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What is a kitchen Territory?

There was an old saying in Dirty Dancing...." This is my dance space...and this is yours."  Personal space is the space of the human energy field, sometimes referred to as the auric field which is an invisible field around each living body, whether it be human, animal and or plant.   In kitchen and bath design, this field is just as important as the "dancing space" in a waltz or funky chicken.  Just some of the functional zones of activities designated in kitchen design include the cooking zone, storage zone, clean up zone, preparation zone, message center zone, and entertaining zones. You can create other zones...like the kiddy zone...where the kids can literally distroy the toys and be free from physical harm by padded walls and floors.  ( No this is no joke.) Each one of these zones have an energy vortex and/or center, and have relationships with each of the other zones. Bathroom zones include grooming areas, bathing areas, toileting areas, and closet areas. There are MAJOR intimacy issues in a bathroom which I will cover in future blogs.

When interviewing kitchen clients, it is extremely important for the client to be honest about how close they want to be to the activities in each of these zones. The designer may ask, and illustrate how the client will react by standing in front of them 3,' then 2,' and then 1' away from their face.  The reaction might be, "Get out of my face!"  That is one way to discovery!  kitchen design is ALL about the people and how they interact energetically to each other. There are some very good questions that can be asked by the designer to aid the discovery of revealing truths of what the clients' needs are. 

Also, there are guidelines for these spaces allowances.

Two people standing in a preparation zone should have at least 54-60" of space to work in if they are standing side by side. It doesn't matter if they are over or under weight.  It's all about the invisible field around their physical bodies.

Seated quests need at least 27" to 30" of space for each person. However, the best parties are usually more fun, when all the energy fields overlap and you're tucked in side by side, and shoulder to shoulder. You might find this an intimate dining experience, and conversations would happen quicker, and the energy levels will be higher at such events. The design of these spaces might be kept in mind as an alternative experience.

Some questions that can be asked by the designer are as follows:

What environment irritates you?  Some might answer: kids, clutter, noise, too many people around at one time, or just people!

Do people make you nervous? 

Are you anti-social and or dislike people?

Are you a hermit and prefer to be alone?

Do you have a close -knit social group of friends or a large social group of friends?  Are you a party-personality, or do you like to stay close into yourself?

These questions will aid the designer in the placement of the zones..and how far they need to be in their personal kitchen territories. If people make the cook nervous, she needs to be in control visually of the entire room.  If she is in control and can see everything around he/she, the territory will be more functional and she will not harm herself by a kitchen accident, and will be more at ease with her environment.

If the client is anti-social or dislike people, they need to have their back to the doorways. They feel safer introverted, and not in the open space of performance. 

Hermits, and people who like to be alone do NOT like to be observed at all in the preparation areas, cooking areas, and hate to have anyone help them clean up.

If the client is close - knit, and friends, the territories and human energy fields will overlap. The designer needs to keep in mind that these zones are still within the quidelines, however the client needs to appreciate the limitations of  three dishwashing assistants and ONE dishwashing machine.There is a host of situation that will follow in other blogs.

I hope that you have enjoyed this bit of information. You are the territory in each kitchen and or bathroom. Your energy field influences everything around you. The designers need to understand this to correctly analize the proportions required to keep clients safe, content, and at peace in their environments.

Bev Adams, CMKBD


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