Appliance-first Kitchen Design

July 20, 2021 – 3 min read

Bringing your dream kitchen to life is one of the most exciting – and challenging – undertakings in the home. And while you may have been fantasising about swathes of marble and beautiful brass tapware, choosing the right appliances is critical to getting the right kitchen.

The benefits of choosing your appliances first

Kitchen appliances are a big investment and play a starring role in the hardest working room of the home. Making your selections before finalising your kitchen design will help you to strike a balance between design aesthetics and functionality. If you’re a passionate home-cook, there’s a good chance you’ve already got the exact make and model of your dream oven in mind.

“Choosing your oven, cooktop and rangehood before fully designing your kitchen allows you to find the perfect appliances to fit your cooking needs without compromising or missing out due to measurement and layout requirements or restrictions,” says Alison McGorlick, Category Manager of Cooktops, Rangehoods, Accessories and Consumables at Miele.

“It definitely makes our life easier,” admits interior designer Naomi Nimmo of Nimmo Nielsen Collective. “That way, we can start drawing based on the exact specs you’ve already chosen.” The size, shape and installation requirements of your big ticket items can influence your cabinetry measurements, your storage options and even your floor plan. “If you choose a wall oven for example, we can include drawer space under the bench,” says Naomi.

When you do hit the shops, there are two important things to keep in mind. “The biggest considerations when choosing appliances for a new kitchen is the size of your space and your individual cooking needs,” says Alison. “Your choice of appliances will also depend on your cooking level, with some appliances suited for standard needs and functions along with high-end options for more advanced cooks.”

Making a wishlist

Start with the essentials, keeping in mind a rough idea of how much space you have to play with. “To help determine your kitchen layout and design, start with the oven, cooktop, fridge and sink,” says Philip Ryder, Kinsman Kitchens Store and Product Manager. “Another consideration is whether your oven or fridge is large enough for your lifestyle and requirements. If you love to entertain in your kitchen or if you have a large family, you need to ensure both of these appliances are large enough to meet your daily needs.”

The size, shape and installation requirements of your big ticket items can influence your cabinetry measurements, your storage options and even your floor plan.


If the kitchen is the heart of the home, the oven is the heart of the kitchen. Or ovens, depending on your affinity with cooking. Opting for a freestanding model, such as the Smeg Portofino 90cm Induction Upright Oven, makes a style statement and will form the focal point of your kitchen. Freestanding options are typically easier to install, and save you the time of having to choose a separate cooktop.

For a more seamless style and greater flexibility, consider in-built wall ovens. Heart set on a gas-burner cooktop? With wall ovens, you can have the cooktop you’ve been dreaming of, but still enjoy the benefits of electric, convection or even steam cooking – with innovative new options such as the Miele 60cm Steam Oven - Obsidian Black.


Gas, electric or induction? Unless you’ve chosen a freestanding cooker, the choice is yours. To create the ultimate entertainer’s kitchen, consider the Miele 93cm Induction Cooktop, which has five different cook zones to help you get everything done at once. Food lovers and keen cooks who appreciate the control of a gas-fuel cooktop should seek out a model that includes a wok-burner, such as the Bosch 90cm FlameSelect Gas Cooktop. Though if you’re more concerned about conserving bench space than cooking capabilities, the simplicity of the Miele 57cm Electric Cooktop might be the model for you.


Heavy duty cooktops will need a rangehood that works just as hard to keep your kitchen well-ventilated. A canopy rangehood – such as the Bosch 90cm Canopy Rangehood – will do just the trick, with three power levels and a one-way flap that prevents outside air sneaking into your kitchen. The exposed flute also brings an edge of industrial style to your kitchen design. Prefer something more unobtrusive? Look to the Bosch 86cm Integrated Rangehood Series 8 instead, which disappears into overhead cabinetry.


Finding your perfect fridge before embarking on the specific details of your kitchen design will have a big impact on the end result. The surface finish is more important here than it is on any other kitchen appliance because of just how much surface is on show. Then there’s the doors, which way they open and how that will impact your traffic flow and floor plan. If you value shelving space over drawers in your freezer, invest in a side-by-side model such as the LG 626L Side By Side Refrigerator. For busy families and big entertainers, a French-door model like the Samsung 488L French Door Refrigerator will give you wide, open shelves in the fridge – perfect for fitting in large cheese platters, tall bottles and pre-made lunches ready to go.

Planning a Kitchen renovation can be so exciting. Visit us instore or online for more advice on choosing the perfect appliances for your new kitchen - and be sure to visit Kinsman Kitchens and our home renovation ideas and Kitchen Design pages for more inspiration, tips and ideas.

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