Whether you’re designing your kitchen for the first time or giving it a much-needed renovation, it’s important to plan your design carefully to avoid making costly mistakes. The best place to start is by researching online for inspiration, through trusted websites such as Pinterest and Houzz. Here, you’ll find countless ideas based around your personal preferences that will transform your mindset into a creative one.


At Contour, we’re well aware of the numerous aspects of kitchen design that can go wrong if not planned properly. The kitchen is, arguably, one of the most important yet difficult spaces in the home to get right. So, to help you along with the renovation process, we’ve pulled together a list of mistakes to avoid.


1.      Not making efficient use of space

Making the most of the space you have is one of the most fundamental aspects of the planning process. Make sure to take into account manoeuvrability, and this includes ensuring that kitchen aisles aren’t too narrow. The space between kitchen islands and wall cabinets should be wide enough so that multiple chefs can cook and move around comfortably. Countertop space is also a fundamental part of the kitchen, as this is where most of the preparation takes place. If you’re re-designing, be mindful that you don’t give up valuable counter space.


2.      Not using a variety of materials

Incorporating a design that’s predominantly stainless steel is a mistake commonly made, and can give a kitchen a more commercial  rather than homely feel. Be sure to include a variety of materials and textures; this could include pairing marble countertops with matte black cabinets.


3.      Confusing functionality and aesthetics

Open shelving is a great way to display your favourite cookware and cook books. A recent trend, when used correctly, open shelving can replace bulky wall cabinetry with a more minimalist, streamlined and Scandi-style appearance. However, when incorporating these into your design, be careful not to overload them with too many items. Use these shelves to present your favourite items, whilst keeping your bulky and less aesthetic items for under-counter storage. It’s also important not to forget about functionality, including that of cabinets. It’s not ideal to find that, once the kitchen is finished, several cabinet doors can’t be opened simultaneously. It’s vital that you take measurements and plan this part very carefully.


4.      Not installing enough electrical sockets

Once the design is finished, there’s nothing worse than realising that there aren’t enough plugs to accommodate all of your kitchen appliances. Make sure to strategically plan where these sockets can be placed – and how many you need.


5.      No variety of lighting

A kitchen that features solely overhead lighting is one that tends to lack character and atmosphere. It’s a good idea to include accent and spot lighting, too – whether this be over-island pendants or LED lighting across cabinet borders.


6.      Not having sufficient ventilation

Odours quickly surface when cooking – and are not pleasant when using the kitchen as a shared, multi-functional space. Ensure that you have ample ventilation installed to avoid this. The Bora Venting Hob integrates both a cooking hob and streamlined extractor, eliminating the need for bulky extractor hoods.


7.      Misplacing kitchen hotspots

The refrigerator, sink and stove are arguably the most-used appliances in the kitchen. It’s therefore important to place these so that they’re within short distance of one another and easily accessible.


8.      Not sticking to a budget

Deciding on a budget before designing is crucial. This way, you can make the best design decisions for your kitchen based on how much you are investing.


9.      Not utilising spaces efficiently

It’s important to ensure that the cabinetry is going to be used efficiently. Being creative helps to achieve this; you might, for example, choose incorporate larder units, le mans corner units and pull out systems to help maximise storage space, thus allowing additional space to be given over to dining or relaxation.


10.  Not enlisting the help of an interior designer

Designing your kitchen can be an exciting yet daunting process. To create a space that’s both identical to your vision and functional is a difficult task when attempted without the help of a professional.


Here at Contour, our expert designers have experience in helping clients create their ideal kitchen that’s aesthetically pleasing, functional and long lasting. To contact one of our team, please click here.