How to make a style statement with a hot kitchen island

14 Mar, 2019

Kitchen islands have been a major feature of aspirational kitchen design for a good few years now, and the trend is showing no signs of being over any time soon. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a modern kitchen these days that doesn’t have an island.

Group 113.png

This design was created by bj,dalton, Homestyler mobile user

What do kitchen islands offer? Well, a whole list of functional benefits actually. Extra storage, a place to perch, an informal eating space and extra work surface are just a few of the benefits of the kitchen island. The kitchen island is a focal point for family life and has become an essential. There’s no other way to make such good use of space.

Group 111.png

This design was created by brenda sanford, Homestyler mobile user

A kitchen island is a must-have, but how do you choose the look and feel of this central feature? Materials and colours don’t have to match the rest of your kitchen. In fact, a kitchen island that brings contrast to your kitchen design is not only on trend, it is sizzling hot!

Group 121.png

This design was created by Teke Tin, Homestyler floor planner user

Practical tips for kitchen island design

Your kitchen island isn’t just a square or rectangular block in the middle of your kitchen space designed to give you extra cupboards and work surface. No, the kitchen island has rather more to offer. Here are some practical things to consider when designing your kitchen island.

· Is your kitchen island dividing up room space? Position cupboards on the kitchen facing side and allow an overhang (a minimum of 30cm) on the other side to make a breakfast bar or seating area.

· To comfortably fit a kitchen island worth having, you do need a bit of space. For an island to truly shine, your kitchen space should measure at least 3.5m x 3.5m.

Group 122.png

This design was created by Teke Tin, Homestyler floor planner user

· Think about what function you want your kitchen island to perform. Your island can include a mixture of cupboards, open shelves, drawers, a hob, an oven, a sink, a dishwasher, or a wine fridge.

Group 119.png

This design was created by Susan Yanelys, Homestyler floor planner user

· Small details can make all the difference. What about pop-up electric sockets, or a charging pad for your smart devices?

· A hot water tap is a real must-have gadget for the kitchen and, where space allows, works brilliantly as a feature incorporated into the island. 

Why it’s cool to contrast

Most visually striking interiors incorporate an element of contrast. What’s more, maximalism is being hailed as the new interiors trend.Colours, textures and pattern are exciting and shouldn’t be feared when it comes to interior design, and that includes the kitchen. In kitchen design different materials are being used to create textural contrasts, while paint colours are also being used to add diversity.

Group 112.png

This design was created by Virginia Sandeffer, Homestyler mobile user

Group 117.png

This design was created by Pelin Gungormez, Homestyler mobile user

If you want to make your kitchen island a focal point, then choosing contrasting colours and materials and making it distinct from the rest of your kitchen design can create the show-stopping kitchen you are dreaming about.

Why go for contrast? Well for a start, it creates interest. It can liven up a kitchen design and give it a real sense of individual character. Any well-balanced interior design will need some contrast in it. A island countertop that contrasts with the cabinetry around the edge of your kitchen is a clever yet subtle way to add interest or even drama to the kitchen.

If you’re a little unsure, the contrast doesn’t have to be stark or garish. Mellow, muted shades can be different enough to draw the eye to the kitchen island as a centre point. A simple beige-painted island is really effective against an all-white kitchen and breaks up any potential monotony.

Anyhow, two-tone kitchens are a cool kitchen trend right in their own right now, and contrasting kitchen islands are the easiest way to create that look.

Ideas for contrasting combinations

If you can’t stand the idea of the latest maximalism interiors trend and prefer to keep your kitchen sleek and simple, go for the tried and tested look: minimalist white with a polished black island.


This design was created by Susan Yanelys, Homestyler floor planner user

In-frame cabinetry can be painted in a contrasting colour to your kitchen island. Off-white kitchens with a blue island are on trend and look spectacular. Add a white marble countertop to the island for a super chic touch.

Thank you to Annie Button for this article! Follow her on her Twitter account for more related content: @anniebutton1994 and read her previous article on Homestyler here.

Do you want to see your article in our blog section? Get it touch with us at!