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Kitchen design 101: Plan the perfect kitchen layout

Different layout options for your kitchen

When designing your dream kitchen, it’s tempting to only focus on cool kitchen gadgets and trendy décor ideas. However, it’s also important to consider how you and your family will move around the space. You want to be able to cook, clean and eat – all without getting in the way of other household members.

Is there enough space for two people to cook at the same time? Are the most-used appliances easily accessible, or hidden in a corner? Is the fridge door blocking the entrance to the kitchen? These are all things we need to think about. We’ll show you how to create a robust plan so you can design a functional kitchen layout to avoid bumping shoulders and bickering.

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The working triangle – what is it and why is it so important?

The kitchen ‘working triangle’ is the space between the three most used areas of your kitchen (the sink, hob, and fridge). By making sure that this triangle is spacious, clear, and dynamic you’ve already taken a big step towards making sure your kitchen is functional. To make the time spent in your kitchen easier, try laying it out around the working triangle. You can do this in a few ways…

u shape kitchen layout ideas

U or G shape:

By placing one appliance on each side of a U or G-shaped layout you can easily create the perfect working triangle.

galley kitchen layout ideas

Linear/galley shape:

Keep at least one of your appliances on the opposite side of the room. This design makes it easy to move between the hob, fridge and sink – great for tight, corridor-style kitchens.

L shape kitchen layout ideas

L-shape/open plan:

Sinks go great beneath windows, and ovens and fridges work well when closer together.

kitchen island layout ideas


Fitting a hob on an island counter is a great way to open up the kitchen, and make the whole room feel more sociable.

As well as the above, consider the following when designing the layout of your kitchen:

  • The total distance of the triangle (between all three points) should be no more than 5m (with a recommended minimum of 3m)
  • The sink should be the easiest to access part of the triangle, as it’s the most used area of the kitchen
Top tips for improving the flow of your kitchen
  • Make sure walkways are big enough to cater for two people to move around with ease.
  • Don’t place major appliances directly opposite each other. You should be able to open your oven and dishwasher without them running into each other. The same goes for cabinets and drawers, they should all open freely.
  • Don’t block kitchen entry points. Make sure there is enough space for people to enter and exit the kitchen with ease.
  • If you’re placing bar stools next to the worktop, make sure they aren’t placed directly in front of cupboards and drawers that are used frequently.
  • Talk to an expert! Designing a kitchen requires a lot of thought and attention. Why not book a free planning appointment with one of our expert advisors? They’ll help you plan a kitchen that works for the size and layout of your space. Using our 3D design tool, they’ll help bring your vision to life.
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