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Six Key Measurements to Help with the Kitchen Design

If you are going to design your own kitchen, you need some ideas on how to make the most of the space and create a comfortable work area. Here are some suggestions for sizing everything in the room. Let's get started.

Circulation Spacekitchen-design-standard-spacing-bench-wall-counter
The circulation space is important, especially for U-shaped kitchens, an island or a galley layout. If your kitchen is medium-sized or large, try to provide at least 48 inches of space between the countertops. For small kitchens you might have to use less space.

Upper Shelving/Cabinet
When designing your kitchen, consider the distance from the upper shelves/cabinets to the countertop. Leave at least 15 inches of space in between to make your work area spacious enough. If the upper shelving is positioned lower than 15 inches, it will be difficult for you to do any kitchen activities such as cooking, washing, etc. or placing any kinds of wall storage organizers/hooks. On the other hand, if the upper shelving is positioned higher than 20 inches, you will find it hard to reach it. So, the best option would be a distance somewhere in between 15 and 20 inches.

Counter Depth
The next thing to consider is the depth of the counters. It can vary depending on the depths of your appliances, but 24 inches is the standard. You might want to measure your appliances before you complete this step. In addition, you should also consider the dimensions and details of your cabinetry as well as the type of backsplash.

Counter Height
Since every person is different in height, it's a bit difficult to tell exactly how high your cabinets should be to provide comfortable work space for you and your family. The counter height also depends on a few other factors, including your personal preferences. Broadly speaking, here are the standards:

  • Cooking surfaces: to avoid accidents while cooking, make sure the surface is positioned about 6 inches below your elbow.
  • Preparation surfaces: to make your work area more comfortable, make sure the countertops are positioned about 4 inches below your elbow. If positioned higher than that, the preparation surfaces will be very uncomfortable to work with and even cause tingling in your hands.
  • Counter height: between 34 inches and 36 inches.
  • Last but not least, some surfaces should be positioned lower than the others for when you want to knead bread or roll dough. In that case, they should be about 8 inches below your elbow.

Stoveside Counter Space
Provide counter space of 12 inches or more, based on the size of your kitchen. If you cook on a regular basis, you need more work area.

Kitchen Work Triangle
The best way to make your kitchen space more efficient is to use the so-called kitchen work triangle. The concept goes like this: an even-sided triangle should be created when drawing an invisible line to the range, sink and fridge. Basically, this is the area which you use while you are in the kitchen.

If you want to achieve maximum efficiency of space and use, you should remember the number 276. That is, the sides of your kitchen work triangle should never exceed the sum of 276 inches if you want to make the most of your kitchen space.

Final Thoughts...
These tips can be very useful when creating your kitchen from scratch, but what if your kitchen is really, really small? To tell you the truth, the above measurements are not likely to fit in for a small kitchen. In that case, consider spacing your counters 30 inches apart from one another. There should be no counters near the fridge. Next to the stovetop, you should provide counter space of at least four inches.

The article is contributed by HouseCleaners Maida Vale

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