Home   >   Articles   >   Design 101: Glossary of Kitchen Terms

Design 101: Glossary of Kitchen Terms

by Stephanie Koathes Sep 24, 2018

Share this

When designing a kitchen you may come across quite a few terms that you’re unfamiliar with. To help you know the lingo, this Design 101 Kitchen Glossary briefly explains some of the most common kitchen design terms you should know.

Galley Kitchen: A galley kitchen’s layout is characterised by two parallel countertops that incorporate a walking area in between

Backsplash/splashback: A backsplash or splashback refers to the material used to cover the area of wall between a kitchen counter top and the upper cabinets. The backsplash protects the wall from splashes; it can extend just a few inches high or go as high as the ceiling.

Overhead cabinet: A wall cabinet is sometimes called an overhead cabinet. Wall cabinets are typically hung on the wall above a base cabinet and do not have a toe-kick or countertop.

Built-in Appliances: Appliances such as ovens that are built into the kitchen cabinetry. These can be stacked to form a ‘bank’ of appliances.

Composite: This refers to man-made countertops made from composite material. Composites made form quartz crystals bound with resin, and polyester or acrylic material, are the two main types found in kitchens.

End panel: This is the visible panel at the end of a bank of cabinets. The end panel is purely decorative, used to make the exposed end of the cabinets look more attractive.

Plinth/kick plate: A plinth, also known as a kick board, kick plate or toe kick, is a long panel that runs beneath cabinetry all the way to the floor. This panel is typically recessed allowing you to stand close to the work surface tucking your toes under the cabinet.

Cut outs: The Cut outs are what we call the holes cut into the work surfaces to house sinks and integrated appliances.

Task lighting: This is targeted lighting installed beneath cabinetry to illuminate the countertop. Task lighting is supposed to provide extra light on the work surface while preparing meals.

Cornice: A cornice is a “trim” placed at the top of your wall units & tall units for decorative purposes.

Soft close: Soft close refers to kitchen drawers that use a mechanism to close gently.

Island: An island is a freestanding piece of cabinetry usually found in the middle of the room. An island can be used to house built-in appliances or a sink and generally offers extra storage and countertop space. An island can also function as a dining space.

Peninsula: A peninsula is a connected kitchen island. Having a peninsula will create a U-shaped kitchen, which is great way to divide the kitchen from a dining room or living room.

Range: This is a mechanical fan suspended above the stove to extract steam, smells and smoke; it also absorbs grease and helps to keep the kitchen well ventilated.

Sources: HGTV, Bentons Kitchens, Bunnings