Although your landscape may appear packed with fun features and hardscaped spaces, there is usually an unutilized corner of every backyard that is either too narrow, small or awkwardly shaped to be useful. With the right design and materials, however, you can repurpose a neglected corner into a fully-functional outdoor kitchen that revolutionizes the way you entertain outdoors in Newton, MA. Here are a few tips for creating a small outdoor kitchen that takes your outdoor living to the next level:
Create the illusion of space
There are various design techniques and materials that optimize how spacious a particular outdoor room looks and feels. Large format pavers, for example, are separated by fewer jointing lines and create kitchen floors that appear less cluttered and restricted. Consider sleek concrete pavers for their incredible compressive strength, or slabs of natural stone for their timeless appeal. Plenty of light and a great view will also create the impression that the kitchen has no boundaries, or that it merges with the distant horizon. Remember that dark colors also tend to make spaces appear smaller, while light colors foster an airy atmosphere.
Forget unnecessary features
While pizza ovens and beer taps are enticing additions to any outdoor kitchen, it is of utmost importance that your kitchen can facilitate the storage, preparation and cooking of food first and foremost. Any feature that compromises the ability of your outdoor kitchen to function on a basic level, should not be included just yet. Instead, ensure that you invest in a grill, under-counter refrigeration, storage, and ample counter space right off the bat. An outdoor kitchen is meant to make outdoor entertainment more convenient and accessible, so achieve a practical design before fitting in additional luxuries.
Dual purpose lighting
Landscape lighting is absolutely essential in keeping you, and your family, safe after dark. You should ensure that hazardous areas, such the grill and its surroundings, are well-lit at all times. However, lighting can also make an outdoor room appear more open and inviting. Consider displaying your unique artistic flair in your choice of landscape lighting. For example, you could hang ornate lanterns from an overhead pergola or drape fairy lights around the space. Common lighting layouts for outdoor kitchens include sleek fixtures placed underneath countertops at the base of vertical structures. Nestling lights into dark spots can also serve to make the outdoor kitchen appear larger.
A stunning selection of materials
Generally, small spaces allow for the use of more luxurious and expensive materials. This can simply be attributed to the affordability of obtaining these materials in modest amounts. Consider a thick slab of real granite for your countertop and enjoy an end result that has been described by designers as rugged and powerful. When putting together a selection of materials, your landscape designer will aim to achieve a pleasant mix of different textures and colors. Certain materials can contrast one another, while some materials should blend quietly into one another. This all depends on where these materials are placed within the design of the kitchen. Countertops, for example, can contrast with the rest of the materials used for a powerful visual impact that draws attention nearer to eye-level. Alternatively, cupboard doors can be installed in a contrasting color for an unexpected pop of color.