Using a Contractor to Improve Your Home

How U-Shape Layouts Work In Different Sizes of Kitchens

When building your new home, it's your chance to create an ideal kitchen that is both attractive and functional. While several layouts are possible, a U-shape design is a versatile set-up that suits both smaller and larger kitchens. 

U-Shape Basics

Forming a U or horseshoe shape, this layout has three walls of cabinetry and countertops with one side open. As well as being pleasingly symmetrical, this design includes two corners in which you can install smart storage to maximise cupboards. You can place the main workstations — the sink, stovetop and fridge — in different arrangements, depending on the room size.

Smaller Kitchens

A major advantage of U-shapes is the ample storage space and benchtop area it provides, even in smaller kitchens. Often, the sink and dishwasher are the end of the horseshoe, and the fridge is along one of the side walls. In more compact spaces, the opposing sidewalls of cupboards are closer together, creating a narrower U-shape, which can be ideal for one to two cooks at once. Your home designers can advise on how wide the area needs to be for the intended number of people. If your kitchen has a window on the end wall, this will allow more daylight to flood into the space, making it feel brighter and more spacious.

Larger Kitchens

In a larger kitchen, the opposing walls of cabinetry are farther apart, creating more area for a kitchen island or a dining table and chairs.  Because you can use it to prepare food and store items, an island provides more versatility — and you can also install a sink or cooktop on top. 

When placing the main workstations — the sink, fridge and cooktop — keep efficiency in mind. You don't want to have to walk long distances between each. Sometimes the cooktop is at the bottom end of the horseshoe, and the other elements are on the sidewalls, evenly spaced so that each has ample benchtop. To bring them closer, you could create an L shape instead. Alternatively, a kitchen island can provide a sink for a more compact distance between workstations.

Open-Plan Living

If your new single-storey home design has an open-plan living area without two opposing walls in the kitchen, you can create a U-shape with the help of a peninsula benchtop. So, two corner walls and the bench form the U. This peninsula can also function as a bar once you add seating. For extra storage, install overhanging cabinets which will also help to define the area.