Entries Tagged 'planning' ↓

What is the most dangerous part of your home?

The kitchen has long been seen as the heart of a home, functioning not only as a place to eat, but also somewhere to socialise & entertain. With plenty of more modern homes being built around open plan living, keeping the space safe & in lovely working order could be even more important.

Irrespective of how your home is set up, & how safety conscious you think you are, it’s still a lovely suggestion to keep in mind that the kitchen can be the most hazardous room in the house. It is filled with a considerable number of potential hazards, & in the UK, 2.7 million people were treated in hospital for accidents in the house last year. So it makes sense to keep your kitchen as safe as feasible to make sure you can avoid the most obvious pitfalls.

Safety conscious? Get home insurance and make sure your kitchen is covered too! Continue reading →

Modern Open Kitchens

The open kitchen has been a modern design staple for some time now. The pros of such an open and airy space, are many. They allow people to freely flow in and out of the adjoining rooms, and are usually closely located near a dining room or breakfast nook, which encourages togetherness, closeness and an all-around more social, and more interactive environment.

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History of the Kitchen – 1920s and 1930s

In the late 1920s and early 1930s, furniture manufacturers found a ready market for kitchen cabinets. These were designed to hold almost everything the cook needed, complete with flour bins, egg racks and extending tables. They also often had vented compartments as refrigerators were still uncommon.

 

From 1932–34 in the USA, General Electric and Westinghouse opened cooking institutions. Engineers, chemists, architects,  nutritionists and professional cooks studied all aspects of the kitchen. The work process was scientifically investigated, and the way was opened for the modern streamlined kitchenplanned kitchen by Hygena Continue reading →

History of the Kitchen – The Victorian kitchen

The Victorians still thought it desirable to keep the kitchen, with its attendant smells, well away from the gentry end of the house. In grand homes, kitchens were positioned in the centre of the servants’ wing, surrounded by the smaller rooms of the scullery, larder and pantry with separate stores for game, fish, ice and coal. These would be adjacent to the servants’ hall with separate rooms for the cook, butler and housekeeper

The importance of the house could be judged by the number of chefs presiding over numerous kitchen maids. Kitchens were full of cooking devices such as roasting ranges, stewing and boiling stoves, turnspits and hot cupboards. However, there were no mechanised devices for washing, ventilation or refrigeration. Water was pumped by hand into scullery sinks and food was kept cool in an ice box with ice brought in from an ice house outside. Most food was still kept in north facing larders with natural ventilation.

The big change in kitchen design came about due to the social implications of the industrial revolution and the development of mechanisation Continue reading →

History of the kitchen

Designing kitchens necessitates the integration of functional requirements, together with spaces which are pleasant to work in. Before analysing these needs it is worth looking back in time to see the antecedents of the modern kitchen. This will help to articulate and clarify the different activities needed to prepare complex meals and to realise how radically modern technology has reduced both the space and manpower needed to achieve this.

Early kitchens

The earliest kitchens, all over the world, are simply open fires, most often out of doors which is still so today in countries with a climate hot enough all the year round to make this possible.

In Britain, little is known about kitchens until Norman times. After the Romans left Britain in AD 407, the culinary arts were largely forgotten. Food was often cooked outdoors on caul- drons or spits. This was to avoid the risk of fire and to keep smells out of the houses. Continue reading →

Kitchen remodeling in a down economy – part 1.

As house values are down across the board and loans / mortgages are harder to get, homeowners are finding few easy-money options for grand remodels. But hey, you probably should not do that anyway! Instead, why not go after projects that cost less, or even garner practical savings and keep their value much better when it comes time to sell.

This is very true for kitchens: usually oneof the (if not THE) most expensive room in your home, a remodel can even cost anything upwards of $50.000 – which can be as much as 10% of the value of your home.  Instead of spending a ton of money, let’s see a few options on modest, practical, recessionproof improvements that build a home’s long-term value while conserving energy or just allow you to rest and enjoy your kitchen.

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The six new kitchen trends of 2011

Are you considering building a new kitchen or remodeling your existing one? If so, it makes sense to keep up with the latest trends, if for nothing else, to check what you’re likely to find in the stores this year.

Here is a list of kitchen trends for 2011

1 Curved shapes become the ‘new minimal’

Kitchen designers starting to introduce curved shapes to the kitchen, just like other parts of the house. Gone are the days of sharp and straight and blocks look, as it’s now being replaced by soft appearance. The easiest way to add curved shapes and bump up your kitchen with a contemporary look is through the introduction of rounded sinks, maybe bowed cabinet, curved faucets. If you can afford a bit more, think about adding a curved kitchen island (be careful though, it better harmonizes with your kitchen still). Continue reading →

Unusual kitchen lighting ideas

Did you ever wonder how some kitchens look like they belong on the pages of a glossy mag or in one of those lifestyle TV shows? Most of the times the simple reason is that they use lighting effectively. And that’s about it. Kitchen lighting design is key.

Well planned lighting can turn even the most drab space into a chic interior, and similarly, poor lighting can completely ruin even the most stylish decor. So I feel it’s quite astonishing how many kitchens rely totally on ambient (mostly overhead) lighting. Sure, you can go to the other extreme and illuminate your kitchen entirely with decorative lighting – as pretty as using candles – cosy if somewhat dim. Plus look out for your fingers when trying to chop something.

kitchen_chandelier2

An important feature of all good kitchen lighting schemes is the use of numerous light sources. Kitchens are fundamentally work areas and require task lighting which typically needs to be placed between you and the items you are working with. If the main lighting in the room is located in the middle of the ceiling then you will find yourself working in your own shadow.

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An advanced lesson in hardwood flooring

Want to install new flooring in your kitchen (or any room, for that matter)? So did I. Here are a few lessons I’ve learnt – probably the hard way.Beautiful room with solid floor

Measure twice, cut once

Once my engineering teacher and numerous craftsmen told me this and its oh-so-true. Not just measure what you need, also what you already have.

Here’s my story: my open kitchen – living room had some stone-tile flooring and radiant heating below it. So far so good. Turned out, the stone needed breaking up as it was installed very-very badly – about seven years ago. I had a choice: either I break it up or it will come up all by itself soon. Not liking surprise-self-destructing floors, I’ve chosen the chisel. Worked like a charm. Continue reading →

Step 5 – Kitchen lighting

Lighting is usually the last thing you consider and the first thing you cut from the budget. But to look its best and function well, your kitchen must be properly lit — and that involves more than just throwing a few stylish fixtures on the wall. A good plan blends lighting into the architectural and decorative details of the kitchen

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