Island Options

An oasis in the kitchen for those lacking counter space and storage, kitchen islands have come a long way in style.  But that style can cost big from $1,500 to $5,000 for an island. Expect to spend for upgrades as well, but there are a whole host of kitchen island upgrades that can make life easier in the kitchen. 

It just may be worth fitting one in to your decorating budget, rather than a complete kitchen makeover.

Multi-level Island

An multi-level island can incorporate both food preparation and eating areas, keeping the prep area out of sight and eating area as the focal point.  Multi-level kitchen islands may be just what your kitchen needs, as one height throughout the kitchen can make for a fairly boring room.

Wine Racks and Glass Racks

For smaller kitchens, an island with an open area in the base can help keep the room looking spacious.  But don’t let that base go to waste, wine racks and glass holders can put that open area to good use.

Seating Overhang

If you plan on using the kitchen island as an eating area, your best bet will be to have a seating overhang, which is an extended top for stools and legs to fit under when seated – not only is it important for eating at the island, but without, stools can stick out into kitchen walkways and take up too much space.

Sinks and Stoves

To really add to your kitchen workspace, islands can incorporate full or half sinks (for washing veggies), a stovetop and even dishwashers.  The cost will go way up with these accessories, and consider that electricity and water sources will need to be added to the area as well.  And speaking of electricity, outlets can really come in handy for a kitchen island.

Specialized Storage

There are a variety of specialized options for kitchen islands – fitted drawers and cabinets make organizing a snap.  Pull out trash cans solve the age old question of how to hide the garbage, and recycling areas can fit right into the cabinet base.  Our favorite, the pop up storage for that heavy mixer – bending and lifting a heavy mixer is a great excuse not to use it, a special swing arm mixer-lift is a real back saver, swinging the mixer out of the cabinet and up to lock in at work level.

Fitted Drawers

Cooks will love the fitted drawer options available for kitchen islands.  Try a fitted knife drawer to clear the countertop and keep sharp objects put away, and spice drawers can keep any cook from the annoying spice hunt in the middle of a recipe.

Whatever options you may choose, make them work for your kitchen and your lifestyle.