looking for layout feedback

mpg2004January 15, 2014

Hi again,

We are looking to remodel our kitchen, and I would love some feedback on the following layouts. I posted our current layout about a week ago, and really appreciate the feedback I got. I've thought a lot about the suggestions I got and came up with these ideas.

I've created these layouts using the NKBA's virtual planner, which has really helped me to visualize the space, but the layouts below are very much works in progress! The “wall” labeled B is actually totally open to the family room. The eat-in area does have beveled walls and the door cannot be moved within the scope of our project. The tables seem to come in fixed sizes in the NKBA program; ours is a bit smaller. I also couldn't figure out how to draw in the island overhang, it’s about 9”. Our aisles are all at least 36”, which works ok for us.

One of our headaches is figuring out a good place to put the fridge. We've got kids who seem to eat more every day, so we really want to figure out a way to fit in a standard sized fridge. Wall “A” is load-bearing, and we've gotten mixed opinions from the different contractors we've talked to about recessing the fridge into that wall. We've got a wall oven & microwave in the cabinet labeled #7 (#4 in the peninsula plan).

So, I would love to hear which layout you prefer -- and why!

Here’s some info:
Option 1: keeps our island downdraft gas cooktop, and moves the fridge into the old desk area. The narrow pantry to the left of the fridge would actually be a shallow “command center” set of shelves facing into the family room. I am concerned the fridge would be too far away with this set-up. There IS about 9" of counter space behind the cooktop, just couldn't get that to render.

Option 2: moves the cooktop to the wall shared with the dining room and adds in an external vent hood. This has the additional cost of adding in venting and a new cooktop (the current one is only 2 years old), so I don’t know if this change is worth it. It would give a nice open island. We’re also considering switching from gas to induction.

Option 3: also moves the cooktop to the wall and has a peninsula instead of an island. I couldn't figure out how to draw in the overhang on the peninsula, but I envision seating there, facing into the kitchen. This seems very open in the middle of the kitchen, am I wasting space with this plan?

Option 1

Option 2

Option 3


ps I know I got a lot of suggestions to take down the wall between the kitchen and dining room when I was first looking for layout ideas. We have thought about that A LOT, but have decided that what makes the most sense for us and this house is to keep the spaces separate. We really want to work within the footprint of the current kitchen. thanks!

This post was edited by mpg2004 on Wed, Jan 15, 14 at 1:43

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#2- I personally don't like island cooktops. Even with an island I find the space between the sink and cooktop the main prep area. I would make the upper corner cabinet an easy reach. You can sell your current cooktop. Get several estimates on the cost of venting or DIY it.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 9:52AM
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#2 would be my choice, but not understanding the cooktop part. Is this because you would be switching to a range? Also what is the distance from the island to the wall with the fridge? It looks less than 3ft, but I'm assuming each square is a foot. #3 would be my second choice of the options. Have you considered putting the peninsula on the sink side instead and thus keeping the cooking area a bit more enclosed and keep traffic out of there to get to the fridge.

I'm sure you can sell the cooktop you have and get some money back if it is the range thing or fit a wall oven in on the other side of the island.

What is the reason for the 9" overhang and where would it go?

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 11:18AM
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Our remodel is driven by needing to replace a worn floor & countertop, so we started out thinking we would leave all the appliances in their current places. However, we soon realized that we needed to replace the cabinets as well, so we're rethinking what the best layout for our space would be.

As far as I can tell, the grids drawn in the pictures are spaced 16" apart. I can't see how to switch that in the program. Our spacing is right at 36" handle to handle on all our aisles right now.

We have thought about a peninsula on the sink side BUT the door shown near the kitchen table leads to our patio which we use for dining quite a bit spring through fall. We thought that location would be a major block to traffic flow from the sink/dw to bbq & patio table.

The island gas downdraft works fine for us. However, I do miss having an open island work surface, so we're exploring what the layout would be like if we moved the cooktop to the wall shown in options 2 & 3. We are planning to stay with a separate wall oven & cooktop setup. If we're going through the expense of moving the cooktop, it makes sense to do it "right' and put in overhead venting. The downdraft is built in to our current cooktop, not a separate pop-up. IF we are replacing the cooktop anyway, then we're exploring switching from gas to induction. One thing leads to another, you know!

thanks for helping me think through these options!

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 12:22PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

My preference is also layout #2, with a little tweaking of fridge location. I'd switch the fridge with cabinet #7, so that the island and/or cabinet #5 could be used for landing space.

If that's the door to the DR on the right (looks like a window to me, but you said that wall is shared with the DR), that would also lessen the conflict of open fridge door with someone coming from the DR. The fridge will be used more often than the MW or wall oven. You'll also have more room to open oven door into the deeper aisle.

I don't care for island cooktop in #1, and the peninsula in #3 looks as if it would impede good traffic flow.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 12:23PM
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oh, and I forgot to explain the 9" overhang. That's what we currently have on the wall oven/fridge side of our island. The aisle spacing is at least 36" from the end of that overhang to the appliance handles. I couldn't figure out how to draw that in the virtual kitchen planning program. It's necessary if we have the island cooktop, but we could go with a narrower island if the cooktop is in a different location.


    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 12:26PM
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I understand on the cooktop now. Guess you could keep it and still do proper venting if you wanted to save some money. Just don't use the downdraft portion.

I know what you mean with project creep - seems to always happen to me no matter how small something starts out. We have one now where we started with needing to replace the water heater soon to having a tankless installed in a different location so I can re-claim that space in the garage to get a utility closet and drop station that is accessible from inside the house (I currently store vaccum/steam mop in a metal cabinet in the garage). Hopefully nothing else will be added while we are doing that as it hasn't been started yet. Hopefully the water heater will be installed next week and then I'll have to wait until spring break to frame the walls and tear it down and add the electricity etc. I want there for chargers and paper shredder.

This post was edited by lyfia on Wed, Jan 15, 14 at 12:37

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 12:30PM
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Thanks for the feedback! I'm now second guessing option 2, wondering if I really have enough space along that right wall to place the cooktop. The window-looking doorway is IRL a 41" uncased arched opening between the kitchen & dining room. I've got roughly 58" from the front edge of the sink wall cabinets to the beginning of the archway. This doesn't leave much prep/landing space on either side of the cooktop, but the island would be right behind. I do love the idea of getting the cooktop off the island, but wonder how cramped cooking in this new location would feel? I tend to use the cootop for most meals.


    Bookmark   January 16, 2014 at 11:58AM
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Michelle - try doing a mockup with your existing space (since aisles etc. doesn't change much) and pretend like you are cooking to see how it functions for you. I would suggest doing it more than once in a row to kind of get used to it as well to sort out any feelings that doesn't relate to how it actually works, but rather the unfamiliarity of it.

Pick a few of the meals you cook often and go through the same motions as you would now, but with a different location of the appliances.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2014 at 11:48AM
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You would have more room it you didn't do the diagonal cabinet in the corner.

Photo during construction.

Photo showing where my sink is in relation to the range.

Between right edge of sink and wall range is against is 6' 5" and my main prep area.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2014 at 1:25PM
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Might want to check with hombuyer23 who seems to have a similar setup.

Here is a link that might be useful: homebuyer23 reveal

    Bookmark   January 17, 2014 at 9:24PM
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What about a classic U shape? This puts a lot of prep space between the sink and cooktop, plus the prep is under the window since most of the time is in prep.

You have enough room to make the peninsula deeper so there is more room behind the sink and still keep the middle of the U big enough.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2014 at 10:41PM
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Thanks everyone! I really appreciate the link to homebuyer23's reveal, they really do have a remarkably similar layout! It looks like we're going to be spending some time this weekend mocking up cooktops to see how cooking along that wall would feel. The cabinet makers we've spoken to have said it would all fit much better if we went to a 30" cooktop instead of the 36" we have now. The cooktop has to be all above its own cabinet right? That's the part I was missing -- I was looking at the available counter space, so I was putting it (in my mind anyway!) partly over the side of the corner cabinet to give more landing space on the left side of the cooktop.


This post was edited by mpg2004 on Sat, Jan 18, 14 at 15:47

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 11:56AM
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