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Below is a diverse collection of some of my favorite designs.
Large new U-shaped kitchen remodel with white kitchen cabinets (a nice variety of cabinet design and layout) with a large square island in the center with an eating area for four stools. This kitchen is very well organized and with all the storage space provides plenty of options for optimal kitchen appliance and dishware organization.
It doesn’t get much finer than this U-shape kitchen design with chandeliers above the 4 person island, custom white cabinetry, crown molding and reddish dark flooring. While it’s an ornate kitchen, it’s also one that’s comfy to congregate in. My one criticism is that there are no windows.
Kitchen with island coated with blue paint, large white farmhouse sink, white cabinetry and wide-plank hardwood flooring all illuminated with a contemporary single unit pendant light and recessed lights.
Beautiful new kitchen with herringbone wood floor, dark island and white cabinetry.
This kitchen addresses the problem with the one above. Look at all the windows which really brightens up the kitchen that has a light and dark color scheme. It looks larger than it is with extra high ceilings. I like the waterfall island and the overall contemporary design, but I don’t think the brown wood floor works with the color scheme. That’s my only complaint.
Fabulous light blue and white kitchen with vaulted ceiling, recessed lighting and pie-shaped island with sumptuous blue leather upholstered island stools. The light, aged looking wood floor is a perfect match for this kitchen color scheme. I love the upper glass-faced cabinets with in-cabinet lighting.
Check this kitchen out. It has no upper cabinets other than a single level floating shelf. It makes the kitchen look bigger and more open and brighter. I’m not sure giving up the storage is worth it, but it’s definitely a notable design idea.
Large rustic kitchen with a beach vibe (white beamed ceiling). This kitchen has an odd shape to it, but is rich in wood. I think it would look better if it had more of the white cabinetry. There’s a small built-in white cabinet toward the rear which is my favorite part of this kitchen and so I think more white would be better.
Here’s a close-up shot of the above kitchen. I like how the island has an irregular shape to match the irregular shape of the kitchen. This photo shows that the island base is also white which along with the white cabinet portion are the highlights of this kitchen.
Modern meets chic which meets ornate. Interior designers had fun designing and decorating this kitchen. Notice the chrome modern stools and contemporary pendant lights that juxtapose the ornate cabinetry. It’s a nice mix that works spectacularly well in this overall white kitchen with dark island base. The ceiling is a bit blah, but it’s not catastrophic by any stretch of the imagination.
Beach style new custom kitchen with wicker breakfast bar stools, nautic blue backsplash and bright white cabinetry. The wood flooring works perfectly in this design except I’d have chosen a darker wicker for the stools to closer match the floor.
Here’s another angle of the beach style kitchen with a view to the adjacent family room that continues the beach style with light river rock fireplace and white walls.
Here’s a fabulous example of a budget kitchen that looks great with inexpensive shelving and island. It sure gives you food for thought with respect to how you can create a terrific design without spending much money at all.
You just have to love that stylish wood-topped custom island with small sink on one side and breakfast bar on the other side. The wood framed windows that flank the chef’s stove and range are a nice touch as well. This is a true farmhouse style kitchen. Notice the open shelves tucked in between the regular upper cupboards.
Contemporary bright muted green and soft beige kitchen with bulb pendant lights, contemporary cabinetry and stainless steel appliances. This kitchen is well lit with 5 pendant lights and many recessed lights.
Transitional kitchen with ornamental lantern-like pendant lights, backless studded island stools (6 of them) and white cabinetry throughout. I love the chrome cabinet hardware along with the dark wood which nicely contrasts the extensive white. Finally, I love the white brick style backsplash adding a touch of industrial into the kitchen style mix.
At first glance this is a plain kitchen with a minimalist vibe to it, but sadly the wood chosen for the flooring is too light. I like the green and white color combination, but the light wood steels all the other design elements in this kitchen. Interesting combinaton in countertops with a black count for the main area and brown granite counter for the island surface.
This is a large eclectic Mediterranean style kitchen with huge U-shaped island. I love the layout, but otherwise there’s way too much going one with dark, white, yellow and red colors as well as an overly ornate stove hood as well as ornate chandelier capped with faux brick ceiling.
You would never guess it, but this home was once a church. While the photo doesn’t show much of the modern kitchen, I include this design because of the interesting idea of two dining tables in the open concept area. I guess this offers a kids table for every meal. I love the black and white accent wall in the living room area… a real highlight in this very successful church-to-home conversion.
Stunning. I love the red wood floor and ceiling in contrast with the otherwise all white kitchen. That ceiling is particularly cool. The cabinetry and backsplash, as well as expensive breakfast bar stools, are all amazing. A lot of thought went into this kitchen design. It’s a bit funky, but not overly so. I also like the small family area adjacent to the kitchen creating a comfortable in-kitchen lounging space.
Huge walnut cabinet and island kitchen with a spectacular large skylight ceiling. This is one of those kitchens that grabs your attention, especially with that skylight ceiling. I’m not fond of the off-white tile flooring though. It looks too old fashioned for the walnut cabinetry and otherwise contemporary design. The chandelier above the island is far too ornate as well.
Stylish kitchen design with dark walls and white cabinets. I love this contrasting color scheme which works well with the wood-based island and wood flooring. I like how the island wood is the same hue as the flooring.
The reason I chose this kitchen to feature is because of the rock accent wall. I love that idea and it works so well in this kitchen by adding natural texture in an aesthetically pleasing way.
Stylish long new kitchen with white cabinets, dark countertops and then the island being the reverse – dark base with white top.
FAQ on How to Design a Kitchen
Designing a kitchen requires a lot of trial and error. While it’s not terribly difficult choosing a layout, you will go back and forth on cabinet/drawer configuration, colors and materials. It’s a lot of variables to put together into a cohesive whole.
Below we set out some frequently asked questions on kitchen design.
What does “kitchen layout” mean?
Kitchen layout refers to one of several common layout configurations. Of course you can come up with something unique, but most kitchens fall into one of the following basic layouts:
Single wall: All cabinets, appliances and counters line one wall.
Single wall with island: Same as single wall, but includes an island as well. This is more and more popular and works great in open concept with a large island.
Galley: All cabinets, appliances and counters line two parallel walls with a single aisle down the center. This is a less than ideal layout because it’s long and narrow.
Galley with island: If your galley style kitchen is wide, you can insert a long, narrow island down the center.
L-shape: Cabinet and counters are placed along two adjoining walls forming an L-shape. Most include an island in the center.
U-shape: Cabinet and counters line 3 walls forming a U. Some have islands while others don’t.
G-shape: U-shape with a peninsula. Island optional – usually needs to be quite large to accommodate an island.
In many ways, your kitchen space dictates which kitchen layouts are available to you. With an open concept design, you can go with single line with island or L-shaped with island. If you have three walls to contend with, you may be restricted to a U-shape or L-shape or G-shape.
Beyond that, it’s a personal choice. A G-shape or U-shape offers more cabinets and countertop space than a single line or L-shape. A galley kitchen can provide plenty of cabinet and countertop space, but it can be a tight and/or dark kitchen space.
What does a full kitchen include?
A full kitchen is one that’s fully stocked and ready to cook.
A full kitchen includes the following:
Storage cabinets or shelves
Oven and range
PLUS it’s fully stocked with cooking necessities – pots, utensils, dishware.
Now, if you rent a place that states “full kitchen” and it lacks a microwave, but has everything else, I wouldn’t consider that to not be a full kitchen. It’s a matter of degrees.
How big should your kitchen be?
I think a better question is “what are the basic kitchen sizes?”
Small: less than 70 sq. ft.
Midsized: 70 to 100 sq. ft.
Large: greater than 100 sq. ft.
Knowing that, it’s up to you. Larger is better, but only to a point. At a certain size, a kitchen is useless. Imagine running around a 1,000 sq. ft. kitchen – that would be a real nuisance.
How big should the island be in your kitchen?
It depends on how big your kitchen is. You must ensure sufficient distance between the island and other counters and/or walls. At a minimum you 36″ clearance, but more if you have more than one person often in the kitchen.
Also, even if you have a huge space for an island, at some point, they’re too large. My personal favorite is one large enough to accommodate 4 stools on one side and deep enough to provide ample working space from the kitchen side. That said, it is nice for the island to be narrow enough to serve people on stools from the kitchen side. If the island is 5 feet deep, you can’t really place dishes in front of diners on the stools. Accordingly, my favorite kitchen island size is 10 feet by 3 feet. See the kitchen illustration below:
Another extremely popular page on our site is the small kitchen designs and remodeling ideas page where we feature over 100 efficient small kitchens. Click the button below for our small kitchens photos.