Designing a kitchen can have one stuck between rather polarised design considerations, one being a kitchen space that is fit for everyday family living and the other being a kitchen which has the capacity to host a little bit more activity when there are family celebrations and all the food and fun to go with it.


If you cannot quite put your finger on that missing set of elements to associate your kitchen space with that much-needed wow factor over Christmas, yet you’re about 90% comfortable with how your kitchen looks and functions for the rest of the year, now’s the time to bring on board some experienced heads in this specific field. It’s amazing just what the eye of an outsider’s perspective can bring to the “kitchen table.”

Here’s a selection of some top tips from shaker kitchen designers, Harvey Jones, for the creation of a kitchen that’s perfect for a celebration any time of the year:

  1. Add an Island or Peninsula Where Guests Can Get Together

Adding an island or peninsula to the structural design of a kitchen leaves the door wide open for some functionality which can be used as a regular part of proceedings throughout the year, but can also be extended to accommodate the needs of all your guests that come over to celebrate a special occasion with you and your immediate family. Add a worktop overhang on the island or peninsula and you’ll instantly have a bar-type setting. You could add barstools under it, which you can purchase at or from your local store.

  1. Create a Watering Hole

Double-door breakfast and tambour-fronted breakfast bars are lighting up the interior design scene at the moment and for good reason too, so they’re great to work into the structural design-phase of doing up your kitchen. As far as the decorations go, a wine rack could be installed or moved in temporarily to complete the party setting, along with making some cosmetic arrangement changes such as replacing breakfast china, the toaster and cereals with cocktail-makers, snacks and glasses. Just remember to leave space for alcohol-free drinks, like this alcohol free beer, as many people now don’t drink alcohol when they can help it.

  1. Provide Ample Place to Sit

Fold-away chairs and those stools which can be stacked on top of each other are never good at forming part of the permanent design of a domestic kitchen, but whenever you bring them out there’s an instant air of festive anticipation doing the rounds. Keep these in those massive storage spaces every kitchen tends to have, alongside brooms and ironing boards — you know, that storage space which you often don’t know quite what to do with? This means there should be plenty of room to move around in when there’s no party going on and when you’re just going about your daily business of using your kitchen for domestic purposes, so that has to be built-into your permanent design.

If you’re looking at hosting some people in the garden in the nice weather, consider maybe using some foldaway camping style chairs, or, if you’re the type to host often, you might want to invest in some zero-gravity chairs or recliners for a more permanent solution to your party hosting problems.

  1. Use Lighting

I mean just think about what makes Christmas time “Christmas time” — it’s the lighting, isn’t it? The same goes for any other type of party or celebration — you can do a lot with LED strips that can change colour to be used when the next party comes around as you might not want to have coloured lighting all year round.