Kitchen Creative – Putting the fun into functional

The kitchen; the hub of the home. The place where homework is done, gossip is shared across the island with a glass of wine and cooking together is becoming more and more popular.

Clayton Leitch, Kitchens Manager at IKEA Belfast has shared some tips on how to put the fun into functional, and enable all these things and more, so that you’re making more than just food in the kitchen.

Storage that moves you
Kitchen trollies or islands that are on wheels are a game changer for the kitchen. They make for perfect work surfaces with additional storage, or a simple veggie rack that can be wheeled around beside you when food prepping. Move it centre stage or keep it stored stage left, it doesn’t matter, it will put on a fabulous performance anywhere.

FLYTTA Kitchen trolley £100 IKEA

But first, coffee
We’ve all been there. Forgoing a cup of coffee in the morning for a few more zzzzs in bed. Really, making sure you have time for both in the morning is all about organisation. Dedicate one nook of your kitchen to a coffee hub; organise everything from beans to sugar in beautiful containers, and use a small shelving unit for mugs, pots and other accessories. If you want to go all out, re-vamp a KALLAX bookcase into the ultimate coffee corner for your kitchen. Your family will be queueing up to avail of your barista skills…

coffee cart_IKEA kitchens

Open up
If you’re thinking of completely re-designing your kitchen, make it an open space. Take advantage of IKEA’s modular METOD products, and ensure every bit of wall space is working for you, leaving the rest of the floor open for social opportunities. An island can be placed in the centre, or even more of a relaxed dining area so that you can chat with your guests while you cook, and they can get involved too.

Shine bright or dim down
Using lighting can really change up how you use your kitchen. Dimmer lighting can be used to focus on a more intimate, dining side of the kitchen, whereas brighter, pendant lighting will give better light for preparing, chopping and event homework. The new SMART Lighting range from IKEA includes endless solutions for dimming, cold and warm light, light panels and personal lighting which can be used on existing products. It’s all contemporary, easy and wireless and we can guarantee it will change the way we light our homes, in particular, spaces that need to be functional like the kitchen.

Game of thrones
Think about comfort and function when deciding on your seating area. Perhaps you want some high stools for the breakfast bar for more casual dining with the kids, or you want a proper dining area. Also think about alternative or after dinner seating – can you fit in some soft furnishings to relax after the Sunday roast? What about some bench seating for the kids, or a little nook they can relax in too? Worth thinking about so everyone can be together before, during and after eating.

Let’s go outside
The ultimate dream is to have a kitchen that naturally rolls out in to the garden. This time of year, we’re hoping for more sun so we can enjoy some al fresco dining and social occasions. Now is the time to either get the outdoor furniture out of the shed, or see what’s new and can complement your kitchen so the back garden becomes an extension of it. Don’t forget that outdoor textiles can really jazz up your outdoor dining, and of course, the ultimate social occasion is the barbeque, so get designing and planning before the sunshine leaves us for good!

APPLARO outdoor table and chairs £365 IKEA Belfast