Whether you’re passionate about pizza or love gadgets, kitchens today combine clever design solutions to create slick, relaxed living spaces.
Despite its lofty proportions, this welcoming kitchen (above) is an intimate and family-friendly hub that’s grounded and defined by the charcoal grey palette that flows from the cabinetry through to the living area, with wood detailing to add visual interest. Grey tones are successful in double-volume spaces like these where deep colour is needed to soften the bright natural light and to give focus. The extra-deep generous concrete slab counter was poured in situ (for more ideas visit Stucco Italiano) and makes a luxe statement. You can create a custom Caesarstone alternative that is easier to maintain and warmer to the touch. Sliding cupboard doors were chosen to save space, and ample accessible shelving was allocated for recipe books.
Tip: Add a boiling-water tap to your budget and design from Franke.
A raised central island in your kitchen is a smart move so that you can stand comfortably around it without your toes butting into the skirting. More importantly, the height can be bespoke, which is a bonus for tall cooks. This kitchen design was structured around top-of-the-range appliances such as the double-door fridge, and the dark hue was chosen for its dramatic sophistication.
Tip: Contrasting white countertops give a crisp edge to a dark colour scheme.
This kitchen combination, with its stainless-steel worktops, sleek extractor and streamlined units, could have looked very industrial in style, but by adding softer layers such as the sisal rug, wicker baskets and pot plants, the look is more country than cutting-edge. Bright idea to copy: install narrow windows high above the cupboard area to bring in loads of extra light without compromising on wall space that could be used for artwork or additional storage.
Tip: Don’t forget about the joys of a good old-fashioned pantry. It’s an ideal space for washing machines, tumble driers and cleaning equipment as it is out of sight.
Here, a narrow window is used to bring the outdoors in and gives a peaceful view out to the garden from the sink, without taking up valuable space needed for storage above. Dark green contrasts effectively with white crockery and other accessories to give it a lived-in feel. Retro bar stools blend in with the tones of the central counter to keep the colour unified instead of providing a focal point that would divide up the already small space. Dark floors are useful in kitchens with access to the outdoors but they also pull the whole look together, as do extra-depth countertops that give it gravitas, particularly in the central island.
There’s nothing quite like a wall of tropical greenery to add feel-good factor to a kitchen. Delicious monsters are a winner for internal courtyards, especially if you need to create a ‘view’ in front of an unsightly wall (although the leaves are toxic, so choose an alternative if you have dogs or young children). Industrial windows offer an easy way of opening up the space and letting light in. Glass shelving is a discreet and easy way of adding storage. World of Windows also does louvred windows that are great for airflow in a kitchen.
This long, galley-style kitchen even manages to fit in a pizza oven that’s great for casual family gatherings. In winter, it makes the whole living space toasty warm, and in summer it’s protected from the wind outside. Collections of kitchenalia fill the shelves, and an elongated ‘tapestry’ of tiles line the floor like a runner. They were spotted in the Lutge Gallery and are from Buenos Aires (find similar tiles at OnSite). However, the sliding glass doors are the unsung heroes of the tight space, making what could be a very dark corner into a delightful, light-filled space. Essential items, including a battery of Le Creuset pots, hang within arm’s reach just above the gas cooker.
The back of the house was opened up so this kitchen could bring nature indoors. A key focal point is the low window that frames a leafy view, adding instant zingy green to the room all year round, which provides a fresh contrast to the turquoise glass splashbacks – the only colour in this otherwise white kitchen. In keeping with the green theme, antibacterial bamboo floors are a hard-wearing, sustainable option (take a look at www.bamboowarehouse.co.za or www.brightfields.co.za) and add depth and warmth to the room. An industrial, stainless-steel butcher’s block on wheels (from catering suppliers) is the perfect foil, and overhead shelving is a great space saver.
Compiled by: Michelle Snaddon
Photographs: Anson Smart, Maree Homer, Nick Scott, Derek Swalwell/Bauermedia.com, Russel Smith/Elsa Young/Frank Features, David Ross/Bureaux
Want to keep up to date with all the latest property trends and behind-the-scenes news from REAL ESTATE? Sign up for our newsletter here!