Apron sinks, also called apron-front or farmhouse sinks, bring instant charm and vintage appeal to your cooking space. Distinguished by their exposed front that drops down to the cabinet below rather than stopping at the countertop edge, apron sinks are available in a variety of materials. You can choose cast iron or fireclay for a traditional look or add a bit of drama with stone or copper. Stainless-steel versions bring a modern twist to the traditional sink design and fit well in contemporary kitchens. Each material offers specific advantages and disadvantages, so research the choices carefully. Both single-bowl and double-bowl apron sinks are available. In most kitchens, the faucet is installed on the countertop behind the sink or on the wall behind it.
Pros and Cons
Apron sinks blend style and function into one sculptural form. These sinks don' t blend into the background rather become a focal-point that helps set the tone of the kitchen' s work area. With a wide base and deep basin, they easily accommodate large pots and pans and minimize splashing. These sinks are usually installed farther forward than other sinks, so you' re situated closer to the work area and don' t need to lean over as much when washing dishes. However, their deep bowls can make it difficult for children or anyone who is seated to reach the bottom of the sink.
The price of apron sinks varies by material, but they often come with a high price tag and are usually heavy and more difficult to install than other sink models. Because of their weight and size, they usually require a special base cabinet, and due to the exposed front, water can drip on the cabinet below and damage it. If price is an issue, you may be able to save money by purchasing a vintage sink -- but it' s important to make sure the sink is in good condition (which drives up the price considerably). You can refinish vintage cast iron sinks, but they may not hold up well to the everyday wear and tear that' s common in a kitchen work zone. Another option to get the look of an apron sink is a self-trimming apron-front sink, which is easier to install than standard models, may help decrease installation costs, and allow you to keep your existing sink base cabinet.