layout critique requested

achauerApril 13, 2014

I have been working on coming up with a new kitchen layout, and I think I have something that will function well. But I've never done this before, so it seemed wise to seek input from the expert voices here!

The room is 10'6" by 14'7", and the ceilings are 9'9" high. We plan to stack the uppers to the ceiling, and have either a stepladder or a removable library ladder in the room for the lesser used high storage. The upper cabinets will be 15" deep and 24" above the counter.

The counter to the left of the range is the primary prep and cooking area, and the peninsula (using a marble tabletop we already have) will be the baking prep area and seating area. The counter between the pantry pullout and the sink is for secondary prep and staging. Cleanup is of course the sink/dishwasher region.

This layout keeps the fridge, sink, and stove in the same spots as they are currently.

The cabinets will be frameless and custom built. I'm thinking of putting some kind of pullout in the blind corner for small appliance storage, either the LeMans or the Magic Corner. Pots will be stored in the other corner on super susan shelves.

I've tried to annotate as much as possible, but let me know if any more info is needed!

Here is a link that might be useful: Photos of my current kitchen

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Your kitty is doing a nice job supervising the photo session!

Not a KD, but here are my two cents.

You won't have much prep space between the sink and stove. There are several drawer stacks, but they are all narrow. Could you remove the window by the stove? That would enable you to combine two of the narrow stacks into one bigger stack and move the stove down to give you more prep space.

Consider pie-cut uppers instead of blind corners.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 10:07AM
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So what do you not like about the existing kitchen, and what are your goals for the remodel?

For example, my kitchen had very inefficient storage, and not enough counter space where I needed it. My goals were increased storage, increased prep space.

It doesn't look like you are changing much, except for stacked uppers. Are you sure you want to go as high as 24" off the counter? Have you used cabinets that high, and are you really tall? I'm 5-4", and if my cabinets were that high off the counter, I'd only be able to reach one shelf.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 10:41AM
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I did in fact write a kitchen mission statement, it is as follows:

I want my kitchen to be ready to handle all of my cooking, from weeknight dinners to multi-course experimental forays. I run the gamut from preserving homegrown produce to experimenting with cutting-edge modernist techniques, and I want room for all the equipment that accompanies these interests. I want my dinner guests to feel comfortable while I cook and even be able to pitch in if they so desire. I want my kitchen to look like a believable part of my architecturally vague 1901 Victorian/Craftsman house, without it needing to be a period reproduction. And when I enter my kitchen, I want to feel immediately connected to the orchard in the back yard.

Cindy103d - We have actually just enlarged the window by the stove (photos show old window, it is now a 54"h x 41"w double hung), because being able to see into our lovely back yard from the kitchen has been a treasured goal since we moved in just over ten years ago. It went in this weekend, and I'm already so much happier with the space!

I was planning to ask my cabinetmaker about doing easy-reach uppers in the corners rather than having them blind. I agree that it would be nice to have more workspace to the left of the stove, but at least I should be able to move my mise en place items over to the right side as I generate them.

annkh - my existing kitchen has terrible storage. The lowers are mostly deep shelves and the corners are vast, dark holes. If I had room to get things off the counters, the counter space would be quite decent. I would like to get all the dry goods in one place, and have tools & equipment located near their point of use. I'm also looking forward to adding a dishwasher and having two ovens in the range. Aesthetically speaking, the current counters & floor are peeling and I've never liked the cabinet style.

Right now our uppers are 24" above the counter, and that's one thing I really like. I can reach the first two shelves without having to stand on anything, and I keep a little kindergarten chair handy for getting to the third shelf (it's also perfect to sit in while playing with the cats :). I'm also planning to put in an 8" deep open shelf under some of the uppers for daily use items.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 2:34PM
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I think my builder knew your builder...

I kept the footprint of my kitchen, but just tweaking appliance placement and taking cabinets to the ceiling made a huge difference in our storage space and function. I love my easy-reach corners, compared to the angled cabinet caverns!

I agree with Cindy that a lot of small drawer stacks are not going to give you the storage you hope for. I have one 18" drawer stack, and while it's fine for dish towels and storage bags, it wouldn't be much good for pots and pans, or small appliances.

Is the window centered on the sink wall? It seems to be in the photos, but the layout shows it off to one side.

It looks like you have a 36" sink base. Do you need that much? I went to a 30" sink base in my new kitchen, and it helped a lot.

My U-shaped kitchen is about the same width as yours, and I couldn't figure out a way to put the dishwasher next to the sink without sacrificing a lot of good storage. I put it next to the fridge, where you show a MW drawer. Could you make your peninsula a little longer, and put the MW drawer there? Or not have the counter extend out toward the fridge, and have the MW face the fridge?

Speaking of peninsula - the corner cab that says "drawers and pullouts" - you won't be able to access a drawer under the counter overhang.

Here's a thought - I apologize for not posting a layout, I haven't figured that out yet.

See if you can imagine this, starting at fridge and working around clockwise:

- Fridge, full-depth storage above. I have pullouts - love 'em.

- 20" tall pantry

- 24" DW. Most people want to put the DW next to the sink, but even with the small one you showed, it throws everything off in a small U. I've had mine on the adjacent leg for 25 years, and have no complaints. With the amount of cooking you do, I think you'd appreciate the full-sized DW.

- 36" super susan. I use mine for small appliances, and it's very convenient.

- sink base

- 32" drawer stack (likely 3 drawers).

- Closed off corner. Yep, no way to store anything in the corner, no way, no how. The advantage (and it's huge) is that you get to have nice wide drawers on each side. I did this in my kitchen, and I use those drawers every single day. I gained enough storage in other parts of the kitchen that I didn't need storage that was difficult to use.

- 28" drawer stack. Here's where the closed corner comes in, with drawers on each side of it. I allowed a couple of inches filler on each side, so the drawers can clear each other.

- your big honking range!

- 14" tray storage. I have one that's only 9", and even that is wonderful

- 24" corner, accessible from the other side (no drawers, though).

- peninsula with MW drawer, facing either the sink or fridge (depending on if you are willing to give up a bit of counter).

I didn't make a space for a trash pull-out (but neither did you). Several here have out a trash pullout under the sink.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 3:59PM
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