A Guide To Kitchen Islands – The Benefits & Things To Consider

Helmsley Classic Midnight Blue Kitchen

Thanks to their fantastic practical benefits and stylish looks, kitchen islands make a wonderful addition to the kitchen. And here at Mike Hughes Fitted Interiors, many of our clients approach their new projects excited by the prospect of introducing an island into their space. To help you understand the advantages they have to offer and figure out whether a kitchen island could be right for you and your home, we’ve put together this helpful guide outlining their benefits alongside some handy design tips and ideas. While an island offers the potential to transform your kitchen, we will also be sharing a few things you may want to consider before making a final decision.


Extra Storage

With the option to integrate cupboards, drawers or shelves into your design, kitchen islands can bring plenty of additional stylish and accessible storage to your space. While deep and durable drawers are ideal for storing pots, pans and crockery, a beautiful shelving alcove can make a lovely decorative feature, allowing you to display your favourite ornaments and cookbooks. Kitchen islands can also help establish a fantastic layout, creating a galley-style arrangement whereby all your storage and work surfaces are conveniently within reach.

Modern Kitchen Island With Storage


Additional Worktop Space

Alongside their fantastic storage capabilities, kitchen islands can provide useful extra worktop space. This additional space can be ideal for food prep; however, you might alternatively wish to integrate appliances such as your sink, hob or even oven, increasing design flexibility. The extra worktop area also gives you the option to sacrifice other countertops in favour of practical tall pantry-style cabinets. This is particularly useful in contemporary kitchens, where a row of tall units creates a sleek and seamless backdrop. Combining storage, appliances and work surfaces, a kitchen island can make a great way to maximise your space.

White gloss modern kitchen


Create A More Sociable Kitchen

Whether you enjoy hosting fabulous get-togethers or simply catching up with a couple of friends over a coffee, introducing an island to your design is a great way to make your kitchen more sociable. While bar stool seating can offer a relaxing place to perch for snacks or drinks, the island itself makes a wonderful focal point for guests to gather without getting under your feet. You might even want to capitalise on this by adding a hob to your island so you can chat with your guests while cooking. Quiet, unobtrusive and with added safety features, a downdraft venting hob makes the ideal choice. Please click here for more information.

Navy & Copper Kitchen


Offers Great Flexibility

From a compact yet practical area for food prep to a showstopping L-shaped island ideal for cooking and entertaining, there are plenty of ways to customise your design to suit your space and lifestyle. Seating isn’t just useful for special occasions; a breakfast bar or integrated dining area can provide a handy spot for the kids to relax or do homework while you cook, and can even double up as an extra surface for family cooking sessions. Whether you choose to include appliances and seating or keep things simple, a kitchen island makes a fantastically versatile addition to the heart of the home.

Large Kitchen with L Shaped Island


Makes A Wonderful Design Statement

A spacious and stylishly designed central kitchen island can bring a dramatic sense of presence to your room. Introducing an accent colour, a contrasting work surface, beautiful statement bar stools or stunning lighting is a fantastic way to showcase your island and elevate your kitchen design to a whole new level.

High Ceiling Traditional Kitchen


A Peninsula Can Free Up Space

A kitchen island isn’t always the best practical solution for your space. Squeezing a large island into a compact kitchen can interrupt the flow of your room, leading to a cramped and awkward design. A peninsula can make a fantastic alternative, offering the same potential to introduce seating and appliances while freeing up space.


Plumbing Can Be More Complicated

Sinks and gas hobs require plumbing, drainage and pipework. With a kitchen island, these will need to be installed beneath your floor. While it may be possible, this is dependent on the services and the composition of your base floor.  A professional designer/project manager will advise. Working with a specialist company that can provide all the services needed to complete your project can help prevent issues such as this from arising.

Milano New England Kitchen


You May Still Want A Dining Area

Bar stool seating is great for casual drinks and snacks. However, many families prefer to enjoy their evening meal at a more comfortable and relaxing dining table. Bar stools can also be a potentially risky seating option for young children, so you may want to accommodate an alternative seating area elsewhere. If you don’t have room for both a dining area and an island, you might consider prioritising a generously sized table as it can double up as a space for food prep and communal cooking.

Navy modern kitchen


As well as making a stunning design feature, kitchen islands offer a host of practical benefits, and for that reason, they are certainly worth considering including in your space. However, the functionality of your design is paramount, and there are plenty of other wonderful solutions to achieving an elegant and ergonomic kitchen. If you have any questions about whether a kitchen island is suited to your home, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our helpful expert team. You can call us on 01229 871122 or email [email protected].


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