Five Efficient Kitchen Layouts

If your kitchen has been designed without the thought of efficiency and functionality in mind, you won’t enjoy using your kitchen, not optimally anyway.

The basic principles behind having an efficient kitchen layout are quite straightforward in most kitchen configurations. Depending on the shape of the room, one or more of the following designs will give you a better insight into how to plan a kitchen that’ll work really well for you.

For example, if you have a fairly square room you can have a U-shape design that won’t be cramped. A kitchen design with an island unit/breakfast counter also works well in square rooms.

For spaces with a rectangular shape, the L-shape kitchen works wonderfully, and so does the galley (as long as the narrow side of the rectangle is a minimum of 240cm). For comfort and ease of movement while working in the kitchen, the corridor must be at least 120cm.

Tiny kitchens require great planning for efficiency. Because there isn’t much space to work at kitchen chores, an In-line layout might be the best bet. As long as you create cabinets that work from floor to ceiling, there is ample space for storage. The counter space may not be much but if cabinets and appliances are placed strategically, it’ll work out really nice.

All five design ideas will always work on a practical level, for most kitchens. The bottom line - working out an effective and user-friendly kitchen plan isn't that complicated. The deciding factor is usually the shape, volume and size of the kitchen's entire space.

Basic Kitchen Designs 

1) In-Line Kitchen Design (Single line units)
The in-line kitchen design layout has cabinet units and appliances all lined up against one wall. This design is practical and well-suited for small and narrow spaces or kitchens that serve as access routes. These types you’ll find in older houses or tiny apartments. The In-line layout is best suited for a single user.

2) Galley Designs
The galley layout is like 2 in-line units facing each other, just as parallel lines. Because they are lined up against two opposite walls, a comfortable space of 120cm (4ft) is advised between the 2 opposite single line units. This allows for easy movement and efficient operations within the room.

The only disadvantage of galley kitchens is that you can feel kind of cramped if more than two are working in the room.

3) L-Shape Kitchen Floor Plans
The L-Shape kitchen floor plan carries the in-line layout and turns around a corner at right angle. This option is a more flexible arrangement, and is great for large spaces where the dining area is a part of the kitchen and both areas are divided with a breakfast counter. This shape is also good for small and odd shaped kitchens.

4) Kitchen Design with an Island Unit

Island kitchens are basically U-shape kitchen layouts with an island of cabinets in the centre of the U. With this layout, there must be a fair amount of floor space in the kitchen for it to work efficiently. Island units provide the ideal preparation area because of its equidistant from all other cabinets and appliances installed in the room.

The island unit can hold the countertop hub, the sink, and/or the food preparation area, bringing them all to an efficient mid-way point in the kitchen. Whilst planning for kitchen remodelling, it is important that the placement of the island unit is effectively positioned. They come as both move-able or permanently fixed, depending on how elaborate it is.

5) U-shape Kitchen Design Layout
The U-shape kitchen design layout continues the L-shape’s floor plan but with a turn around another corner. In other words, there are 2 corners and 2 ends in this arrangement, forming a peninsular of sorts. With units and appliances lined up against 3 walls of the kitchen space, the U-shape allows for a perfect 'work triangle'. If you plan to do kitchen renovation works, this layout will be a wise choice. This is the best shape for large and square kitchens

Do Configurations Come in Endless Possibilities

In a way, yes and no! Yes because kitchen shapes, volumes, and sizes come in so many forms. No because size can be a limiting factor. However, almost all layouts are derived from one of these five basic designs.

As long as each layout is designed to create an efficient work triangle (except probably the In-line shape) which is the path between the three primary work stations in the kitchen – sink, range, and refrigerator, your kitchen design will work efficiently and functionally while maintaining a striking and appealing look. .

(Images . . . Created by Viryabo@Polyvore)

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