Open kitchens are increasingly becoming a popular trend in modern home design. From HDBs and condominiums to lofts and landed properties, many homes in Singapore these days spot open-concept kitchens that blend beautifully with the entire house. One of the biggest reasons for the appeal of open kitchens is the seamless flow they create between the kitchen and living areas, making it a perfect space for family and friends to gather.
However, setting up an open kitchen can be challenging, especially if you are new to the idea. Hence, listed below are some tips to help you set up an open kitchen that is both functional and stylish, demonstrated by one of Editor Interior’s projects – a 5-bedroom unit at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3.
Define the space
Before coming up with a list of design ideas for your kitchen, you should first determine the boundaries of your open kitchen. Although an open kitchen is meant to be exposed, there is still a need for visual separation between the kitchen and the rest of the house.
In this apartment, our client wished to implement an open kitchen for their home yet maintain a level of privacy and detachment away from the living room at the same time. We managed to accomplish this by installing a sliding glass door, which allows the client the freedom to expose or close off the kitchen whenever desired. In addition, the counter / dinner table mounted against the wall also serves as a form of visual separation.
This glass sliding door can come in handy whenever the client wishes to do heavy cooking.
Another project that demonstrates a clear separation between the kitchen and living areas is this unit at Jurong East. While we did not incorporate a sliding door, we used a different material for the kitchen flooring in order to differentiate the kitchen from the dining and living spaces.
Choose the right layout
A well-planned kitchen layout is essential to maximise the space and functionality of your open kitchen. Many people tend to think that the layout of the kitchen is a trivial matter, but that is absolutely not true. Whether you go with an L-shaped, U-shaped, or galley, the layout of your kitchen can affect your lifestyle needs and even design preferences.
In this unit, since the kitchen area is large and spacious, we decided to take advantage by not only creating an L-shaped layout but also setting up a separate stand-alone area to accommodate the fridge, an additional sink, and more shelving units. While you are free to choose whichever layout that suits you, we recommend going with an L-shaped for open kitchens as it provides more efficient use of corner spaces and can reduce traffic flow.
Lighting is key
Good lighting is crucial in any kitchen, and even more so in an open kitchen. As the kitchen is a social space in the house, it should possess a warm and inviting ambience, one that is comfortable for both cooking and entertaining family and friends. This is where ambient lighting comes into play.
Some lighting fixtures you can install throughout your open kitchen include under-cabinet lighting, recessed lighting, and spotlights, to name a few. As you can see in this apartment, these lighting fixtures illuminate the kitchen well yet do not brighten the room too much to the point that the space feels cold and sterile.
Create a focal point
Considering that an open kitchen is part and parcel of your home’s overall interior, it should be aesthetically pleasing to merge well with the other areas of the house and impress your guests whenever they come over. We recommend incorporating a statement piece, be it a unique backsplash or vibrant pop of colour as done in this unit, to create a focal point in your open kitchen.
The main colour of this open kitchen is dark green / teal, but the pops of dark wood for the shelves help to add interest and draw the eye in, creating a visually appealing space. What’s more, touches of gold-accented fixtures elevate the space and make the entire kitchen feel more luxurious.
In another project we have done, we instead highlighted the soft green colour scheme by pairing light wood shelving and a unique flooring tile that has hints of green to tie everything together. Despite the various materials, prints, and colours used, the kitchen’s interior remains cohesive.
While open kitchens are undoubtedly stunning and may even increase the value of your home, setting up one requires careful planning and attention to detail. As long as you follow these tips, you can create a practical and stylish open kitchen that is perfect for entertaining and everyday living.
With Editor Interior, you can rest assured that your open kitchen is done up to your expectations with our team of experienced interior designers. As a premier interior design consultancy firm in Singapore, we boast a wide-ranging portfolio of residential interior designs, such as this 5-bedroom unit as depicted above. If you’re looking to incorporate such BTO interior design or something similar in your home, get in touch with us here.