Although at first sight the island occupies additional space and obstructs the convenience of movement through the kitchen, it may actually, be more than a decoration. Practically, a kitchen island is extremely functional and significantly facilitates the work in the kitchen and replaces a part of the cabinets and kitchen accessories.
We should fully understand the role of this important accessory and not just look at it as a design element that is in fashion now.
Let’s see which are the features of a island, which are the best its features and how much it can help us for a better ergonomics of the workspace or for dining.
Kitchen islands come in a huge range of sizes, shapes, and materials from which they are made.
A Wrong Approach to the Concept of Kitchen Island
Some islands you can see in many homes are presented solely as a worktop and possibly where to eat. The countertop surface is on legs or a wooden frame. This is a minimalist version of an island with a dual role of providing a work space and dining space, but just that. Often the countertop is located in a higher position, such that it comes to your chest when standing and the chairs are also high and commensurate with the countertop height.
However, this system is only an imitation of the island and can be categorized more as bar, or a design element. It isn’t a comfortable work surface because to be indeed useful, it should be at a lower level. Your hands should stay slightly bent during cooking, when you prepare a salad or simply pour a drink into a glass. In some apartments an island kitchen is designed only to separate the living area from the kitchen (hence the height at which it is located).
This is basically, a waste of possibilities that kitchen island can offer.
The Triple Functionality of a Kitchen Island
The triple functionality of a kitchen island is to provide storage space underneath, a worktop in the middle of the kitchen and third (not always mandatory) a dining area, without these three types of functionality to interfere one with each other. In addition, ergonomically, in a kitchen large enough, the existence of an island shrinks the distance traveled between the lateral and central countertops.
Kitchen Island Ideas (video)
The triangle is thus designed and possibly are even created more work triangles, which offers the possibility that two people to work simultaneously in the kitchen (while one make the coffee, the other prepare the breakfast).
The Versatility of a Kitchen Island
The equipment, accessories, storage areas are many and various and offer the possibility to adapt the island to any lifestyle, needs and taste.
In fact, it’s not just about the organization of the underneath cabinets, the shelves and drawers, or just about the materials that you can choose (from metal to wood, glass, plastic, stone, concrete and so on). You can embed in the island, a sink for washing vegetables and fruit, you can install lighting systems or even you can install extensions and folding tops for additional work surface when you need it.
Anyway, it’s up to you what you want to install in this island, from small refrigerators, wine coolers, dishwashers or electric and gas hobs. However, you must not forget that all accessories must comply with ergonomic triangle an island too “equipped” may seem rather an eccentricity as long as we do not need all facilities amalgamated into a single point. Of course, many of the features depend on your space and financial possibilities that each and they can just complement the “basic units” that are on edge.
Kitchen Island Dining Area
As for the dining area if you want, you can use one of the corners to be built with empty space underneath or countertops arranged on different levels. Do not forget that there is a space above the island that can be used for kitchen utensils, glasses holders, for a stove hood, or for a faux ceiling with recessed lights that can complement excellent the other features of the island.