Published at Wednesday, 07 November 2018. Kitchen. By Fleurette Guertin.
Until a few years ago, modernizing a kitchen meant purchasing a new refrigerator, range, a combination sink and painting the kitchen in a bright, shiny white. We have come a long way in only a few years. The most striking aspect of the contemporary kitchen is its color. White has been displaced by more sophisticated colors. Counter space has been increased. Storage has been engineered to provide maximum use of all available space. Everything is within easy reach. Today's kitchen blends into the home. It is not a room apart, but a part of the home's living area.
In the days before electricity changed everything in our lives, family kitchens in modestly sized homes were large but simply appointed rooms. They contained a solid fuel heat source for cooking (a fireplace or a coal or wood stove) and a built-in sink, with or without running water. Everything else was a piece of furniture. The icebox was elegantly made of wood, as were the central dining/work table, cupboards, pie safes and pantries. The family kitchen was the central work/social place of the home too where family members, sometimes in the company of friends performed most domestic chores and socialized with each other.
Now, current planning has opened up the kitchen to incorporate the social rooms again. New homes almost always have a breakfast/family room completely in view of the kitchen. The Great Room concept is simply a large social room with a kitchen in it. Walls between the kitchen and other rooms are being torn down in older homes in the effort to create multi-task, live-in kitchens. We have actually gone full circle, in a little over 100 years, by creating a modern version of a pre-electricity social/working kitchen.
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