Particularly during these challenging times, it could well be that your outside kitchen has, or will become, the most used space in your home this coming summer. Outside space has become crucial especially with so many of us now working from home.
So much of our work and leisure time is spent in the confines of our homes now, using mobile devices to access all that we need from work to movies and accessing popular destinations like playing at a mobile jackpot casino. Therefore, more and more people are looking to upgrade or create an outdoor kitchen making their gardens more useable and desirable places in which to spend time.
True, outdoor kitchens have until now been used mainly in the summer months but owing to the changes in our circumstances, these areas now need to be useful and to work the whole year round. Your outdoor kitchen should be an extension of your home, and should include all the things that your home contains, from style to function.
There are a number of important things that are you should avoid when designing this specific area. You want your outside kitchen to add to your living space and to create an extra place to relax that is both functional and stress-free.
Here below are a number of things to avoid when designing an outside kitchen.
1.Using materials that are not strong enough for outside use
2.Waterproofing your outside kitchen space is vital.
Very few places receive such small amounts of rain that waterproofing is not an important issue.
According to Jamie Blake, creative director of Blakes London, “Your choice of material is key”. And he goes on say, “We recommend “marine ply carcasses, solid oak and iroko as all these timbers are complex but well suited for the outdoors. Oak being rock solid and iroko holding a lot of natural oils that allow it to endure outdoors.”
Another expert, Hege Lundh, the marketing director of Lundhs also recommends that you “Make sure you choose materials that will withstand changes in temperatures, exposure to the sun’s UV rays and also to the moisture of rain and dampness.” It is important that these materials “stand the test of time against these elements.” The elements to look for are those that have low levels of porosity, absorption and a high resistance to UV rays.
Those materials that are require little or no maintenance and are easy to clean are the best. The best option is choosing a 100 percent natural material. For instance, Hege says “a completely natural stone will be used to the elements and notoriously only require a very little maintenance – a simple wipe with a damp cloth will suffice.”
Another factor to take into account is safety. Hege points out that it is important to take safety issues seriously. He says “if you are planning on installing a grill, for instance, make sure you avoid flammable materials and choose a worktop and surfaces that can withstand high temperatures of, up to 300 degrees centigrade”.
3.Don’t make the mistake of not installing a sink and water supply
The main component of an outside kitchen is a sink and water supply. Without this addition, it is simply not a kitchen but just a barbequing area.
Jamie Blake explains it well when he says “Constantly running in and out of the house to use the sink or grab something from the fridge can be incredibly frustrating, so replicate a preparation area and space as you would have in the kitchen outside. This is key to delivering a sociable outdoor kitchen you will actually enjoy.”
4.Not installing the correct lighting will be a huge mistake
Your outdoor space should be adequately lit so that you can see well at night when making a barbeque. Jamie Blake also makes the point that “It’s a good idea to add ambient lighting to create the right mood during those long lazy summer evenings.” He also says that it is very important to think very carefully during the design process, about the location of your outside barbeque area and the position of the table. You want to make sure that when you are barbecuing in the summer months, you won’t be constantly standing under the hot sun and that your dining table won’t be immersed in shade.
5.Choosing the wrong location for your kitchen
Hege Lundh, says that ‘The outdoor kitchen should not be fully exposed to sunlight, and, if possible, find the least windy area.’
Jamie Blake points out the importance of considering the proximity to the house when at the design stage. He says, “As when designing your main kitchen think about circulation. Where do you want people to stand and congregate, kids to run and play and where are the thoroughfares?”. There is a lot to think about at the design stage.
Think very carefully about the position of the table. According to Blake “a raised bar with stools between you, the barbeque master, and your guests gives you the space you need and a clear line for people not to cross and kids not to venture.”
6.Failing to install outdoor heating
In order to make your outside kitchen really useable you have to install heating. It is so uncomfortable to be cold and, therefore you should install the correct heating. Jamie Blake says you should “consider heating the seating areas and installing retractable covers for those cooler wetter months.” He goes on to say that he likes “to create a permanent overhead cover for the barbeque to keep off direct rain and weather on the units themselves.” This will better protect the work area, especially if it is made of wood and also increase the lifespan of off the equipment and hardware.
7.Not providing adequate storage
A kitchen, whether inside or outside needs adequate storage space. There are so many items we use in our kitchens and storage for these is crucial if the kitchen is to function properly. Hege Lundh recommends that you “Make sure you’re able to close and lock things away so that they are safe from the outdoor elements, and so you can store appliances outside without having to run indoors to grab utensils or glasses every five minutes.”
8.Leaving out adding a refrigerator
If you don’t include a refrigerator to your new outside kitchen you will surely come to regret it. When working in a kitchen, the fridge is a key element. Jamie Blake says that “The further you are from the house the better stocked your outdoor kitchen needs to be in terms of a refrigerator, spice rack, etc.” However, if your outdoor kitchen is located very close, say on a patio right outside the main house door, then perhaps an additional fridge is not so crucial.
Hopefully taking into account the above points you will be able to create the perfect outside kitchen area and enjoy many barbeques and family get togethers in the comfort of your newly extended homes.