They say if you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.
But then what?
As one of the most used spaces in a home, avoiding the kitchen isn’t really a realistic option.
What is a possibility though, is creating a space that oozes calm and tranquillity. And as April is National Stress Awareness month, we can’t think of a better time to take a look at how you can transform your kitchen into a more relaxing space.
So, take a deep breath, grab a cup of chamomile, and read on for The Marble Store’s top tips for a calming kitchen.
How to create a stress-free kitchen
– Think about the layout
Creating a stress-free kitchen starts with getting the design right and optimising the arrangement of key appliances.
The best place to start with this is with the ‘work triangle’. Tried, tested, and endorsed by kitchen experts the world over, the ‘triangle’ approach aims to improve the functionality of kitchen space by reducing movement between 3 key elements – the fridge, hob and sink – by positioning them so they form a triangle.
Whilst this layout isn’t always possible, it is a good basis to kick off your design and will get you thinking about the logistics of your space and how you’ll move within it.
Remember too, to consider key thoroughfares in the kitchen, young children running past hot pans on the stove is not going to help reduce stress levels.
– Create more storage
Tidy house, tidy mind.
Worktops covered in clutter is not only a hazard in the kitchen – it’s also a huge stress trigger.
To avoid this, re-think the storage in your kitchen. Sort through cupboards and get rid of anything you know you’re never going to use. If this still leaves you without enough room, consider fitting shelves or additional wall cupboards to maximise space.
– Focus on lighting
The impact weather and daylight levels can have on our well-being and mental health shouldn’t be ignored. Around 1 in 3 people suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) with symptoms ranging from fatigue to low self-esteem and anxiety.
Breakfast, lunch, dinner – you’ll pop in and out on a regular basis and that’s just for snacks! Many of us are still WFH with the kitchen table doubling as the office desk, so it’s an important space to think about lighting.
Make sure you’re setting the right mood and getting your lighting levels right. Think about where the light comes in and try to design your kitchen to maximise its flow. Consider opting for lighter worktops to help reflect the available daylight. And try switching the kitchen curtains for a roller blind that takes up less space and allows more light in when not in use. If all else fails, plug in a few extra lamps to brighten things up.
– Add colour
If the light level can affect our mood, just imagine what colour can do!
Gentle shades of grey and blue are great for destressing an environment, but the key here is that we’re all different.
For some, it’s the fresh simplicity of white walls, the shimmer of high gloss cupboards and the soft sparkle of granite worktops that will soothe the soul. For others, it’s all about bright, vibrant colours. Then some find solace in rich dark shades, the deep hues for walls and worktops.
Getting it right is about not being a slave to the trends. Take time to think about what makes you tick and style your space accordingly. After all, it’s your kitchen.
– Make maintenance easy
Is nothing more likely to push your buttons than a stack of dirty pots left in the sink? Then it’s time for a dishwasher. Not only does a dishwasher mean no dirty pots left lying around but it’s also one less job on the chore list and a little more ‘chill’ time.
Most come at a standard width of 24inches but there are a range of slimline options on the market. So even if space is tight, you don’t have to rule the option out.
– Pick materials wisely
Are you a bit of a clean freak? Does the worry of germs lurking on worktops stress you out? Or the thought of hot pans being put down without a board make you break out into a cold sweat? Then think carefully about the materials you use in your kitchen.
Quartz worktops are highly durable and great for stylish yet practical family spaces – non-porous, it’s also a naturally hygienic surface.
The feel of natural stone marble and granite worktops are also popular options and introduce a powerful calming element to a kitchen.
The key is to be practical about the materials you use. If you’re in a city pad for two then high gloss cupboards and sleek marble might be a perfect choice. If you’re in a family home, then the durability of quartz worktops, easy wipe paint and matt wooden cupboards are likely to give the look and practicality you need.
Remember, you don’t want to be stressing about the cost, damage, or getting frustrated with how things look or work.
– Stick to a schedule
Whether it’s a lick of paint, changing the worktops or a complete overhaul, we get that the idea of revamping your busy kitchen can be a daunting prospect.
But the point here is to reduce stress levels, not raise them. Set yourself realistic goals and stick to a schedule. Working towards an end date is way more manageable than an open-ended project.
To achieve this, you need to make all your decisions – on colours, styles, layout etc – before you start work. If you’re getting someone in, take time to research kitchen fitters, painters etc, that come recommended. It’s also important to work with companies who can deliver their services in a timely fashion – at The Marble Store, we promise to fit worktops within 10 days of templating!
Relax and enjoy
Plan changes that are realistic and right for you and the effects can be revolutionary – and long-lasting!
To find out more about choosing the perfect worktop for a calming kitchen space, or to order surfaces with a fitting time you can rely on, talk to the team today.