More and more people are opting for smaller kitchens as space becomes premium in their homes. Micro-kitchens are the trend that is seeing many people swap larger kitchens for open-plan living or small rooms with just the basic mod cons.
Whether you make your existing kitchen smaller in order to extend another room in your house or your home only comes with a micro kitchen in the first place, is this style of living suitable for you?
With the kitchen being the heart of the home, you may feel that smaller spaces lose something, or you might think they are the best idea. Either way, before you invest in a micro kitchen, you should make sure this style is right for you.
Do you eat in the kitchen?
If you're used to a kitchen-diner, swapping to a micro kitchen might leave you without anywhere to put your dining table and to enjoy your meals. Unless you have a separate dining room or are switching to a micro kitchen to create one, you might want to consider what your dining options are with a small kitchen.
If you have an open-plan space, you may be able to create a breakfast bar to allow you to have meals, making more use of the room without having to limit space within your actual kitchen area. However, this can be hard when it comes to having people over for dinner, so it is worth bearing this in mind.
Do you prepare big meals?
More often than not, big, complicated meals require a big kitchen. This is because you tend to need more surface space for preparing dishes, as well as a large oven to get everything cooked.
If you have a large family, big meals are probably a regular thing, whereas the odd dinner party might require some clever planning but not necessarily a lot of space. It is worth thinking about your kitchen habits and how they might be affected if you go micro with your kitchen.
How many utensils do you have?
Are you a big fan of your kitchen gadgets or do you have a lot of bakeware? If you tend to accumulate and use a lot of items in your kitchen, you need to assess your storage options.
Smaller kitchens come with fewer cupboards, although there are some clever ways to store things in your room. You may also have a basement or storage space elsewhere in your house that is suitable for putting some of your bulkier items – you just have to judge whether this might affect how often you use them.
Of course, you could even have too much stuff and the switch to a micro kitchen might be the best thing to help you downsize, stick to the necessary items and ultimately save money in the long run.
If you can't live without easy access to your gadgets on a day to day basis, you might want to avoid going too small with your kitchen, as things could get cramped and uncomfortable – as well as easily messy.
How will your kitchen be used in future?
Kitchens are designed to last years, which means that your circumstances could change before you need to redesign the room. While you may not have a family now, in a few years you may well have and your micro kitchen could be too small.
Similarly, your kids could move out in a few years, leaving you with a big kitchen that doesn't get much use.
It is worth thinking about how your kitchen will age and whether it will still suit your needs five years down the line. This is just as important as working with what you need now and could save you shelling out for a new kitchen before your old one is even tired.