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How to Design an L Shaped Kitchen Island

The kitchen serves as the central hub of every home, and a thoughtfully designed island can greatly enhance both functionality and aesthetics in your space. With its distinctive configuration, L-shaped kitchen island presents a plethora of possibilities, enabling you to optimize storage, establish efficient work zones, and foster social interaction.


l shaped kitchen island


In this comprehensive guide, we will guide you through the vital factors to consider and offer practical advice and innovative concepts to assist you in creating the ideal L shaped kitchen island that seamlessly integrates into your culinary sanctuary.

Can Kitchen Islands Be L-Shaped?

Can kitchen islands be L-shaped? Certainly! Kitchen islands do have the option to be L-shaped. The L-shaped configuration offers a one-of-a-kind and versatile design choice for kitchen islands, deviating from the typical rectangular or square shape. In an L-shaped island, two sections of the countertop are connected at a right angle, forming the distinct L configuration. This design presents a great opportunity to maximize the functionality and efficiency of your kitchen space.



The L-shaped kitchen island is particularly advantageous for kitchens with limited space or irregular layouts. By utilizing the corners of your kitchen, the L-shaped island optimizes the available area, making it a practical solution for kitchens of all sizes. It provides ample workspace on two adjoining sides, creating separate zones for various culinary activities, such as food preparation, cooking, and even dining.

Key Benefits of an L Shaped Kitchen Island

The L-shaped kitchen island provides multiple advantages that make it an appealing choice for homeowners. Let’s explore some of these benefits:

  • Effective Space Utilization: The L-shaped design optimizes kitchen space by extending along two adjacent walls or cabinets. This configuration maximizes the available area without disrupting the kitchen’s flow, making it especially advantageous in smaller kitchens or open-concept layouts.
  • Enhanced Work Triangle: The L-shaped island contributes to a clearly defined work triangle in the kitchen, which includes the sink, stove or cooktop, and refrigerator. Strategically positioning the island ensures convenient access to these key areas, facilitating a smooth workflow during meal preparation and cooking.
  • Improved Traffic Flow: The open side of the L-shaped island allows for better movement within the kitchen, creating a clear pathway and preventing congestion. It also promotes interaction between the cook and family members or guests, becoming a social hub in the kitchen.
  • Ample Workspace: The L-shaped kitchen island provides a generous countertop area on both sides, offering abundant workspace for various tasks such as meal prep, chopping, mixing, and serving. The extended countertop also serves as a convenient surface for casual dining or buffet-style gatherings.
  • Additional Storage: With an L-shaped island, you can incorporate additional storage options to keep your kitchen organized. The longer side of the L can accommodate cabinets, drawers, or shelves, providing ample space for cookware, utensils, small appliances, and pantry items.
  • Flexible Seating Options: The L-shaped island allows for versatile seating arrangements. You can choose to have bar stools or counter-height chairs placed along one side of the island, creating a casual dining or breakfast bar area. This seating arrangement encourages social interaction while cooking or preparing meals.
  • Design and Aesthetic Appeal: L-shaped kitchen islands can enhance the overall design and aesthetic appeal of your kitchen. The sleek and functional layout adds an element of style and sophistication to the space.


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How to Design an L Shaped Kitchen Island With RTA Cabinets: Step-by-Step


Step 1: Asses Your Kitchen Space and Needs

Before you begin designing your L-shaped kitchen island with RTA (Ready-to-Assemble) cabinets, it’s important to evaluate your kitchen space and consider your specific requirements. Here’s what you should do:

  • Measure your kitchen: Take precise measurements of the available space where you plan to install the L-shaped island. Consider the length, width, and any obstacles such as doors, windows, or appliances.
  • Determine your goals and requirements: Identify what you hope to achieve with the island design. Do you need extra storage space, seating options, or specific functionalities like a built-in sink or cooktop? Assess your kitchen workflow and determine how the island can enhance it.

Step 2: Plan the Layout and Configuration

Once you have a clear understanding of your kitchen space and needs, it’s time to plan how the L-shaped kitchen island will be arranged and configured. Follow these steps:

  • Consider the work triangle: Determine the optimal positioning of the sink, stove or cooktop, and refrigerator while keeping the concept of the work triangle in mind. Make sure that the island doesn’t disrupt the flow between these essential kitchen elements.
  • Designate functional zones: Divide the L-shaped island into separate functional zones based on your requirements. For instance, you can allocate one side for food preparation and cooking, while using the other side for seating or additional storage.
  • Plan for storage: Decide where and how many RTA cabinets you need to fulfill your storage needs. Consider incorporating a combination of drawers, shelves, and tall cabinets to accommodate various kitchen items.

Step 3: Choosing the Right RTA Cabinets

Picking the perfect RTA cabinets is vital for both the design and functionality of your L-shaped kitchen island. Follow these guidelines:

  • Consider the style and finish: Opt for RTA cabinets that align with the overall aesthetic of your kitchen. Decide on the door style, color, and finish that complement your design theme, whether it’s contemporary, traditional, or transitional.
  • Assess quality and durability: Seek out high-quality RTA cabinets constructed from sturdy materials like solid wood or plywood. Check for features such as robust construction, smooth drawer glides, and adjustable hinges.
  • Optimize storage solutions: Explore cabinets with smart storage features, such as deep drawers, pull-out shelves, or specialized organizers. These elements will enhance the functionality of your L-shaped island.

Step 4: Creating a Detailed Island Design

Once you’ve finalized the layout and cabinet selection, it’s time to create a detailed design for your L-shaped kitchen island. Follow these steps:

  • Utilize design software or sketch the island: Make use of design software tools or create a hand-drawn sketch to visualize the island layout accurately. Include precise measurements and the placement of RTA cabinets, appliances, and seating areas.
  • Consider electrical and plumbing requirements: If you plan to integrate appliances or a sink into the island, consult professionals to ensure proper electrical and plumbing connections. Take into account outlets, ventilation, and water supply lines as needed.
  • Pay attention to countertop materials: Choose the suitable countertop material that suits your design and functional needs. Popular choices include granite, quartz, or butcher block. Consider durability, maintenance requirements, and budget when making your selection.

Step 5: Ordering, Assembling, and Installing the RTA Cabinets

Now that you have finalized your design, it’s time to proceed with ordering, assembling, and installing the RTA cabinets in your L-shaped kitchen island. Follow these guidelines:

  • Placing your order: Get in touch with your selected RTA cabinet supplier and provide them with the specifications of your design. Make sure to order all the required cabinets, ensuring you have all the necessary components and hardware.
  • Assembling the cabinets: Follow the manufacturer’s assembly instructions to put together the RTA cabinets. Ensure that you have all the required tools and equipment for the assembly process.
  • Installing the cabinets on the island: Position the assembled cabinets in their designated locations on the L-shaped island. Secure them to the floor and to each other according to the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Make any adjustments as needed to ensure they are level and properly aligned.


Constructing an island using RTA cabinets is a gratifying DIY project that has the power to completely revamp your kitchen area. With the convenient nature of RTA cabinets (Ready-to-Assemble), you can effortlessly create a practical and fashionable island.


To start, consult our comprehensive manual offering step-by-step guidance and valuable suggestions for constructing the island. Begin by gathering all the necessary materials and tools, including the RTA cabinets, countertop, screws, and a power drill. Adhere to the instructions in the manual to assemble the cabinets, ensuring a precise and secure alignment.



Once assembled, position the cabinets in your preferred layout, making any necessary adjustments for a level and stable foundation. Connect the cabinets together and firmly attach them to the floor. Lastly, install the countertop, guaranteeing a perfect fit, and secure it firmly to the cabinets.



With our detailed manual and a dash of DIY spirit, you’ll achieve a personally crafted island using RTA cabinets that augments both functionality and appeal in your kitchen.


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Incorporating Seating Options: Bar Stools or Built-in Banquettes

When planning your L-shaped kitchen island, it’s crucial to take into account the inclusion of seating options that not only enhance the island’s appearance but also establish a warm and inviting atmosphere for dining or casual get-togethers. Two popular choices for seating are bar stools and built-in banquettes.



Bar stools are a versatile alternative that can bring a contemporary and sleek touch to your island. They are available in various styles, materials, and heights to suit your design preferences and the height of the island’s countertop. When choosing bar stools, consider factors such as comfort, durability, and ease of cleaning. Swivel stools offer flexibility and easy movement, while stools with backrests provide additional support and comfort. It’s also important to measure the available space to determine the number of stools that can comfortably fit around the island.



On the flip side, built-in banquettes offer a cozy and intimate seating option that seamlessly integrates with the island’s design. These custom-made seating areas are typically positioned against one side of the L-shaped island, creating a comfortable and stylish space for family and friends to gather. Built-in banquettes have the advantage of efficiently utilizing space, often incorporating storage beneath the seating or within the surrounding cabinetry. Consider upholstering the banquettes with durable and stain-resistant fabric, as it allows for easy maintenance and cleaning.

Functional Considerations for L-Shaped Kitchen Island: Storage Solutions and Appliances

When it comes to designing an L-shaped kitchen island, careful consideration of functional factors, such as storage solutions and appliances, is paramount. Enhancing the island’s functionality and efficiency can be accomplished by maximizing storage space and selecting the appropriate appliances.



Effective storage solutions play a vital role in maintaining an organized and clutter-free kitchen. With an L-shaped island, there are numerous opportunities to incorporate diverse storage options to suit individual needs. Implementing a combination of drawers, cabinets, and open shelves can accommodate different items.


Deep drawers are ideal for storing pots, pans, and small appliances, while cabinets can house larger items and pantry essentials. Open shelves provide an aesthetically pleasing display area for frequently used dishes or decorative items. Utilizing a mix of storage solutions ensures that everything has its designated place, making it easier to locate items during cooking or entertaining.



Furthermore, the selection of suitable appliances for your L-shaped kitchen island is crucial. Evaluate your cooking habits and preferences to determine which appliances would be most convenient at arm’s reach. Options may include a built-in cooktop, oven, microwave, wine cooler, or beverage refrigerator.


For those who enjoy hosting gatherings, incorporating a sink or secondary prep sink into the island can facilitate food preparation and cleanup without constant back-and-forth to the main kitchen area. It is essential to carefully plan the placement of appliances for easy accessibility and to create a functional work triangle between the sink, cooktop, and refrigerator.


Final Thoughts

At Nelson Cabinetry, we comprehend the significance of a well-designed kitchen island, which is why we provide a complimentary 3D design service. Utilizing our expertise and state-of-the-art technology, you can envision the appearance of your L-shaped kitchen island before making any commitments. Get in touch with us today to explore the possibilities and bring your dream kitchen to reality!

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Nelson Cabinetry

Nelson Cabinetry is an online distributor of high quality kitchen and bathroom cabinetry. We pride ourselves in delivering a high quality product via an easy to use, convenient website. Placing your cabinet order has never been easier and you can do so from the comfort of your home, office or job site.


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Evan Nelson

Evan Nelson

Evan Nelson is a skilled content writer with over 5 years of experience specializing in kitchen and bath design. His expertise in the field and ability to convey complex ideas in an accessible way have made his articles a valuable resource for homeowners and design enthusiasts alike. Evan's insights have been featured in top publications like Homes & Gardens, Family Handyman, and Real Homes. He focuses on providing practical advice, innovative ideas, and detailed guides to help readers make informed decisions about their kitchen spaces. With a passion for creating content that educates and inspires, Evan's writing helps transform kitchen dreams into reality.

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