Touch of Glass

Award-winning designer Lisa Melvin unveils the new trends to turn your kitchen dreams into reality for 2014

I’m always being asked what’s the latest ‘in-thing’ to make a new kitchen extra special. Kitchen design is like any other form of fashion – it’s constantly changing and evolving with fresh thinking which delivers even more originality and style, while never losing sight of the fact that the ‘heart of the home’ has to be practical and functional too. What’s going to be setting the trend in 2014? Top of the class is going to be glass! Everything from kitchen doors clad in gloss or satin glass in a spectrum of colours to your kitchen tap. While glass splash backs are already a hit in the UK, there’s no end to how glass will feature in this year’s kitchen designs. Ask your kitchen specialist about creating a bespoke design just for you and take a look at for some great ideas, too. So, that else should you be thinking about for your new kitchen?


There are two ways most people go with storage – not enough or far too much. Get a happy medium. Never include cupboards for cupboards sake. If there is a wall you really don’t have to fill, then don’t. Be meticulous and really work out the amount of cupboard space you’ll need by taking into account all your pots and pans, baking and roasting trays, Tupperware, cutlery, dry foods, etc.


You can never have enough preparation space but make it count! Make sure all small appliances, music systems, TVs, etc, are integrated where possible to maximise the preparation space available. Think about the height of the work surfaces if members of the household are either particularly short or tall – cabinet heights can be tweaked to make the work surface more accessible to prevent stooping or overreaching.


Lighting can make or break a kitchen design, so pay particular attention to both task and ambient lighting. Always use LED lamps throughout – your lighting scheme should always be designed alongside your kitchen not as an afterthought.


Getting an expert on board is crucial to fully realise your new kitchen’s potential. Even if you think you are 100 per cent happy with the layout and design you or your architect has worked on, a kitchen designer can bring a whole plethora of options, ideas and suggestions to the table. They can also potentially save you time and money in the bigger picture. Before instructing a kitchen designer always check out their signature style and design portfolio – it is crucial that both the designer and client are on the same wavelength. Be prepared to pay for this service, though.


Consider airborne odour from your appliances, especially for open-planned kitchens. Soft seating and fabrics should always be washable – in a year, the equivalent of a packet of lard will settle on work surfaces, blinds and soft furnishings in a typical family kitchen. Kuppersbuch have a patented design within their ovens that processes airborne odours within the oven cavity and converts them into steam which is then absorbed back into the oven in a similar processes to a catalytic converter on a car.


Depending on your budget and stage of build, consider either water or electric underfloor heating controlled via an electronic thermostat. If you are using radiators make sure they have thermostatic valves installed. It is important to be able to control the temperature of your kitchen, to avoid getting hot under the collar.


Want hot, cold and boiling hot water all from the one tap? Now you can thanks to the latest hi-tech designs. Try Grohe’s Red Hot Tap at Krushr recycling bins ( take care of all waste by combining a waste disposal with a compactor. All your ‘wet’ waste can be disposed with down the sink via the waste disposal while ‘clean’ waste such as jars, tins, plastic ands cardboard can be sorted and compacted.


Transform space and connect with the natural environment with the built in Saltwater Aquarium – it gives a therapeutic experience in your own home and of course adds a real ‘Wow’ factor! Many high-end hotels feature mind-blowing aquariums throughout the world, now you can have one in your kitchen. Display your prize oils and vinegars, beautiful glassware or your vodka collection in an eye-catching illuminated shelving niche – it will also add ambient lighting to your kitchen. Illuminated wine, chilled or ambient room temperature display cabinets are available in a vast array of sizes and prices to suit all budgets. For the serious wine connoisseur with a spectacular collection ask your kitchen specialist to design a wine cellar that is on view!

Lisa Melvin Design tel 01788 866996 or visit