While it’s more common for people around the world to design their kitchens in the typical U shapes , L shapes or galleys, there are not the only options for designing your kitchen.
Be it the shape of your kitchen, personal preference or any other reason, the design appropriate for you might be a single-wall kitchen. In this article, we will try to tell you all there is to know about the single-wall kitchen, before you get past the planning phase, and start actually setting it up.
While the single-wall kitchen is rapidly gaining popularity, many people still consider the more traditional kitchen layouts to be the only ones viable and practical. Nothing further from the truth – a properly designed single-wall kitchen can be just as good, or even better than the classical U-shaped one.
Remember, however, that to make your experience with such a shape of the kitchen as good as it can possibly be, you have to approach the subject in a smart way. It’s not something you can just try out and ditch if you don’t like it – changing your decision later will require a complete overhaul of your kitchen, so think ahead – better safe than sorry.
Okay, enough with the scares. All you need to do is read this article, and after you’re done, you will be more than prepared to design your very own, unique single-wall kitchen – so let’s get started.
Let’s start by looking at the assets of a single-wall kitchen – after all, who doesn’t like to read about the positive stuff, right?
- Ergonomy – the single-wall kitchen is very ergonomic, above all else. Because it demands more planning ahead and effort from you when you design one, the final result is usually highly thought-out and ergonomic kitchen. As such, it teaches you a more efficient way of working in the kitchen, which pays off later.
- The efficiency of space – another thing about the single-wall kitchens is that they are very space efficient when it comes to your overall house space. While giving you some trouble, when you try to make it all work, after such a kitchen is done, your interior has a lot more free space than it would otherwise have in the case of a standard kitchen layout.
- Design – single kitchen walls, when designed properly, add a very modern and chic look to your house, which is a very desirable outcome. After you’re done with setting it up, the result will offset the effort.
- Social values – with this kitchen type, your close ones won’t be getting in your way when you prepare food. No more clashing with each other, trying squeeze through, like it happens in a closed, U-shaped kitchen. While a single-wall kitchen is usually designed to allow only one person to prepare food at a time, it actually leaves plenty of space behind said person for others to stay around and behind and socialize. As such, the social values of a single-wall kitchen are indeed tremendous.
The cons of a single-wall kitchen are pretty self-explanatory – it’s a more demanding type of the kitchen, and requires more planning than a standard kitchen.
- Extra measures – well, if they weren’t necessary, this article wouldn’t exist, right? Some people see it as a drawback, and some as a challenge – but still, remember that it’s a demanding type of a kitchen, even though the result pays for the effort.
- Special appliances – sometimes, to make such a kitchen fit your interior, you have to look for smaller and perhaps more expensive appliances and furniture. Again, it will be worth it, but that certainly is a bit of a trouble at first.
- Requires knowledge to be used efficiently – you will have to change your kitchen habits and the way you normally move around a kitchen. Not that much of a problem, but still something you have to learn and get a hang of.
Preparing a proper storage zone in your single-wall kitchen is different than in the case of an ordinary kitchen. After all, there is only one wall available for you to place your cabinets on, so that’s naturally less convenient.
Because of that simple fact, you have to get creative with your storage, as well as try your best to use the entire space available to you, all the way from the floor to the ceiling.
In the case of the single-wall kitchen, completely filling the wall with cabinets is often a must, unless your walls are really big, so you can fit everything without a drop of sweat. However, if your house is of a more standard size, leave only a cutout for the countertop – which, by the way, should be as versatile as they come.
Countertops these days come equipped with some really smart features, designed to make your life easier but at the same time to be as ergonomic as possible. The bottom of your countertop should have drawers and shelves installed, not to waste even an inch of space. Most likely, such a countertop will be at the same time the place where you cook, wash and prepare food, so when choosing one – think about kitchen islands. Your countertop should basically be as multipurpose as the best of the kitchen islands, only it won’t be an island, but stay near your wall. I hope that makes sense to you.
If filling your wall with cabinets isn’t your cup of tea, then think about setting up a spacious and capacious pantry somewhere in your house – ideally connected with the kitchen, but that depends on the shape of your house. Be it as it may, with a proper pantry you will be able to store all your food, cookware and kitchen tools inside of it, which means you won’t have to keep all that stuff near your cooking zone. If that’s an option for you, your single-wall kitchen can be really light and free of clutter, which is always good.
Floating shelves also work really well when designing a single-wall kitchen. You can get rid of your cabinets and install them above your cooking zones, just remember they can’t be too high up or else they won’t be very convenient to use.
Especially in the single-wall kitchen, it’s mighty important that your work surface can fit the precise space available. If for some reason you just can’t make it work, or want something to serve you as an additional work space on special occasions, there are ways to bypass the inconveniences. What are your options when it comes to providing a desk to prepare food on in a single-wall kitchen?
- Kitchen island on wheels – some people rarely cook anything substantial, or live alone and because of that don’t need a very spacious countertop. It’s fine if you don’t need all that much space for preparing your food, but what about the times when you throw parties? Well, that’s what kitchen islands on wheels are for. You can keep one of these stored wherever it is that you store items you don’t use at times when you need your kitchen to be free of any clutter, and roll it out only for special occasions when you’ll be preparing more food. A modern, fancy and overall cool way of getting the workspace you need.
- Kitchen tables – just because your kitchen cabinetry and appliances are designed to occupy just one of your walls, it does not mean you can’t have a kitchen table, right? Pick one that’s cohesive in style with the rest of your kitchen furniture. If you don’t want to install a spacious countertop, such a kitchen table can serve you well when you need additional space to prepare your food on.
- Countertops – as mentioned earlier, so not much to add. Just pick one that comes equipped with enough of additional features to satisfy your needs – bottom shelves and drawers can be very handy when you need to store things that otherwise would have to be stored somewhere else.
As stated before, it’s a bit more complicated matter to make everything fit your single-wall kitchen, than it is in the case of the standard one. Because of that, it is also your appliances which need to be picked appropriately.
These days it’s possible to get kitchen appliances in every shape and style, but one thing is for sure – the newer ones aren’t as huge as they used to be back in the ancient times. Therefore, look around for minimalistic, simple appliances. Don’t worry, they won’t be less efficient – thanks to the new technological solutions, they are both small and very powerful at the same time.
It’s also a good idea to hide your appliances behind the cabinet fronts – this will make your single-wall kitchen look more cohesive in style, as nothing will stand out. The goal here usually is to make the kitchen wall look as if it was the actual wall, so it’s good if it has a single texture and color all over it.
If your single-wall kitchen will be connected with the living room or the dining room, it’s also very important that you pay attention to the noise your appliances will emit. Invest some time into looking for the quieter ones, not to disturb all the house inhabitants during their daily routine, such as watching TV, for example.
Enough with the boring, practical stuff – let’s talk a bit about ways to make your single-wall kitchen as impressive and beautiful as possible. We’ve prepared a few ideas for you, so read on.
It’s best you decide whether you want to make the kitchen wall the focal point of your interior, or if you prefer to keep it more subtle and in the background. Depending on your answer, there are two main options:
- Highlighting one spot – if you want your kitchen wall to kinda blend with the wall and not be the ” in your face” kind of a kitchen wall, it’s a good idea to make one feature of it stand out – let’s use the oven as an example. Consider using the same color and texture of cabinet fronts all over the wall, with every other appliance hidden behind such a front as well. Now, leave the oven exposed by not covering it with anything. This way people will still notice your kitchen cabinetry, but their eyes will be sliding off them because of the distraction. Basically, they will just see your practical oven and take note it’s a kitchen, but not much past that.
- Highlight the entire kitchen wall – if you want your kitchen wall to really be impressive, think about something that forces people to look at it. Usually, your best bet is some fancy illumination system or a stylish, bold backsplash. A kitchen wall with white cabinetry and a yellow, illuminated backsplash which screams ” look at me” is not something you can overlook, right?
This sums up our guide to single-wall kitchens. Now you should understand what such a kitchen is all about – don’t rush it, and take your time to decide whether it’s something up your alley or not. However, if you decide to design a single-wall kitchen with enough commitment and determination, we’re sure the final result will be well worth it.