Portable Kitchen Islands

The portable kitchen island is an ideal option for small kitchens or a savvy chef who is always on the move.
Portable Kitchen Island

Portable Kitchen Island

From: Selling LA

By: Caroline Shannon-Karasik

The portable kitchen island allows for a very simple, yet helpful, function: mobility. Whether you are seeking an island that is a perfect fit for a small kitchen or just want to be able to move your island around the room, the portable kitchen island is the option for you.

Popular Kitchen Features

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Concealed Kitchens

Kitchen design has reached a new level of integration. The quiet incorporation of the kitchen into the home's primary living and entertaining rooms provides homeowners with far more flexibility in their lifestyles. Integrated and concealed appliances allow the kitchen to enhance rather than intrude into other spaces. Clean structural lines coupled with sleek color palettes enable the space to establish a distinctive identity without overpowering the surrounding rooms.

Photo By: Copyrighted by Susan Gilmore

Beverage Stations

This area usually includes an under-counter refrigerator and wine refrigeration as well as a coffee makers ranging from simple single-pot machines to larger units capable of making espresso, latte and cappuccino. This functional destination within the kitchen typically houses stemware, coffee cups, silverware, cream, sugar and tea, and it sometimes has a smaller bar area.

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Soft Geometry

Rounded, organically shaped islands and countertops carve a smooth-flowing traffic pattern throughout the room, while an appropriately placed arch brings an overall softening to the more angular fixed features typical in a kitchen.

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Creative Use of Space

Fixtures once confined by location can be incorporated into kitchen designs in almost limitless ways. This freedom in the use of space allows designers to create design-driven room plans rather than those driven by necessity and space solutions. Appliances that are stacked and positioned within islands contribute to functionality in the kitchen by bringing together task space and the right appliances.

Design Framing

A seemingly simple detail such as the use of a soffit along the ceiling or a width of wall space surrounding inset cabinetry can call out the item being framed as a focal point while also providing visual balance to the room. The thickness of a countertop edge outlined by a higher countertop acts to highlight a unique material used in the surface. Balance in design isn't achieved only through the use of simply symmetry; portions of a room can be treated as a piece of art, with a frame indicating its presence.

Varying Heights

Island tops, countertops and partial walls can be customized to the task performed there and to the needs of the homeowners. Pairing lower desk and prep areas with higher breakfast-bar surfaces provides convenient task-specific spaces, which fosters a greater level of family interaction in the kitchen. And varying heights seen in the edge of a wood bar top or granite countertop serve as a beautiful counterbalance.

Japanese Influences

The impact of Japanese design can be seen very subtly in clean lines, open spaces and neutral color palettes with bold splashes of color in select areas. More visible Japanese influence can be seen in a single strong anchor piece of Japanese origin. Such cultural effects are not just additions or decorations to a design but deeply embedded as primary ingredients.

Many portable islands, like carts or utility tables, include several features that allow for storage and food preparation (e.g., drawers, cabinets, butcher block cutting surfaces, etc.). These islands are typically on wheels and can be easily moved. A portable island is often ideal for a homeowner who has a small budget or little time to remodel a kitchen area.

Creative ideas for portable kitchen islands include a counter-height table that has wheels added to the legs and allows for diner-style seating within the kitchen. Other do-it-yourself projects might include a dresser that can be turned into a portable kitchen island by giving it wheels and a working surface, like marble or wood. The already-installed drawers in this option make for perfect storage solutions. If you're adding your own wheels, be sure at least two of them have locks to prevent your island from moving when you want it to stay put.

Other features that are often included in portable kitchen island designs are hooks for hanging utensils or small pots, and a dish towel rack. These small details make it convenient to keep kitchen work contained to one space, allowing for easy cleanup.

Kitchen Storage & Space Planning

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