Kitchen Island Design

jill430March 28, 2014

We are building a new home and I'm struggling with a design for a kitchen island. I would really appreciate some advice! The dimensions of our kitchen will be 19'8" by 13'4" (see attached picture but please note the entrance to the dining room has been moved to where the pantry door is and the hallway closed off to provide more wall space on this side). I would like to keep the island in area of the kitchen with the cupboards and leave the breakfast nook area open for a small table. That leaves a space approximately 12' by 13'4" to place the island. I would like to use the island for a prep area (preferably allowing me to face the nook) as well as a place for my son to sit and help me bake, do homework, etc. I've also attached a few drawings (I hope they are legible!) with some possibilities I was playing around with. I originally planned for a 48" by 36" island but this only allowed 32" clearance on the walkway sides. I've read that 36" is minimum so I reduced the width to 40". I think this will make fitting two stools tight. Another option would be a 32" by 63" island turned the opposite way. This allows a 48" clearance from the fridge and 40" clearance from the dishwasher and wall oven but would not allow seating which I really hoped to have. Could anyone offer any suggestions? Or experience with their own islands/clearances? Thank you!
Floor Plan:

Option 1:

Option 2:

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I am here to tell you that I am dealing with nearly the same exact footprint kitchen space that you are, and chances are good that you will not be happy with the lack of space on either side of your range. I have a whole thread going now, chronicling my process of changing that all up. "My Kitchen Facelift Journey."

Those 12" upper cabinets are practically useless and 15" are not much better.

Do you need such a large fridge? And how important is the desk?

If it were me I would opt to put the pantry where the desk is, move the fridge where the pantry and cabinets were and give yourself more counter space around your range.

Since you are not worrying about blocking a sliding glass door (like I am, unfortunately,) you could probably get a full six feet of island if you need the storage and work space.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 6:39PM
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I originally did plan to put the fridge where you suggested but it sticks out so far that it would definitely ruin any possibility of an island. I am beginning to wonder if we should have gone with a smaller fridge, but unfortunately it is already ordered and as it was special order, I'm not sure about the return policy. This is definitely a steep learning curve and I'm really wishing I had of considered the kitchen layout a bit more when designing the floor plan!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 6:44PM
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Your reply has me thinking of ways to rearrange the layout so I posted a new thread :)

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 11:47PM
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I must have missed it, I will go back and look.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 7:46PM
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I don't know your overall dimensions, but at a glance, it looks like your size may be close to what we were working with. What do you consider your need for aisle width? 36" is minimum. Our sink is in the same location as yours, with the DW to the left of that and then our cooktop. I'm attaching a photo - what you don't see on the other side of the island is a set of 3 tall cabinets (we did a 30", 36", a 32", and a 12") - this was a pantry, drawers/small appliance, oven/MW, and a broom closet respectively...your wall may not be that long on that side....I'll post a photo of it in the next post.

I'd be quite inclined to get rid of the desk area...from what I've seen, it's one of those "often removed" items in a remodel because it never winds up being used the way that people thought it would get used and they feel that they can better utilize the space.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 8:10PM
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Tall cabinets to the right of the island:

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 8:14PM
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Overall our dimensions are 12' by 13'4". I think I'd be ok with 36" for the aisle width but I've seen so many posts where people say they wish they had more so I was beginning to doubt myself. We did a mock up and felt comfortable with it but I'm sure it isn't the same as the real thing :) What clearances do you have? The desk area will basically be a counter with upper and lower cabinets but with a small opening for a stool. That way if we don't use it for it's intended purpose at least it's more counter space adjacent to the fridge! (We've decided to switch out the fridge with the microwave and recess it to counter depth). Your tall cabinets are lovely! So much storage!

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 12:35AM
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Jillian - how many cooks/helpers do you typically have in the kitchen? Mine is a one-cook kitchen. But, it's designed so that if DH wants to get to the fridge, he has two access ways - if I'm in front of the MW or the oven, he can head by the sink and if I'm at the cooktop or DW, he can head through by the talls.

After reading here so many warnings about 36" aisles, I was almost terrified and rather apologetic about it. I fretted like crazy. And I was virtually convinced that I was going to feel that it was too darn tight. But, I needed the island to make my kitchen work the way I wanted it to. So, narrow aisles it was. In retrospect now, I'm quite comfortable with the decision.

If you need more of an opportunity to see how a 36"-ish aisle might feel and you have a local IKEA, head over there - I actually went in and found that one of their kitchens had a 36" aisle layout. Others were wider. The 42" wide one felt TOO wide for me.

Our aisles are about 38" from countertop to countertop. We have more than that from the fridge handles to the island countertop...don't remember exact, but I think 42"-43"

Personally, I find it "comfortably cozy". Given the opportunity, I would have probably gone to about 40" on the off chance that I'd have someone else helping to cook. But I find what I have works well for me. And, really, there's enough different work spaces that even if I *did* have a helper, we could coexist easily enough.

Potential "gotcha" areas in my layout...if my DW is open, it's tight to walk around it. It can be done, but it's tight. In my island, I have the pullout garbage - it will only extend enough for access to the front garbage pail (recyclables are in the back can) if the DW is open. But, I don't really keep the DW open much, so that's a limited concern. Only the top 2 drawers in the island can be opened when my DW is open. But, the bottom drawer is holding lesser used things, so really 1st drawer and 2nd drawer are just fine.

Aside from that, I've found everything very usable. And things are generally close enough together that I find it comfortable to work in. I'm 5'3", so I don't know if it would change for me if I were taller.

And, we really maximized our storage in our kitchen. We're still not all finished, but it's to where I'm working in it and it's a pleasure so far. The storage has been fantastic. The talls were a pain to design...our cabinet maker has the patience of a saint, I swear!

Our layout is approximately 13 x 12'9" (the 12'9" is cabinet, aisle, island, aisle, talls) - our dining area runs right into the kitchen and adds about another 7'-ish feet to the 13'.

We wound up with a 15" upper - it's okay, but I wish that it would have been larger (it's to the right of the sink) - mainly snacks are going in there, so it's not too big of a problem.

Have you worked out where each of your things are going in your kitchen. That's an extremely important step to determine what size drawers you need and how the layout will work for you. Keep in mind that you want things near where you use them. So for example, I have oven mitts in the talls - they are in the 2nd drawer down, along with aluminum foil, etc. I also have hot pads over in the drawers next to the cooktop. My plastic wrap and storage containers are over near the fridge. Really think through how you will do things in your kitchen to determine the best layout.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 8:31PM
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I would move the double oven to where the current cooktop is, then make the island huge and put the cooktop in it and add as much seating as I possibly could there.

Then on that wall where your current cooktop is make that a long shallow pantry like the one in the link below. It mentions that it only takes 3' of floor space because it is built into the wall. It has a book shelf also if you are looking for a 'command center'/phone charging area.

OR.. if you are really set on having your double oven on that wall then flip it with the desk and make the desk narrower and shorter with a rounded corner.
That entryway between the oven and the fridge would be more of a concern to me than the 36' aisle or the size of the island.

Here is a link that might be useful: shallow pantry

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 10:00PM
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I know what you mean andreak, from what I've read on here I feel like I'll be committing a deadly sin if I go with 36" clearances. I think I'll have a hard time admitting it if I do :( we don't have an ikea or any large stores with displays (small town) but I've been to many friends and family's homes with similar or even smaller clearances and never minded. It will be a one cook kitchen and we are a small (and short) family. I guess a lot of it is probably what you're used to as well. The general consensus on here is that my kitchen is tiny but where I'm from it's actually a good size kitchen. Excellent point about thinking about where things will go in drawers and cupboards, I've been trying to do that as well :)
Thanks for your suggestions too mellyc! I have been playing around with the oven and fridge location to try to make that space between them bigger. I'll attach two more drawings I did though on my other thread the consensus seems to be they will not work either.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 11:12PM
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I like your last one, but would pull the island in more towards the stove top and I would move the stove top over more.

If you are fine with 36" aisle space then having the island partly covering the fridge shouldn't be a big deal. 55" is way too far from the stove top to make it useful. 48" is a good aisle space that also keeps it within a couple of steps.

You can always do the kitchen and add an island later or remove it later if you find it doesn't function well. I would consider this when doing the flooring etc. Gives you options.

Seems like a lot of people in the real world are not bothered by the 36" aisles, but when we were house hunting I couldn't stand it when houses had islands squeezed in like that as they often were placed and became a barrier that required you to walk around it to reach anything. The way you have your fridge and pantry it shouldn't be an issue for you.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 11:19AM
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Three things I'd consider - making the island 30" wide instead of 36", thereby increasing the aisle width to 39" on each side. "push" the island toward the cooktop, making that distance no more than 48" (instead of 55"), and switching the locations of the refrigerator and the wall ovens so the order will be fridge-sink-cooktop.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 12:11PM
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I didn't realize that you had two threads going on the same lay-out question. That's a bit confusing. Have you abandoned the other thread? Did you see the lay-out I suggested?

Your aisle clearances are less than you think they will be in Option 1 in your first post. I suspect that you've forgotten to take counter overhang into consideration.

Your room is 160" wide. If you subtract top and bottom cab runs with counter overhang - 25.5" each - and a 40" island (assuming that's with counter overhang, not just cab width), you are left with 69" to split for 2 aisles. That's 34.5" inches each. Cheating aisle clearances a bit is okay but that's much too narrow, IMO.

Your aisle clearances in your plans posted in your Sunday thread are 36.5". When the fridge or DW doors are open, those aisles will be essentially blocked. I have 39" between island and DW run and we have to close our DW door a bit to let people past. We do not have cab drawers or doors in the island that open into this aisle so that helps. If I did, I'd want a wider aisle so that I could unload items from the DW into the island cabs without having to close the DW door.

Also, if you intend to have a chair at the counter-height desk, you should have more aisle room so that someone can easily walk behind anyone seated at the desk.

Additionally, a 40" wide island is 8" too narrow to accommodate 2 seats; 24" seat width is the minimum recommendation. A 36" wide island will only accommodate 1 seat at the end. Sure, kids can get by with less room initially but they have this remarkable tendency to grow. ;-)

Anyhoo, the lay-out I proposed in the other thread gives you a larger island with 3 seats - room for your current kid and/or future children and friends - and slightly roomier aisles.

Here is a link that might be useful: Awkward kitchen design?

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 2:46PM
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Thanks lisa,
This was my original post but then I realized I should maybe be asking for more general layout advice rather than just the island so I re-posted. People kept replying to this one as well though so I ended up with two threads :) I'm new to this so I apologize for the confusion! I did see your design, thank you! I'm ok with 36.5 inches if the alternative is giving up some features I want to keep. I've been visiting homes and speaking with homeowners and there haven't been any complaints with narrower clearances so I've decided to stop driving myself crazy about it, one thing I'm learning from reading so many online posts is that what works for one person doesn't for another :) But I certainly appreciate everyone's advice. I will probably push the island closer to the stove as you suggested Lyfia and sjhockeyfan. And perhaps narrow it an inch or two as well. Thanks again :)

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 3:21PM
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I would have them do the floor first and get the biggest Island I could possibly squeeze in. Any regrets at a later time and you can have them cut it down.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 5:10PM
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Jillian - make certain that your clearances are AT LEAST 36"'s how you break down approximately right now:
13'4" = 160 inches

25.5 (24" cabinet with 1.5" overhang
39" island (36" island [is the base 36? Are you using a 24" deep and 12" deep cabinet backing to one another?] plus 1.5" overhang on each side)
25.5 (24" cabinet with 1.5" overhang

This gives you on 35" on each side for aisles. I would really suggest narrowing the island. Our island is a 24" base with a 3/4" finish board on the side nearest our talls, so it comes out to 24.75" + the overhang. Our kitchen width is just shy of 154", so just 6" less than yours and you're talking about going 12" wider for your island. I would absolutely advice against going that wide.

36" aisle is going to be tight for you when opening the oven. When I open my oven, it's not impeded by my island enough and I'm able to stand back a bit. The way you have yours, it's going to be more difficult getting things out of the oven. I've taken some quick photos to show you how my aisle is when the oven is open...excuse the still-mid-renovation messiness.

I would advise against going with "the widest island you can get in there". My island is narrow, but exceptionally functional. That said, if I could have had at least 40" aisles and increased the width of my island, I would have done so. But, I would have increased my aisle clearances more first before increasing my island width. As it is, my island width and the aisle widths look nicely in proportion (if I do say so myself). So, proportions are something to consider as well. Our island is made of of an 18", a 30, and another 18". With the width, I wouldn't have wanted to go much longer.

I also would suggest not having the island end past where your cabinets end.

Again, I would advise against the desk. Are you going to have a table in the breakfast nook? That will work perfectly fine for a temporary work area. Create tall cabinets there instead - do some drawer bases in the bottom portion - that can give you a location for keys, charging center, and even a place to put bills etc. But, I think you'll find that the "desk" area will become a clutter catcher.

The 55" from the island is for sure too far away, particularly if you aren't tall.

Are you planning on doing a banquette seating area oven in your breakfast nook area or what are your plans there?

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 5:45PM
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Hi Andrea, I can't see the pictures?
Thank you, I'll make sure I don't go over 36" including overhang. I'm still searching for an exact design, I'd love to find a way to fit a stool or two in somewhere. I'd consider narrower but would have to convince my husband because he says he doesn't want long and skinny. And I will move it closer to the stove, that could help with the oven door as well. And yes for banquette seating as save space and I also think it looks nice :) we are going with a desk area as we want a permanent place for a our laptop or small tv perhaps. We are both neat freaks so I promise it won't be cluttered :)

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 11:57PM
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I have a bad head cold so I missed this pinch point earlier....

If you shift the island towards the cook top - and I think you should, 55" from island to cook top is too far for the island to be useful prep space - you'll have a really tight aisle between island and fridge. Even though you're recessing the fridge, the door will sit proud of the adjacent counter by several inches, making that aisle shrink from 36.5" to around 32" and possibly even less than that. That isn't enough room to maneuver a full depth fridge, approx 35" deep with handles, into the recessed cavity. Unless you can or are willing to recess the fridge even deeper into that wall and reduce the depth of the desk next to it, you're going to have some serious aisle clearance issues here.

What are the features that you are unwilling to give up? Knowing that would help us help you find a design that fits your needs and wants and works in your space. Be open to the idea that you may not get it all. Unless space and budget are unrestricted, kitchen remodels are all about compromise (bummer, I know).

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 1:28AM
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Jillian - sorry, I forgot the photos! Here's the side view of the oven and our island. It looks like there's a good bit of room to get around, because I purposely tried to move the oven to where it wouldn't be overlapped much by the island. I'm going to post another photo from straight on that shows how I approach the oven. If the island overlapped the oven area, it would be too tight to be a good function. I would also consider it a bit dangerous if the aisle area were closed in more because of getting hot things out, it's good to have a bit of area to maneuver.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 6:53AM
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You can see more of a straight on view here the bit of overlap. If it were all overlapped, it would be an issue. As it is, I stand in the opened up area to put things in and out. There's only a few inches off to the side where I have overlap and luckily, I'm not so wide that it matters so much. My island is my landing point for taking things out of the oven. It's basically a 90 degree pivot.

And yes, what Lisa mentioned about placing the fridge, it probably will be an issue in your layout. We ALMOST didn't get our fridge back into it's area. Plus you will have several more inches that the fridge sticks out, even if you recess it back, the doors generally need to sit proud of the cabinetry, which adds a few inches and then the handles. You won't have anywhere close to a 36" aisle there in practice.

Right now, with your appliance layout as it is, I will say that your aisles will not be a good function. My layout of my appliances seems like it would work relatively well for your space. We're nearly identical in width and overall access areas, I think. Let me see if I can dig up my floor plan and attach it here. I'm not saying that my floor plan is without any flaws, but I worked really hard to get it to provide the most function possible with the least drawbacks for within our space.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 7:04AM
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Thanks Andrea and Lisa! Ok so what I'm not willing to give up....well the appliances are purchased so they are staying. And I do want a counter height "desk" area somewhere (doesn't have to be where I drew it). I put this in quotations because I consider it more of a place to put a laptop or tv and store supplies (including a printer if possible) and not a typical desk. I want it to blend with the cabinets and counters as much as possible but with a narrow opening underneath for a small stool. I could recess the fridge as far as need be (though I'm not sure if all the way into the wall would look odd? ). Just a question I've been wondering about too.....I understand that to be the most useful the island should be closer to the stove, but if I went with a peninsula like a few people suggested, it would be much farther away. Is a peninsula not meant to be a prep area? Thanks again :)

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 7:22AM
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Here's our floorplan. It got tweaked a little from what's here, but perhaps use this as an idea of where to place appliances.

We have a banquette starting at the end of our cabinet run...we don't have the angled area like you do, but still have a banquette.

You don't have to give up the appliances you've bought, just perhaps move them from where you have them drawn.

You can only recess the fridge so far, the doors need to sit proud of cabinetry in order to open properly. So, it's not a matter of how far back you can recess it in your space, it's a matter of the actual appliance functioning (opening/closing) where you put it.

Look over my layout. See if it will work for you with a little tweaking. If it's helpful, I'll see if I can get my final working one separate from the packet, but I think my appliance layout can work for you.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 7:36AM
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I didn't realize you had already purchased the appliances. That definitely affects the lay-out.

However, with a slight tweak, my Plan A would still work.

As a review, here are my comments about Plan A from your other thread:

I moved the fridge next to the DW. It's in a 40" wide cab. I noticed that you marked your fridge in a 42" wide cab; that seems like overkill. You don't need that much face frame and given your small space, it's foolish to give precious inches to it.

The 42" aisle is measured from fridge handles (assumed 35" total depth with handles) to island counter edge. I wanted to be sure to give you sufficient aisle room for moving the fridge in and out of the space (hopefully it won't need service but if it does, you'll be glad you didn't scrimp here).

I bumped the whole run of counter on the sink wall out to 30" deep so that it is even with the fridge box. That will make it seem less hulking plus the extra counter behind the sink will give the illusion of a bumped-out window as Buehl suggested.

The island only has a 13.5" seating overhang, just shy of the recommended 15" but I opted for a shallower overhang to keep the aisle as the recommended 44". You could steal an inch or so from the aisle for seating overhang and be okay. That overhang does *not* include adding panels to the backside of the island. That would eat up roughly another inch of overhang.

The island is prep space, homework space, snack space with room for 3 stools.

Here's new info that relates to Plan C.

The oven is installed below the cook top, like this:

Midcentury Kitchen by Laguna Niguel Media & Bloggers Lisa Hallett Taylor

Alternatively, you could install the oven below the counter next to the cook top like this:

Contemporary Kitchen by Norcross Architects & Designers Cynthia Karegeannes, Registered Architect

You would need to adjust the cab widths on each side of the cook top to make this work.

The MW is installed on a shelf below the counter like this:

Traditional Kitchen by Saratoga General Contractors RemodelWest

Or this:

Traditional Kitchen by Roswell General Contractors Innovative Construction Inc.

The message centre (you must live in Canada ;-)) is flush with the pantry wall like this:

Contemporary Home Office by San Francisco Architects & Designers Andre Rothblatt Architecture

Or this (pretend there are walls, not cabs on either side)

Eclectic Kitchen by Lawrenceville Kitchen & Bath Designers Designs by BSB

Or this:

Contemporary Laundry Room by Wooster General Contractors Weaver Custom Homes

The printer can go in a cab below the counter, hidden from view until needed.

Add charging station space to the message center like this:

Traditional Laundry Room by Columbus Design-Build Firms Nicholson Builders

Put the whole thing behind doors so that any mess is hidden from public view when company comes over.

There is not a place to sit at the message center but with island seating just 44" away, there's no need to add seating here, IMO.

What I don't like about this plan is the tightness around the banquette: 20" clearance between fridge and table to get to the bench and only a 25" clearance between table edge and fireplace between FR and nook. Even though you still have a 48" opening between fireplace and exterior wall, the banquette table pretty much blocks that walkway. I didn't realize these spaces were this tight until I drew it out and did the math for this plan. I also don't like the lost potential of the empty space between island and fireplace.

So I came up with Plan C-1, which addresses both concerns.

The perimeter of the kitchen stays the same but the island is longer by 2' and I altered the banquette area.

Since the aisle between fireplace and exterior wall is essentially blocked by the table in Plan C, I decided to embrace that hurdle and eliminated that aisle completely by going with a round table banquette set-up that cozies up to the fireplace like this:

Traditional Kitchen by Victoria Architects & Designers The Sky is the Limit Design

Or this:

Contemporary Kitchen by Salt Lake City Real Estate Agents Marvin Jensen @ Windermere Real Estate

Or this:

Traditional Dining Room by Saint Paul General Contractors Home Tailors Building & Remodeling

This is the same idea but without a round table:

Mediterranean Dining Room by Oakland General Contractors Mueller Nicholls Cabinets and Construction

You have loads of prep space on the island plus room for 4 seats. At 96" long, I'd be tempted to add a prep sink to it. It would also serve as a handy art project sink when your son is working at the island.

Contrary to your proposed plans, Plans C and C-1 give you sufficient aisles, an efficient work zone that follow the logical flow of fridge to sink to oven/cook top, and seating for more than 4 in your kitchen. It would also flow well when you entertain (not just for grown-ups but for kid birthday parties, soccer parties, etc).

My plans may not fit your mental image for your kitchen but hopefully you can assess these plans with an open mind.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 3:48PM
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Wow! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this. You ladies are trying so hard to figure this out for me and I really appreciate it :) and yep I'm Canadian hehe :) If I had an island that size I would be ok giving up the banquette table. We have the dining room right beside the kitchen anyway. The only thing that wouldn't work is the oven and microwave as they are one unit. And the message centre would have to be at the other end of the wall to avoid the plumbing but that's no big deal. You've given me lots to think about :) I was almost convinced to throw in the towel and go for a peninsula but I maybe I don't have to!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 4:23PM
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I came across this online as you think it looks ok to have a fridge completely recessed into the wall like this? Minus the cupboards next to it

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 6:08PM
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So something like this:

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 6:26PM
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Yeah but with trim all around like in the first pic

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 6:33PM
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I wondered if perhaps the oven and MW were one unit, not individual units. That does make it a bit harder but not impossible. How about this:

I moved the sink and DW to the island because I thought it would be better to have more than 12" on each side of that corner between sink and cook top. I personally would hate having so little counter between my cook zone and my clean-up zone. That said, if you prefer, you can move the sink and DW back to where I had them in Plans C and C-1. I would definitely add a prep sink to the island in that case so that you have a water source next to your biggest expanse of counter.

There is shallow storage (12" deep) on the back side of the island behind the sink.

I moved all the island seating to the end of the island, rounded it and eliminated the banquette since you wrote that you're okay with having only island seating. You may be able to get 6 at the island; my cold foggy brain just wasn't up to doing the math to figure that out.

The smaller circle under the end of the island is a large support column, similar to this:

Contemporary Kitchen by Calgary Design-Build Firms New West Custom Homes and Renovations

I did shrink the aisle between island and pantry wall from 44" to 42" to give you a 44" aisle between fridge and island. I wanted to give you a bit more butt room since the fridge and sink will be close to a back to back placement. Since most of the island seating is at the end where the kitchen opens to the hallway, I don't think a 42" aisle here will be an issue.

I kept the window seat but you could also place a couple of occasional chairs with a side table here instead. Something like this:

Farmhouse Kitchen by Norwich Architects & Designers Smith & Vansant Architects PC

Or this:

Traditional Dining Room by San Francisco Architects & Designers Gast Architects

btw, you should check if you can put the 30" oven/MW set into a 30" wide cab. It will depend on your cab maker and the appliance specs but if you can steal those 2" and add them to the counter and cab between oven/MW and cook top, that would be a plus.

(my 30" oven will be housed in a 30" wide oven cab. My 36" wide fridge is going into a 38.5" wide fridge cab, the narrowest width possible, thanks to my fab cab maker. I need every inch I can find.)

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 6:45PM
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I like the idea of keeping the window seat :) I will definitely look into the narrowest cabinets possible, I was just being generous in my planning to be safe. This could definitely work! So of all the options everyone very kindly presented (huge thank you!), do you think the island or peninsula functions better? And looks better? I know function is the most important but I still want it to be pretty haha

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 7:02PM
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I'm a bit confused. I thought you were completely opposed to having a peninsula. Or are you considering the peninsula plan proposed by Buehl in your other thread after all?

In the meantime, here's another island plan for you.

I moved the message center to an 18" deep, 30" wide counter height cabinet next to the fridge cab. That gives the window seat area a purpose plus it offers comfy seating for the message center.

I moved the oven/MW column to the spot vacated by the message center, centered the cook top on the side wall and move the clean-up sink and DW back to the fridge run. That freed up room for a prep-sink and trash cab in the island, the latter accessible to both clean-up and prep work areas.

I couldn't quite find images that showed what I mean for the counter height message center but perhaps this photos will help you visualize it.

Traditional Hall

Traditional Kitchen by Charleston Kitchen & Bath Designers Gaylord Design LLC

Contemporary Living Room by San Francisco Architects & Designers John Lum Architecture, Inc. AIA

Alternatively or in addition, you could add storage below the window seat to store the printer and other office items as shown in two of the above images.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 4:36PM
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Thanks Lisa! I'm not surprised that you're confused because I'm starting to confuse myself lol. I definitely think the island looks nicer than a peninsula but after so many people on the other thread insisted that a peninsula was the better option for my space , I've been trying to give that idea a fair chance too. I'm trying to accept that what looks prettiest may not always function the best. My instinct says island but I'm very new to this and there are a lot of experts on here and I respect your opinions! Having said that, I really like your latest design! I like the message centre there because I could put a laptop on there and see it from the island.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 5:04PM
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I think the reason people on the other thread were suggesting a peninsula was because you didn't have room for an island with a U-shaped kitchen (cabs and appliances on the top and bottom walls). Getting the appliances and cabs off that bottom wall - other than cabs recessed into the pantry - made all the difference, IMO.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 9:20PM
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