Ahead of the CURVE

02 October 2017

Curved kitchens, that is to say kitchens that include curved doors and countertops, are something rather special. With the right space (large or small) and the correct arrangement great results can be achieved. However, curves aren’t always possible. In some cases, square ends are essential - just to physically fit everything in! Furthermore, some people simply prefer the look of square kitchens, particularly the ‘soft square corner’ by Tomas (which in its own small way actually is a curve).

Beauty is, of course, in the eye of the beholder but let’s, for the sake of argument, agree that the curves look beautiful! As in all good kitchen design, the things of beauty should also be functional and practical. Here at Tomas Kitchen Living this is something of a golden rule! Let’s then look at the functional and practical benefits of having curves in the kitchen.

  • External or convex curve doors will improve the ‘flow’ around the kitchen area. Particularly near doorways and busy thoroughfares.
  • The amount of storage and length of countertops is often increased with a curved kitchen. This sounds strange, however a large radius (say 450mm) will often allow an island or peninsular to be longer than it might’ve been if it were squared. The pinch-point is only momentary, so longer lengths can be entertained without the arrangement feeling crowded.
  • For seating areas, the curves create a friendly and sociable back drop to the conversation. Stools arranged around curve certainly seem better than stools in a straight line.

 Curve Worktop

Imagine how much less countertop would fit if these corners were square…

The curved doors we manufacture at Tomas Cambridge are best described as a ‘true’ curve. This means that they are a literally a quarter circle – without a flat section at each end. This means if two are connected, to form a D shape, the perfect half circle is formed. This looks more natural and aesthetically pleasing than the alternative. Many Tomas seating arrangements incorporate a 600 D shaped cabinet (the D Element in Tomas Speak) positioned beneath a 900mm curved countertop. This creates a beautiful organic form which creates knee-space as the two radii part. We call this arrangement Parting of The Curves…  

6 under 9 

A Parting of the Curves! A 600 D element positioned beneath a 900 curve creates a beautiful organic form and a comfortable ‘knee-space’

When it comes to curved internal corners a concaved door is introduced with a 900x900 corner – we call this the R Element. Any larger than this, two concaved doors are required and the cabinet becomes too deep and cavernous, not to mention difficult to fit in! The trouble with a single concaved curved door is that the access is small in context with the space inside – it’s a bit like a cave! A round rotating basket is a possible solution, but many people I speak too have had negative experience with such gadgets! To ease the access to the corner we have created the J Element. This is like having a double base cabinet that wraps itself around the corner. Access is greatly improved and simplified when the straight door and the curved door are opened as a pair. The straight door is made to any length to suit the kitchen arrangement.

Depending on the layout, it is sometimes hugely beneficial to position the sink(s) on the curved internal corner to free up space for food prep and/or the hob.

Open J Element

An open J Element shown here with the sink going around the curve… often a great way to unlock an optimum kitchen layout

You will gather that curves are something of a speciality at Tomas and we don’t know of anyone who does it better. That said they are not obligatory!  Your kitchen must be right for you and the available space. It can have soft-squares or even hard squares if you prefer a sharp angular look (often favoured by architects and designers). Whatever you do make sure the design is right and if you have curves, make sure they are in the right places!!

Other Blog Posts