The classic kitchen, a modern interpretation of the Italian home tradition

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What does designing a classic kitchen mean today?

When talking about classic style – for a house, a garment, or an object –, we immediately refer to a tradition established over the years and to a timeless beauty unconstrained by the latest trends.

The kitchen, the heart of the home, is – both functionally and emotionally – a classic room. Meals are prepared and consumed within it based on old, time-honoured recipes handed down within families from generation to generation. We spend many hours of the day in the kitchen, perhaps engaged in activities that are not strictly related to food: studying, working, and chatting with friends.

Designing a classic kitchen therefore continues to have a current and profound significance, which can be reflected in architectural and interior design choices explored with materials and furnishings which, although modern, embrace the inspiration of tradition.

Classic style has always been an archive of inspirations that are constantly being updated. Indeed, what we label as modern today will, in the future, undoubtedly aspire to establish a new classic tradition.

Let’s take a look at how to design a perfect classic kitchen, exploring the following aspects in particular:

  • separate room or kitchenette in the living room: a choice that is stylistic, as well as functional
  • furniture for the classic kitchen, from base units to wall units, hoods, complements, and accessories
  • colors and materials for floors, walls, and furniture: what can be considered classic?


Classic kitchen in a living room or in a separate room: how to choose the perfect solution for your home

Instinctively, without giving it much thought, any of us, when thinking of a classic kitchen, would imagine it located in a separate room from the living room.

The immediate mental connection to this spatial arrangement comes from the idea of a rather large traditional house, structured into a public living area, a private sleeping area and a series of accessory, service spaces, which once ensured that the whole home mechanism functioned. 

Today, we all live in our homes in a much more informal and dynamic way than in the past and the domestic space consequently accommodates and overlaps several different functions, which do not necessarily correspond to specific areas.

This means that if we want to design a classic kitchen, we can either do so by devoting it a well-defined room, separated from others by movable or fixed partitions, or by carving out a corner in the living room, perhaps completed and enhanced by versatile and innovative design solutions suited to the needs of modern life.

In both configurations, we can set certain design criteria to steer our kitchen towards a recognisable and timeless classic style:

  • a classic kitchen must have a regular and geometrically perfect layout, preferably organised symmetrically around a few focal points
  • the furnishings – i.e. the base, wall and column units – must have a solid, concrete aesthetic reminiscent of traditional wood, metal, stone and ceramic craftsmanship
  • lighting plays a very important role in a classic kitchen: it brightens up the overall space and enhances its details, accentuating the functional importance of each area intended for the various stages of food preparation