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A Kitchen Built for YOU

SO many things go into planning for a new kitchen!

Sometimes, it’s just a new look that people want in their kitchen (new cabinets, countertops, and finishes). Other times, people understand there is a real need for an organized layout in a dysfunctional kitchen. That’s where a smart and meticulous Architect can help!

One of the biggest questions is, should I use a kitchen designer, an architect, an interior designer, or a builder? Kitchen designers and interior designers are great resources for a kitchen renovation. Kitchen designers can often show you the latest cabinetry styles and accessories. Interior designers are often up-to-date on the latest kitchen trends and colors. Both professionals are capable of providing a good, efficient kitchen design. But a good Architect can meld the kitchen and interior design together, and also ponder the “larger picture”, taking into consideration the connection to adjacent rooms, natural light, structure, how you’ll get the groceries from outside to inside…etc. Beware, not all Architects can do this! A good Architect can successfully balance both the architecture and the interior design. A good Architect will provide an in-depth analysis of your space and compare it to your needs. This analysis will repeatedly prove valuable because it is a holistic approach to the problem you want to solve.


Regardless of who you choose to help with your kitchen modifications, do your homework - always ask to see images of their kitchen projects and ask for references. Remember, you will invest a lot of money for your kitchen changes, so why not empower yourself by hiring an expert who will give you an intelligent, functional, and beautiful design? That’s where we fit in!


Here are some questions to ask yourself before jumping into a kitchen renovation:

  • Does my current kitchen layout work for me? Or do I just want to refresh the overall look? Is your “work triangle” (sink-stove/oven-refrigerator) efficient? If so, maybe you just want new a new look with better cabinet features.

  • How would I like to use the space, what do I want to accomplish? Do you envision small, intimate family gatherings; entertaining small & large groups; a relaxed setting open to living space; a cooks’ kitchen; extra space for homework and home desk? These uses all affect the layout, fit and finishes.

  • Do I want any larger changes, like opening up the kitchen to another room or adding more windows/doors to the outside? Larger changes to a kitchen can drastically make a positive impact on the room. Think about the flow of space into your current kitchen…does it work well, and/or would larger openings and connections to other spaces be advantageous? Would you like more natural light? Make sure these considerations balance with your storage needs.

  • What is my budget – how much will this project cost me? This is always the magic question, right? It really depends on your kitchen size, finishes, appliance selections, and where you are located (material and labor costs). However, an Architect, Builder, or Designer could give you sample kitchen costs in your area.

  • Who primarily uses the kitchen? It makes a big difference if you typically have one cook versus two or more.

  • Do I really need top of the line appliances? This is totally a personal preference. Do your research and see what brands get good ratings, and try not to select something uncommon that will have limited customer service for repairs.

  • Where might I be able to save some money without compromising the overall design? We would recommend not skimping on the quality of the kitchen cabinetry. However, using a standard stock size cabinet, instead of custom sized cabinetry, could be a cost savings. There is also a wide variety of countertop and backsplash selections, so there are plenty of options to bring cost down in the finishes. Lastly, if your original utilities are in good locations, keeping them in place is a big cost savings.

  • How do I get started? Once you’ve answered some of the questions above and you feel comfortable moving forward, start collecting photographs and jotting down notes….and let Melichar Architects help you! We will collaborate with you!


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© 2020 Melichar Architects

The Practice of Fine Architecture

207 EAST WESTMINSTER, LAKE FOREST, IL 60045

Tel 847.295.2440

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