If you’re looking to upgrade your kitchen, a great way to do so is to add a kitchen island to your setup. Kitchen islands expand the amount of counter space, storage, and seating that you have in your kitchen as well as enhancing its style. For these reasons, kitchen islands are a valued addition to nearly any home. Keep in mind that there are a few things to know when choosing a kitchen island for your space—consider these, and you’re sure to find the perfect one for your room.
The Size of Your Kitchen
When choosing a kitchen island, the first thing you need to consider is the size of your kitchen. Is your kitchen large enough to comfortably accommodate an island? How large or small would the island itself need to be to look right in the room? Some kitchens are right for islands, while others are not. If you evaluate your kitchen and decide that you would, in fact, like an island, measure the room to determine the ideal size for it.
The Island’s Intended Location
While considering the size of your kitchen and island, you should also take into account the island’s intended location within the room. Note the location of any drawers, as well as any cabinet, oven, or dishwasher doors. Will these still open without incident once your island is installed? If not, you may need to reposition your island or choose a smaller version. Your island should also be positioned in such a way that you’ll still be able to easily maneuver around your kitchen.
Your Desired Counter Height
In addition to the size of your island, you’ll need to consider its height. If you already have other counters in your kitchen, how high are they? Do you want the countertop of your island to be the same height, higher, or lower? The height of your island will usually depend on your specific needs, but the most common heights are 30, 36, and 42 inches. If you want, you can also combine different heights for different parts of the island.
Your Ideal Kitchen Island Style
The design of your kitchen island is not limited to one style. Rather, you have a wide variety of styles to choose from! Perhaps your kitchen is a more traditional style and you love the look of a neat, wooden island with a marble countertop. Perhaps you prefer a more modern style that incorporates a blocky, abstract shape or stainless-steel cladding. Or maybe you’ve decorated your kitchen with farmhouse décor, making a vintage kitchen island the perfect fit. Consider the existing style of your kitchen and choose a kitchen island design to match.
Do You Have a Preferred Material?
One way to personalize the style of your island is by choosing your favorite type of material. Have you always longed for a wooden, butcher block type island? Maybe you dream of the beauty and versatility of a stone countertop. If you want, you can go with a more unusual type of material or choose an island with a construction that combines several different materials.
Your Island’s Intended Use
Think back to the moment you decided you wanted a kitchen island. What was it that caused you to make that decision? Was it the lack of prep space in your kitchen, the need for extra seating room, or the desire to be trendy? How would you use a kitchen island if you had one? Answering these questions will help you determine which type of island to choose and what features it will need to have. For example, if your island’s primary purpose is extra storage space, you’ll want one with enough cabinets, drawers, and shelves. If you’re looking for extra elbow room while cooking, you will want to prioritize the island’s countertop space.
The Kind of Island You Want
When it comes to the type of kitchen island, you have a lot of options, with each being well-equipped for a different set of needs. Some kitchen islands, like rolling carts, are small and portable; these are great for tiny kitchens where just a bit more storage or prep space is needed. Other kitchen islands are not necessarily portable but are not fixed to the floor. This kind of island is ideal for those looking for less expensive and perhaps less permanent solution. Built-in kitchen islands come in a variety of shapes and sizes, including tiered, U-shaped, and L-shaped islands, which are ideal for different kitchen setups and needs.
Will You Be Adding Utilities?
Another thing to know when choosing a kitchen island for your space is whether you plan to install utilities to your island. These utilities could be anything from a sink to a stove to a built-in microwave. If you plan to add any of these utilities to your island, you’ll need to make sure your plumbing, gas lines, or electrical lines are compatible with the island. Make sure you know what you need in your island to make it functional before placing or installing it.
Do You Want Seating?
One reason many people decide to install a kitchen island is for the additional seating it offers. If this is the main reason you want a kitchen island, consider this aspect when choosing a design. How many additional seats do you need? That will help you decide how large your island needs to be. Make sure the design of the island is conducive to seating—the island should at least have a ledge under which the seats can be placed. Many long and tiered islands come with a designated area for seating, so you may want to consider choosing one of those designs.
What Are Your Storage Needs?
Finally, as you choose an island, you’ll want to consider your storage needs. If your primary reason for getting an island is to add storage space to your kitchen, purchase an island with plenty of shelves, drawers, and cabinets. While these features may increase the price of your island, they are well worth having.
As you’re choosing an island for your kitchen, consider all these elements of design and functionality. Choosing the right kitchen island will allow you to make the most of your space. Vintage Mill Werks specializes in beautiful, handcrafted, vintage-style islands to complete the look of any kitchen. We have a wide variety of designs and storage options available—browse our collection and choose the perfect one for your needs.