Many of us get so used to our familiar spaces, we develop a sort of functional blindness to them. We store our kitchen tools in the same places we always have, purely because that’s where they’ve always been. Often times, storage is inconveniently far away from where the items are actually used and to reach them, you have to dig past lots of appliances you never use. If it’s time for a change in your kitchen, follow these steps to realize the functional kitchen of your dreams.

Evaluate Your Lifestyle

It’s important to begin with how you use your space. Is your kitchen the heart of your home? Is it a purely functional space where you heat up frozen meals? The reality is probably somewhere between the two. Some questions to consider about your lifestyle:

  • How often do you cook?
  • How often do you entertain?
  • Where do traffic jams occur in your kitchen?
  • Which areas are most used?
  • Where could you use more storage?
  • Where could you use more workspace?
  • Which spaces are under-used?

Take Stock & Purge

Not every item in your kitchen is useful or as useful as it once was. We all avoid using some tools and appliances because they are too difficult to clean or too cumbersome to assemble. Before redesigning your space to fit what you have, take an inventory of what you need, use, and want. Keep those items and plan to donate or discard the rest. Some items to include in your inventory:

  • Perishable vs. non-perishable food
  • Appliances
  • Pots and pans
  • Serveware
  • Daily dishes
  • Cutlery
  • Food storage
  • Linens
  • Seasonal
  • Other

Of these items, prioritize them based on which you use regularly. Note that those items should be kept easily at hand and/or visible. Which items currently have a home on top of your counters? Are they used so often that it makes sense they are stored on the countertop or can they be stored away in an easily accessible location for the sake of decluttering?

Match Storage With Functional Area

Is your storage located nearby where the items it holds are most needed? It doesn’t make sense to keep cleaning items far from the sink or knives far from your worktop. Think about where the remaining items are used and if they are easily accessed from that area of your kitchen. Some typical kitchen zones are:

  • Prep
  • Cooking
  • Storage/Pantry
  • Cleaning
  • Eating

Speak with a Kitchen Designer

Finally, it’s time to speak with a pro. You have now taken some time to give thoughtful responses to some of the very questions a kitchen designer will ask about your lifestyle and use of your kitchen.

Visit a Fairview Millwork and Kitchens showroom, meet with a designer, and discuss your ideas and expectations about your project. At this meeting, our designers can set up a time for a free in-home design consultation.

During your consultation, our design experts will discuss your aesthetic style, functional needs, activities in the kitchen, storage space needs, possible pet stations, as well as other areas of the home where cabinetry will add style and beauty.  They will also measure the kitchen space and talk about how you want things stored, charging station options, entertainment areas, and any specific cooking or baking areas you may want. Ultimately, they will take into consideration all of your information and the size of your space and create a beautiful 3D rendering.


Between Oct 30, 2019 and December 31, 2019, save between 5% and 20% on Kraftmaid and Kraftmaid Vantage cabinets at Fairview Millwork and Kitchens. Call your local Fairview for more information (508) 413-1018.

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