I'm new and so is my kitchen! Help with layout!

frmrswifeJanuary 18, 2014

I need layout help. I really don't know where to start, but I read the sticky and tried to answer the questions on the "quizzes."

I've placed some cabinets and appliances in here to get started. We are adding a 20 x 32 space onto our house. It includes a 20 x 18 kitchen and expansion of a current bedroom to be a master bed/bath/closet. We are repurposing our current 9 x 10 kitchen to a laundry room, which is now on our back porch.

We are a family of 4. We have a 5 yo and 18 month old and haven't ruled out another child. We plan to stay here at least 5 - 7 more years. I do all of the cooking unless dh wants cookies. He can slice and bake. My family visits in the kitchen. We spend a lot of time in our current tiny kitchen. I am a stay at home mom. My toddler and I eat lunch at home daily, and I cook supper 5 - 6 nights a week. I'm pretty diverse - I do everything from grill outside to crock pot to stir fry or casseroles. We eat a lot of fruits and vegetables.

This is meant to be a nice kitchen that will give us more space and allow for more company (I have 4 siblings, and our Sunday school class gets together regularly.), but it's not my dream kitchen. If it were, I would love a 36" Dacor dual fuel range with 6 burners. We are sticking with our 30" convection range we have for now.

My must haves are an island and plenty of prep space. I have about 18" of total prep space in my current kitchen, ONE lower cabinet (that's in the corner), and three small drawers. I need storage for mixing bowls and small appliances. I need a place to sort mail/file, have my laptop. I would love a walk in pantry but I don't want to waste space on a huge one. An entry closet would be nice to put my stroller as we don't have a garage, but it's not a must have. Space is key for me. We have a dining room, but I like an eating area in my kitchen too. Chairs at the island would do. My stand mixer stays on my counter and I drink coffee in the winter.

The new kitchen will be the entry to the house for most everyone. Our driveway goes to the back of the house. The kitchen will flow into a dining room and den. I want lots of natural light, plenty of space and functionality. I am open to any suggestions. None of this is set, and I would love ideas.

Questions I have:
*Where is the best place for the entry door?
*Where should I build a pantry? Behind the range and cabinets? Another place? Use some of the master suite area for part of the pantry? What is a good size?
*If we put pantry behind the range, should I change to a U shape?
*How big should the island be? What length will accommodate 4 chairs?
*Do I have enough space for a desk area with cabinets? Small entry closet? From Screen Captures

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Where is the fridge? I see all those small squares blocked off in the kitchen on your graph (by the DW and sink); are they spoken for as to use? Are they counter workspaces? Is that the range up against the laundry room?

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 12:49PM
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Not addressing the layout issue immediately but I just want to warn you that adding on is a lot more expensive than new construction. I worked with an architect to draw up a 400 sf addition that came in (3 competitive bids) around $120k without the kitchen innards (mid range house, 1979 tract Colonial with aluminum siding) . so you may easily be at $200k+ for your addition including kitchen. I just say that because if you are going to that much cost a 36" Dacor range is a minor difference. Best wishes.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 12:52PM
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Thanks for your replies. Let's see... The fridge is on the north side just on the other side of the dishwasher. All of the little squares are lower cabinets with countertop. I didn't put in uppers on the diagram bc The program I have been using is limited... hence the weird corner cabinet too. The range is currently next to the laundry. I had another layout with it on the east wall with the L shape moving north to the exterior wall. I like that idea too so I can have a big window over my sink. But as with this layout I'm having a hard time with the left over space on the opposite wall.

As for the addition... We live in rural south Georgia, and the cost of living is very low. Where are you, scrappy? The estimates we have received for the entire construction are under $80 a square foot with high end cabinets, hard wood floors, granite, etc. We might use our current appliances bc my stove is fairly new and appliances are something we can do later. We do want to build on one of our farms (we grow watermelons, cabbage, cotton, peanuts...) eventually but would rather our kids be older. And we really love our house. It was DH's grandfather's... Glass door knobs, arched entries, lots of character. We have a huge lot in our tiny town and can ride our atv just about anywhere. If we do this and end up not building it would be ok. I'll have to keep you posted on how it ends up price wise!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 1:34PM
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Here's one possibility...just to see if I'm even close :) From Kitchen plans

Windows on each side of 36" range (go for it, even if you just add a small cabinet now to make room for it later)... From TV kitchens

And lots of widows over your sink (borrowed from Homeblessings)...... From TV kitchens

Closet and desk on wall to bedroom, along with seating for two (coffee, etc.) and plant with low light needs (LOL) but cute in the picture.

Cookbook shelf on end, with cabinet pantry, fridge, dishwasher, sink, and back to the windows. I moved the island over just a bit, since 4' is a lot of space, but you could move it back.

Your farmhouse sounds nice! We hope to remodel my husband's grandparents' farmhouse. Best of luck with the project!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 2:30PM
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This is a super idea! Y'all are awesome. You know how you look at something so long and just can't see a thing!!

The only thing I might change about this is maybe to swap the sink and range. The back window (where you have the range) looks out over our back yard, and I think I would like the smaller windows on the side of the range to look at the neighbors' house. This also breaks up the huge "hallway" I was making with the entry on the left. Definitely a great option!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 3:21PM
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That would look really nice...and I would go with the view, too!

If you do that, can you put a prep sink on the island? It would give you a great work triangle on the long wall and a separate clean up area. Just an idea :) From Kitchen plans

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 5:08PM
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I could do that! I redrew our plan to show my husband. This is a great option. We might have be able to work in a bench seat and table in the corner. I would have to play with measurements. The thing I guess I might miss here is a large pantry. But I could sacrifice the closet if I felt necessary.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 5:14PM
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You know, I would incorporate the pantry into the laundry area. Maybe something like this? A pocket door would take up less space and make freezer access easier... From Kitchen plans

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 5:28PM
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Another idea, if the entry can be on the long wall.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 5:59PM
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We just built a kitchen with almost the exact same layout that Lavender_lass helped you with (fridge and stove on the left wall, sink at the top, etc) and even though I haven't worked in it yet I can tell you that it feels very functional.
I'll stick in a picture in case it helps you visualize it.

If I were you, I would try to figure out a good pantry solution because I have two kids (ages 5 and 7) and one more on the way and a big part of the reason I ended up hating my old kitchen was because there was a totally insufficient pantry. And it sounds like you and I have very similar cooking habits, so your needs are probably very similar to mine.

Best of luck! You'll get great advice on here-- as LL has already shown you. :)

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 7:58PM
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I would be tempted to have the entry door between the dining room and kitchen, across from the laundry. That way people wouldn't walk straight into the kitchen in the same way. However I would want a door to the backyard too so it may be bit too redundant to have two.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 8:21PM
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Thank y'all so much. This is all so helpful. I really like the design lavender did too - and the picture of your kitchen, swfr, is just like it! You are going to love it! It really helps to see it for real. I think you are correct about the pantry. We live 25 min from the grocery store so I keep a lot of stuff on hand and I like gadgets! I think I can work it in though, even if it ends up in the corner instead of the sitting area.... Unless someone else wants to chime in with a suggestion! Sena, your plan looks much like one of my originals. I like it but wish it used more space in the hall area.

One other question. What do y'all think about a door to the master bedroom from the kitchen? I can do without this, right? The laundry will be a walk through, and will provide a pretty short path to the bedroom.

Lavender, I will definitely use some of my laundry for pantry type storage - but it will have to be a walk through just for traffic flow for our family. I'm planning on a pocket door on that south laundry wall.

Lyfia, you have a good suggestion except my side yard is fenced in so I would have to go into the fence to use a door next to the dining area. It's a good idea but probably not something that we will want to do.

I'm going to post a picture of my current kitchen/future laundry room. Y'all will see what I'm leaving for this awesome space. I'm super thrilled!!! I'll spare you the nastiness of my porch laundry area. I'm not going to know what to do with a real laundry room!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 9:34PM
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Here is my kitchen. My husband put it in about 10 years ago right before we met. One lower cabinet for pots, one for trash, and four small drawers. I do have a decent pantry behind where I'm standing for the picture that will turn into a linen closet. It's 3 x 5 and had one shelf in it when we married. Now it has lots!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 9:54PM
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One other question.... If I did the windows on either side of the range, do I just put my spices in the upper next to one of the windows?

    Bookmark   January 18, 2014 at 9:55PM
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Well my husband suggested we put the entry next to the dining room -- before I even told him you had suggested it -- so I guess that may be where it goes! :)

    Bookmark   January 19, 2014 at 8:52AM
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Two doors might be nice! One could be for bringing in groceries, driveway, etc. and maybe the other (by dining) could go out to a patio or porch?

    Bookmark   January 19, 2014 at 1:37PM
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Are you planning on a range hood with outside venting? Looks like there is room to not put the mw over the range.

I would love the size of that laundry room!

    Bookmark   January 19, 2014 at 2:24PM
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Yes! I plan on getting a nice hood instead of,the microwave! Yay!

    Bookmark   January 19, 2014 at 10:18PM
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I wanted to give y'all and update on the latest layout that we have. We took suggestions and came up what I think is a great plan⦠very similar to swf and sena's suggestions. Tell me what you think! We borrowed from the master suite for the pantry. I like that idea since I don't spend a lot of time in the bathroom.

I've listed on here what we've got planned for cabinets/drawers and wanted to see what everyone thought. The location of the window ("65) above the sink and the sink will dictate some of the cabinetry when my cabinet man comes to measure, but the measurements are pretty good here.

I just bought a used 36" Dacor Range Top, double oven and warming drawer for a steal! They are 10 years old but look brand new. I think they were hardly used -- came from practically a show kitchen in a really big house. I was really worried about not liking a 36" cooktop with 5 different size eyes but we didn't really have a $2600 range top in our budget. Then this one came along! They will be loved here for sure!

I'm so excited. They have framed and are putting the roof on Monday. :) I told my husband that I'm going to sleep on the island. From Screen Captures

    Bookmark   February 22, 2014 at 3:17PM
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Glad you got your Dacor and other appliances for a bargain price.

Looks like a good plan, but fridge is too far from prep. I'd consider moving the desk to the sink wall, and resize the cabs on the range wall and have the fridge+12' cab next to the ovens. Or ovens can go to the other end of that counter run. Also, you may want to rearrange the island cabs, maybe move MW to the fridge end of the island.

Table and island seating looks a bit tight, but if they won't be used at the same time I think it is doable. Or you could just use 3 sides of the table.

You can consider a pocket door for the pantry.

This post was edited by sena01 on Sun, Feb 23, 14 at 6:26

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 6:19AM
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Thanks! i thought about the MW⦠I have never had one in an island so I didn't know where to put it. The end probably would be a better spot. I see what you're saying about the fridge. We thought about turning the island, but then it's not convenient to the range. I will work on it and see what I can come up with.

Lav -- I meant to tell you that i LOVED your design but could not make myself do the windows on the sides of the range. I cook so much I felt like I needed my cabinets to the sides, and we decided to put 4 6' windows on that wall.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 2:05PM
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What about turning the island to face the sink wall? Can I push it 6" towards the stove? I can also make it 6" smaller. Would it be inconvenient to the range facing the sink? We want to make sure we have room for a table. And that would solve the fridge issue.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 6:37PM
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Ok. I reworked the fridge placement. I like it ok, but now I'm not sure about it being so far from the dishwasher. I would ideally put my glasses next to the fridge, so this means several trips back and forth every day unloading the dishwasher. ??? Idk!! From Screen Captures

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 8:57PM
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I like your plan! I'm the same way...I love the look of the windows, but I don't know if I could give up my uppers on each side of the range.

Here's an idea...just larger windows over the sink (like your picture above) and the banquette! Also, I changed the plan back to what you had earlier...just with fridge in new location. I like that you don't have the corner and you can store baking supplies in that cabinet :)

Oh, and I did move the prep sink over just a bit...to give you some landing space for the fridge and work space on that side of the sink. Hope this helps! From Kitchen plans

This post was edited by lavender_lass on Sun, Feb 23, 14 at 22:52

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:49PM
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Thanks, lav! I love the banquette. I had one in my original plan and my hubby wasn't sure about it. Is the 3' between the fridge and island ok? I do have room to shorten the island by 6". I guess the only concern now is my glasses storage. I've always kept them next to the fridge. But that sure is a long haul from the DW.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 11:07PM
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I would like to make a couple of suggestions. The fridge is sort of "out of the way". Could the fridge and the ovens be swapped? You access the fridge multiple times a day, but usually only use the ovens for dinner.
Also, where are your dishes and glasses..are they by the window sink? That's a long way from the fridge for the many drinks small ones have during the day. Maybe the dishes could be in one of the cabinets near cooktop and glasses near the reconfigured fridge.
Also, dw could be moved into the island for easy emptying to those cabinets. To make room, the trash could be moved to the left of the prep sink where the vert. storage is and the dw in its place.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 12:36AM
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Canuck, swapping is not a bad idea. I'm going to play with it some more.

I don't think I want the dishwasher in the island bc then I would have to have my big sink in the island and I want the counter space there instead.

I usually keep glasses next to the fridge. In my original design the fridge was in the upper corner. And I *really* liked my storage layout that way. From there going right I had glasses, misc drawers (sippie cups in one), trash, dw, sink, plates, silverware, and baking supplies planned for that wall of cabinets and drawers. Then on the range wall, cooking supplies, pots/pans, ceramics, potholders, trays. I liked that setup.

I'm going to have to think on it some more. I do agree that the fridge is very far from the prep space. But so is my mom's. Her fridge is 20 feet from her range -- and blocked by the island. Her pantry is all the way in the laundry room 20 more feet away. People told her she wasn't going to like it. But she does. And in 14 years since they built their house, this has never bothered me. So if I end up with it way up in the corner, I don't think it will be awful.

Now my good ol' 9x9 kitchen seems so cozy!!

Ok. (lots of time has passed since I started this post!) I've worked on it a little. I've got two plans.

1. The double oven is way in the upper corner, but I still have a drawer for pot holders and cabinets for bakers and such. From Screen Captures

2. This may work. There is a cabinet next to the right of the fridge where I can keep glasses (and counter space for coffee maker too). It's convenient to everything and it's still on the perimeter so that DH and the kids can get drinks without getting in my space to bad. The cabinet next to the oven could house all of my hot pads instead of having to split them if I put the ovens in the top corner. The only issue is that the glasses cabinet is far from the dw, but I can get over that. Now to see which one I can get over the easiest⦠dw to glasses or fridge to prep.

The fridge is a little deep and close to the desk, but we haven't bought one and I can get a counter depth one if it makes life easier.

From Screen Captures

Tell me what y'all think. Y'all are awesome btw.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 2:12AM
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One other thing. If I had to, I could put my desk in the laundry room (old kitchen). I would rather not, but there is definitely room. From Screen Captures

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 2:18AM
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Okay, y'all!!! Is this the best one yet? 2:30am and I may have hit my design groove. Yes!

If I give up my kitchen desk and put it in the laundryâ¦. Good zones, better triangle, allows for huge dining table (I think looking at each other during meals is important when you have little kids!) AND I get all of my cabinet planning just how I wanted it. And my deep storage for my brooms and such -- with outlet inside for charging my mini vac. AND that wall that the desk was on is brick that will be covered with sheetrock (it's the exterior of the house right now), so it probably would not be the best to hang cabinets on. And maybe I could keep it brick for character instead of covering it with sheetrock. From Desktop

*Is the range top placed weird with the island?
*I have good counter space on either side of the range, so does it matter where the island prep space is?
*Should I make the island a little wider than 45" so that the chairs are a little further back? Or move it back from the sink 6 more inches? I wish we could scoot the range wall cabinets up and take out the pantry door, but that's not happening.

To be honest, giving up the desk in the kitchen, especially right next to the entry, is probably a really good clutter reducer.

Go ahead and burst my bubble⦠:)

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 2:42AM
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Hey frmrswife, just wanted to say I love your post about living in DH's grandfathers house. DH and I have been grain farmers up north for 37 years. We live in his uncles old house(been here 33 years) and our son and daughter- in-law live in the same aunt and uncles (newer) home next door to us since they are now passed away. It's a fact of life in farming families that we occupy our ancestors homes though there's nothing wrong with building anew! We ride our atv's around too, with the grandkids.

Btw, thank you southern farmers for those luscious fruits and other produce we can't grow up here. We are happier and healthier because of you!

Good luck with your kitchen reno!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 9:03AM
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I would move the oven over by the pantry area. I think you can manage to not have to access the pantry when needing to open the oven and it is out of the way and no chance of kiddos running into it.

I also prefer the area visible from the dining room and the rest of the house to not be a view of an oven or a potentially messy desk.

Having your breakfast/coffee bar there could work well. Close to DW and you'll want to put dishes/glasses etc. close to the DW and not across the kitchen and easy access to the table too.

I'm not fond of the turning of the kitchen unless you completely change the sink and stove around. Then it makes more sense. You loose usable prep space and you have people in your work areas with the stove exposed like that and conversation to anybody sitting on the island will be funky.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 11:54AM
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Bec: Thanks! Yes, everyone has lived here - my fil, his brother, dh before we got married.... And it's a precious house.

We are gearing up for watermelons now and will send most of ours to PA, NY, VA, etc. I don't know if our a make it your way, but they sure are yummy! My fil is the best watermelon grower around :)

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 11:57AM
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frmrswife, why not change that encroaching door into the pantry to a pocket door? I know at one time they were unreliable and jumped the track, but now they're better designed.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 1:34PM
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thank you canuck, I just talked to may builder, and we did exactly that! great idea.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 2:25PM
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Three things about the space...I think the fridge does work best by the main sink, especially if the table is over there, too.

The prep sink on the island is FOR the cooktop/range. Without it, you don't have a very functional kitchen. I think the island works best opposite the cooktop, but maybe just a bit smaller.

The desk should be in the kitchen, IMHO, but not in the main work zones.

By changing the island slightly and moving a stool to the end, you are no longer all lined up and it will be easier to visit with the cook and each other. Also, the desk chair should be the same height as the table chairs...that way you can move it over for extra seating, when needed.

The banquette will give you MUCH more seating, because people can squeeze in, where chairs would take more room. Having the banquette on one side only, makes it easier for people to access and with outdoor fabric, a breeze to clean up. There are some beautiful outdoor fabrics (that look like indoor) that would be perfect for the banquette, cushions, chairs, etc.

Oh, and I think the banquette will allow you to sit in the sun and take full advantage of the windows and view...although the windows will have to be a little higher from the floor, for the banquette. Hope this helps :) From Kitchen plans

One more thing...why is the laundry door opening out? It would probably make more sense to swing into the room, against that right side (away from sink) but can't see entire space.

This post was edited by lavender_lass on Mon, Feb 24, 14 at 18:45

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 6:42PM
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and if there isn't space for the door to swing in, pocket it too, lol.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 8:20PM
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So it was like crickets in here today and I know at this point y'all are saying "bless this girl's heart. She has no clue." ;)

I do like the banquette. I had it like that and pulled for it from the beginning. It's even in my inspiration kitchen. I totally agree about the sink in the island. The main thing we use moms for is to fill pots and dump pasta. It's so nice to have.

I also like the idea of the desk in the kitchen. I do happen to be a tad junky at times so this does worry me :)

You would think that with this amount of space I could make it perfect but the addition of space itself adds issues!

The link is what I'm going for.

Thank you all again.

Here is a link that might be useful: Inspiration kitchen

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 8:20PM
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