AESTHETIC CONSIDERATIONS There is no doubt that an island is a platform on which to make a visual statement. An island can be painted in an accent colour to draw focus or include individual details such as open shelving and glazed doors. An unusual shape island is an alternative option, for example an island which features some curvature. Curves relax us and encourage natural flow; a round seating area or chopping block can be approached from all angles making it feel more inviting. A soft wave or curve can be incorporated across the whole island or just one feature of it, such as the breakfast bar, the design decision is yours. Islands are astounding pieces of furniture with an infinite range of possibilities. Be ambitious with your plans and discuss with your kitchen designer exactly what it is you want to achieve. HOW TO INCORPORATE SEATING Creating a designated seating area on an island immediately emphasises the sociable, inviting nature of the kitchen; making it a relaxed space to be used by cook and guests alike. Breakfast bars are very popular as they provide an informal place for guests to sit at the same level as the chef. Having a split level island, where the breakfast bar is raised, establishes it as a distinct area, away from any mess associated with food preparation. An alternative island seating arrangement is banquette seating – where a bench seat is incorporated into the island with a table and chairs added. This creates a charming but informal dining table, perfect for brunch or other casual occasions. BELOW Style | Audley The round island and breakfast circle juxtaposes the architectural detailing on the mantel, softening the feel of the room. 19