Kitchen desk: 36" or 48" wide?

CamGMay 13, 2013

We've got a little over 4' in which to put a kitchen desk between a wall and a doorway. (I know kitchen desks are on their way out, etc etc, but we want one.) The desk will be for organizing, recipes, kids using laptops there, etc.

My question is how wide to make the desk section (the surface with space underneath). We could do a 3' wide desk area and a 12" drawer base, but that doesn't seem like a very big drawer base and adds a lot of cost. I'm leaning towards a 4' desk and hoping to fit two stools there (so two LOs could use it simultaneously). Any advice? Thanks!

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DCkitchen13

We just did this. It's actually more of a counter with overhang so the kids can sit/talk/eat there. I planned to do 4 feet but the design just didn't allow for it. So we did a little over 3 feet instead. Both kids (ages 4 and 6) can sit there but it is a tight squeeze. Highly recommend 48 inches if you can swing it!

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 11:21AM
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carolmka

I would also go with the 4 feet if possible. We have a desk that is only 3 feet it is very tight and it has become our beverage center. Too small of a space for us or the kids so they use the kitchen table. I agree with DCkitchen13, 2 kids is an extremely tight squeeze even in 4 feet. If you are looking at a study area, the kitchen desk is not a long term solution.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 11:48AM
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CamG

Thanks. The surprises me that 3' is not wide enough to use as a desk--I'm right now at a stand-up desk that is 3' by 2'. My worry about 4' was that it would be too wide to effectively be used by 1 person and not wide enough for 2.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 12:10PM
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kaismom

it depends on what is at the sides of that 3 ft.

if there are cabinets on both sides, squeezing in the person, that person feels crammed in and the space will not be used. Try to mock up a 3 ft wide space blocked on both sides and see how you feel sitting there...

If it is a free standing furniture, then it has a different impact from the carved in 3 ft space.

If there is a window you can look out from it, it will be a welcome space. if you are looking at a blank wall, then it will not be as pleasant.

How we use a particular space has to be considered in its context.

BTW, most people will not sit at a kitchen desk to use their lap top. The whole point of the lap top is to take it to where it is pleasant; your couch, kitchen island etc.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 1:56PM
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doonie

We went with a 4 foot desk. I ended up getting a Pier One basket to keep underneath, in addition, to be able to quickly stash stuff. I don't know what people do with their mail with out a drop zone of some sort. This does end up being a drop zone, but it's nice that the mail doesn't end up on the working surfaces of my kitchen. The filing cabinet underneath has served to keep papers for the kids filed and easily accessible.

What's nice is that this desk area is adjacent to the tv in the kitchen and the kitchen table. We are able to pull up this extra chair to the table for a seventh person if so needed. It's got a great view to the outside which also adds to its appeal.

My cook books are kept up on the shelves to the right of the desk. Underneath there are additional baskets under the counter to the right for extra storage.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 2:28PM
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CamG

kaismom, I appreciate the perspective. It may be that we use it less than expected--but we want a desk nonetheless, if only as a command center, so we might as well make it as useful as possible. It is pretty open on both sides--on one side is a doorway, and on the other, the wall juts out about 28". When dealing with kitchen islands, the rule of thumb is 24" per stool, so I figured for kids, that would make 4' safe for two.

doonie, thanks for the picture--is your entire desk 4', or the desk part with the opening underneath? It looks like the entire thing is 4'. If so, do you know the size of the drawer base?

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 2:37PM
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doonie

The entire desk is 4'. The drawer base is 36".

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 2:59PM
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