Kitchen is the most important room in the house. It is an ever-evolving space, in both design and function. How one uses a kitchen space, varies from household to household. The one thing they all have in common across the globe is the increased demand laid on them.
The kitchen is a space for a family to socialise and communicate, to bring up stories and share precious moments. Our culture expresses the kitchen through the traditions of festivals and sacred occasions. Our history has impacted the designs of the kitchen. Do kitchens from around the world hold similarities or display differences? Let’s take a look at some of the nations known for their unique kitchen styles, the materials they use and their functionality.
The UK prides itself on what people recognise as being quintessentially ENGLISH. The tradition of country living and the use of localised natural handcrafted materials fits the idea of modern family life. Some incorporate classical features, others, like to take inspiration from the modern era. For the needed comfort, features like worktops and ovens are incorporated till date.
Japanese kitchen designs are based on purpose and space. They are practical yet ingenious. In the past, kitchens would be simpler and with a low height. Even today, these elements still find their place in Japanese kitchens. The style of cooking today relies on the use of small appliances, gadgets and gizmos. Traditionally, they wouldn’t use a dishwasher because nothing can beat handwashing and of course you get space to for other kitchen accessories. Today’s kitchen appearance is clean, plain and sometimes modular. The materials used are lacquered wood and stainless steel. The Japanese appreciate good use of space with a clever arrangement, leaving no gap untapped.
The Italians are known for their extravagance and family life. It’s no surprise then that the Italians did kitchens well. Traditionally, Italian style used many classical features such as carvings, pilasters, ornate cornices and panelling. The Mediterranean’s tend to use materials such as tropical woods and stone that is readily available. Contemporary Italian style is much different, adopting a minimal yet stylish concept, which is often white, high glossed and with a high-end look.
There is no denying what profound impact Scandinavian design has had on the industry. Although there are differences between each of the Scandinavian nations, their concept for minimalism is largely the same. Characterised by simplicity, they are modern, elegant and often echo the outdoors with the use of white and wood. The cold weather and hours of darkness this region endures is the very reason for its simple light and generally white design. Family share this space, it is suitable for homework & hobbies and indeed, sharing a meal.
The Germans are well known in the design world for their precision, innovation and consistency. They enjoy a functional kitchen that is easy to use. Similar to the Japanese, Germans also make the most of the space.
All the styles mentioned have their design reasons; they contain stark differences but are brought together by a universal focus on togetherness. Historical factors and culture are deeply rooted in today’s kitchen designs, which remain the centre of our homes, no matter how big or small. Undoubtedly, we are using them to their full potential and diversifying their function to suit.