kitchen layout a mess - please help

housebuilder14April 16, 2014

so the kitchen started with peninsula seating but was changed to allow the breakfast area to have a bigger table.
so now you can sit at the island.
the peninsula also had the sink and dishwasher but that was moved to the island to have it closer to upper cabinets where most of the dishes go. but now the kitchen triangle seems unnecessarily cramped. the long skinny thing next to kitchen is pantry - i wanted it to keep the coffee pot and toaster (because i like clear countertops) but now it feels so far away and a pain to go to, to toast bread, get coffee. please help!!!

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Others with more experience will chime in but I will say these are the things that stand out:
a) you have 3 sitting and eating areas: counter, breakfast and dining rooms. Which will you use the most? Focus on that one since if it's awkward it will annoy you most often.
b) coffee, toaster in the pantry is only workable if you have those things once a week. Look at your usual daily schedule and arrange your most used appliances for most efficiency and that also depends on how many people will want to use those things at a time. I drink about 7 cups of hot tea a day at all times, so the electric kettle is closest to the sink and I chose a water filter near the sink instead of the fridge (4 less steps to make - my kitchen is tiny)
- you can probably do an appliance garage on the same wall as the fridge to hide the coffee pot and toaster and bring it closer.
Also: if possible, blow up the kitchen part of the image and provide dimensions. GW's are masters at re-planning layouts when you make it easy to see! Oh and where are your windows located?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 5:15PM
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Does the peninsula still exist?

Is so, put the clean-up sink and DW back there and that becomes your clean-up area. You seem to have a lot of upper cabinets to the right of the range - can that not hold dishes and glasses?

Put a prep sink in your island at the bottom end and then you prep on the island.

Just some thoughts.

Without knowing measurements - the entrance into the eating area between the wall and the end of the peninsula seems somewhat narrow.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 5:45PM
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How about something like this? Eliminate the peninsula, move the dishes and Cleanup Zone to the DR wall - bringing the dishes closer to the DR and straight shot to the Nook from the Dish Hutch.

More open kitchen, less crowding of the Nook, even with the two seats at the end, better seating a the island (better for conversation).

Also, a Message/Command Center for keys, calendar, etc. and Snack/Coffee Center with the coffeemaker on the counter but the toaster in a drawer.


    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 12:48AM
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Buehl - I wondered about doing what you have done, getting rid of the peninsula and extending the island. My concern was the wall of the breakfast room and whether, with the extended island, there will be room to get into it behind the stools. Without knowing the width of the opening it's hard to tell. But I may be missing some measurements.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 1:06AM
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wow guys - thaks!
the breakfast nook is 16x12
the only issue about buehl's plan is that the clean up zone faces a wall.
if i have a peninsula and put the sink there (or keep on island) i am looking out at the ocean. the views from the back of my house are the ocean.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 7:59AM
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Keep in mind when you are at the sink you might rarely be looking up. I had a sink on a wall for 20 years. Now I have a window. Guess what? When at the sink I never look out. I do look out that window when I am standing in my kitchen (not actually doing anything) or when I am sitting at my island. Think about how much time you actually spend in the clean up zone and what you are doing. As per Buehl's layout it is not your prep area.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 8:07AM
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I disagree with not looking up if you have a view. Naturally if you have no view you might seldom look up. I have had both view and no view and I most certainly looked when there was something to see. I hated looking at a wall at the sink.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 9:43AM
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If the view out the Nook (looking through another room to see the view), then move your Prep Zone to the Peninsula, not your Cleanup Zone.

Keep in mind the following kitchen work statistics: 70% - 75% (or more) of your time is spent prepping [Prep Zone]
10% of your time is spent cooking [Cooking Zone]
15%-20% of your time is spent cleaning up [Cleanup Zone]

So, what Zone does it make the most sense to have the "view" from? Your Prep Zone. You spend far more time prepping (or prepping + cooking) than cleaning up - so put the best "view" in the Prep Zone!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 11:14AM
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Oh and regarding "looking up". When I'm cleaning up, I rarely look out the window (yes, our cleanup sink is in front of a window with a nice view). However, when I'm prepping, I often look up and around. I prep either to a wall or on a peninsula - but I can easily look left or right. [The most functional layout for our kitchen worked with the cleanup sink in front of the window. If I could have reversed the kitchen, I would have - so the Prep Zone would have been in front of the window - but it did not work out as well that way.]

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 11:18AM
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I just don't spend enough time at the cleanup area to worry about whether I have a view or not. Clean up and then go sit and admire your beautiful ocean view. I really really believe this issue is overstated. Maybe in 1950 when every dish, pot and utensil was hand-washed, it might have been an issue, but now? Really, how long do you spend at the sink/dw?

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 11:33AM
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buehl take advantage of the ocean view (I envy you!)


    Bookmark   April 18, 2014 at 1:12AM
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Thank you!!! What program are you using to draw these designs?
This is was all very helpful. We are still playing around with the entire layout of the house and now might move the stairs to the wall that you've placed fridge, etc. (a suggestion from Mrs. Pete to only have one staircase in the house instead of the current two). If that happens not sure what kitchen will look like. AHHH this is so difficult.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2014 at 11:26AM
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Microsoft PowerPoint. I downloaded graph paper and copied it into a PPT presentation. I use boxes and other shapes to create the various appliances, cabinets, etc. They're all to-scale.

Be careful that you don't make unnecessary changes that end up making it more difficult to make other areas functional. It may work fine, but think about the whole layout, not just the stairs.

Don't assume two stairways are a waste - they may be necessary based on the upstairs layout. I'd have to see the layout of the entire house (all floors) before I'd say whether they are a waste.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2014 at 9:17PM
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