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About the city

Pretoria, one of South Africa's three capital cities and serving as the seat of the government's administrative branch, is located in the Gauteng province's northern region. Pretoria is often seen as the quiet sister city of the nearby bustling Johannesburg, which is about 60 km away.

Over the years, Pretoria has had quite a diverse range of cultural influences, and the city's wealth of architectural structures reflects this perfectly. From colonial to modern and from contemporary to classic, the city is home to some of the country's most exquisite buildings. Some of the more impressive examples include the Voortrekker Monument, Tudor Chambers, and Erasmus Castle.

What does a kitchen planner do?

A professional kitchen planner meets with clients to discuss ideas on how to meet their goals regarding new and improved kitchens. These clients may be considering remodelling their existing kitchen via small touch-ups (such as new cabinetry or lighting fixtures) or looking to build a brand-new one, whether it's in their existing home or a new house they're moving into.

It is not unusual for a kitchen planner to work with another design professional, like an architect or Interior Designer, to improve on a project and enhance design ideas related to a kitchen. Other professionals that a kitchen planner can also work with on a project include remodelling contractors who specialise in kitchen renovations. It is possible for kitchen planners to form a collaborative relationship with contractors who can complete the installation of a new kitchen for the clients.

The skills and knowledge required for kitchens in the residential (houses) and commercial (restaurants) industries may differ considerably, especially when it comes to the building codes (which are usually stricter for a commercial project).

Who does a kitchen planner work for?

A kitchen planner can either work as an independent designer or as part of a larger team / firm. They may even be employed through an interior design firm or architectural company. Some kitchen planners also work for design-build contractors who take care of both the project design and installation of the new kitchen.

What skills are required to become a kitchen planner?

To successfully complete the daily duties of a professional kitchen planner, regardless of whether it's for a residential house or a project in the commercial industry, a person requires:

  • the ability to use hand tools, including tape measure
  • the ability to scale real site conditions into drawings
  • the talent to produce detailed drawings to assist clients in conceptualising a project
  • strong communication skills (both written and verbal) to liaise with clients, contractors, and vendors
  • excellent project management skills with the ability to remain calm under pressure, and focus on and deliver results under budget and ahead of schedule
  • the ability to envision a fully completed project right from the start, including its colours, the type of appliances, how the light will balance out with the décor and furnishings, etc.

How to arrange kitchen appliances like a pro

1.    Redirecting traffic away from your kitchen's working triangle (the area between the cooktop, sink, and fridge). This space needs to be kept clear for a fully functional kitchen. If there's an island with seating in your kitchen, the kitchen planner will undoubtedly know that there needs to be at least 1.5 m of clearance.

2.    Making appliances look built-in for a modern look. This is especially true of the fridge.

3.    Ensuring there is adequate working space around all appliances. A professional kitchen planner will never put a stove in a corner, as there won't be enough working space around it. They also know that fridges need landing space for when you take items out, such as an island.

4.    Picking out all appliances before starting the design. A seasoned kitchen planner knows that it's much easier to design a kitchen around existing appliances than trying to find appliances that will match with a finished kitchen. But if your project entails a brand-new kitchen with all the required goodies, hold off on picking out appliances early on as your kitchen's design may need to be tweaked at a later stage.

5.    Thinking about the size of your kitchen appliances. It's difficult to fit large appliances in a small kitchen. Fortunately, your kitchen planner will know when to start which step in the design process to best fit your needs.

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