Kitch remodeling help needed

kitch1March 9, 2014


I want to surround the fridge to get that boxed in look but I have two different color cabinets (upper different color than base cabinets). For the refrigerator end panel on the counter (right) side, should it match the lowers or uppers? The far left side will be against a wall, does that need an end panel as well? I'm new to this so thanks for bearing with me!

Also, any suggestions on a decent french door counter depth stainless fridge (36" wide x ~27" deep- need ~25 cubic feet of storage)? I've read countless reviews and either they are too loud or they leak water everywhere- hard pressed to find one that everyone likes and is reliable.

Also, please share any other tips or best practices as this is my first kitchen remodel. E.g., can I put the dishwasher to the left of the farmer sink? I thought I read in here that some people said not to do that.


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The last cabinet installation I did had the refrigerator panels and wall oven cabinet match the base cabinets, not the uppers that were different. It looked great.

I suggest you seek the advice of a professional kitchen designer. It's just too easy for a rookie to make a catastrophic mistake.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 8:37AM
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Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I was leaning towards matching the bottoms. Even if I had to remove or change it later, it wouldn't be that catastrophic but I would prefer to do it correctly the first time which is why I appreciate the feedback from others who clearly have more experience than I.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 11:09AM
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" ... refrigerator ... hard pressed to find one that everyone likes and is reliable."

It's like trying to find a unicorn, only harder.

Regarding the fridge panel against the wall, I think it looks better to have the entire refrigerator boxed in. You will also need a little space against the wall for opening your refrigerator door, so having a panel on the wall side will help there.

I agree with Tre ... match the tall pieces to the base cabinets.

I have no idea why a dishwasher couldn't go to the left of your sink and I hadn't heard that before. I'll be interested to see what others have to say about that.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 11:32AM
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I matched mine to the base cabinets (I do have a "frame" in the same material as the base cabinets that goes all the way across the upper cabinets, but I think it would have looked right even without it). When I asked this same question, I got all kinds of answers, including doing the refrigerator part in the same material as the uppers and the freezer in the same material as the lowers!). Anyway, it's done and I think it looks "just right".

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 11:46AM
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Am also putting DW to left of apron/farmer sink.

Advice I was given was: if your are right handed, it is more comfortable to have it to the right of your sink - easier to load from sink.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 2:59PM
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To the left of the sink for right-handers, according to one of our KD. Mine is left of my sink, and it's easy to load, though we right-handers can probably adapt to either side.

I recommend the Electrolux CD fridge.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 3:53PM
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Here's what I have.

And here's a drawing showing that area in the base cab's color.

For the DW, I'm left handed, and it makes no difference on which side I have it (except for a raised one which I'd have preferred on the right of the sink). I believe the trick is to keep the DW outside of the area where you'd prep.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 1:56AM
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I moved DW from right side to left side with the remodel, to get it out of the prep zone. It took no time to adjust to the difference. I do find less water spills on the floor when loading to the left (we are both right handed).

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 5:57AM
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Great ideas so far. I too would match your refrigerator panel with the base cabinets. No panel needed on the refrigerator side that is next to a wall, but if you are using a built in (i.e. Sub-zero, GE Monogram, Dacor), a panel would be needed to complete the built in look. If you are using a free standing counter depth refrig., no need for the extra panel. Just remember to adjust your cabinetry by 1 1/2" +/- depending on whether or not you use the second panel. To achieve that built in look, also remember to make your cabinet over the refrigerator 24" deep. Kitchenaid has a nice counter depth 36" free standing french door refrigerator. Of course, a built in refrigerator is better looking but significantly more money. As far as the dishwasher to the left of your farm sinkâ¦.perfect ! Also, consider setting your farm sink cabinet forward from the rear wall about 3-4" for a focal point and more interest in the counter top. This photo is not a farm sink, but gives you an idea of what it will look like.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 12:13PM
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Agreed on DW out of prep zone.. whatever side that ends up being. Also agreed on matching the base cabs.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 12:18PM
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