We love tricks of the eye, and ways to make your spaces magically look larger and more airy. Open islands are one of those secrets, and offer not only a pretty visual, but lots of possibilities for seating and storage in the kitchen.
You may be tempted to choose a solid island because of all the storage it can offer — and hidden away at that, but if your goal is to keep your kitchen feeling airy and light, consider an island that is more open. Here are some examples:
Jessica Helgerson’s Alhambra kitchen features a free-standing piece of antique spindle-legged furniture as its island. From certain angles, it almost fades into the cabinets, leaving you instead to look at the show-stopping tile instead, which already packs a visual punch. Yet the island itself is anything from boring on its own.
This rustic country kitchen from Bolig Magasinet has everything from storage to seating in a reclaimed wood package. The open island shelf makes the space seem more relaxed, but also accessible — cooking supplies are just a grab away.
You can really see what a difference it makes here, in the “kitchen” in The Line’s Hamptons retail location. The island is half closed, half open and the side by side comparison is notable.The left side, although no doubt useful, feels blocky and the right lets the room breathe.
This feature is especially nice, and functional, in small kitchens, like this narrow peninsula in Michael Penneman’s kitchen, seen on Est Living. It doubles as both a workspace and a seating area, and the open space underneath leaves plenty of room for legs and feet.
The heavy parts of this island (countertop, tube column for the plumbing) are balanced out by all the negative space underneath, which works well for this ultra-modern Venice kitchen seen on Dezeen.
Even a little cut out area, like the end of this island in a kitchen by Steve Baldini Architecture, really makes a difference and invites you to enter. The kitchen feels more accessible, and less boxed in, than if it were totally walled off by a closed island.