Kitchens Over The Last 100 Years

There was a time when kitchens weren’t the special spot in the house. It didn’t really have a social atmosphere for people to congregate to. They were purely used for servants and women of the house to prep food and that was it. Usually small unless it was the rich and then it was big because of all the servants who needed to prepare meals for everyone. Things have changed dramatically over the last 100 years.  Kitchens are now a place for the whole family to relax, work and socialize as well as cook. Modern kitchens spill out into the living room, garden area or patio to emphasize on entertaining family and friends. Below, we take a glance at how far and how much change has the everyday kitchen evolved into what it is today.


Before 1940

This was the era before kitchens were more than just a prepping area. Kitchens mostly consisted of wood. Kitchens started to take a turn in 1920 when the electric dishwasher was built but it wasn’t easy. Magazines would have to encourage husbands that he’d have a happier life if he had a happier wife. Women didn’t have the upper hand in buying things for the household so to free themselves from the curse of dish-washing, advertising companies had to convince the husband that it was a good investment. Some women reported washing 200+ pieces a day back then.




This was the era of appliances. Waffles irons, toasters, and percolators were some of the first to take popularity. Kitchens started to become more decorated with built-ins and pops of color especially in appliances like the fridge and stove. It was the age of fancy for the kitchen trend through the 60’s. Minimizing work was very important to the housewife and easy cleaning was a must so metal cabinets, stainless steel counters, and linoleum floors started to become the trend. The washing machine and wringer made its debut during this time and back then laundry rooms were non-existent so it was set up in the kitchen. Refrigerators stepped up their game and offered glass shelves, indoor compartments, crisper drawers, and freezers which made daily grocery shopping a thing of the past. The electric oven also became a household need instead of the original wood, coal or gas stoves. During this time is when kitchens started to become more inviting to friends and family trying to include the cook with the rest of the household. 



This was the decade for colors! This is where the harvest gold and avocado green were born. Kitchens started to become more opened up to include the eating area which created the work triangle and the U-shaped kitchen. It still gave kitchens the feeling of intimacy without completely enclosing the walls but also providing an open feel to it. Creating extra space for cooking and storage as well. Storage was huge in the 60’s and 70’s because of all the gadgets that were being invented so design ideas that helped with storage were a growing factor. Kitchen pegboards were one design that seemed to take off. It added a convenient way to keep pans within arms reach while adding an unexpected decorative element to space. Another boundary-breaking design that hit kitchens in this era was busy prints, especially in wallpaper. A few devices that were popular in the kitchen were microwaves, which changed how cooking was done from here on out. Fridges even stepped up their game and added more features like water and ice dispensers from the door. The phone also became a household item and usually was found in the kitchen. 




This is the era we are all running away from now. Oak cabinets, frilly window treatments and color palettes that are now heavy-handed. Bright colors and busy patterns started to fade from kitchen decor and neutrals started to make its way into the kitchen. Pastels and bright hues were still popular but it tended to be more in the accents. Natural light, open shelving, and islands were trendy now that the kitchen started to become a place for socializing. The 80’s brought the home computer and a new fad was eat-in kitchens. After the 90’s, Linoleum floors and Formica counters faded into tile floors and granite counters to make kitchens look more timeless.


Modern Day

One style that is sticking around since the 80’s and 90 ’s is natural light, open shelving, and islands. 2000 kitchens differ greatly from 2018 kitchens and will also continue to change by 2030 but the design goal with kitchens of the 21st century is to reach an aesthetically pleasing and functional kitchen that is timeless. Kitchens today are all about the amenities and unique storage options. While modern minimalist designs are popular so is the old-fashioned farmhouse look with a modern touch. Kitchens have become the center of the home bringing families closer together. Appliances have become smarter than the average joe, from remote access to automated encyclopedia by voice activation, the wave of the future has changed the way we do things. With both parents working full-time careers, the kitchen has become less for prepping and more for gathering.


Kitchens have definitely changed a lot over the last 100 years and will continue to change in the next 100 years to come. One thing to remember when renovating your kitchen is choosing a contractor to listen to your wants or needs and communicating with you every step of the way. Need a free estimate give us a call and we will make your dream kitchen come to life.


Feel free to Contact Us here at Retro Pro Kitchen and Bath and we would be happy to answer any questions you may have!

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What To Do With A Galley Kitchen

What is a galley kitchen? A galley kitchen is a narrow usually small kitchen with one long aisle lined with countertops, cabinets, & appliances on either side. Below gives you a general idea of a galley kitchen layout.



Small kitchens aren’t necessarily a bad thing. If the space is designed correctly you will find a galley kitchen is functional. If your kitchen is an outdated galley kitchen then yes it was probably badly designed and creates a hectic workspace. Fear not remodeling your galley kitchen can help make the space more efficient and give you just as much storage as a large kitchen. It truly is an effective space and makes the most for a true chef as long as you have the right designer in place to give you what you are looking for. With the long aisle and parallel counters, this is designed exactly how the professional kitchens are in restaurants. The only thing you may not get in a galley kitchen that you do with a large kitchen is the open concept. When you entertain an open kitchen gives you a chance to mingle with your guests while still working in the kitchen, this is less likely to occur with a galley kitchen but isn’t impossible if it’s designed right.

Look at the positive side of a galley kitchen. If you love to cook this is an ideal way to control traffic flow in and out of the kitchen. It’s ideal for one person in the kitchen so it’s a great asset if there tends to be too many cooks in the kitchen. Tidying up a galley kitchen is usually easier because the design is minimal. It keeps the cook organized and utilizes the space around them. It also follows the design technique of the “kitchen triangle” which is an invisible line that is drawn between the sink, stove, and refrigerator creating optimal efficiency.

Getting ready for your galley kitchen remodel. The vertical cabinet is a great way to utilize space. Getting bins and baskets to store extra cooking tools and various accessories like cookbooks can be stored up higher while the necessities can be stored at arm’s length. Get rid of countertop appliances that you don’t use much and invest in multi-use appliances. Pot racks are another good addition to save on cabinet space and can add some style to the kitchen.

Choosing a style. Choosing the right style for a galley kitchen can be tricky, first of all, remember that galley kitchens can be dark and dungeon-like because of the space confinement. It is best to go light and bright when designing your galley kitchen. This will help make the kitchen feel open and spacious. Making sure to have a lot of natural light is important so, make a larger window or add skylights will help open up the kitchen. Choosing lighter paint colors will reflect the light in the space also. White is the trend for kitchens now so this will also add a timeless look if you are trying to sell. To add depth pick out colorful accents to make the space inviting. Under cabinet lighting is another nice feature especially for cooking.

Dining in a galley kitchen. It might be hard to dine in a galley kitchen but you can possibly create a breakfast bar or nook that will give you somewhat interaction with your guests. This is popular in large kitchens also but usually, it is an island in the middle of the kitchen.




Feel free to contact us here at Retro Pro Kitchen and Bath and we would be happy to answer any questions you may have!

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How to Clean Stainless Steel Appliances


Stainless steel appliances are popular for kitchens in millions of homes across the U.S. They look amazing when they are new, so shiny and futuristic looking. Stainless steel can be a pain to keep clean! Everyone has their ideas as to the best way to clean it. There are tons of companies that claim their product is the best to use for the job, but which ones REALLY work! Sometimes the simplest solution is the right one! And it’s not all about the cleaning, it’s about understanding the material you are working with.

Cleaning solutions for your stainless steel appliances

Let’s start with the material, like wood, stainless steel has a grain direction. So when cleaning, it’s important to figure out the direction of the grain and be sure to wipe with the grain and not against the grain. These striations can be very faint, so you might have to look close. It’s possible for one appliance to have more than one grain direction, so be sure to pay attention when cleaning different parts like doors, handles etc. Cleaning with the grain will prevent cleaning residue from collecting in the tiny little crevices, and gives a better shine. Many stainless steel products have a fingerprint-proof finish, or will slowly show less fingerprints over time as the stainless conditions itself.



Cleaning products don’t always mix well, so try to find a solution that works for you and stick with it. Mixing products can actually make the cleaning harder over time. Try to avoid products that contain chloride, as this can damage the protective finish. Some of the better products are chloride free glass cleaner (this is great for the polished surfaces and mirror like surfaces), and the commercially manufactured pastes made for stainless steel.


For natural and DIY cleaners you have a few options. White vinegar is great for cleaning. Use a spray bottle to apply the white vinegar to a microfiber cloth or directly onto surface, allow it to sit for a moment, then wipe in the direction of the grain. You can apply as many times as needed to get the desired results. Vinegar contains a mild acid, called acetic acid.  It cuts through the oil left behind by fingers, rather than smearing it around like a lot of other products.


Good ol’ hot water! Yes, just hot water and a microfiber cloth does great for keeping appliances clean and the microfiber cloth won’t leave streaks. If you have stuck-on food or stains on the surface you may need to scrub a little longer. If you don’t feel like hot water is enough to clean, then add a little concentrated dish liquid like Dawn to a soft sponge (DO NOT USE ANYTHING ABRASIVE) or a lint-free cloth and and wipe in the same direction of the grain. Wipe again with hot water and dry immediately to prevent any mineral spots (if using regular tap water).


Another option is Windex and a soft cloth or paper towel to remove fingerprints. Glass cleaner works great on stainless steel, and can be a quick and easy fix to those annoying fingerprints and smudges. When using the glass cleaner spray it on to the cloth and then wipe onto the appliance, by doing this you wont have to worry about any drips or the cleaner drying and streaking before you are able to wipe it down.


For really tough stains or to get your appliances to really shine, you can always use the commercial stainless steel cleaners. These should be used as a last resort or just on occasion. Non-toxic solutions are always a better option, but commercial cleaners can come in handy! Just like everything else, be sure to always wipe and clean with the grain to prevent any scratching and build up in the tiny crevices.  The two best commercial cleaners are the 3M Stainless Steel Cleaner, and the Bar Keepers Friend Soft Cleanser. Both are non-abrasive and a great option for cleaning and polishing your stainless steel.


Kitchen Cooking and Cleaning Tips

Perfect Pasta

You have just made up your pasta according to the directions, but it is still going to be a few minutes before you serve up dinner. What can you do to help keep it warm?

Place your pot about ¼ to 1/3 full of hot water back on the stove over med to med/high heat. Now place your pasta in a metal or heavy duty plastic colander that can withstand heat. Place the colander over the top of your pan and let the steam keep your noodles warm with out over cooking them.


How to Remove Stains from Wooden Cutting Boards

Can rings and wine and strawberries stains don’t help the style of your cutting board. To get out stains, try sprinkling the board with salt rubbing it with lemon. For more stubborn stains, try an abrasive antibacterial kitchen cleaner and scouring pad. For the toughest, reach for sandpaper! And of course wash thoroughly afterward!



How to Soften Hardened Brown Sugar

Brown sugar hardens as its moisture evaporates over time in the cupboard. But you can easily re-moisturize it by placing the open sugar bag in a microwave with a cup of water next to it and zapping it on high for three minutes. Or you can place the sugar in a bowl, cover the sugar with a double layer of wet paper towels, and then cover the bowl with foil or plastic wrap and let it stand overnight.  The jury is still out on what to put in the bag of brown sugar to keep it from going hard: a slice of apple, a piece of bread, and a shard of a terra cotta pot have all been used.



How to Refresh Crystallized Honey

You know that jar or bottle of honey that’s hardened and crystallized on your shelf? It can easily be brought back to its easy-to-pour glory if you let it sit for 15 minutes in boiling water that has cooled for five minutes.

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Plastic Bag Holder

An empty rectangular tissue box makes a convenient holder for small garbage bags, plastic grocery bags and small rags. Simply thumbtack it to the inside of a cabinet door.



For cleaning smelly hands after chopping onions or garlic, just rub them on a stainless steel spoon. The steel is supposed to absorb the odor.


If you happen to over-salt a pot of soup, just drop in a peeled potato. The potato will absorb the excess salt.


When boiling eggs, add a pinch of salt to keep the shells from cracking.

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When storing empty airtight containers, throw in a pinch of salt to keep them from getting stinky.


If you are making gravy and accidentally burn it, just pour it into a clean pan and continue cooking it. Add sugar a little at a time, tasting as you go to avoid over-sugaring it. The sugar will cancel out the burned taste.


Burned a pot of rice? Just place a piece of white bread on top of the rice for 5-10 minutes to draw out the burned flavor. Be careful not to scrape the burned pieces off of the bottom of the pan when serving the rice.

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If you aren’t sure how fresh your eggs are, place them in about four inches of water. Eggs that stay on the bottom are fresh. If only one end tips up, the egg is less fresh and should be used soon. If it floats, it’s past the fresh stage.


Before you chop chili peppers, rub a little vegetable oil into your hands and your skin won’t absorb the spicy chili oil.


To banish ants from the kitchen, find out where they are coming in and cover the hole with petroleum jelly. Ants won’t trek through the jelly. If they are coming under a door, draw a line on the floor with chalk. The little bugs also won’t cross a line of chalk.

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Before making popcorn on the stove or in an air popper, soak the kernels in water for 10 minutes. Drain the water, then pop as normal. The additional moisture helps the popcorn pop up quicker and fluffier with fewer “old maids.”


Don’t store your bananas in a bunch or in a fruit bowl with other fruits. Separate your bananas and place each in a different location. Bananas release gases which cause fruits (including other bananas) to ripen quickly. Separating them will keep them fresh longer.


To keep potatoes from budding in the bag, put an apple in with them.

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After boiling pasta or potatoes, cool the water and use it to water your house plants. The water contains nutrients that your plants will love.  When you clean your fish tank, the water you drain can also be used to water your house plants. The nitrogen and phosphorus in fish droppings make aquarium water a great fertilizer.


When defrosting meat from the freezer, pour some vinegar over it. Not only does it tenderize the meat; it will also bring down the freezing temperature of the meat and cause it to thaw quicker.


For aluminum pans that are looking dull, just boil some apple peels in them. This will brighten up the aluminum and make your house smell yummy.


To keep cookies fresh, put some crumpled-up tissue paper in the bottom of the cookie jar.

Keep iceberg lettuce fresh in the fridge by wrapping it in a clean, dry paper towel and storing lettuce and paper towel in a sealed baggie in the fridge.


If your loaf of bread is starting to go stale, just put a piece of fresh celery in the bag and close it back up. For some reason, this restores a fresh taste and texture to the bread.


To reuse cooking oil without tasting whatever was cooked in the oil previously, cook a 1/4? piece of ginger in the oil. It will remove any remaining flavors and odors.


If your milk always goes bad before you can finish it, try adding a pinch of salt to the carton when you first open it. It will stay fresh days longer.

How to select Range Hood for Stove


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There are few things better than the mouth-watering aroma of a gourmet meal. Whether it’s the sweet scent of garlic or the savory smell of old-fashioned spaghetti sauce, there’s little question that smells greatly enhance the flavor of home cooking. Once the meal is over, however, you don’t want those smells to linger in the kitchen. Range hoods not only vent away odors instantly to keep your kitchen fresh, they also filter out heat, smoke, grease and moisture. Regardless of how your kitchen is set up, you’ll be able to find a hood that will fit in well in terms of both performance and style. Choose from over-the-range, downdraft, microwave/range hood combos and other designs and keep the following questions in mind as you shop:


  • What type of range hood is best suited for your kitchen?
  • Where should the range hood be installed?
  • What type of ventilation system should you use?
  • How large should your range hood be?
  • Are there any special features you’d like to have?


Ventilation Systems, Style and Installation


The size of your range and the amount of time you spend cooking will help determine what type of range hood you should purchase. Ventilation systems may be either external or recirculating, and range hoods can be installed in several different places, including underneath a cabinet, hanging down from the ceiling or even in the countertop. Though their primary function is to get rid of bad smells, smoke and grease, range hoods can also add a stylish element to your kitchen, particularly if you choose a customized unit. There is a large selection of features to choose from, including halogen lights, variable-speed fans and filter indicator lights, each of which is designed to make using your range hood easier and more convenient. Regardless of which type you choose, it’s important to remember that proper care and maintenance is essential to effective performance.


Ventilation Systems: There are two primary types of ventilation, external and recirculating. You can also choose from a couple of different fan types, including rotary fans, which feature blades, or centrifugal fans, which are shaped like a barrel or wheel. In general, centrifugal fans are slightly more powerful and better suited for longer ducts. The amount of air that is vented by fans is measured in cubic feet per minute, or CFM. Units with higher CFM rates move more air, and the Home Ventilating Institute, a nonprofit organization that certifies products and provides consumer information in the field of residential ventilation, recommends a minimum of 40 CFM for every linear foot of range. So, if you have a 3? range, you’d need a range hood with at least 120 CFM. For gas cooktops, a good estimate is to have 1 CFM for every 100 BTUs of power the stove has. Consult the chart below to learn more about the different ventilation systems and some points of consideration for each.


SystemsDescription Points To Consider
Convertible –Able to utilize either external vents or filters.
  • If using filters, be sure to change regularly
  • Choose to vent externally if possible for greater effectiveness
External –Vents contaminated air outside of the house through a series of vertical or horizontal ducts.
  • Air must be vented outside of house, not into a crawl space or attic
  • Generally more efficient
  • Can be more complicated to install
Recirculating- Uses a filter system to clean air before circulating it back into house.
  • Filters must be cleaned or changed regularly to ensure high-quality performance
  • Easier to install


Size, Style and Placement: The type of range hood you choose will be dictated in part by your kitchen setup and in part by your own sense of style. If your range is installed against a wall and there are cabinets above, you may want to consider an under-cabinet range hood or a slide-out unit, which can be unobtrusively tucked away when not in use. Telescoping downdraft hoods are installed in your countertop and remain hidden from view until they’re needed, at which time they can be activated with the touch of a button, making them ideal for people who don’t want a visible venting system. If you have a cooktop on an island, an island range hood provides a sleek, stylish ventilation method that comes down from the ceiling. Chimney hoods are mounted on a wall and used in conjunction with soffit vents. They often provide lights to help illuminate the cooking area. Depending on the size, style and features you choose, range hoods can cost anywhere from under $100 to several thousand dollars.

  • Common colors include almond, bisque, biscuit, stainless steel, silver, black and white
  • Make sure to match the finish and style of the hood to your range or cooktop
  • Hoods are typically 30”, 36” or 42” wide
  • Choose a hood that’s at least as wide as your range for maximum effectiveness
  • One-touch activation of downdraft models allows you to start them quickly and easily


Maintenance and Installation Tips: In many cases, you should be able to install a range hood on your own. If, however, you’re unsure of your ability to do so, don’t hesitate to contact a professional. For houses that already have ductwork in place, make sure you select a range hood that has a compatible design. If you’re building a new house or installing new ductwork, make sure to determine whether vertical or horizontal positioning will be more efficient. Always make sure that air is vented outside the house and not into an enclosed space, such as an attic, as heat, moisture and grease can accumulate there and cause damage. Models that can accommodate either round or rectangular ductwork provide greater installation versatility.



  • Generally speaking, gas ranges require a hood with a higher CFM rate than electric units
  • Wash or replace filters regularly as needed to maintain efficient and effective operation
  • Deep-frying, using a wok and frequent cooking may all necessitate cleaning or replacing filters more frequently
  • Convertible units generally allow for both vertical and horizontal ventilation
  • Wipe down range hood surfaces regularly using warm water and mild soap to avoid grease buildup




Halogen Lights and Nightlight: Lights on a range hood make it easier to see what you’re cooking. Nightlights provide soft illumination that will prevent you from tripping when you sneak into the kitchen for a midnight snack.


Electronic Touch Controls: For easier use, look for models that feature convenient electronic touch controls for precise operation and the ability to preset on and off times.


Variable-Speed Fan with Heat Sensors: Variable-speed fans can speed up to handle more heat, and heat sensors automatically increase speed or sound an alarm when things get too hot.


Quiet Operation: The noise generated by range hoods is measured in sones and, in general, the higher the fan’s CFM rating, the more sones it produces. Some hoods, however, feature insulation for quiet operation, minimizing the noise to provide less of a distraction while you cook.


Automatic Shutoff: Some units shut the fan off automatically after a specified period of time or let you designate a shutoff time, so you can keep the fan going after you leave the kitchen to completely clear the air.


Self-Cleaning/Filterless Operation: For easy maintenance, look for a self-cleaning range hood with filterless operation. These units can be programmed to clean themselves, ensuring your kitchen stays fresh with minimal effort.


Filter Monitor and Indicator Light: You have far too many things going on in life as is, and having to keep track of when to change the filter in your range hood adds one more item to the list. Fortunately, some hoods feature an indicator light that lets you know when it’s time to replace the filter, making it one less thing you have to worry about.

Kitchen Sink Buying Guide

Kitchen sinks consist of one or multiple bowls with a faucet, drain with a strainer and convenient accessories like sprayers and soap dispensers. Besides serving as a heavily used fixture for washing hands, preparing meals and cleaning up afterwards, kitchen sinks are a prominent focal point in your kitchen. From gleaming stainless steel to colorful sinks made of durable composite materials, kitchen sinks now come in more shapes, sizes, depths and materials than ever before. This buying guide explains the materials, configuration and mounting options available, so you can feel confident you’re selecting the sink that provides the perfect balance of form and function in your kitchen.


Factors to Consider

Consider these important factors when selecting your sink:


  • Material – Stainless steel, cast iron, composite granite, solid surface, cast acrylic, fireclay and copper.
  • Configuration – Shape, size, number of bowls, bowl orientation and number of holes (tappings).
  • Mounting – Drop-In, Undermount, Solid Surface and Tile-In.



Choosing the material for your sink is a decision that is both practical and aesthetic. As a prominent fixture in your kitchen, you’ll want a sink that complements your décor and fixtures. At the same time, your sink will experience a lot of heavy usage so you’ll want one with a sturdy surface that maintains its appearance over a long period of time. Below are descriptions of some of the most popular kitchen sink materials to consider.


Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel offers an excellent balance of cost, usability, durability and ease of cleaning. Higher quality stainless steel sinks are made of 18 to 16 gauge or thicker steel to help prevent dents and scratches and reduce noise. Look for vibration-damping foam insulation on the underside of the bowls to deaden water drumming. Brushed satin finishes tend to hide water spots and scratches.


Cast Iron

Cast Iron sinks with enamel coatings have a layer of porcelain enamel that provides a hard, durable surface with a smooth, glossy finish that tends to hide water spots and streaks. Cast iron sinks retain heat well, making washing dishes easier. While the surface is very hard, if hit hard enough the surface can chip and expose the underlying black surface of the iron. Cast iron sinks are heavy and require a sturdy counter.
Composite GraniteComposite Granite sinks are made of a mixture of materials that provide a sturdy, low maintenance surface. Available in a range of composites, color and prices, they withstand hot cookware, although some materials are more durable than others. Composite sinks with high granite content are especially durable.


Solid Surface
Solid Surface sinks are reinforced with a high strength composite backing and have no ridges to collect grime. Their non-porous surface offers a sleek appearance, and because the color goes all the way through the material, these rimless and seamless sinks can be buffed to easily remove scratches. Seamless installation of solid surface sinks with countertops requires special fabrication and installation.

Cast AcrylicCast Acrylic sinks are made of plastic molded into the shape of the sink and reinforced with fiberglass. They are an inexpensive solution compared to other sink materials, providing a surface that’s resistant to stains and easy to clean and maintain. Scratches can be sanded and polished out.


Fireclay sinks are fired at an extremely high temperature to produce an exceptionally durable, hard and glossy, non-porous surface that won’t rust, fade or discolor. Resistant to chips, stains and scratches and available in an array of colors and sizes, these low maintenance sinks are highly resistant to bacteria associated with food preparation.

CopperCopper offers a unique blend of beauty and functionality. Copper is a highly durable metal which does not rust or tarnish and requires little maintenance. It’s an extraordinary match for natural surfaces, like wood and stone with a surface that takes on an attractive aged patina over time. Copper sinks are handcrafted and each is unique. Copper sinks also make living environments safer with strong anti-microbial properties that kill bacteria and viruses, including E. coli.



Configuration options to consider for your sink include size; the number of bowls, how they are oriented, and the depth and the number of holes your sink requires for your fixtures and accessories.SizeThe interior width of the sink’s cabinet determines the maximum dimensions for your sink. Most base cabinets are 36”–42” high and 25-1/4”-26” wide. A typical 33” by 22” sink will fill a 36” base cabinet.
If you use your sink primarily for washing hands, light rinsing and garbage disposal, you may need a large sink. If you cook frequently and use the sink for cleaning vegetables or washing dishes by hand, you may need a wider sink deep enough to accommodate odd sized pots and pans.

If you are replacing a sink, select a sink that fits the existing sink cutout. If the cabinet allows, you may be able to install a larger sink by expanding the cutout.
If you are creating a new kitchen, the only limitations are the location and size of the cabinet in which the sink will be installed.
Number of Bowls

Deciding how many bowls you need is best determined by the size of your kitchen and your typical activities in it. Double-bowls of equal size can be an ideal solution if there are often multiple cooks in the kitchen. If one cook focuses on prep work, a 1-1/2 or 1-3/4 bowl design may be the best solution. For smaller kitchens, a large single bowl sink can fulfill most functions. While the most common sinks are double bowls of equal size, double and triple bowls offer their own unique advantages.


Single Bowl

Single Bowl sinks offer plenty of space for large-diameter dishes and oversized pots. Single-bowl designs take up less space than other bowls. They can be as wide as 33”.


Double Bowl

Double Bowl sinks provide room for separate tasks such as washing and rinsing dishes, food preparation and clean up. They can be as wide as 48”.


Triple Bowl

Triple Bowl sinks feature a small third bowl for use as a prep sink. They can be as wide as 60”.



Bowl Orientation

The most efficient sink configuration is often determined by the relationship between the sink, dishwasher and disposer.

The ideal dishwasher location depends on whether you’re right-handed or left-handed. The key is to be able to hold dirty dishes with one hand while rinsing with the other then placing them easily in the dishwasher.
For double sinks, having the garbage disposer installed on the same side as the dishwasher increases efficiency.
When the sink consists of a larger and smaller bowl, locating the disposer in the smaller sink with the smaller sink located on the same side as the dishwasher provides the greatest convenience.


Bowl Depth

How you use your sink determines the bowl depth that meets your requirements for function and comfort.

Average bowl depth is 8 to 10 inches.
If you cook with large pots and pans, 10-inch depth allows for easier soaking and scrubbing and reduces water splash.
Your height should be a consideration as well. Having your sink at the right depth helps you avoid fatigue and backaches. Rules of thumb for bowl depth and comfort when the countertop is 36” high are:



Sinks typically have between one and five holes, or tappings, on the deck behind the bowls for accessories like faucets, soap dispensers, spray hoses, hot filtered water and more.

The sink you choose should be able to accommodate the number and configuration of items you want.
The standard configuration for most sinks is four holes but you can purchase a sink with five or six holes, depending on the manufacturer.
If the sink you want has more holes than are needed, decorative covers are available to conceal them.
Refer to the examples below for how the holes can be configured for your sink fixtures and accessories.

Sink Hole Configurations



How your countertop is constructed and the material your sink is made of play a large role in how your sink is installed.


Drop-In – Drop-in sinks, also known as topmount sinks, drop into a pre-cut hole in the countertop with the edge of the sink resting on the counter. This is typically the installation method for stainless steel sinks and can be used with virtually any countertop material. Drop-in sinks that use the same size cutout can be replaced without disturbing the countertop or relocating plumbing. They may be self-rimming or rimmed.
Self-rimming sinks are easy to install and work with almost any countertop. Heavy sinks, like those of cast iron are held in place by their weight while lighter sinks are fastened with clips and screws.
Rimmed sinks install in a similar manner but are more recessed into the countertop and the joint is covered by a metal rim.
Undermount – These sinks install under the counter and are ideal for use with solid surface and granite. They have a sophisticated look and, because they have no rim between the countertop and sink, clean up is easy—just brush crumbs and spills into the sink. Undermounting is not recommended for laminate countertops because the edge above the sink is exposed.
Integral– Integral sinks are built into the counter and constructed of the same material. They are flush-mounted, meaning the surface is even with the countertop. Integral sinks are very easy to clean and a popular solution when the entire countertop is being renovated.
Tile-In – Tile-in sinks have flat edges and square corners so they can mount evenly with a tiled surface with no visible separation between sink and countertop. This seamless installation makes countertop cleaning easy—brush any dirt or crumbs into the sink.


Specialty Sinks

Secondary Sinks provide added convenience in large kitchens or kitchens where there is more than one cook. Round bowls are ideal for prep sinks on a cooking island or as a high-capacity secondary sink for entertaining.


Bar sinks add convenience for basement remodels or rooms away from the kitchen used for entertaining.


Apron sinks, also known as farmhouse sinks, feature a wide base and deep basin for easier cleaning of large pots and pans. Mostly found in country-style kitchens, these sinks feature an exposed front that drops down in front of the sink instead of stopping at the edge of the counter.


Corner sinks are a popular solution for a U- or L-shaped counter. Placing the sink in the corner increases efficiency by having the sink be equidistant from work areas.


Features to Consider

Drain Position
Sinks with rear or offset drain positions feature pipes at the back of the unit, creating more cabinet space underneath for your trash can, cleaning supplies or other items you need to store.


Plumbing Depth
The depth of the sink bowls can affect available space for installation of accessories like a garbage disposer. When space beneath the cabinet is an issue for the disposer and plumbing, special needs can be accommodated by having a bowl with a shallow depth on one side.


If you find yourself short of counter space, look for sinks with custom-fitted cutting boards. Some units are also specially designed to accommodate colanders and drain baskets, making it easier to drain food without tipping the container and spilling contents into the sink.


The original article can be found on the Home Depot site.