Episode 47: Kitchen Design Essentials – Key Kitchen Measurements

In this episode, Frances outlines the essential measurements to ensure your kitchen is functional and workable. She discusses the kitchen triangle and the theory behind how this works in your kitchen, cabinetry size standards, appliances, splashbacks, and also some of the regulations to check.


Kitchen Triangle

You need to be able to access things easily and move between key areas for food preparation such as your sink, fridge, stovetop and ovens. Ideally, you need to have a maximum of 7 metres between all these areas.

The theory behind it is-;

  • Have bench space near the fridge so you can put your items down
  • Adequate space next to the stovetop
  • Easily unpack dishes from the dishwasher
  • Space on either side of the sink (i.e for handwashing, preparation, washing vegetables and etc)
  • Check your local regulations with regards to how close a water source can be next to electricity– normally at least 500mm.


Check with the local building regulations but as a guide.

  • Electric – 600mm between the stove and overhead cupboards
  • Gas – 650mm from top rivet of the stove to underside of the lowest point on overhead cupboards
  • Induction – 650mm

The height of your splashback may impact the splashback tile that you choose.


When we are doing deep dives with our clients, we consider how many people are going to use the kitchen so we can design it specifically on how many people are going to cook or prepare food in that space.

  • Between benches – 1000mm minimum is allowable but ideally it should be 1200mm.
  • If there are two cooks working together, we would recommend a minimum of 1200mm between benches
  • Between the Island bench and dining area, minimum measurement of It gives you adequate space for chairs to be pulled out and still be able to flow and walk between the spaces.
  • Ideally, you need 300 millimeters between the edge of the bench and the sink. You don’t want to have your sink hard up against the edge of a bench as you have got nowhere to put anything down
  • Ideally, the dishwasher should be 500mm from the corner – can also be placed at the end if need be.
  • Ideally, 300-400mm bench space either side of stovetop
  • Standard bench height is 900mm – go higher if you are taller
  • Standard bench depth is 600mm
  • Kicker/kickboard which is at the bottom of the cabinetry is generally anywhere between 90 and 150mm. Setback is about 50mm.
  • Overhead cupboards are anywhere between 300-350mm deep

Island bench

  • Ideally it should be at a metre But in apartments that may not be achievable, so then they would be between 800mm-900mm.
  • For benchtop overhangs, 400mm is a good measurement as it allows you to tuck stools under. However, 300mm is also sufficient.
  • Benchtop – 8-40mm thick is available in various materials.
    • Island bench can be a feature and be thicker than rear benches
    • Suggest 20mm -25mm – depending on material – 40mm for feature stone
    • Laminate benchtops 33mm as standard
    • Solid acrylic surface can be any thickness


  • From a functionality perspective, it’s better to have your microwaves either on the bench or overhead rather than underneath the bench.
  • Standard dishwasher size is 600mm but you can get a smaller size at 450 mm. Not so popular in Australia as they are in Europe.
  • Standard wall oven size 600mm – free standing ovens can be 600, 750, 800, 900
  • Fridge cavity – minimum 1000mm for a 900mm fridge & 1800mm high. If you want to future proof your space, measure your fridge cavity first so when you upgrade your fridge you will have enough space for the new one.
  • Double sink allow about 800mm x 480mm deep

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Overwhelmed by the amount of decisions that need to be made when creating a stylish, functional and durable kitchen? What materials to select, what colours will co-ordinate together, what design is going to best suit the space, and your requirements.

We offer kitchen design packages that include joinery design and material selections for a complete kitchen design. Click the link here to find more.

Related Resources:

Episode 45: Kitchen Design Essentials – Internal Elevations & Joinery Design and you may watch our video for more info here.

Read our latest blog on Internal Elevations and Joinery Design here.

Episode 43: Kitchen Design Essentials – Flatpack Vs Custom Designed Kitchens

Episode 41: Kitchen Design Essentials – Cabinetry Materials

Episode 39: Kitchen Design Essentials – Splashbacks

Episode 38: Kitchen Design Essentials-Benchtop Criteria and Materials – Part 2

Episode 36: Kitchen Design Essentials – Benchtops part 1 

Episode 14: Forever Home LIVE- Joinery Drawings and Why Do Them Early On

Episode 30: Kitchen Design Essentials -Kitchen Design Layouts and Location

Episode 32: Kitchen Design Essentials – The Builder’s Insight 

How to Choose the Right Bench Top

Top 5 tips for selecting benchtops

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