possible change to remodeled kitchen in mcm home

rockybirdJanuary 10, 2014

I'm editing this post, hoping it will be easier to read and get more opinions:

My question: Do you think it is worth bumping out this island and built-in appliances four feet in the below pics to build a 9.5 ft x 6 ft. walk in pantry where the built-ins are? Otherwise, I will leave as is and add storage to back of built-ins, but there's only 12" of space.


-Would LOVE a walk in pantry to store food, espresso machine, parrot food, dishes, camelback, water bottles, etc in. Kitchen is open and very visible and hate seeing clutter.

-By moving island/builtins forward, the 14x20' of empty space in front of the island will be better utilized.

-Might be able to use the cool orange and light blue cabs yillimuh pointed me towards.

- worry about design - would the floating cabs not look so cool with everything moved forward?

- would it feel crowded on the counter side where the pantry door is (space btwn. ctr. edge and pantry door/wall will increase from 34" to 48")?

Proposed pantry:

Current scenario/cheapest plan:

Unused space:


Where shelves will go in alternative plan:

Cool cabinets I want to use somehow: :)

This post was edited by rockybird on Sun, Jan 12, 14 at 21:17

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Your kitchen is stunning. Glorious. It does appear to be a giant open space. I know the aesthetic of mcm is the antithesis of clutter, but would you consider a second island or a comfortable seating area? I say this because I have observed that although I use my island for prep, I often wish I had an additional island just for entertaining and buffet serving.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 9:19PM
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Neither. Just turn the island the other direction and add a lower seating area. That won't be cheap either, but its certainly cheaper than tearing the whole kitchen completely apart and trying to rebuild it.

What's happening with the stained concrete that you did? You're planning on tile now?

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 9:22PM
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Carree- THanks for the compliments on the kitchen. We looked at adding a second island, but everyone agrees that it will look too broken up. When the first arch. planned this kitchen, he had considered adding a second island. I discussed it with the new architect and he also agrees that it wouldnt be a good option for the design. It would be the cheapest way to use the space though.

Live oak wire - Thanks for remembering my kitchen! It wouldnt really be tearing up too much...just moving the appliances and island forward 4 ft., but that is still a lot of plumbing and electrical changes. I'll ask the architect about turning the island around. I think he likes how it sits in the middle of the kitchen. It really is pretty to look at.

i was thinking that if I did decide to add the walk in pantry, I could put the door facing the counter and make it a wide panel door. I know I would leave it open most of the time, which would allow the feeling of more space where the counter is.

The concrete floor is an overlay. It is not holding up well.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 5:15PM
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Okay...here's another idea I had. It's not a dramatic pantry, but with a six foot wide counter space, maybe it will feel less confinded? But maybe that counter space wont be useful, tucked away like that. Not sure it would even feel confined with the pantry opening towards the counter, especially if I did a panel large door...

    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 10:29PM
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For the use of space, I like the first option. I don't think it will make the counter wall seem to crowded, and adding an enclosed storage space that can get a bit messy seems like a great idea.

I think only you can decide if the expense of moving everything is worth it. Even if it seems crazy to others to re-renovate a space so soon, if you can make it work and it makes sense to you, I don't see the problem. Find the plan that makes the most sense, price them out, and then decide if it is worth it to you!

    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 10:39PM
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Imhappy&Iknowit IOWA zone 6b

Was this the former warehouse or something like that? In the desert? Cement floor had drains or needed drains?

    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 10:42PM
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I don't understand the floorplan - where does that room end? Do u have layout of the house? At first blush it looks lime a nice place for a seating area.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 11:45PM
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Thanks yillimuh! I want to do it, but not if it compromises design or is overly expensive. Cabinetry will not have to be redone, but electrical and plumbing will. I am going to be tiling all 3880 sq. ft. of the house, which is a huge expense and I need to do any changes beforehand. I'll be gutting the master bath (which is barely usable and in its original state) so I'm hoping I can do it all at once. The architect is worried about the 4 ft. clearance being too confining. I thought his estimate off the top of his head for the cost (he is a licensed ctr. also) was very reasonable, but it will depend on getting actual bids.

lovmykitchen, no this is a home built in 1958 by Al Beadle.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 11:49PM
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Here's some more pics. The floor plan goes on through the dining room and living room.

looking from kitchen:

I'll look and see if I have a floorplan. I tried to draw one but it looked terrible.

I dont want to add another island. The kitchen is very visible and I dont think two islands would look good plus the second island would have to be skinny. That was the original intent, but now I dont think it will work, and the architect agrees. I am also fine with leaving it as is, but would love a pantry, but not if it interferes with the design.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 12:13AM
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I'm no designer or anything and prefer function over form, but if the 2nd option would be enough for your storage needs, I wouldn't move the island or built ins.

The kitchen, both from inside and outside looks great as is. I'm afraid moving the island etc would make the floating cabs appear as ordinary ones (at least from some angles).

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 10:29AM
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Hey Rockybird,

Do you know how Al Beadle originally intended for that space to be used? It seems awkwardly large for a dining room, so I'm wondering if we don't understand the original design intent.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 1:18PM
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Here is a pic of what it looked like when I bought it. The kitchen was very crowded, dark and closed in. It was very confining. The ceiling was dropped across the kitchen, almost to the glass. I cut the ceiling back and removed the wall. This opened the space up and allows for the view of the city below. It didnt help that the house had been abandoned for over 10 yrs and was disgustingly dirty with water damage everywhere. It was so dusty I tried to hold my breath when I went in for as long as I could.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 2:47PM
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So it looks like the too-big dining room was original then, right? I can't help but feel that orifinal designer had a vision for that space that we're missing here.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 2:59PM
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Yes, for the most part, that is correct. However, the current kitchen or proposed kitchen do not interfere with the dining space. Both plans are still within the confines of the originally desgined kitchen. All I am proposing is moving the island forward. Basically, where the tiny island and wall were will be the new island.

In the original plans, where the "cabs/ctr" were in the above diagram was written "desk." I am wondering if this was supposed to be a part of the kitchen that was open to the dining room, like an island.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 3:34PM
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I think I'd leave the kitchen as is, and build a wall of cabinets where you've shown. If I understand correctly, this is behind the fridge/range wall? Where the bikes are in the photo?

Do you have another place for the bikes?

I see boots and a briefcase/tote in that photo as well, suggesting it's an entry. Cabinets there could make a nice home for both, as well as a nice drop zone for incoming. Putting a counter in the middle, floor to ceiling cabs on both sides would give you a place for the blue and orange cabinets you love.

In the dining room, I'd move the table closer to the island, and put a comfy chair in the corner, under the big clock. The vast space between kitchen and dining doesn't feel right to me.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 4:14PM
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ann's suggestions sound good to me. Regarding original design intent for that space, I'm guessing that her suggestion to move the dining table closer to the island and add a seating area beyond is what the architect was thinking.

Please note that I'm not saying that the original intent is better than your vision, I'm just supposing that they're mutually exclusive, and therefore one should understand both before spending a bunch of money to switch from one to the other.

I'd also consider other structures, potentially including storage, to separate the entry from the public living space. For example, if you go with ann's suggestion to move the dining table closer to the island, then it might be nice to have a barrier of some kind, potentially including storage space, between the front door and the dining table.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 4:34PM
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Sophie Wheeler

You're gonna faint when you get the price to move everything. I'd bet at least 10K+, because it's not just the plumbing and electrical move. It's uninstalling everything carefully. And then reinstalling it. Do a room divider instead, and maybe scoot the dining area over. Add a couple of chairs to the back side of the fireplace.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 5:40PM
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Thank you all. Maybe you are right, and I should leave as is. From the pic outside looking in, it looks so symmetrical.

Ann, the problem is that where the bikes are, there will only be about 14" of width to add counter/cabs. There is a small chance that I may be able to demo the wall and grab some more space. The first architect made a 6 inch error in calculating where the wall was to be framed in, so there may be 6" to grab. However, I guess that would mean moving electrical, but maybe that wouldnt be such a big deal.

Thank you all so much for helping me with this!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 9:59PM
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Oooh, where will the Cervelo's go then? :-(

I think finding a place for them should trump finding a place for the tinned beans and peas. :-(

Gorgeous space you've got here. Very jealous of what you've got right now.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 11:04PM
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robo (z6a)

12" deep cabs can be extremely awesome and efficient for storage!

Is your table undersized? I could picture like a 10 person seater centered in that empty space, and then a modern stove back to back with the fireplace wall with two modern chairs around it.

That said, the pantry idea also sounds great! I may have just tried to spend your pantry budget on expensive furniture...

I thought I liked the way the island lined up with the back window, but I actually think I'd like it better lined up with the edge of the floating cabs. The walk in pantry sounds divine. I think I'm changing my vote to pantry. Pantry and a bigger dining table. I don't think that 4 foot hallway would feel crowded with the pantry off of it. But I also don't think you would work at the counter in the hallway. It would just become a short hallway. But it seems you have lots of counter space to the right of the sink and on your island.

This post was edited by robotropolis on Mon, Jan 13, 14 at 23:43

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 11:35PM
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Forgot to add if it helps with the pantry that the house is almost 4000 square feet. The houses around me are priced in the millions. I got this house as a short sale...very lucky otherwise could never afford this neighborhood. Anyway, I dont know if a pantry would be expected for a house of this size in this neighborhood.

Ann, I forgot to add thanks for the pics! They are awesome. LOL that first storage piece probably costs as much as moving everything! It is beautiful!

LOL Mindstorm, spoken like a true cyclist! My babies (bikes I mean) may get their own bedroom! If so, I will convert the window in the br to a slider, so that I can exit from it.

robotropolis, the architect wants to line them up against the cabs, as you suggest. But he was worried about crowding. He wants to come over with some giant foam to see if it feels crowded. Like you, he also suggested getting a larger table. I love the little fireplace! The dining table actually backs against the back of a drywalled fp.

I hired the architect to look at everything and anything in the house that could be moved, because I will be putting tile down. Once the tile is down, I am done moving things.

Here is a pic of my dream pantry (but with orange and light blue cabs and no fridge).

Here is a link that might be useful: bright pantry

    Bookmark   January 14, 2014 at 12:28AM
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I have 12" deep cabinets, floor to ceiling, and I can get a ton of stuff in there. It's like having a whole wall of upper cabinets. I don't use it for food storage, but it contains things like a bread maker, cookbooks, water bottles, my purses, binders that DH and I take to various meetings (Scouts and church) - and mine is only 30" wide.

In my new kitchen, I got extra shelves for most of the upper cabinets. That allows me to store more things without stacking, and without having a lot of wasted space between the tops of soup cans and the bottom of the next shelf. If you opt to build a wall of cabinets, I would recommend the same, to ensure flexibility and maximize use of space. If you are looking for food and small appliance storage, 12" is plenty of depth.

I can picture floor to ceiling on the sides, with a counter in the middle, possibly higher than a standard kitchen cabinet height. Or put a bench in the middle, so you can sit down to tie your shoes before you head out the door.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2014 at 11:08AM
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Here is a plan I worked out. I meet the architect on Fri to discuss it. I would hope to have sliding doors or panel doors to close off the pantry if necessary. Do you think it's superfluous? The pantry entrance near the carport door would have hooks for jackets and room for shoes.

Distant view for perspective:

This post was edited by rockybird on Thu, Jan 23, 14 at 14:04

    Bookmark   January 22, 2014 at 11:03PM
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