A Freestanding Kitchen Lets You Create the Versatile Space of Your Dreams

Enter the Freestanding Kitchen

A freestanding kitchen, as opposed to a fixed island, is set up on wheels and can literally roll out of the way when meal prep is done. No more awkwardly-placed kitchen cabinets and bulky islands—this vintage storage unit brings a one-of-a-kind touch to your home. While it might sound ideal in every way, a freestanding kitchens is a departure from how most people think about kitchen design, which can make it feel a little risky. To determine if a freestanding kitchen is for you, an expert shared the details on this trend and why you might—or might not—want to try it in your home.

What Exactly Is a Freestanding Kitchen?

“A freestanding kitchen is made up of freestanding furniture instead of built-in cabinetry,” says Audrey Scheck of Audrey Scheck Design. “Since a freestanding kitchen is made up of individual pieces, you can incorporate vintage furniture such as Welsh dressers or Hoosier cabinets, creating a relaxed, unique, and charming look.”

Why Freestanding Kitchens Are Trending Now

These kitchens are gaining popularity due to evolving lifestyle trends: We expect our rooms to be multipurpose; having an island on wheels that allows you to make more space when hosting or open shelving that can be switched up to create a makeshift bar for a cocktail party follows that sentiment.

Advantages of Freestanding Kitchens

“One of the biggest advantages of a freestanding kitchen is the flexibility of moving pieces of furniture around to best fit the room’s layout," Scheck says. "Additionally, using vintage furniture is a budget-friendly and sustainable way to outfit your kitchen. We recommend visiting your local antique mall to source vintage cabinets, dressers, or even a table to use as a freestanding island."

This budget-friendly style allows you to work with what you have and gather pieces over time instead of feeling like you have to overhaul everything at once. It also challenges the idea of a “perfect” kitchen that must have expensive marble countertops or brand-new, stainless-steel appliances to be “good enough.” It embraces a more laid-back, acquired look.

Potential Drawbacks

There are definitely some elements of freestanding kitchens to keep in mind before you rip out all your cabinets. Storage is a top concern in a kitchen, so if you decide to ditch a traditional design for a freestanding kitchen, you need to replace the cabinets’ function. A combination of a pantry and freestanding furniture can do this, but it’s something to think about as you plan the layout.

You also have to consider the future implications for resale. If you create a kitchen that's very taste-specific, potential homebuyers might not be able to imagine themselves living in the space. Plus, if you intend on taking some of the bigger pieces of furniture with you when you move (like the island or an antique dresser you converted into kitchen storage) it may be a dealbreaker for some buyers.

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