If using the words “kitchen” and “kids” in one sentence conjures up images of burned fingers, bumped heads, and general chaos, welcome to parenthood! Although the kitchen is considered the heart of the home, it’s simultaneously one of the most dangerous and messy rooms of a house – and often results in headaches for parents. But instead of anxiously monitoring your kids’ each and every move or trying to jam yet another Tupperware box into your overflowing cabinets, let’s address the root of the problem: chances are that your space is not as child-friendly as it could be. If you’re ready for a change, take a look at these five must-have features for quality kitchens that are fun, safe, and practical for the whole family.
1. Multipurpose Islands
One of the most common problems that parents face is an abundance of stuff – and a lack of space. From lunchboxes to bottles to bibs, your storage space is most likely filled to the brim, making it difficult to find what you’re looking for without rummaging through the depths of your cabinets. The solution? A kitchen island! Whether you’re installing a new one or already have one, ensuring that it’s equipped with fully extending pull-out drawers is an absolute must. Along with serving as a valuable storage solution, drawers allow you to take stock of their contents with one quick look, saving you oodles of time and effort. What’s more, the island’s countertop will come in handy when you’re preparing food, or when your kids need a casual seating area for meals or homework.
2. Space is the Solution
Any parent – particularly those with accident-prone youngsters – know just how crucial space is to fostering a suitable environment. Bumped heads, stubbed toes, you name it: kitchens can be a breeding ground for boo-boos, especially if they’re narrow or jam-packed with furniture. The biggest common denominator for family-friendly, quality kitchens is a decluttered, open space, which minimizes the risk of injury when you have children running around. From simply rearranging furniture to opting for a remodel, creating a spacious kitchen should be a high priority: it’s not only safer for the little ones, but also makes for a more social environment that’s perfect for family time and for entertaining guests.
3. Safety First
In addition to fashioning an open space, it’s always a good idea to equip the room with a few child-friendly gadgets. For example, why not get a few step ladders and stools to encourage your kids to help you prepare meals or wash dishes? This simple addition can work towards maximizing quality time with your children, as well as spurring a sense of independence in them. Many quality kitchens also make use of non-slip mats, corner protectors, and plastic, child-proof utensils, which create a family-friendly environment without breaking the bank.
4. Include a Kids’ Corner
Need to keep an eye on your little ones while cooking? A kids’ corner enables you to do just that. By dedicating a kitchen area to a few toys, picture books, and more, you not only encourage your children to spend time in the kitchen as you prepare meals, but also keep them occupied – and away from the cooktops. You may even want to add a small children’s pantry that’s filled with healthy snacks, which can further inspire a sense of autonomy in your youngsters.
5. An Educational Edge
Oftentimes, family-oriented quality kitchens cater to kids’ curiosity. From decorating your fridge with magnetic poetry to writing out riddles on a blackboard, providing your children with little challenges – and rewards for completing them – creates a positive learning environment, as well as encouraging independent thinking. Entertaining and educational – what’s not to love?
From safety to practicality to fun, designing a kitchen that meets the whole family’s needs isn’t always easy. However, planning ahead – and investing in the above features – goes a long way towards building a space that both you and your kids will love. If you’re ready to revolutionize the heart of the home, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team of experienced designers. We’ve already created many quality kitchens for families – and yours is next!