Gloria Graham, AKBD
Brendan Donovan Furniture & Cabinet Co.
3685 Investment Lane, West Palm Beach, Florida
Phone (561)254-7736,

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


It doesn't get much more basic than this!

As I explore and research the concept of the intuitive kitchen for my new book I find myself wanting to start from the very beginning.  What were the first kitchens like and how did they evolve?  The obvious answer is that they  developed to better suit the needs and lifestyles of our ancestors. The first kitchens consisted of only one essential element which is fire.  When that fire was located indoors the first kitchen was born.  These fires  were not only used to cook but to heat the home, or at least main living area.  It was truly the warm heart of the home.  As cultures advanced and segments of it became more affluent, kitchens were located away from the main living areas to keep smoke and cooking odors at bay and to keep the help out of sight! (I would have thought "help" would be a sight for sore eyes!) I remember touring a southern plantation which housed a free standing kitchen.  The guide explained that the threat of fire also motivated building a separate structure for the kitchen. Should it burn down, hopefully, it would not take the main house with it.
The hand pump was used in the US even in the 1940s! 
The second essential element to come into the kitchen was, of course, water.  At first manual pumps brought water indoors not to be followed by modern plumbing until the late19th century. Why is this important to my kitchen today, you ask?  The reason is because this brings us back to the most basic essentials, your cooking appliances, sink and faucet.   


This sink and faucet combo is by Kohler and the modern day hearth features a Viking range. These represent state-of-the-art "basics" and a good place to begin planning your kitchen.  If state-of-the-art is not in your budget, no worries, today's competitive market offers many beautiful, quality products at more consumer friendly price points.  Just make sure to do the research, especially when purchasing on line.  Check warranty policies and never hesitate to contact a kitchen professional before you spend any amount of money.  A simple consultation could be your best investment.  Next post- The First Modern Kitchen


  1. The succeeding generations are very lucky to grow up in a house complete with all the amenities in the house, particularly the kitchen. During the early years, they've been using dry woods or anything to start fire, and they actually cook using rocks. But it's cool imagining these things how our elders a long time ago manage to develop the kitchen design we are enjoying in the present! ;-)

  2. Yes and even though it's so different today, there are still common threads such as the need to be as efficient as possible and to meet a budget! Thanks for the comment :)