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The Art of a Great Kitchen Layout: A Single Wall with an Appliance Block

Kitchen design is an ever-evolving craft merging both art and science and has evolved with our use of space over the centuries. Typical layouts have included U-shape designs, L-shape designs, single wall kitchens, and galleys.

A Growing Layout Trend

A growing trend within all these layouts is the appliance “block” – where the refrigerator, ovens, microwave, wine refrigeration, and tall pantry–are all bundled together. The block is not only efficient, but it consolidates the most massive elements in the kitchen altogether, creating visual harmony.

Although the trend has been around for a while in Europe, it is finally catching on in American kitchen design. Within European design, the look was often stark and minimalist. Within American design, it is being integrated into kitchens that are anything but.

blue kitchen with wall of appliances
Photo credit: Studio Dearborn

When you consider traditional kitchens of the past, there is rarely much light. There may be a window near the sink or a sliding door that leads out to a porch, but most wall space is dedicated to cabinetry.

One of the biggest benefits of the appliance block within a kitchen layout is that it allows for fewer wall cabinets, by accommodating tall pantries and all the tall appliances. This way, windows on the exterior walls can be enlarged to let in more light.