What Is an Open Concept Kitchen?
There’s nothing wrong with a conventionally designed kitchen. If you design it well, it can turn into a real focal point of your home, and you enjoy spending time in it.
Some homeowners may want something different, however, and that’s where the open concept comes in.
The name should already clue you in on the design scheme. The idea with this kitchen is to connect that part of your home to the other rooms. Instead of walls and barriers to keep the kitchen separate, everything’s opened, and you’re essentially creating a more wide-open space.
Open concept kitchens feature the cooking and dining areas combined into one. In some cases, they even integrate the living room into the open kitchen, and the entirety of the home interior becomes one larger space.
What Are the Benefits of Having an Open Concept Kitchen?
Open concept kitchens are a significant departure from the norm, but they aren’t only for show. They present homeowners with real benefits.
They Offer More Cooking Space
One of the benefits of building a backyard kitchen is that you’re creating a new and larger area dedicated to cooking. You can take advantage of the additional space to introduce more equipment or give yourself more room to move around while cooking.
Open concept kitchens provide that same kind of benefit. If you’ve long felt that your kitchen is more cramped than it should be or you’d like to add spots for some additional appliances, going with an open concept would be a good move.
They Provide a Comfortable Cooking Area
When everything’s crammed into a small kitchen, the act of cooking itself can become a test of endurance. Freeing up space inside the kitchen results in the creation of a more comfortable cooking area.
Since you are cooking in the heat, that can be exhausting. By the time you finish, it may feel like you’ve gone through a full workout.
Designing an open kitchen gives the heat more places to go instead of being trapped in one spot. You may find cooking to be more enjoyable once you realize that spending hours standing over a hot stove doesn’t need to constitute the entirety of your experience.
They Maximize Your Available Space
Open kitchens also make sense for homeowners who want to be more practical. We don’t all have the luxury of having spacious home interiors to use any way we see fit.
For those working with a limited amount of space, going with an open kitchen design could be a smart decision. By getting rid of the walls and other barriers, nearly all the square footage available inside your home is now usable. You, your family, and any guests who’ve dropped by have more space to get comfortable.
This approach to home design makes the most out of the space you have. Instead of dividing your home interior into three smaller rooms that often feel cramped, you’re bringing to life a space that is accommodating to more people.
They Allow You to Utilize Natural Lighting More Effectively
You should make a point out of utilizing natural lighting whenever possible. Doing so can help cut down on your monthly electric bills. Aside from that, natural lighting also has a way of bringing out the beauty of home décor that electric lights cannot replicate.
Obviously, you can have windows and glass doors installed in your kitchen to improve natural lighting without opening it up. The result is still arguably more spectacular, though, if you have natural lighting filling up your home’s interior living space.
You Can Use Them for Entertaining Purposes
Homeowners often must strike a delicate balance whenever they’re entertaining. They need to find time to converse with their guests and keep them company while simultaneously tending to the food preparations.
It’s not always fun dividing your attention like that. You may even become so preoccupied with the juggling act that you forget to have fun altogether.
The good news is that open concept kitchens can free you from that problem. Opening the kitchen space makes it easier for you to watch over the food and spend time with your guests. They can even help you keep an eye on the dishes and tell you if something’s done.
They Help Create a More Interactive Dining Experience
Open concept kitchens work great for setting up a buffet-style experience. Set up dining options from the living room to the kitchen and allow your guests to take their pick of what they like.
This kind of setup also encourages more interaction among your guests. They can converse over the food and drink options available or catch up with one another while they’re deciding what to eat.
Meanwhile, you as the host will be free to enjoy the party you spent a long time organizing.
They Give You More Opportunities to Bond with Your Family
Everyday life can get hectic. After a long day at work, you may only have enough time to cook your kids dinner before you need to get some rest too. Before you know it, several days may have already passed since you had a conversation with your children.
Spending time together inside an open kitchen is easier. Your children can get comfortable as they do their homework and talk to you. At the same time, you can prepare a meal while hearing about their day.
They Make It Easier for You to Nurture Your Child’s Cooking Skills
Cooking is one of the most important skills you can teach your child. Learning how to cook makes it possible for your child to eat healthier, and it’s also a good skill for them to have as they grow up and become more independent.
An open kitchen is arguably the ideal setting for a younger person to learn about cooking.
You can join them as they’re putting a dish together. While you’re in there, you can keep an eye on their cooking and give them some pointers.
Who knows, getting the chance to study cooking in such a fun environment may even inspire them to go to culinary school later.
They Enable You to Establish a More Cohesive Design Scheme
We all have different preferences when it comes to interior design. Some of us prefer a more understated approach, while others like to be bold with how they design their homes.
Regardless of the overall design, you can realize it better by building an open concept kitchen.
Since barriers aren’t breaking up your home décor, it’s easier to showcase the theme you like. Indulge your imagination by opting for an open kitchen.
They Add Value to Your Home
Finally, open concept kitchens warrant consideration because they can make your home more appealing to a potential buyer.
More buyers these days are looking for modern features, and an open kitchen is among those highly sought after. You can give a potential buyer one more fantastic reason to consider purchasing your property by presenting them with an open kitchen.
What Are the Drawbacks of Having an Open Concept Kitchen?
We’ve finished detailing the many benefits of having an open concept kitchen. For this next section of the article, let’s focus on its possible drawbacks.
Your Home’s Heating and Cooling Efficiency May Suffer
We noted earlier that creating an open concept kitchen can help you cut down on your energy consumption if you rely more on natural lighting. Unfortunately, any wipe out any savings you’re supposed to get by your home’s increased heating and cooling needs.
According to HGTV, the absence of walls is what affects your open kitchen’s energy efficiency. It’s harder to keep the cold or warm air in one place when there’s so much open area for it to roam.
Cooling down your home in the middle of summer could become especially difficult because the steam from your kitchen is also moving into the other rooms. You may want to cook outdoors more often during that time of the year to keep your home comfortable.
The Mess from Cooking Could Spread Throughout Your Home
Cooking can be messy. Whipping up your own meals is highly enjoyable, but everyone agrees that the cleanup that follows is no fun.
In a closed kitchen, you can easily contain the mess into one part of your home. Open kitchens make that significantly harder.
Even if you manage to contain the mess to one area, the smoke and other smells may still linger into the dining and living rooms. You probably don’t want your curtains smelling like fried food, so be more mindful of how the smells travel while you’re in the middle of cooking. Installing some exhaust vents could help keep the rest of your home free from kitchen aromas.
Your Home Could Become Noisier
It’s not only the mess you need to worry about. Noises will become an issue if you decide to open your kitchen.
Kitchen appliances aren’t exactly known for their whisper-quiet operation, and they can be disruptive while in use. The constant clanging of pots, pans, and silverware is not always easy on the ears, either.
It is worth noting that some folks like hearing kitchen noises reverberating throughout their home. They find it therapeutic in a way. However, if you’d prefer a more peaceful environment at home, an open kitchen is not going to help with that.
Counter and Storage Space Will Become Scarce
Open concept kitchens give you more room to move around in, but they also take away some of your working areas. Since there are fewer walls in place, the spots for countertops drop in number too. You may also quickly run out of storage space since those cabinets under the countertops are gone. .
If you’d like to bring more counter and storage space into your open kitchen, this article from The Spruce points to a possible solution. What you can do is to create a kitchen island.
Set the island up in the middle of your open kitchen and use it as a spot for prepping ingredients. You can even install a sink there to make it a more useful addition.
Safety Is a Greater Concern
One more possible drawback of building an open concept kitchen is safety.
We all know that the kitchen is not the safest area for young children. Sharp objects can end up scattered all over the kitchen countertops, and there are also numerous hot surfaces that your child may accidentally touch.
It’s not a place kids should go in and out of whenever they want. You can try to set up protective barriers along the spots heading to the kitchen, but that would defeat the purpose of opening it up in the first place.
Creating an open kitchen in a home with toddlers is risky. Consider waiting until they’ve grown up a bit before you make the change.
Is an open concept kitchen a good fit for your home? Hopefully, the benefits and drawbacks we’ve detailed in this article have helped you find an answer to that question.
No matter what kind of kitchen design you want to implement, we at Eco Minded Solutions can help with the execution. Get in touch with us today, and let’s start putting together your dream kitchen!