Kitchen Layout Design Tips & Renovation Mistakes to Avoid

Many of our home activities — cooking, cleaning, eating, drinking, socializing — take place in the kitchen. Which is why a beautiful and functional kitchen is so important. Regardless of your kitchen design style, organization and layout are key components. Take a look at these 10 renovation mistakes you should avoid and design tips to try, so you’ll end up with a practical and elegant kitchen design.

Before you get started, if you’re looking for a loan to create your dream kitchen, check out these personal loan options for nearly every credit type.

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What is a Transitional Kitchen?

Transitional is the most popular kitchen design in the National Kitchen + Bath Association’s 2019 kitchen design trends. In fact, 65% of kitchens designed in the past year were transitional, more than double the kitchens that were traditional, contemporary or farmhouse, according to Tricia Zach, Market Research Analyst at the NKBA.

Why are transitional kitchens so popular? And, perhaps more importantly, would this style fit your design aesthetic? Freshome asked Zach and John Starck, CEO and Owner of Showcase Kitchens in Manhasset, NY, to explain the features that define a transitional kitchen.

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Galley Kitchens: Pros, Cons, and Tips

Whether you’re thinking about remodeling your kitchen or searching for a new home and weighing your options, the kitchen setup is extremely important. And if you cook a lot, the layout of this room really matters.

Quite a few homes have galley kitchens — and the owners either love them or want to take a sledgehammer to them. But what is a galley kitchen, and how do you know if this style is right for you? Freshome rounded up several experts to help you understand the pros and cons of a galley kitchen. They also provided tips for designing a galley kitchen that you’ll love. 

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What is an L-shaped Kitchen Layout?

The L-shaped layout is the most popular kitchen configuration, according to the NKBA 2019 kitchen design trends. But what is an L-shaped kitchen layout? We asked a few top experts to explain this layout and provide advice for using it. After all, just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it’s the right configuration for you.

“The L-shaped design consists of two adjoining, perpendicular walls of cabinets that form a formidable ‘L’ shape,” explains David Shove-Brown, Partner at Washington, D.C.-based boutique design firm //3877. He says its popularity is due to the layout’s adaptability.

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Is the Kitchen Work Triangle Concept Outdated?

Contemporary kitchen design places less importance on the traditional kitchen work triangle concept, but the principles behind it continue to influence modern designers.

For decades, the kitchen work triangle has been a standard that designers have used to base a lot of their decision making. This concept dictates that a range or cooktop, refrigerator, and sink should be connected as points in a triangle. The distance of each individual side should be somewhere between 4 and 9 feet and the total sum of the sides shouldn’t exceed 26 feet. The kitchen work triangle, as the primary workflow of the space, should also be separated from all other major traffic flows in the area. Take a look online, however, and you’ll easily find article after article discussing how outdated this concept is. But is the kitchen work triangle really obsolete?

General Kitchen Design Principles

The main reason that designers use to argue that the kitchen work triangle is outdated stems from its origin. This concept was developed in the 1940s due to kitchen size limitations at the time as well as the relatively massive sizes of the appliances of the period. The triangle concept allowed for ease of use and high functionality. These two goals are still used to determine great kitchen design no matter what concepts underpin it.

In addition, the idea of separating a kitchen into three zones precludes the development of an opposing theory of kitchen design – that of work zones. Work zone theory tends to include a kitchen island as an essential element of the design – this works best when freed of the constraints of designing for the triangle workflow. However, we should still recognize the need for dedicated workspaces in a kitchen that the kitchen work triangle concept introduced back in the 40s.

Where the Kitchen Work Triangle Still Works

The kitchen work triangle doesn’t work as a fundamental design principle for many contemporary kitchen styles, such as the galley style or open concept designs. However, there are still plenty of other factors that might make the concept work for a new kitchen design. For example, the triangle design works really well in a kitchen utilizing stainless steel appliances and a subway tile backsplash style. The eye is drawn to each point of the triangle and the workflow is naturally efficient. Ultimately, every space and every homeowner’s needs will be different. Examine each carefully to determine the best kitchen style to suit both! Read more

How to Create More Storage Space in a Smaller Kitchen

Kitchen appliances with multiple functions, such as this refrigerator with a built-in Keurig coffeemaker, can help you squeeze more storage space out of your kitchen design!

Nearly everyone dreams of having a luxurious, massive kitchen area, full of the space they need to have dedicated storage spaces for all of their kitchen items and a walk-in pantry for their foodstuffs. While it’s true that some are living that dream in their homes, the sad truth is that most of us are stuck with a kitchen that isn’t big enough for our ambitions! Space is a premium commodity in our homes and nowhere is this truer than in our kitchens. However, there are steps you can take to create more storage space in kitchens of any size

Utilizing Windowsills

If the windows in your kitchen have sills, these are great areas to squeeze out a little more storage space. Many homeowners use their windowsills to grow small herb plants, but if your windowsill is deep enough, you could store many of the items that clutter your counters, such as carafes, canisters, and other containers. Even windowsills with shallow depths can serve a purpose and help you create a little more storage space in your cabinets and on your counters than you might not have had before!

Smart Drawers

Your kitchen drawers actually have a lot of potential storage applications if you think beyond your silverware. They can hold spices and pantry items in addition to small tools that you may use more or less often in your kitchen life. Look into drawer dividers, which can help neatly organize your drawers into smaller storage units.

Space Above the Cabinets

The space above your cabinetry is a great space to store any items that you use more infrequently in your kitchen. Items such as woks, Creuset ovens, large pots, and smaller kitchen appliances can have a home in your kitchen that won’t make your more frequently used tools harder to access.

Multi-Functional Appliances

Smaller appliances, such as the coffee maker, can really take a toll on counter space, especially if you use them frequently. Why not outfit your kitchen with appliances that can serve multiple purposes? For instance, you could opt for a refrigerator with a built-in Keurig coffee dispenser so you’ll always have easy access to your morning cup of joe and still clear out some space on your counters. Today’s kitchen appliances have much more functionality than they used to, and you can use this new technology to your advantage to maximize the storage space in your kitchen as well. Read more

Everything You Need to Know About Induction Cooktops

Induction cooktops use electromagnetic energy and specialized cookware to cook food without generating heat on the actual “burner”.

If you’re looking to outfit your new kitchen design or renovation with the latest in appliance technology, an induction cooktop can be a great fit. Induction cooktops are sleek and feature a way to cook food that doesn’t emit any heat, making this one of the safest and most energy-efficient cooking methods out there. How do induction cooktops work, and what can they offer to your kitchen that other cooktop varieties can’t? Here’s what you need to know!

Induction Cooking – Using the Power of Electromagnetic Energy

One of the most distinctive elements of induction cooktops is the way that they can cook without emitting heat from the “burners”. This is due to the innovative technology behind the unit, which uses an electromagnetic field to generate heat. A high-frequency induction coil sits underneath the cooking surface and interacts with specially designed iron cookware to create the electromagnetic energy needed to cook food. The iron in the cookware makes it magnetic which allows for the transfer of this energy from the coil underneath to the cooking surface.

What Do Induction Cooktops Bring to the Table?

Compared to gas and electric cooktops, we can see that induction cooktops have a number of advantages over them that are worth considering if you’re shopping around for a new cooktop unit. These benefits include:

  • Quick Cooking: The transfer of electromagnetic energy from the cooktop to the cooking surface happens much more quickly than electric or gas flames. It can allow you to save a few minutes on cook time every time you use it, which, over an extended period, can add up to more time spent with your family.
  • Best-in-Class Energy Efficiency: Because the transfer of electromagnetic energy happens directly, it is considered to be the most energy-efficient type of cooktop you can buy.
  • Safety Features: Induction cooktops do not generate heat on the surface of the unit, which can make them great choices for families with small children. In addition, this feature also allows for easy cleanup of the unit day in and day out. No heat means that any food elements that spill onto the cooktop surface won’t cook onto it.
  • Precision Controls: Induction cooking allows for very precise control of the cooktop unit, meaning you’ll be able to simmer, melt, or boil whatever you need to at the proper temperature.
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    Trending in Kitchen Design: Modern Glass Collection by Café

    For a sleek, minimalist look to your kitchen design, the new Modern Glass collection by Cafe is a perfect choice!

    Happy new year from all of us at ADU! 2020 is shaping up to be a good year if you’re planning to remodel your kitchen or designing a new one from scratch. There are many different paths that lead to a well-designed, modern-looking kitchen with great functionality. The brand Café recently debuted a new collection of kitchen appliances, the Modern Glass collection, that you should definitely check out if your preferred kitchen aesthetic is sleek, futuristic, or even minimalist! We’re keeping our eye on the ways that this collection of appliances can be used in your kitchen.

    State of the Art Design

    The Modern Glass collection is the newest set of appliances from Café, and as such it features state of the art design cues. The appliances are sleek, featuring angular lines and a reflective glass finish. One of the most striking aspects of this collection is the way the handles on the units are deemphasized in the design (integrating into the overall look of the unit), or even eliminated altogether. This gives the Modern Glass collection one of the most urban, modern aesthetics of any appliance collection currently on the market and can open new avenues in your kitchen design. Some homeowners have begun opting for a kitchen style that tries to do away with all handles, including in the cabinetry and drawers, which creates a very sleek, minimal aesthetic. For years, the choice of appliances to pair with this look was slim, but the Café Modern Glass collection makes this kitchen style a lot more accessible for those trying to achieve this look in their own kitchens.

    The Latest Technological Features

    In addition to looking great, the Modern Glass collection also features some of the latest appliance technology to make them function well in your kitchen. For example, the Platinum Glass French Door refrigerator boasts a convertible drawer with customizable temperatures and Soft Freeze technology as well as an Auto Fill button on the water dispenser, which uses sensors to determine exactly how much filtered water to dispense into any glass. The range features a stunning digital temperature display and an electronic touchpad for easy control of the unit. And the wall oven can come with convection or GE Advantium technology while also boasting an amazing, full-color digital display and smart technology to allow for remote control of the unit through the Café app. Read more

    Happy Holidays from All of Us at ADU!

    From all of us in the ADU family, we’d like to wish all of our customers a safe and enjoyable holiday season and a happy new year! We sincerely hope that your holidays are filled with great company as well as great food! If you’re planning a holiday feast for your family but you’re not sure what kind of sides to prepare, we have a delicious recipe that you can try! This roasted baby potato recipe pairs particularly nicely with roast beef, prime rib, and seafood, but can go with any main dish you may have planned.

    Roasted Baby Potatoes with Lemon and Bay Leaves


    • 2 ¼ pounds unpeeled baby red potatoes, cut into ½” wedges
    • 1 lemon – cut into ¼” slices
    • 4 fresh bay leaves
    • 6 unpeeled garlic cloves
    • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 teaspoon sea salt
    • Fresh ground black pepper to taste


    Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Place your potatoes, garlic, bay leaves, and lemon slices in a roasting pan and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle in the salt and pepper. Toss ingredients together and spread to form a single layer. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Remove the foil, toss the potatoes again, then place in oven uncovered. Bake for 20-25 more minutes, or until the potatoes are golden brown. Enjoy immediately! Read more

    Molekule Air Mini – Air Purifier Review

    It’s no secret we were a fan of the Molekule Air Purifier when it first came out. We were one of the first publications to get a test unit, and we just loved it’s simplicity and quiet operation. We also liked the concept behind Molekule, which works differently than traditional HEPA-based air filtration units.

    Instead of focusing on super fine filters in a race to capture the most air particulates,

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