Posts Tagged ‘Design’

Interiors Fit For Royalty

April 26th, 2011 by Lori Gilder | No Comments


Photo: John Stillwell/Corbis

I have a confession to make.   I’m a Royal Wedding geek!  I can’t wait until Friday morning 4am where I’ll be whisked away to London’s Westminster Abbey (along with a billion or so other guests – who’s invitations were lost in the mail along with mine) to witness the pageantry, the spectacle, and the Pomp and Circumstance of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s lavish Royal nuptials.

The spectacular gothic architecture of the Abbey with its elongated walls and vaulted ceilings, vibrant stained glass windows and spectacular colors and textures make this the ideal setting for the “Wedding of the Century”.


Westminster Abbey

I’m particularly interested is seeing “Catherine’s” choice of wedding gown.  Nina Garcia, the Marie Claire fashion director and “Project Runway” judge, considers Kate Middleton’s style as “contemporary, sophisticated, easy, effortless, and often sporty.” “She often dresses conservatively but it’s very ladylike,” says Garcia.  I’m eager to see which style of dress she will choose to wear.

I’m also fascinated to see how Kate’s “contemporary, sophisticated, conservative and sporty fashion style will translate into her interior design style?

Kate and William have hired “family friend” Beverly Hills Interior Designer to the stars Kenneth Bordewick to makeover their 4,000 sq. ft. farmhouse in North Wales.  Kenneth is a friend of Prince Charles and previously designed the library at London’s royal Clarence House.

“They want it to be casual and contemporary.  It won’t be classical or old-fashioned at all” said Kenneth. “They know that the rest of their lives is going to be very traditional and want to let their hair down now with a typical young, newlywed house.” he said.

So based on this client profile, will William and Kate’s casual and contemporary farmhouse contain undertones of a more Country Classic approach, a Traditionally Elegant ambiance, or Transitional Chic environment?

By the way I hear Kate loves to cook – so all eyes are on the kitchen as well.

Kenneth shares these 2 interiors below, which give us a glimpse into William and Kate’s “Royal Taste.”


Designer:  Kenneth Bordewick                          Beverly Hills Luxury Interiors LLC


Designer:  Kenneth Bordewick                           Beverly Hills Luxury Interiors LLC

I also wanted to share a few more images with you that I feel are fit for the couple’s farmhouse design aesthetic.

Enjoy – and let me know which ones make you feel regal?


Classic Bathroom


Designer: Mary McDonald


Designer: Kathryn Ireland


Designer: Mark Cutler

Stay Inspired!

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2011 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

5 Simple Ways To Take Your Home From Bleak To Chic This Winter

December 15th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | 1 Comment

With the temperatures plummeting and blizzards pounding the Midwest, now is the best time to escape indoors to your own private winter hide-away.  It’s easy to cozy up your home with some chic and affordable finds to suit your family’s lifestyle and your design style.

1.  Fireplace
Nothing makes you feel more comfortable and cozy than a roaring fire on a cold winter day.  A fireplace instantly infuses character and charm into any room and gives the space its personality.  But to give it the winter makeover you’re after – pack up the old accessories adorning the mantle and swap them out for some new seasonal ones.

  • Be your own photographer, bundle up and head outside to capture some black and white photos of some winter scenes.  Blow up your favorite image and frame it in a simple black, metal or white frame and set it on the mantle.
  • To one side of your new winter scene, cluster a collection of three antiqued or vintage silver urns (or similar) in varying heights – and include some eucalyptus, feathers or other greens to give the composition added volume.
  • On the other end situate some natural elements like a birch vase, pinecones, candles or dull greens to flank that artwork as well.
  • Keep the accessories in the center to a minimum and very low. Perhaps a metallic framed photo or two.  Either way, make sure there is some height on each side of the wintery photograph.

2.  Furniture Layout
If you’re lucky enough to gather around your living room or family room fireplace this winter you may want to consider a quick change to the furniture layout or floor plan – cozying things up a bit.

  • If your fireplace is centrally located within a wall and is flanked by windows or bookcases that are the same dimensions on each side, then you’re dealing with a more traditional space and personality – which speaks to a more traditional furniture layout.
  • Pairs are important here. To take advantage of the roaring fire flank a pair of comfortable and inviting chairs on either side of the fireplace which will keep you and your guests warm and cozy.
  • Place your sofa directly facing the fireplace for a comfortable conversation area and a great view of that crackling fire.  After all it’s the focal point of the room.

3.  Flooring
Whether your home has carpeting, hardwood, stone or tiled flooring there are some quick and easy solutions to cozy up your space.

  • Add more layers for warmth.  Right on top of your existing flooring material don’t be afraid to layer one or even two area rugs for texture and color.
  • Incorporate a deep striped pattern, textured sisal or even a faux animal hide rug on top of the original flooring.
  • Relax the formality and potential stiffness with some colorful patterns and textures.

4.  Draperies
Again it’s all about layering and adding weight to the walls particularly if your window treatments are sheer, billowy and romantic.

  • If your window coverings are sheer or simple blinds, add heavier fabrics overtop those fabrics for an entirely new treatment.
  • Find some ready made panels to attach over top your windows in a velvet or brocade fabric.
  • Remember if you love the look of winter white install some off-white or cream velvet panels for the ultimate in winter chic.

5.  Accessories
This is a simple quick fix.  Remove all your existing accessories, store them and re-visit them again for another season.

  • Look for vintage blankets, throws and pillows and blend textures.
  • Mix and match your blankets from plaids to knits, to faux fir and drape them over sofas, chairs and ottomans throughout your home.  They will keep you all warm and cozy during those frigid nights.
  • Replace your old sofa pillows with knit sweater pillows, tea towels and even printed burlaps for added interest pattern and texture.
  • Natural elements are all around us.  Bring the outdoors in – even now by incorporating, birch trunks, light green foliage, pine cones and candles and sprinkle these elements in with family photos, framed in metals or whites for that monochromatic sophistication.

So light that fire, grab some hot chocolate and enjoy cozying up in your winter chic home.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

How To Create A Summer Escape At Home

July 27th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Whether you call it a beach house, summer cottage or weekend pied-a-terre – who says you can’t create your own coastal look at home.

  • Beach house style living gives you the luxury of living more casually but with great sophistication and style.
  • White tends to be the most used color in interior design. Is white a true color or rather the lack of it?  Regardless, it’s extremely malleable, easily transitional and highly reflective creating a bright and cheery atmosphere even on the gloomiest days.
  • Using white walls, ceilings, floors, moldings as the dominant color in a home might seem a like a recipe for disaster to some, but the reality is it enlarges small spaces at the same time acting as the ideal backdrop for making every day practical items pop like works of art.  The space feels lighter and airier.
  • Treat your ceiling to some volume if at all possible with exposed beams and truss work, and add some 8” tongue and grooved paneling to your ceilings and/or
  • Everyone loves the dark deep rich tones of wood floors over the past few years, but to achieve that lighter and brighter “beachy” environment consider going blonde.   Sand your floorboards and refinish them in a myriad of ways by using natural linseed oils, white wax oils, lyes or white soaps to get the latest look.  A lighter looking floor allows the wood’s character to show through, which tends to create a more rustic feel.  Top it off with a natural area rug for added texture and comfort.
  • Incorporating a host of organic materials such as bamboos, rattans and natural woods creates a sense of both casual and natural living – perfect for achieving that summer-like cottage environment.
  • Maximize your outdoor views whether it’s your pool, patio, deck or lake, with bi-fold or sliding doors – that tuck neatly away – to extend the interior out to the exterior.
  • Grab inspiration from your home’s natural environment – so when it comes time to select your color palette – let your outdoor property help guide your color inspiration.
  • Use slipcovers on seating – and provide yourself with multiple sets in alternating fabrics and colors for the changing seasons.  Do the same with your accessories – shifting from spring/summer and fall/winter without ever having to leave your vacation home.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

How To Choose A Color Scheme That Speaks To Your Buyer?

July 22nd, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

EXTERIOR
This speaks to knowing your neighborhood, the style of your home and its architecture and what colors will enhance your piece of property.

Take a look around your neighborhood and see which color palettes appeal to you and what the trends are.  Are the exterior colors gravitating to more neutral colors?

  • Don’t scrimp on the quality of paint or the job itself! (Interior or Exterior)
  • A professional quality paint job will instantly boost the resale value of a home.
  • You want your house to be similar but NOT identical to others around you.
  • Choose a color scheme that enhances your curb appeal and accentuates your homes character and charm!
  • For a Spanish Style Home:  You’ll want to introduce a palette of more neutral desert inspired colors such as tans/sandy whites/clay/browns.
  • On a Victorian Home: Use rich subtle shades of historic colors, with  4 –5 different coordinating colors.
  • Variations of greens/golds,  blues/grays, or greens/tans/peach.
  • Full of handsome color combinations.

Every paint company will have sample palettes that are interchangeable for your exterior and interior, which works for walls, trims, doors etc.

INTERIOR
When it’s time to re-paint your interior for re-sale it’s probably best to use softer, less stressful colors.  Introduce a neutral palette for the interior – keep it on the safe side leaning to the lighter tones.

  • Prospective buyers have an easier time envisioning their furniture, accessories and personality in a more neutral color palette.
  • Don’t be afraid to use a few different calm and soothing colors that coordinate and compliment each other from room to room, for an easy transition.
  • Offset those soft neutral wall colors with painting out all the trims, baseboards and moldings in a nice crisp white semi-gloss. It will make those mellow colors pop and create some elegance and sophistication throughout the entire home.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

5 Major Home Renovation Projects That Offer The Best Return On Investment

July 15th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

When it comes to renovating your home for re-sale there are a few major renovations that top the list.

1.  Major Kitchen Remodels. (ROI 75-85%)

The function of the kitchen has evolved over the years and now more than ever the kitchen must meet those needs.

  • Buyers want to envision themselves in a gorgeous newly renovated kitchen where they can actually see themselves – preparing meals for their friends and family –where the kids nestle into a cozy banquette doing their homework, or their guests mingling around that gorgeous island.  Buyers want to see this in their minds eye and know that it’s attainable.
  • A major kitchen remodel may need to include a new floor plan to improve on a poorly designed work triangle.
  • If the kitchen is completely dated, isolated and compartmentalized with an inefficient floor plan and layout – don’t think that replacing the cabinets and appliances will camouflage the problem.  It won’t!
  • If at all possible add an island into those plans. Everyone loves them!
  • Replacing all cabinetry, appliances, lighting, flooring, finishes and fixtures and new French doors and windows will grab the buyers’ attention.
  • Since kitchens and baths are the costliest rooms to renovate, the buyer will be thrilled that the work is already done for them.

2.  Family Room Additions. (75% ROI)

The family room is the second most popular space in the home after the kitchen.

  • Adding 400 sq. ft. of bright and cheery living space (if your neighborhood will bare it), will definitely improve the value of the home.
  • Increase the overall height of your space and introduce a vaulted ceiling.  Creating a sense of volume instantly makes a room feel more spacious.
  • Consider the details and add beautiful French doors, floor to ceiling windows or even skylights to flood this new space with light and maximizes a view.  Take it one step further and add the deck.

3.  Deck Addition. (72-95% ROI)

Deck additions are quite possibly the best investments these days. They naturally transition the interior to the exterior – instantly expanding your living space.

And who doesn’t love that?

  • It’s a vacation-at-home experience, as it expands your living space and extends the summer season – forcing you to live more outdoors before the winter season sets in.
  • Its design can be as simple or elaborate as the home it’s attached to.
  • Multi-leveled or single, built in seating or casual seating areas, hot tubs, and outdoor kitchens – all of which add to the vacation home atmosphere.
  • Decks are more popular than pools and relatively easy to build.
  • Design the deck to compliment the character of your home’s exterior architecture.  Give it some thought in planning – it should be proportionate to the size of your yard.
  • Incorporate energy efficient solar or led lighting.

4.  Main Floor Master Bedroom Addition (73% ROI)

Adding a 400 sq.ft. master bedroom suite and spa-like bath provides a private retreat and appeals to many home buyers.

  • Access to main floor is gaining in popularity.
  • Empty nesters and others, who no longer want to tackle stairs, prefer to have the master bedroom and bath retreat on the main floor level of the home.
  • Immediate access to a gorgeous deck or patio outdoors also adds to the return.

5.  Two-Story Addition (77% ROI)

  • A two-story addition of 800 square feet could include a new main floor family room and an upper level master suite complete with a full bath.
  • Or utilizing that extra space and designating it, as the home office, is very appealing to home- buyers.
  • Homeowners are spending more time working from home and with the homepreneur trend growing, buyers are attracted to the extra space dedicated solely to operating their home based business.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

The Top 5 Home Renovations to Tackle This Year

July 8th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

This year the more popular home renovations tend to be smaller in scale – where function trumps flash.

According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2010 cost vs. value report, the smaller tweaks and midrange interior and exterior projects are yielding the biggest bang for the buck. In other words the more moderate home improvement projects prove to be the most cost effective.

So if you’re thinking of selling your home now or in the near future, consider these top 5 home remodeling projects to help turn your current house into someone else’s home.

1.  CURB APPEAL
First impressions are everything and you don’t have to be a real estate agent to know that. If your house is unappealing from the outside those potential buyers may never make it through the front door.  A great first impression could add a good 10% to the value of your home.

  • Define a clear pathway.
  • Upgrade your front door.
  • Update old windows with energy efficient products.
  • Replace your siding, as it tends to be the least costly upgrade.
  • Add a porch or deck. (any extension to the outdoors)
  • Add Architectural Details such as trims, shutters and moldings.
  • Add a new fence, trellis or gate.
  • Landscaping.
  • Roofing – replace or repair shingles if damaged.
  • Exterior Lighting.
  • Fresh Paint.

2.  MINOR or MAJOR KITCHEN REMODEL
Just to give you an idea how important kitchens are to a home’s value – Here in the US we spend almost $200 billion a year on home renovation projects and $15 billion of that are spent on kitchen renovations. If your kitchen’s layout works perfectly well, just making some simple updates will appeal to the perfect buyer.

Either way when you go to sell your house – keep in mind that you’re essentially selling your kitchen and the emotions attached!

  • Upgrade the appliances to stainless, as it has become the new standard finish in kitchen appliances.
  • Countertops and Sinks.  Consider Quartz surfaces, which are available in a multitude of colors, and finishes for its wonderful properties.  They are highly durable, non porous and easily maintained.
  • Kitchen sinks are available in all shapes and sizes to compliment and fit within your kitchen – from under mount, top mount and integral seamless sinks.
  • Cabinets and Hardware: repaint, re-stain or reface all door and drawer fronts if the layout still works – otherwise plan for new and improved cabinetry.
  • Replace and update old flooring with vinyl, ceramic, hardwood, concrete or stone.

3.  MINOR BATH REMODEL
Just simple upgrading of sinks faucets and fixtures will add value, style and sophistication.

  • If your master bath has one sink only and you have a 6’long space, add two new under mount sinks.
  • New countertops and cabinetry really set the stage for the space and are critical elements in creating a beautiful spa like environment. Consider certain marbles, soapstone, bluestone or limestone to create a sense of luxury.
  • Furniture-like cabinetry in deep warm woods evokes richness.
  • Flooring such as ceramic, stone, concrete and woods.
  • Frameless glass shower enclosures undoubtedly add to a spa-like atmosphere.

4.  CONVERTING UNFINISHED ATTICS INTO BEDROOMS

  • Increasing the amount of livable space is still very important to homeowners and potential buyers – and repurposing existing space is the most cost effective way to achieve that.  It’s much more cost effective than adding on, as well as being the green thing to do.
  • If you have the attic space you could develop a 15’ x15’ bedroom c/w a 5×7 bath and shower.   Or utilize that finished attic space as a home office/guest suite.  Allocate this new square footage to appeal to you as well as the buyer.

5. DEVELOPING BASEMENTS INTO AN ADDED LIVING SPACE.

  • Developing the basement into a finished and livable entertainment space.
  • Create an added bedroom and bath, office, laundry or game room.
  • Provide ample built-in storage, playroom and finished bedroom.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

5 Master Bedroom Essentials To Create Your Ultimate Retreat

June 10th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Your master bedroom is the most private room in your home and creating that intimate retreat requires you to identify the essentials.  The master bedroom is your refuge and should be limited to the number of activities that take place here.  It’s a space dedicated to peace and romance – a refuge where we need to relax, restore and rejuvenate our body, mind and soul from the daily stresses of everyday life.

Yet it seems that more and more of us are bringing our work and laptops into our bedrooms to catch up on those unanswered emails of the day or finish that report that’s due tomorrow.  So if you truly want to create that luxurious environment of rest, relaxation and de-compression then leave those piles of files, and computes out of the bedroom!

Here are 5 bedroom essentials to help you create your utopia with comfort style and function.

1.  The Bed.

  • If space allows buy a high quality king-sized bed.  It provides plenty of space for intimacy and a restful night of sleep.
  • Create a focal point within the space and incorporate a custom upholstered or wooden headboard to add elegance and sophistication to your room.
  • Invest in luxurious bed linens.  There’s nothing better than sinking into your sumptuous bed – dressed in finest Belgian linens or Egyptian cottons (from 300-1000 thread count) and cozying into your delectable duvet and perfectly plump pillows. AHHH!

2.    Seating.

  • The master bedroom doubling as a luxurious hotel suite is becoming increasingly popular these days.
  • A comfortable seating area could include anything from a designated sitting room complete with a fireplace, sofas, chairs and tables – a charming window seat or a cozy nook simply adorned with a classic chair, ottoman and side table.
  • Delineate a space for watching television or reading.

3.  Storage.

  • Maintain a calm and serene bedroom by eliminating clutter of any kind.
  • If at all possible conceal your plasma television behind a remote controlled motorized piece of art – it slides horizontally or vertically over the television itself when not in use.
  • Nightstands should provide you with ample surface area for fresh flowers, magazines and the book you’re currently reading.  Use side tables with drawers to organize and store any loose paperwork – keeping clutter out of site.
  • If you have built-in bookshelves in your bedroom keep the books uniformed and consider including doors on the lower portion of the unit keeping the visual clutter free.
  • If access to your closet is within the bedroom room itself, invest in a professional closet company to maximize and organize your storage.

4.  Lighting.

  • Create a warm and relaxing atmosphere in your bedroom by overlapping several sources of light.
  • For overall ambient lighting include some recessed halogen fixtures overhead, suspended reading lamps over each bedside table (to free up surface area), or table lamps and wall sconces for a reading light.
  • Install individual light switches on each person’s bedside.
  • Ensure that all lighting sources are on dimmers, which will provide you with a romantic ambiance – and the greatest flexibility.
  • Don’t forget candlelight!

5.  Color.

  • Sets the tone of your bedroom space.
  • To achieve that calm and peaceful environment avoid using highly stimulating or overpowering colors.
  • Colors like violets and lavenders bring a sense of calm to a space.  Blues, whites, greys creams and taupes can also contribute to the overall serenity of the bedroom, and work beautifully with rich wood furniture.

Remember, the right combination of all these bedroom essentials contribute to the overall success of your space.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

What You Can Do – With Bamboo!

June 8th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Bamboo is a tremendously versatile, highly sustainable and renewable resource – and the perfect alternative to hardwoods.  It can be harvested every 3 to 5 years compared to 10 to 25 years for most other soft and hard woods – and never needs replanting as it continues to grow from the same root system.   It’s innate characteristics and strength rivals maple and oak and due to its water resistant properties won’t shrink or swell like most hardwoods. This unique species of grass can be implemented into any home renovation project from cabinetry to flooring and everything in between

Here are some perfect bamboo applications for your next home remodeling project.

  • Exterior Decking and Deck Tile
  • Interior Flooring
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Outdoor Fencing and Garden Edging
  • Gazebos
  • Interior/Exterior Doors
  • Cabinetry
  • Shelving
  • Furniture
  • Wall paneling
  • Wallpapers and wall tiles
  • Bedroom headboards
  • Butcher Block
  • Kitchenware
  • Home accessories
  • Window coverings
  • Screens/Room dividers
  • Light fixtures

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

Design With Personal Style!

May 20th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Everyone has a unique interior design style – and that particular style directly reflects our personalities.

Getting a handle on your unique style before you begin your home renovation, addition or decorating project is all it takes to save you valuable time, money and stress down the road.  Arming yourself with this knowledge will ensure your home reflects the “true” you, and will provide every inch of your home with an underlying sense of cohesiveness that reflects your particular style and the way your family really lives.

There are many different design styles and over the next few days I want to zero in on YOUR design style.

Does this describe you?

Your casual, relaxed and friendly personality is reflected in the warm and comfortable lived in look that you’ve created in your family home.  Whether your particular style of country is French, English or American rustic, you have a true connection to nature and the outside world.  You are drawn to all things natural, both in color and texture that embodies the overall philosophy of country living.

You may like a variety of fabrics, leathers and hides intermixed throughout your home, which look fantastic against bold splashes of color.  The fabrics you love range from brightly colored floral prints, stripes and plaids and are often combined with various leathers.

If this sounds familiar then consider your design style – Country Casual.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

What’s The Best Kitchen Layout For You?

April 29th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

The kitchen remains the most popular home renovation project. On average a kitchen remodel will yield a return on investment of 75 to 100 %.  So as you plan, begin by generating a design concept, one that fits the new or existing space and your family’s personality.

Typically, most kitchen plans tend to be categorized into 5 basic layouts with a lot of creativity in between.

1.  Galley Kitchen.

This kitchen layout is typically designed in homes where space is at a premium. It’s an efficient use of space and consists of two opposing walls with a floor area of approximately 3 ft. between countertops.

A great way to maximize the space would be to open up one wall to the neighboring dining room or family room with a pony wall (stub wall) and introduce a cantilevered countertop with barstools on the other side.

2.  L-Shaped Kitchen

The L-shaped kitchen is probably the most popular of kitchen designs for many reasons. This particular layout utilizes two adjacent walls and is best suited for the classic kitchen triangle.

This kitchen design offers great flexibility when it comes to locating your workstations, and as a result makes prepping, cooking, and clean up a lot easier. Make sure to provide ample counter space between each appliance for work surfaces.

3.  U-Shaped Kitchen

The U-shaped kitchen is the most efficient layout. This plan utilizes three walls and provides a great workflow by keeping within the classic kitchen work triangle. In other words, placing one major appliance per side allows the cook to move and work effortlessly between the sink, stove, and refrigerator.

This configuration also allows you designate one side of the U as the eat-in bar area with bar stools on the opposite side, or in the best-case scenario, if space allows, perhaps you can introduce an island within the overall kitchen space.

4.  G-Shaped Kitchen

The G–shaped kitchen plan is a similar to the U–shaped kitchen layout, with an additional peninsula or fourth wall of cabinetry.

You need a larger space to accommodate this type of kitchen design. It ultimately provides more space for food preparation, additional state of the art appliances, and dining. It’s ideal for multiple cooks, but would function best by incorporating a second work triangle. This is easily achieved by simply adding a second sink (in the peninsula perhaps), and both cooks use the other appliances.

5.  Island Kitchen

Islands work best in L-shaped or U–shaped kitchens that are typically open to another area. If you have the luxury of space, an island would be a welcome addition to any kitchen.

This free-floating piece of furniture allows you to socialize with your guest while you’re cooking without feeling ostracized. An ideal island size ranges from 36”+ wide by 72 to 96”+ long. Allow for at least 42” from the edge of the counter to any adjacent work surface, and preferably another 42” for aisles and traffic. Islands can be designed at counter height (36”), table height (29”), or a combination of both.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.