How to make a kitchen island work for your home

The current trend is for modern kitchens to have a kitchen island. These can be built-in or portable, and any size or style you can dream of. If you want a built-in island, then you could have a stove, sink, and other functional things on top, as well as a dishwasher or plenty of storage space underneath. Or it could be something as simple as a table with a shelf and a butcher block countertop. The size and look of your kitchen should be your guide.

Small kitchens may not be big enough for a standard island, but portables are designed to be moved around when needed. A kitchen cart can even fit in a small kitchen and serve as a type of island, at least enough to provide workspace.

If you plan to install a kitchen island, you can determine whether portable or built-in is best for your room. Measure the island you want and plan where you will place it. You can even use masking tape to mark where it will sit, and don’t forget to leave space around it for kitchen stools. Now, as you go about your day, does it become absolutely necessary to invade that curb space? If you find yourself walking or stepping there, that’s just a habit. But if your oven door or any other stationary object goes through the space where the stools would be placed, then you probably need to find a smaller island that doesn’t take up as much space.

Also, consider how people can move around in your kitchen. With an island there, can you easily walk around the room and get what you need? Is the feces in the way? What if there are people sitting on the stools? Would they have to move to get people in and out of the room, or to get to the refrigerator or cupboards?

As for the type of island, consider your budget first. Building a kitchen island with a dishwasher, sink, or stove is going to be an inexpensive expense, but you can get a portable island at a fraction of that cost without worrying about electricity or plumbing fixtures. You may also prefer one that is open underneath or one with built-in storage for kitchen items. If there is storage underneath, consider where people’s knees will be when they sit and how far your stools will be required to sit away from the island when planning size.

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