brighter area to prepare and serve meals and better storage your family will feel more comfortable. Head into your kitchen renovation with these expert design tips and make this area the true heart of your home.

Include Light and Space

Contemporary, modern kitchens almost always include light colored cabinetry, stainless steel surfaces and appliances and recessed lighting. Even if this design style is not what you’re looking for it’s a good idea to borrow some of the cutting edge concepts and create a brighter space that feels large and open.
While elaborate designs can be included in trim work, door and drawer hardware and décor accents, you’re best bet is to create a smooth look with the main elements in your kitchen design. That way you’ll end up with a more open feel.

Be Practical

Good design is more about how the structure and layout create comfort than about how a room looks. Nowhere else is this more important than in the kitchen. While it is the center of your home and will become a gathering place, most of the time spent in this room will be working. It pays to design a suitable workplace that includes ergonomic features with well laid out storage and appliances.

Be selfish and think about your family, especially if you are planning on staying in this house. Are their two cooks in your family? Make sure the kitchen design includes space for both to be working at the same time. Think about designing for different counter heights to suit your family members and always include plenty of accessible, spacious storage.

The latest high tech kitchen gadgets may sound great and look flashy but it’s a better idea to opt for the top quality appliances that you will use often. Consider wall ovens and cook-top ranges if you are an entertainer or built in features such as over the range microwaves and under cabinet toaster ovens if space is at a premium. Always design a kitchen with your own cooking habits and lifestyle in mind.

Durability is Worth the Money

Kitchen renovations are expensive and expansive. They will disrupt your household and schedule for a time and although a good design makes it all worthwhile, this is not a project you want to tackle more than once in your home. Because of the scope of this home improvement it’s essential that you choose the highest quality materials you can afford.

Investigate which counter top materials suit your tastes, looking at marble, granite, concrete and slate. These will all have a higher price tag than the usual suspects but will deliver a much more durable product that can handle the heavy workload experienced in every kitchen.

Flooring is similar. While vinyl is a popular and economical option you will get much more life and beauty out of tile, bamboo or cork. Research what types are the most suitable for your circumstance and work with the best quality flooring you can afford.


Check back for Part Two in this series where lighting, fixtures and features such as islands and pantries are considered. Your family deserves a well-designed kitchen renovation and these expert tips can help get you there.