Kitchen Design — standing the test of time

A new kitchen typically has a lifespan of at least 10-15 years, so it’s a big investment; not only in terms of cost, but also with regards to the commitment you have to make to its look and its functionality.

With over 30 years’ experience, Kitchens By Design leads the field in terms of kitchen and bathroom design in New Zealand. Collectively, its designers have won over 60 nationally recognised awards by the NKBA (National Kitchen & Bathroom Association). Who better, then, to ask about future-proofing the design of your kitchen for the years ahead?

We sat down with the design team at Kitchens By Design and asked them to give us just one design detail each that will not only look great, but will also stand the test of time. Here’s what they told us:

Creating ‘hidden’ service areas, such as breakfast stations and bars, is something designer Shane George tries to integrate into his designs, where appropriate. “Hiding these areas behind foldaway doors gives the whole space a clean look. They’re not only very practical, but also a bit of fun for the client when they first show their friends. I also like to make the interiors a contrasting colour or texture to the exterior – this adds to the surprise,” he says.

Marianne Gailer, from Kitchen By Design’s Takapuna showroom, says that using the benchtop material for the splashback simplifies the material palette and creates harmony and flow. “It’s a sophisticated and timeless look. You can go a step further by adding a waterfall end, grounding the kitchen and adding
a line for the eyes to follow.”

Designers Sean Monk and Michelle Gillbanks are both using custom steel tubing to create frames on walls and benchtops, and even to support larger elements such as extractor units. Depending on how they are used, they can give a space a semi-industrial, or a very contemporary look.

Introducing timber highlights not only looks good, but because it’s a natural material, it makes it inviting to touch, says Jane Fergusson. “Be sure to choose your material from a sustainable source, though.
A great choice is bamboo - it’s hard and durable, and its colour and texture give quite a different look to wood,” she adds.

Kitchens By Design’S showrooms can be found at 7 Melrose Street, Newmarket, T: 09 379 3084, and 3 Byron Avenue, Takapuna, T: 09 488 7201.

The showrooms are open Monday - Friday 10am - 4.30pm, Saturday 10am - 2.30pm, or by appointment.

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