What You Must Consider Before You Buy a Modular Kitchen

While walking out of her friend’s new flat, Riya decided that she must have it.

She and her husband, Debashis, had already decided that they would book a flat very soon.  They have chosen one suitable flat and are in the final stages of discussions before signing the documents.

Riya really loved the gated community where they would start living in the near future. What a relief that would be! She is forever unhappy over their claustrophobic rental flat, dark and devoid of much air, in a standalone building. Add to it the various irritating demands of the landlord on the tenants.

You mustn’t waste much water, put out the staircase lights at 9 pm, please tell your guests not to park their cars in front of the house, and so on and so forth. All these would be a thing of the past very soon, as only after a few months their flat would be ready to take possession.

In her mind’s eye, Riya had been witnessing her apartment taking shape into a lively home full of beautiful furniture, tasteful decor, warmth, and love.

She spent hours with Debashis discussing how they would decorate their home, what are the must-haves, and what are not so essential but they would love to have.

Riya Made a List

Riya and Debashis had decided that their home decor would be a mixture of convenience and aesthetic appeal.

While they took collective decisions in almost everything, the kitchen was left out for Riya.

”It is your domain, and I don’t want to get into it. Choose whatever is convenient, and aesthetically pleasing,” said Debashis.

”I need to make up my mind on it. I am not sure how the kitchen layout would be, and how all utensils and equipment should be arranged,” replied Riya in a diffident voice.

”Do you want to talk to a professional interior guy?” asked Debashis.

”No way,” replied Riya, her confidence coming back, ”I will figure it out myself, dear. Don’t worry.”

Riya Met Sreemoyee

Riya had an element of pride in her ability to give her imagination the shape into reality. After all, she is a qualified fashion designer and successfully runs an apparel boutique in the city.

One of these days she went to Gariahat to do some shopping and bumped into her old friend Sreemoyee. Suddenly, they felt that they must catch up with the old times and they started sharing slices of their lives with each other. Sreemoyee talked about her life and invited Riya to have coffee in her new flat.

Riya was quite impressed with Sreemoyee’s flat, especially the interiors. Riya wanted to know more about the neat modular kitchen and Sreemoyee started to educate her.

Riya started thinking of installing a modular kitchen in her own flat.

What is a Modular Kitchen?

Traditional, Indian-style kitchens are fast giving way to modular kitchens where small sections or modules are joined to build the complete kitchen. The kitchen design consists of drawers, countertops, kitchen cabinets, micro-compartments, and shelves that can be arranged to save a lot of space and create an organised kitchen. Such kitchens are a convenient décor solution for all kinds of homes, especially smaller ones with limited space.

Advantages vs Disadvantages of Modular Kitchens

  • Modular kitchens are easy to install. They are manufactured in factories and assembled in the kitchen. No need for noisy and dusty carpentry at your home for days.
  • You can practically carry your modular kitchen when you shift house.
  • You can change or replace any subsection of the modular kitchen quite easily.
  • You can custom design your modular kitchen based on your requirement and choice. You can coordinate your kitchen theme and colour or go for a design that compliments or matches the theme of your house.
  • With efficient and proper planning by professional kitchen planners, these kitchens provide more storage and better workflow with an easy and smooth pace. Modular kitchen cabinets come with special storage such as built-in bottle racks, plate holders, cutlery compartments, garbage holders, and wire trays for vegetables.
  • It also helps to declutter the kitchen giving it a clean and tidy appearance.
  • Modular kitchens are not only convenient but they also impart an elegant look to your home. They come in a wide range of designs. From the more neat designs to sleek and modern ones, you will find a number of patterns and designs with attractive beauty and the best functionality. An abundant range of colours, patterns, and finishes are also available to match your overall home dĂ©cor.
  • Cleaning modular kitchens is rather easy and effortless.

Although modular kitchens are overwhelmingly preferred these days because of the advantages, there are some disadvantages too. For one, modular kitchens are generally costlier than carpenter-made kitchens. They also need regular cleaning to maintain that spick and span look.

Consider these before You Go for One

Before you go for that eye-popping modular kitchen to give your kitchen that start chef’s playground look, consider the following points.

Plan the Layout

Depending on the size of the kitchen choose a straight, L-shaped or U-shaped layout which ensures good work flow. Follow the golden triangle rule so that the cooking range, the refrigerator, and the sink become the focal point of the kitchen and the distance between each point ranges between 4 to 9 feet.

Optimise Storage

Analyse the storage requirements of the home and consider differently-sized drawers and cabinets for storing spices, pots, cutlery, utensils, electronic appliances, and so on. Opt for a dedicated pantry unit for storing all the dry kitchen ingredients. Optimise the vertical storage by increasing the height of the overhead cabinets till the ceiling level.

Select the Kitchen Appliances

Select the kitchen appliances during the design phase of the kitchen so that they can be integrated within the layout according to their exact sizes. Introduce adequate plug points for all the appliances. Finalise the position of the cooktop-cum-chimney unit and choose a chimney with a high suction power so that it can eliminate the odours and create a smoke-free space.

Select the Materials

It is preferable to go for BWR (boiling water resistant) plywood instead of less durable materials like MDF, HDF, or particle board which may not last long in moisture-laden conditions. One has to choose between acrylic, laminate, membrane finish, and duco paint finish for the exterior finish of the kitchen cabinetry. Materials like granite and quartz are the most preferred countertop materials. Avoid using marble because it is a porous material which makes it prone to staining.

Select the Colour Combination and Finish

Choose a single colour or go for a two-tone colour scheme with contrasting colours. Consider a matte finish for the kitchen cabinets because a glossy finish shows fingerprints and smudges easily. Also, avoid using too deep colors as this might impart a dark look. Moreover, Indian homes should also avoid an all-white décor in this type of kitchen setup, as it requires high-maintenance and regular cleaning.

Make provision for under-cabinet lighting to illuminate the countertop so that there is adequate task lighting for food preparation and cooking.

Choose Proper Accessories

Choose from a wide range of accessories like bottle pull-outs, pull-out baskets, tall units, cutlery organisers, corner units, and under-sink accessories and integrate them within the kitchen design.

The Final Word

Modular kitchens stand out when compared to the conventional carpenter-made ones because they are ergonomic, maximise storage, and are convenient to use. Today’s homemakers like Riya prefer them over those old-style carpenter-built kitchens for their advantages discussed above. However, you must consider your requirements carefully before you choose one.

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