First crack at our kitchen layout

mtimmerJanuary 24, 2014

Little nervous here, but here goes our initial (and very rough) kitchen layout. Here's the scoop:

Existing kitchen is 12 by 12 feet with a wall separating the kitchen and living room. Our plan is to remove that wall to open everything up (we've been led to believe that is structurally feasible). There is a nice ocean view looking from our proposed prep area across the living room that we are trying to take advantage of that. In adding an eating area, we are infringing on the kitchen space (since it seems relatively wide) and (more or less) leaving the living room area intact.

We are adding the door to the outside, which makes the layout awkward, but if we didn't do so our day-to-day lives would be even more awkward in terms of coming and going. The door can move, but we need it against that wall.

We have numerous concerns about much of our design, but rather than list those concerns we thought it best to first hear what everyone had to say. We're just starting to meet with professionals to do this work and we're trying to develop our own point of view first. In terms of lifestyle, it's just my wife and me. We both like to cook and family gatherings are relatively small. I do hope my graph paper drawing is semi-coherent! Thank you!

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Real quick, before getting ready for work; I think I'd flip the cleanup and range areas. First, you said the ocean view is out the living room? Most of your time is spent prepping so for the majority of work your back will be to the view. Secondly, you should have ventilation. A hood may obstruct the view. The bottom wall is an outside wall? If so, I'd rather vent against the wall to the outside. That's just an initial observation.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 5:55AM
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I see you have a french door to the patio. Where does the new outside door lead to? Have you considered putting the door where the living room window is currently located? That would allow you a possible L-shape.

Because of the prep sink, you have thought about wanting to prep on the peninsula. I like to prep next to my range also, so I get it. But RemodelFla has a point with the venting issue.

At first glance, my biggest issue was the refrigerator and shallow pantry situation. What is in that corner between the 2, nothing? Wouldn't it actually make more sense to have a pull out pantry in that location, and nothing on the wall with the door? Pull-outs over a surprising amount of storage for food items.

But speaking of storage, you otherwise have very little. Where do you plan to put glassware? Dishes?

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 6:49AM
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We were planning on using the peninsula as both cooking and prep areas to take advantage of the view. Yes, having a hood there isn't great, but if we can keep it to one side the impact is minimal. We also have room to extend the peninsula if we need to...not sure if that's necessary.

Controlfreakecs, you're hitting directly on some of our issues. We don't really get how to use that back corner...we'd like a pantry so we just sorta pencilled something in. As we understand it, there should be a landing area on either side of the fridge (french doors), so that's why there's another counter there.

And yes, we're concerned about where we could put dishes as there's not much opportunity for wall cabinets with this design. Glasses could go in a wall cabinet above the DW. Would it be too odd to put dishes in one of the base cabinets under the spur to the side of the main sink?

Re the door, it leads to the driveway...there's a detached garage at the back and we were looking for easy access after parking and ferrying groceries and the like into the house. It does make that back wall more difficult to design around, but we really feel like we need it there.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 10:29AM
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I have the same question as controlfreakecs and I'm not sure you answered it (or I didn't understand). Can you put the door where the window is on the left in the living room? If not exactly there, down toward that window?

As was said then you can have a nice L shape which would be much more functional. I understand about the view. Our island was designed for the view. BUT in reality I never look at the view if I am prepping or cooking on the stove. I only look out between tasks or when I'm sitting at the island.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 10:38AM
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This is a sketch of what I'm interpreting others suggestion as

This post was edited by lyfia on Fri, Jan 24, 14 at 10:58

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 10:55AM
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Yes, that is what I'm thinking except I would like continuous counter between the main sink and the range.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 11:15AM
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Wow, thanks so much for giving us a potential new path to pursue and particular thanks to lyfia for drawing it out as I admitedly wasn't quite following along. That said, while we were going for an open look with the living room this actually is significantly more open then we were thinking of so we'll need to decide if it's "too open." Perhaps if we turned the island 90 degrees that might be an effective compromise.

Regarding that pesky door, we didn't want to place it at the living room window as that window is adjacent to the fireplace and there's a window on the other side of the fireplace that makes for a nice symmetry. On a more practical level, our driveway is quite steep: while the part by the kitchen is flatter, it quickly becomes steep and having the door there means a steeper hike up to the garage instead of using the flat part. There's also little room for steps on that part of the driveway as it's very narrow there. (1948 house.) Perhaps there is a way to use this layout, but to move the door further in.

We're going to the house this afternoon (we're not moving in until we've finished the re-model) so this gives us a new idea to model.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 3:57PM
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Another idea, keeping the outside door in the kitchen (but not sure if it's good enough).

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 4:35PM
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Can you change your French door patio to ones with locks on the outside and come in through there?

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 5:16PM
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Interestingly, we just met with a designer that we're considering hiring (and we liked her a lot) and one of her first thoughts was that we should consider an L-shaped kitchen!

Thank you sena, and your design is even more food for thought. And I like the seating on both sides of the island, which is very conducive for conversation.

Re the French Doors, they do have outside locks but they're on the other side of a backyard fence so you have to go through a gate and then go through the doors. It really seems that the added convenience of the door come at the cost of kitchen function.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 7:42PM
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I didn't think symmetry would be an issue around the fireplace with the way you had the initial design as it was going to block that side completely.

Doing the door inside the middle of the kitchen creates a traffic path right through the working areas. Better to avoid if you can.

You could do an L that is broken possible with a door where my sketch had the pantry. 2ft out from the wall bottom wall in the drawing with door on the right wall. and cut the stove run short and put the opening there if that area works from the outside. Don't have so I can sketch it upright now.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 7:57PM
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Thanks for your additional thoughts lyfia. I'm going to put pencil to graph paper and draw out what you're suggesting.

I agree about the problems the door can have in regard to traffic patterns, but with just the two of us here there should be minimal coming and going.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2014 at 12:07PM
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