Now those long cold evenings are well and truly here, what better way create a heart-warming glow in your home than by whipping up a fresh batch of something delicious in your kitchen? Whether you're a seasoned baker or you're new to the baking game, we show you how to turn your kitchen into the perfect place to get cooking - just in time to recreate all the culinary wonders this year's Cake International at Birmingham's NEC is set to serve up!
1. Start by laying a good foundation with anti-slip flooring. In a wide range of colours, this flooring solution not only looks good, it'll help make a busy kitchen a safer place to be - perfect for cooking with kids. Check out our range here
2. No one enjoys cooking in a dark kitchen where you're straining to see your ingredients - let the light in by keeping window dressings to a minimum, ensuring you have task lighting installed where you need it and by using light, airy colours. White, cream or pastel coloured kitchen tiles are perfect for this; why not take a look at our selection
3. If you're giving your kitchen a revamp, the best thing you can do to turn it into the perfect place to bake is to install plenty of counterspace. A kitchen island is ideal for this, and better still, you can grab a few barstools to set beside it, making the ideal setting for friends to sit and chat to you as you bake.
4. Not only will you appreciate those extra surfaces, but when you're whipping up that meringue or caramelising the sugar on your perfect crème brûlée, having all your utensils within easy reach will make baking even more of a joy. We suggest you dedicate an area of your kitchen to baking - preferably a collection of cupboards and drawers next to an expanse of surface space - and keep all your whisks, icing bags, measuring spoons and so on together in that area.
5. A double oven is the Holy Grail for serious bakers. If you need to, you can justify it to yourself by saying it'll make Christmas dinner so much easier!
6. Transforming your kitchen into the perfect space for a spot of baking is not all about big changes: the little touches make all the difference. Give your kitchen a wonderfully homely feel and make things easier for yourself in one go by laying out all your ingredients in pretty jars with clearly-written labels. Not only does this look lovely, it'll free up space in drawers and cupboards, meaning you'll have even more room for those essential cake-making gadgets! Don't worry if your jars aren't all the same - mismatched jars
look great too! They'll also allow you to get collect jars from all over the place rather than buying a set, which is sure to save you money.
7. Turn your utensils into a feature of your kitchen by hanging them on hooks near your workspace. Not only will this make them easy to get hold of while you're baking, they'll show off your passion for cooking and create a talking point when you have people round. If you're hoping to turn baking into an activity your kids will love to get involved with, why not choose bright, colourful accessories that'll inspire them? We love the blue and silver set here
Have a delicious winter!