So you are renovating your kitchen and you are determined to have an island. Now comes the hard part. How big should it be? Should it have seating? How much overhang is enough? Do I want counter height or bar height? Will I be using the island for food prep or instead of a kitchen table? Should I put appliances in the island or perhaps the sink? These are some of the questions you should be asking yourself when deciding how to configure your island…or when determining if an island is right for you.
If you are looking to replace your kitchen table with an island then the primary focus should be on seating and comfort. In general, you will want to allow for a minimum of 10″-12″ of counter top overhand so that you can sit comfortably while eating. You should also allow for a minimum of 24″-30″ for each person to sit without feeling cramped by the person next to them. Other considerations should include arrangement of seating. With everyone sitting in a row at a long island it is more difficult to have productive conversations and/or see each other. For that reason, you may want to consider having seating on more than one side of the island. Depending on the size, layout ceiling height of your kitchen a good designer will be able to give you a few different seating options suited for your family.
If the purpose of the island is more for food preparation then your considerations will be a little different. You may want to consider putting your cook top or sink in the island and perhaps having any seating raised to bar height so that the people seated at the island are at a different level than your work area. Size, shape and location of the island will be determined by the size of the room and the location of other appliances and work surfaces in the room. Regardless of how you want to use the new island in your new kitchen, it is best to have a detailed discussion with your kitchen designer about what is important to you. Your kitchen island should help create the perfect work and/or entertaining space and make your kitchen work for you!