Choosing a Designer for Your New Kitchen or Kitchen Renovation

Choosing the right designer for your new kitchen or kitchen renovation is one of the most important decisions you’ll make in the entire process. The right designer will instill confidence, eliminate stress, and help turn your kitchen dream into reality.

What Kind of Designer Do You Need?

There are many kinds of designers who would gladly design your kitchen. Interior designers, for example, happily create stunning kitchen designs. 

Instead, we recommend hiring a kitchen designer – a designer who specializes in designing kitchens

There are many aspects of a kitchen design to consider beyond its aesthetic appeal.

Components of a Great Kitchen Design

A kitchen design specialist is skilled and experienced in creating a cohesive design to encompass all the components of a kitchen you’ll love.

Behind the Kitchen

The part you see and use in your kitchen is what you’re looking forward to most. But that gorgeous design will become a nightmare if the hidden parts are not factored into it. 

Consider plumbing, for example. If your dream kitchen design includes a sink in the island, that island will need access to the plumbing. Is the plumbing in your house easy to modify accordingly? What will it cost? 

A good kitchen designer will look at how your house is built and how your plumbing and electrical is structured and create a design that will minimize costly interior changes.

Beyond the Good Looks

A beautiful kitchen is only as good as its functionality. It’s one thing to create a kitchen design that looks amazing. It’s quite another to create a kitchen design that looks amazing and functions efficiently and is a joy to work in.

Cutlery drawers in awkward sizes, shelving so deep you can’t reach the back, the wasted space of corner cupboards… these nuisance design flaws will be avoided when you choose the right kitchen designer. 

When you look at a kitchen design, you are seeing pictures. You have a vision in your mind of how the room will look. But an experienced kitchen designer will also know and adhere to building codes and regulations for appliances.

A kitchen design expert can master the functionality of your beautiful kitchen. They understand what it’s like to work in a kitchen:

  • You need quick access to your spices when you’re standing at the stove 
  • You should be able to open drawers without them sliding into each other or hitting another cupboard or appliance.
  • You want to go between your stove, your fridge, and your sink unobstructed and in minimal steps. (It’s a design principle called “the triangle”.)
  • It makes sense to have your dishwasher near the sink, as well as your garbage and recycling.
  • Getting your mixer out of the cupboard shouldn’t break your back. You want the ability to store it where it’s easy to access. 

This is everyday life. These are the little things that make living in your kitchen more enjoyable. 

The best kitchen designers will integrate optimal functionality with brilliant design.

How to Choose the Right Kitchen Designer

Choosing the right kitchen designer for you is as much about trust and compatibility as it is about skill or expertise. It’s hard to trust someone you don’t know or with whom you’re just not comfortable. There needs to be a certain amount of likeability between you and your designer. 

There are 3 main ways to determine if you trust a kitchen designer. 

  1. Design: Ask to see a portfolio of previous designs. Do you like what you see? Does each design look similar, or can you tell the designer has the ability to work with different styles and spaces?
  2. Answers: Ask questions about the designs. Does the designer answer those questions directly and with confidence, or do they give vague, indirect answers or come across as condescending?
  3. Listening: This is definitely the most important trust factor. If a designer is only telling you what you need to do instead of listening to your wants and needs, they’re not listening. A good listener asks good questions. Are they asking you questions that indicate an eagerness to truly understand what you’re looking for? 

A good designer can still make recommendations and suggestions based on experience, but they’ll ultimately let you have the final say. After all, it’s your kitchen. (And that means the design must also stay within your budget!)

Questions to Ask a Kitchen Designer

To help you make the best decision for your new kitchen or kitchen renovation design, here are some questions to ask the designers you’re considering.

  • Can we see a portfolio of your designs?
  • In what ways do you incorporate functionality into your kitchen designs?
  • What design features would you suggest or recommend for our kitchen?
  • How long will we be waiting for our kitchen design?
  • Is installation available or do we have to provide our own?
  • Are you available to help us make selections for countertops and backsplash, etc.?*

* Riverstone Kitchens provides this service and willingly meets you at other stores to help you make selections.

Don’t settle for a kitchen that merely looks like the kitchen of your dreams. Get an expert kitchen designer to design the kitchen that looks and functions like a dream!

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