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5 worst kitchen design mistakes. Not-to-do things to avoid kitchen remodel fail

November 30, 2023 | Updated on: November 30, 2023

A woman regrets the unsuccessful design of the kitchen

Designing a kitchen is like trying to put together a challenging puzzle. You've got to make it practical for cooking and hanging out, all while making it look aesthetically pleasing and fit your budget. It's like a balancing act! You've got to figure out how to arrange everything so it's easy to grab stuff when you're cooking and have enough space for all your kitchen appliances and groceries. Plus, you want your fridge, stove, and sink to be in the right position and not get in each other's way. Oh, and don't forget about making sure the kitchen smells nice and doesn't turn into a sauna when you're cooking up a storm! It's a lot to juggle, especially when you're working with a budget and trying to make the most of the space you've got. 

There’s no doubt that it’s a challenging task designing a kitchen on your own. Kitchen mistakes are almost always unavoidable especially if it is your first time to venture into this kind of remodelling or renovation project. Nobody wants to experience a kitchen makeover fail because kitchen design mistakes can be very expensive.

In this blog, we’ve put together common kitchen renovation mistakes that homeowners usually make as well as kitchen ideas to avoid. Knowing the useful info on what kitchen mistakes to avoid will help you speed up the process of your kitchen remodel. You don’t have to make the same mistakes that others have done before. Learn from the trends to avoid kitchen remodel errors. Take note of these kitchen remodel mistakes to avoid and finish your kitchen renovation project like a pro.  

The signs of bad kitchen remodel

inconvenient storage due to fail kitchen design

Renovating your kitchen can be a thrilling project, but let's face it, not all kitchen remodels end up as Pinterest-perfect success stories. Sometimes, they turn into a bit of a mess, leaving you with a half-baked kitchen and a lot of regrets. The process of designing a kitchen can take many twists and turns which makes kitchen renovation mistakes hard to avoid. It is important to know what mistakes to avoid during a kitchen remodel to skip delays and costly replacements. So, let's dive into the common kitchen mistakes that might just scream, "This remodel is going downhill!" Here are top 5 kitchen design mistakes to avoid.

  1. Lack of detailed plan

Ever started something without a game plan and ended up lost in the woods? That's exactly what happens when a kitchen remodel lacks a detailed plan. It's not just about picking out cool tiles or trendy cabinets; it's about having a blueprint. If you're winging it as you go along, chances are your dream kitchen might turn into a bit of a nightmare. 

Before diving into a kitchen remodel, having a comprehensive plan is key to avoid getting lost in the renovation woods. Start by addressing potential kitchen layout mistakes. Consider the 10x10 kitchen layout as a basic guide to organising space efficiently. Factor in appliance placement, traffic flow, and ample storage, ensuring a balance between functionality and aesthetics. Outline specifics like cabinet heights, countertop materials, and lighting placements. A detailed blueprint acts as your roadmap, guiding each step to manifest that dream kitchen without stumbling into renovation chaos.

  1. Timing underestimate

Ah, one of the most classic kitchen remodel mistakes! Underestimating the time it takes to remodel a kitchen is a trap many fall into. You might think it's a weekend project, but in reality, it can stretch into weeks or even months. When the microwave is your makeshift stove for longer than expected, that's a sign your timing estimate went way off.

  1. Non-realistic budgeting

Money talk - never fun but oh-so-important! One of the biggest red flags in a kitchen remodel is a budget that's more fiction than reality. Overspending or under-budgeting your kitchen renovation cost can leave you with half-done countertops or compromised quality. Trust me, that's not the kind of 'statement piece' you want in your kitchen.

  1. Have no structural integrity prioritizing 

Sure, those shiny new appliances and sleek countertops steal the show, but what about the bones of your kitchen? Neglecting structural integrity for superficial glamour could haunt you later. If you're ignoring things like plumbing, electrical work, or the strength of the kitchen's foundation, you might be setting yourself up for disaster.

Prioritize structural integrity by ensuring proper kitchen cabinet backing to prevent potential kitchen cabinet backing fails. Opt for dovetail drawer construction, a sturdy method that enhances durability and longevity. Additionally, conduct a thorough assessment of plumbing and electrical systems, ensuring they align with your remodel plans. Strengthening the kitchen's foundation safeguards against future headaches, ensuring your remodel remains a success built on a solid base. 

  1. Neglecting energy efficiency

In an era where sustainability is king, overlooking energy efficiency is a cardinal sin in kitchen remodels. Failing to opt for energy-efficient appliances or neglecting insulation can spike your bills and leave a larger carbon footprint than necessary.

Embracing energy efficiency in a kitchen remodel involves more than just picking eco-friendly appliances; it's about integrating smart kitchen technology. Invest in appliances with Energy Star ratings, LED lighting, and consider smart thermostats or sensor-based faucets that optimize energy usage.

Additionally, prioritize proper insulation to regulate temperature, reducing reliance on heating or cooling systems. Incorporating energy efficiency not only slashes utility bills but also minimizes environmental impact, making your kitchen a beacon of sustainability in your home.

Kitchen remodel dos and don'ts

a man suffers from insufficient organization of the kitchen

When it comes to creating your dream kitchen, steering clear of pitfalls is just as crucial as picking the perfect elements. We're diving into the dos and don'ts of kitchen design, shedding light on what not to do in a kitchen remodel and highlighting the common kitchen design mistakes to avoid. From the worst kitchen design mistakes to the kitchen design trends to avoid, this guide aims to help you sidestep the pitfalls and create a functional, stylish, and enduring kitchen space. Explore the table below for insights on what to avoid when remodeling a kitchen, ensuring your renovation journey is smooth sailing from start to finish.

Kitchen aspect




Kitchen cabinet trends to avoid


Choose timeless cabinet designs with quality materials and functionality.

One common kitchen cabinet mistakes that homeowners does is follow trends. Don't blindly follow short-lived trends. Prioritize functionality over fleeting styles.

Consider Shaker-style cabinets or classic wood finishes for a versatile and enduring look. Doing this will help you avoid fail design of cabinet doors in the kitchen.

Kitchen island mistakes


Opt for a well-proportioned island that enhances workflow and traffic flow.

Avoid oversizing the island, hindering movement, or creating cramped spaces.

Leave adequate space around the island for seamless movement, approximately 36-48 inches.

Kitchen backsplash trends to avoid


Select classic and neutral backsplash options for a timeless appeal

Avoid overly busy or extravagant patterns that might quickly become outdated.

Subway tiles or simple mosaic designs can add elegance without overwhelming the space.

Prevent countertop damages 

Ensure a comfortable and practical counter height suitable for the user.

Make sure your measurements are correct to avoid leaning the kitchen counter.

Don't install excessively high or low counters that strain posture or usage.

Standard counter height is around 36 inches; adjust based on the user's comfort and ergonomic needs.

Avoid impractical kitchen sink design


Prioritize a sink size and style that suits your kitchen's needs and space.

Avoid impractical or oversized sinks that dominate the counter space.

Deep and single-bowl sinks offer versatility, while undermount sinks create a seamless look.

Kitchen remodel flooring mistakes to avoid


Choose durable and easy-to-maintain flooring materials suitable for the kitchen's traffic.

Don't install flooring that's easily damaged by water, heat, or heavy foot traffic.

Consider materials like porcelain tiles, hardwood, or luxury vinyl for durability and easy upkeep.


How to avoid an outdated kitchen look

kitchen design mistakes that lead to outdated kitchen look

Keeping your kitchen looking up-to-date isn't rocket science, but it takes a pinch of savvy and a dash of know-how. Let's whip up some trends to avoid in kitchen remodel and tips to ensure your kitchen stays on trend and far from outdated.

Lighting magic

Modern kitchen lighting goes beyond mere brightness—it's a pivotal element defining contemporary spaces. Consider a layered approach: task lighting for functionality (think under-cabinet LEDs), ambient lighting for overall mood, and accent lighting for character (like trendy pendant lights).

Opting for energy-efficient LED fixtures not only reduces energy consumption but also extends the lifespan of your lighting. Transforming into statement pieces, chic pendant lights or stylish chandeliers become focal points, adding flair and personality. Strategic placement, dimmer switches, and smart control options further elevate the ambiance, creating a functional yet visually captivating kitchen space.

Colors to avoid in kitchen

Move away from outdated palettes and embrace hues that breathe life into your space. Consider painting cabinets in versatile tones like taupe or sage green, balancing trendiness with timelessness. Introducing vibrant accents through accessories - such as colorful rugs, statement artworks, or lpvely kitchenware - adds depth and personality without overwhelming the space. Utilize color strategically to create focal points or highlight architectural features, fostering a vibrant ambiance that invigorates the entire kitchen atmosphere.

Kitchen Cabinets

Hardware hustle

While often overlooked, dovetail drawer pulls, cabinet handles, and faucet designs play a significant role in defining your kitchen's style. Choose hardware that complements your design theme; sleek finishes like brushed nickel or matte black exude a modern and sophisticated vibe. Consider the ergonomics and functionality of these fixtures as well—opting for easy-to-use, durable hardware ensures both style and practicality. Mixing and matching hardware styles can add visual interest while maintaining a cohesive look, allowing these small details to make a big impact on your kitchen's overall allure. 

Timeless tiles

When choosing tiles for your kitchen, prioritize designs that transcend fleeting trends and endure through time. Favoring classic patterns such as subway tiles or straightforward geometric shapes ensures a timeless appeal that remains eternally chic. These versatile options not only offer a clean and sophisticated look but also provide a neutral backdrop, allowing flexibility for changing décor elements. Opting for neutral colors or muted tones further enhances the longevity of your kitchen's style, allowing the tiles to serve as a canvas for your culinary space while ensuring a timeless elegance that withstands shifting design trends. 

Appliance elegance

Modernizing your appliances can significantly elevate the overall look and functionality of the space. Upgrading to sleek stainless-steel appliances not only adds a touch of sophistication but also offers a versatile aesthetic that effortlessly integrates with diverse design styles. Look for appliances equipped with advanced technology and energy-efficient features, ensuring not only a stylish appeal but also practicality and sustainability. 

Consider the layout and size of your kitchen when selecting appliances, aiming for a cohesive look that complements the space while embracing contemporary elegance—a step towards a timeless and functional culinary haven.

kitchen mistakes - where to put groceries

Embrace openness

Integrating open shelving into your kitchen design serves both aesthetic and functional purposes, transcending trends for a timeless appeal. This design choice not only introduces a modern and airy ambiance but also offers practicality by providing easy access to frequently used items. It's an opportunity to display cherished cookware, stylish dinnerware, or unique decor pieces, infusing personality and warmth into the kitchen. 

However, careful curation is key - organize items thoughtfully to maintain a clutter-free and visually pleasing display. Consider the balance between open and closed storage to ensure functionality while embracing the contemporary allure of open shelving, a design choice that fosters an inviting and personalized culinary space. 

So, there you have it - the kitchen trends to avoid! Your recipe for not falling into an outdated kitchen look. With a sprinkle of modern lighting, a splash of color, and a touch of contemporary hardware, your kitchen will be the envy of time itself!


Article by:

Valentina Melnikova - Lead Designer at Cut2Size

Office 403.366.7411

Hi there! I’m a millwork designer and an owner of a kitchen cabinet manufacturing company. With a team of professionals, I work on designing and manufacturing high-end millwork. Combining professional designing and manufacturing skills is what allows us to develop and translate our plans into a reality through our uniqueness and exclusive ideas. Our employees are highly skilled and creative thinkers that also utilize their professionalism and experience to take millwork to the next level. I’m very familiar with the industry and I take on each project from the design to the final product. With that said, if you’re looking for design advice or technician help, you’re in the right place.