Common Kitchen Layouts

TKDC - Kew - Haydn 6

Let’s breakdown the common layout for a kitchen and discuss the terminology for the different elements

Every home is different, therefore every kitchen is different. While the design might change from space to space, there are 5 common layouts that form the general concept of the kitchen shape. You can use the diagrams and images below to identify what layout your kitchen is or which layout you’d like it to be.

G shape
A very common layout in older Australian homes. Usually characterised by 3 walls and a return bench.

G Shape layout       TKDC - Croydon Hills - Dan B
Example of a common G shape kitchen

G Shape 2       G Shape 3


U shape
Can be wide and narrow or narrow and long. Usually seen with 2 walls and a return bench or sometimes with an island in the centre.

U Shape layout                             U shape with part return
Example of a U shape kitchen

U Shape layout 1       U Shape Layout 2

U Shape with L Shape island       U Shape layout with T Shape island
U shape with L shape island                                           U shape with T shape island


L shape
Often seen with the addition of an island bench in the center. Usually seen with the L part running along 2 walls. A common layout for modern homes

L Shape layout       L Shape 1
Example of an L shape kitchen

L Shape layout with island       L Shape with 2 islands
Example of an L shape kitchen with an island               L shape kitchen with 2 islands

L Shape with island 1       L Shape with island 2

L Shape with island 3


A very popular layout at the moment. A galley consists of 2 walls opposing each other and a walk through at either ends of the kitchen. A gallery style consists of 1 wall and island in front of that.

Galley layout       Galley Layout 3
Example of a galley kitchen

Galley Layout 2       Galley Layout 1

Gallery layout       Gallery Layout 3

Example of a gallery kitchen

Gallery Layout 2       Gallery Layout 1


One wall of cabinets usually seen in smaller apartments. Everything that’s needed for the kitchen runs along one wall.

Single-wall layout       Single-wall Layout 1
Example of a single-wall kitchen


What is an island?
An island is an area of cabinetry that sits independently of the rest of the kitchen and doesn’t touch any walls. It can house the sink or cooktop or be left clear as a preparation zone. An island bench can be any shape, the most common being a rectangle. Other shapes include; square, curved, half hexagon, L shaped, etc. An island bench can be built into the floor or put on wheels to be moved around. This space usually becomes the feature of the kitchen and the center of which people congregate.  An island bench can be added to any shape kitchen if there is sufficient space surrounding it.

TKDC - Kew - Haydn 6


What is a return or peninsula bench?
A return bench or peninsula bench is an area of cabinetry that extends out from the end of the kitchen but doesn’t run along a wall. It is usually connected to a wall at one end but the 2 longest sides of the return are accessible from both sides of the kitchen (inside and outside of the kitchen). A lot of homes use this space as a breakfast bar area or a chance for additional storage on the outside of the kitchen. They are commonly seen in G and U shaped kitchens.

TKDC - Greensborough - Dan 1

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