Stylish kitchens: Design style, space and flooring

Key industry design experts share their knowledge and experience to help you achieve your dream open-plan space. This part looks at choosing the right flooring and the most functional, practical layout.

Graeme Smith

Lynda Phelan

‘Kitchen floors are subjected to splashes and spills, so they need durable, low-maintenance flooring. Porcelain design has become more sophisticated, with replica stone, terracotta, slate and wood styles – beautiful for a dining area.

‘If you choose terracotta, real stone or slate, ensure that it’s sealed correctly when it’s installed to protect it from stains. It will occasionally need re-sealing or waxing, so follow the manufacturer’s instructions.’

ABOVE (clockwise from top left): Breton Limestone, (W)40x(L)40cm, £85 per m²; Cotto, (W)30x (L)30cm, £34.90 per m²; Belgian Blue stone, £175 per m²; Arboreto porcelain wood grain planks, (W)10x (L)40cm, £89.89 per m², all Fired Earth.

Jason McNulty

‘For a contemporary scheme, high gloss units work especially well in a kitchen-diner. You can offset this sometimes minimalist look and create a little warmth by using colour cleverly – this will transform what could be an austere space and inject some vibrancy. Use your chosen shade carefully, on a few wall units or as a drawer line, for example. It’s best to choose a colour you love rather than follow the trends as colours go in and out of fashion.

‘Your choice of furniture should complement the kitchen units to get the perfect result. Brightly coloured chairs will create fun and interest in a white kitchen – but if there are a lot of colour features in your design scheme already, then clear acrylic styles are a good option.’

Kitchen from Wren Kitchens

ABOVE: Boyd kitchen, from £182 for a fully assembled 60cm base unit (when purchased as part of a complete kitchen), Wren Kitchens.

All prices and stockists correct at time of publishing