Thoughts on my kitchen

CamGMay 16, 2012

Hi everyone,

I recently posted a redesigned 2 story plan to the home building forum. I think we are getting closer on this, so I thought I would show it to you all to evaluate the kitchen before I put it through a CAD program.

There are some issue's I'm aware of, and am okay with:

-The desk, which no one likes. That's fine, but my wife insists, so that's nonnegotiable. If it turns out to be unused or bad, we will convert it to a snack center or the like.

-Tight space between island and desk. I've given up on trying to design a better space for the desk, and my wife and I have gotten out the tape measure in our kitchen, and feel fairly comfortable with this. The space will be a bit close when someone is sitting there, but otherwise I think we will be okay. Again, if it turns out to be a huge pain, we'll convert the desk to a snack center.

-Sink is not central. We really want the sink to look out over the kids playing in the backyard.

Here are some things I really like about this:

-The 2' counterspace to put groceries, which will then be unloaded into either the fridge or pantry. I realize this isn't space enough tons of bags, but the bigger it is, the less easy it would be to grab from it and step to either the fridge or pantry.

-The kitchen pantry and dining room table line up well--it would bug me to have them offset.

There is a raised breakfast bar on the back of the island. The exact depth of it and the island are will conform to whatever cabinetry we find for underneath.

Please ignore furniture placement, I have no clue about that. I'm also not sure about the kitchen cabinet dimensions, but I think we can make it work if I decide the layout looks good.

Thanks for any thoughts you have!

Whole first floor:

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It looks like a wonderful plan, that pantry is amazingly big!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 1:30PM
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This looks like fun!

I guess my preference would be to have a walk through pantry so I could go directly from the garage to the kitchen without having to walk through the mudroom and dining room first. However, you would lose some pantry space, and a few more steps won't kill you!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 1:36PM
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Looks great! The only thing I would add is a prep sink on the corner of the island, closest to the fridge :)

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 1:48PM
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Is that a 24" ramge, as drawn?

Are you doing without a DW?

For some reason the Fridge icons are flipped because as far as I know the fridge is always on the right, and yours show on the left. Not that it makes much difference in your location, or if it's a french door. But if it is a single door I would have it hinge toward the corner and reconfigure that set down space a bit. The desk is probably the most convenient spot for loading into the fridge.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 1:57PM
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Overall I really like your plan. In fact, I like your whole floor layout. I have a few thoughts/ideas.

Make the door to the pantry a pocket door. Sometimes you want the pantry hidden. Other times, you might be in and out of the pantry and a pocket door would allow the door to be open and out of the way. Also, that is a huge pantry! Do you need that much space?

Make the desk area counter height and use a stool. With a comfortable stool, it should be just as functional and would allow more versatility. If your wife ends up not liking the desk, then it could more easily be converted into something useful for the kitchen (bar, coffee bar, snack zone, baking area). When someone is not using it for a desk, counter height would allow standing work to be done at it. Also, I believe the space a stool takes up should be less than that of a standard chair.

Would you consider a prep sink at the island? It seems like that might be a nice feature.

Where is the microwave? I'm hoping you're planning for good ventilation and not a microwave over the range.

Similarly, where is the dishwasher? I'd put it to the left of the sink.

With such a large kitchen, would you consider a larger range? It does look a little small, and perhaps something larger would be more functional.

I really like claybabe's idea of an entrance from the garage to the pantry (or garage to mudroom with a door to the pantry from there) to allow direct access to the pantry and kitchen from the garage.

Do you need a dog door separate from the rear door? It seems like you could extend your cabinetry on both ends of the kitchen if you put the dog door in that back door.

Plan for plenty of sound proofing between the powder room and the kitchen. Nothing is worse than having to use a powder room while at a dinner party and having everyone overhear what you're doing in there.

Your plan is looking fantastic. I'd move in right now. I hope you'll continue to share as you build the home.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 2:23PM
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Thanks everyone!

To answer a few questions:
-I forgot to add in the dishwasher, which yes, would be on the dining room side of the sink.
-The dog door needs to be in a wall so that there are two layers of insulation (like this We are in Nebraska and winters can get very cold.
-Guilty, I had the microwave above the oven. I was thinking that a range would be too expensive. Looking at it a little more, I'm rethinking that--with it being on an outside wall, that might be a couple hundred dollars well spent (my wife hates the smell of cooking bacon ever since she last ate it when she was pregnant...) The question, then, is where to put the micro if not above the stove?
-I don't think we'll put a door from mudroom to pantry, as this would loose a lot of wall space in both rooms. If we find the walk is too far down the road, that would be an easy remodel. Maybe I'll even install a header in the wall in case.
-The fridge is wrong, this silly program I'm using gets everything screwed up.
-I don't know about the size of the range, I had figured on a standard range. I doubt we will upgrade to a nicer one, that's a lot of money...
-I don't know that we need such a big pantry, but I don't see the space as terribly useful for the half bath, and I can't expand the mudroom without making both the bathroom and pantry too narrow/shallow.

I've heard a couple ideas I absolutely love:
-stool and counter height desk is a wonderful way to fix the space issue.
-pocket door for the pantry--of course! Why didn't I think of that? (Others have probably mentioned the idea before I and I forgot...)
-Sound dampening between powder and kitchen. I don't know the first thing about this, will have to look into it.

Lavender has suggested the prep sink a number of times, and her wonderful suggestions are not lost on me! We'll have to see, I don't know how often we would end up using it. I'm sure the cost is relatively minimal. I'll have to look more into it--honestly, I don't know a single person who has a prep sink in the kitchen, so it's hard to picture using it. I'll talk to the wife about it. Thanks for bringing it back up.

Thanks again everyone, your suggestions have already made this plan better!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 3:08PM
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The comments about the range is because is looks like it is only 24" which is really an appartment size range. A standard range is at least 30". Is that what you are allowing for?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 3:18PM
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No, I'm planning a normal range of at least 30". I didn't get too detailed looking at cabinet sizes and things, but I'm glad you pointed it out. I'll change the dimensions of the stove for the next version.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 3:28PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

I love your lay out....could it be because it is so similar to mine???

Given that it is, a few comments.

. you have a lot of wall space where the desk is. We kept ours counter height which is fine and we put a stool under it. We made sure the drawer under the counter where the stool would go was very shallow...we had a deeper one at the old house and it was impossible to sit at comfortably. The space between the desk and the island is 48" which is plenty of space....if it was a few inches smaller, as yours is, that too would be fine.

. however with all that wall space by the desk area and given that there is no need for the sides of the kitchen to be symmetrical, I would move the desk to the left so the chair would clear the island. Then I would use that extra space to put in a wall oven stack. We have a drawer on the bottom, then a 30" wall oven, then a cubby above with nesting doors and an outlet. We use this space for a countertop style microwave. Very inexpensive to replace, no need for fancy trim kits and we make it go away by shutting the doors when we don't want to look at it. Then we have more tall storage above.

. prep sink is a great idea. If you think about the kitchen work triangle, this allows you to have a small one....fridge, cook top and prep sink. Then whoever is doing cleanup has their own area to work in out of the cook's way.

. i'm very concerned with the 36" distance between the island and the sink area because of the dishwasher door. We wanted to make sure we could get by while someone was loading....I think your space is tight. We have 45" with ours and that works fine.

. it's hard to tell from the pic but there is currently no symmetry in the cabinetry where the cooktop is. That will be the most important wall, the focal wall and it needs to make sense. Usually because the cooktop area provides the most interest in terms of backsplash, it should be in a position that makes sense. I know you want off load for the fridge (we actually use our island the most as with french door fridges, there is no "convenient" side to off load to, but behind works really well) but you can keep that on both sides by moving the cooktop down so it is centered on the island anyway....will make the room feel more balanced.

. DH insisted on using the space above the refrigerator for a tv set which we have slaved off of the one in the family room. We also put the nested doors over it so i don't have to look at it all the time. It works well for him as every a.m. he eats breakfast at the island and watches the morning news.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 4:14PM
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I'm a big pantry person so I always look at those parts, first. And yours is very spacious.

One thing I'd consider, though, since you have the space is making the shelves a little deeper on the bottom (18-20") and then stepping back to 15" at either normal counter height, or a bit below. It's a charming look and allows for all kinds of useful storage.

You could even consider having the back wall lower section deeper than that (perhaps even 21-24") with either simple cupboards for large items, or deep drawers if you've been bitten by the all-drawer bug. You could make the drawers unusually deep for bulky and tall items, in that case. If you then skipped the lowest shelf above the extra deep section in the back, you'd have a bit of counter space in the pantry which is handy while loading the shelves. It beats stooping to pick everything up out of bags or baskets directly from the floor when you come home from marketing. In a pantry of your size, you could spare the lose of that shelf-space in exchange for the added conveneince of a close-in counter.

I will look at the rest of your pans when I have time - we've a bad storm approaching - but my eye always goes first to any pantry proposal and I couldn't resist getting my oar in on that now in case I lose power for a few days.



    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 4:34PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

. good point lirio on the pantry design. I made the mistake of not making sure the lowest space in the pantry was high enough and now I struggle to put the taller heavier things in the container of kitty litter.

. on the island, I would not add the breakfast bar, but keep the island at counter height for several reasons. A) it makes the stools easier for short people like me to operate. I can't stand those stools that are so tall that I have to perch on them, and then can't touch the ground to move them in comfortably. B) the bar area is too narrow to be that spreading out a newspaper to read or even putting dishes on their comfortably. C) you have to be careful not to knock stuff off the bar onto the island. D) it makes the island less useful for serving area at parties or roll out space to make cookies. E) we use ours as a de facto kitchen table when company comes so I end up sitting on the cook's side where I can put food out and such and we're all at the same height

. DH also wanted me to mention to you that putting the microwave in the wall oven stack puts it at a much more convenient height to operate than it would be over the cooktop.

. Powder room consideration....I would think about putting the toilet on the bottom wall so that when you walk into the room you can have a nice large vanity as the focal point and the pot will be around the corner, out of the way.

. On the mudroom, it looks like you have a 12 foot long bench in there which is really long. I'm not sure what that long area is next to the that a folding table? DH suggested that more closet space would be useful, and if the room isn't wide enough, perhaps you can cheat some space out of the very large pantry to make a closet there...or you may be able to move the door to the garage down to give more wall space on the top side for a closet.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 5:09PM
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You need a prep sink to make that layout work. Otherwise the prep space consumes the entire working kitchen and overlaps completely with cooking and cleanup. The flow of food goes from fridge and pantry to sink to prep surface to stove. To follow that workflow now, you have to cross the whole kitchen.

The countertop to the right of the fridge is going to be a big black hole.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 5:19PM
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First off, that's my wife's name, how funny!

Your kitchen is gorgeous. Thank you for the detailed photos and measurements. Do you have any photos of the whole kitchen? I would love to see any more you have, as we will definitely be stealing some aspects of it!

Great point on the symmetry around oven--that was easy to do, and gave me more space to the right of the fridge, so that's not such a small little corner.

To get more clearance between dishwasher and island, maybe I can cut down on the size of the island if I make it curved like yours--maintaining the same seating capacity with less length. I wasn't terribly set on the breakfast bar.

I hadn't seriously considered having separate cooktop and wall ovens, but it does have a nice look to it. Functionally, are they better than a single unit? I'll have to look into it. I like the idea of having a hidden micro. TV over the fridge, love it! CNN for AM coffee, I'll bring that up to the wife.

Thanks so much!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 5:58PM
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Thanks for the thoughts on the pantry. I'll be sure to incorporate that when thinking about the dimensions. I had put those shelf dimensions in just for reference, without much thought. What great suggestions!

Annie, re your second post:
I agree very much about the breakfast bar. Will bring up your points to my Annie. That's also a good point about the micro, especially with kids--my wife had the above the oven micro growing up and had to climb on the countertops, which, while I like to instill a sense of adventure in my kids, is not a great idea... I'll experiment with pivoting the toilet, I like that idea. The mudroom layout is pretty general, just to give an idea--I still need to find a place for dog bowls and such, and you're right about that being too large, and about my closet being too small. I'll look into that.

Regarding the mudroom, one question unrelated to kitchens--anyone find it weird to have two large windows from the front of the house going into the mudroom? It will make it nice and bright in there, but it seems a bit strange.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 6:05PM
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Cam- If the range and sink were switched (not that I'm suggesting they should be) then you wouldn't need a prep sink...but I think it makes a lot of sense, if your only sink is that far from the fridge. That will allow one person to work at the island and another to be cleaning up or working in the area, between the range and main sink.

Are you planning to use a dishwasher or dish drawer(s)? 3' might be a little tight, if it's a regular dishwasher, with the door open it will block your aisle. I'm no expert in aisle width, but I would check on that one...the rest look great.

I love a large pantry, but if you aren't sure you need it, you might want to put in a pocket door to the mudroom, too. It would be handy...and allow people to get from the garage to the kitchen, without walking through the front entry.

Annie has a great idea (IMHO) to move the desk over and put the oven/microwave in that area. It's so close to the fridge and pantry, it will make a nice snack area :)

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 6:16PM
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If you don't do the wall oven stack and include the MW in that, depending on how much you use the MW you could put it in the "big black hole" (as marcolo termed it) to the right of the fridge. Throw in leftovers straight from the fridge, heat up water for coffee/tea (this would work out great if there was a prep sink in the corner of the island as already suggested), - just a thought.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 6:30PM
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Ditto all the suggestions regarding the prep sink. Would also consider double pull-out garbage cans in your island. You either love them or hate them but I am crazy about mine.

I also love my dog, but living in the country, I wouldn't put a pet door directly to the outside. Could you put it into the garage? Since you have that mud room, it would be a great place to clean off the dog too.

For the desk space, why not extend that counter space down the wall and put more than the desk? Include some of the ideas already thrown out regarding the microwave space, snack bar, wine rack under the cabs, glass-front cabinets, etc? Maybe even a small beverage refrigerator down low for the kids along with that microwave.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 7:14PM
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Very nice kitchen, I will agree with moving down the desk and adding the oven cabinet for the micro. Advantium is a fabulous micro/speed oven by GE. You should research it. I love mine. Also, unless you are doing dishwasher drawers I'm afraid that 3 ft isle will not work, know your appliances and the specs specific for them.
My concern is that you have too much space between the island and the stove wall, and not enough room between the island and the table. Reversing what you have might be better.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 8:26PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Not sure what else I can show you.

The arch shape in the island is part of the theme of the home (I call it the broken arch) and the shape is repeated throughout the house...from the front door to the shape in the doors throughout the house, the front of the woodstove and the fireplace and others. In the kitchen we used it for the fume hood cover and then the island, where the flooring changes from family room to the kitchen, and the soffit over the island, which acts as a visual break to make the kitchen feel separate, though there are not walls, between the kitchen, family room and breakfast nook.

Really old shot during construction:

This is another old shot, pre backsplash, drapes, etc., of the sink wall. It doesn't show in the picture, but the trim mold above the window is actually several inches away from the wall. This was done so I could tuck a tension rod up there to hang the curtain on and the molding itself becomes the wood valance for the curtain. The cabinetry fell out with an extra few inches so we put in a dish towel bar.

This picture also reveals a second oven under the counter. Rather than get an oven and a warming drawer, I felt the 2 ovens were more practical. I also sacrificed some size on the oven to leave space to build an electric outlet in the middle front of the island which I use all the time. Usually appliances like food processors have such short cords that you'd have to use extensions just to plug them into the island.

The "cabinet" next to the drawers on the left of the sink is the dishwasher which has the cabinet door front. The kitchen window is bumped out a few inches at the same level as the counter to put plants behind the sink.

We chose an induction cooktop and love it. I can boil water in 90 seconds or less yet turn the heat down so low that I can melt chocolate without a double boiler. It also has the same control as gas, so cools immediate when you turn it down, much like a gas cooktop...but much more energy efficient.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 8:46PM
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Personally, I'd at least draw changing the ref for the desk area. The ref is one of those things used by others.

Then move the stove a little bit away from the window. You don't want the edge of the hood to be smack on or in your window trim.

The other design I'd draw is sliding the dining room window and exterior door towards the living room and flipping the ref over beside cleanup. This does the same thing in terms of making the ref accessible to others and also lessens the need for a prep sink.

The only other thing for me, in terms of stuff to consider IF adding a prep sink, would be thinking about if I wanted a longer cleanup area where the desk is shown (consolidates plumbing) and move the desk to the outside wall in front of a window.

From a floorplan reason, I like having cold food and pantry food in the same general direction. If I move the dishes and the micro within striking distance of the ref, I've successfully disposed of those irritating, possibly younger, people who want to micro something while I'm working. I can then place the prep sink in either the island or the corner between the windows. Placement would depend on whether I used it more to fill and dump pots or to wash veg and perhaps put peels down a garbage disposal. Plus thinking about whether I'd rather prep looking out a window while it was daylight. A lot of people like to prep between sink and cooking surface and that doesn't seem possible here.

This is one of my personal things, but when you have two sinks, the majority of the time is spent at the prep sink and not at cleanup - at least not since the invention of the dishwasher.

It is a cherished romantic vision of a lot of people that they will stand over the sink either washing dishes or doing prep and watching the kids. The reality sometimes is that the parents work, that supper is the main cooked meal and its dark outside when its being prepared, or that in this design, prep is done on the island without a view out of the windows. Plus, I tend to look at where my knife is!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 10:35AM
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Dog door thought. I know what you mean about cold - we live in Alaska. We used a dual flap door from Hale dog doors. We needed a HUGE door for our big Kuvasz (135 lbs and 31" at the shoulder) and they were one of the few companies that made one large enough. It's a through the door model. You will not gain any insulation value from the "dead air" space between the flaps - there's not a dog door on the market that seals that tightly (we looked and looked before spending big bucks on ours!) The real value in the dual flap models is that it makes it that much harder for winter winds to find their way past the flaps. If your kitchen layout would benefit from the additional space - you do have options. Overall - very nice layout, although I too see an advantage in adding a prep sink to the island. Looks nice!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 11:58AM
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I'm starting my kitchen remodel, and am wondering what software you used to render your drawings? Thanks!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 3:51PM
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I don't know if anyone addressed this yet but the desk could be shallower. We did a built in desk in our last kitchen that was the full 24" deep to match the cabs and honestly it could have been 18" and been fine. Unless you are going to put a enormous honkin' CRT monitor on it you can do it narrower and put a slide out keyboard tray (if you are going to put a PC there, no need if you use a laptop of course) and that will give you some more space for your aisles. Just get a stool or chair that will push in compactly.

Honestly I liked my built in desk in the kitchen but part of that is because we didn't have a spare room for a home office. And we had an extremely long and narrow space (8x22) and really needed to fill up some of the length so we put the built in desk at one end.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 4:06PM
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Just throwing out another idea, but what if the window behind the dining area was changed to one or two glass doors to the exterior and eliminating the door? That would allow the dog door to be moved over and more of the wall space to be usable. Not that you particularly need more space since you seem to have a good sized kitchen. But I'd hate to cut usable space short unnecessarily.

I understand not wanting to lose wallspace in both the pantry and mudroom. Another option might be a door directly into the pantry from the garage (instead of through the mud room. I think it's a great idea to install headers in case you determine in the future that you would prefer the door to the wall space.

Another option for desk space might be to extend the countertop that you currently have labeled for the desk area to make an overhang towards the dining room and then place the stool facing the same direction as the island stools on the edge. This would eliminate the concern of desk user sitting in the walk way.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 4:11PM
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I strongly agree with a lot of things you're being told... A prep sink will make this layout work, and make the island one height. The raised bar will do nothing to hide the view of any kitchen mess and just decrease the use of the island.

I don't think the 2 ft to the right of the fridge will do much except collect things. It's no good for loading the fridge, because the door will open over it. It could possibly be a good location for the microwave, and maybe oven/micro as I now see has already been suggested.

4'8" is a wiiiide aisle in front of the range. I prefer 3 to 4 ft.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 4:41PM
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I think this plan is a vast improvement from your earlier plan. I really like it, so much so that I hope you don't mind me saving your ideas in case we ever build someday. : )

I have to agree with everyone about putting in another sink in the island. We have two sinks, and I would never, ever want to go back to one, especially with a busy household and a big family. More times than not, there is action at both sinks at once. To be able to have one between the fridge and stove like your plan allows would be a dream come true for me. (Our second sink is in an awkward location that I'm hoping to be able to change.)

If your pantry is bigger than what you think you'll need, how about putting the freezer in there rather than in the mudroom? It seems like that would be a lot more convenient for cooking.

This is a very exciting plan and folks have given you great suggestions for making it even better.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 4:42PM
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Too many great thoughts here to respond to each! Our house will owe so much to you fine folks.

I designed this at, which is not the most precise but is good enough for general planning. If you use it, be sure to check the dimensions of the items such as sinks and ovens.

Okay, based on all of your suggestions, I have revamped this a bit, if you could give your thoughts.

The biggest problem with the above plan, I think, was the narrow space between the island and dishwasher. There also wasn't a real big space between the island and desk. I do not want the kitchen to seem crowded, especially with lots of people circulating around in it. So, I took out the desk entirely, made the island bigger, made the isles bigger, and now everything is bigger. So the fridge wasn't either in the corner or next to a worthless counter, I moved it over a bit, giving me nearly 3' of out of the way space--perfect for that desk.

-Annie had some great suggestions, but I think we will stick with a conventional oven range. I would prefer a simple, spacious kitchen to one packed with amenities. That said, the overwhelming opinion is for a prep sink, and with the bigger island, that's easy to do.
-Apparently they make fully functional hoods/microwave combinations. I like that idea as a compromise.
-I made the area around the oven symmetrical like Annie suggested.
-Made the pantry door a pocket door.
-I put the dog door in the door--if it works in Alaska, it will work in Nebraska!

What I don't like about this is that the dining table no longer lines up with the island, but that's a given if I make the dishwasher isle longer. And we really feel strongly about keeping the sink on the back wall.

Again, thanks so much for all of the suggestions and thoughts!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 7:16PM
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Whoops, I forgot to move the desk label. The desk in this version is next to the fridge, where the stool is.

Ahhh and now my wife says she likes the wall ovens! I blame you Annie :)

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 7:54PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Hey we Annies have to stick together. ;)

The separate oven/cooktop is such a good look. And microwaves over the cooktop are not so hot for reaching and venting is not as good.

If you are taking all function out of that bottom wall, then you can narrow that space and enlarge the island.

But somehow I like the desk there better as when you're coming home, it's usually the place you want to go to first to dump the keys and the mail, etc.

I'd move the island sink in from the edge as having no counter space on one side diminishes its usefulness.

As far as the dining table not lining up with the island, that is either ok or can be handled by creating visual breaks to make the space feel more separate, or you can line them up by adding furniture like a low buffet to the top wall so the table will be centered in the space.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 8:54PM
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First thing I noticed was the LONG walk around the house to get to the pantry. I saw someone addressed it earlier.

I think you need to make that door into the pantry now, and not as a remodel project. I would be so irritated every time I made that long trip with sacks of groceries. Form follows Function.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 11:33PM
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Cam- Now that the TV is in the family are you planning to use the living room?

If it were me (just another idea) I would take out the door, between the two rooms and just have access from the hall. There's no room for an end table or light by the sofa, in your current layout.

And, I would rework the mudroom, so that it's an L-shape and goes from the garage, through the current pantry and into the kitchen. Then, I would make that bathroom a 3/4 bath (with a shower) and move the closet down to the front. This should give you more space (width wise) for your pantry and maybe you can reconfigure the space to include your desk and or oven/microwave...along with your pantry storage.

I know this is probably a big pain in the side idea...but it would give you more flexibility and allow you to have a sometimes first floor guest room/den. This would not only help, if you have parents that visit (and don't want to climb stairs) but it should boost your resale value, too. Just another possiblity :)

    Bookmark   May 18, 2012 at 12:20AM
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Okay, you're all right. That is a long walk to the pantry. And looking at prices, I'm not sure a wall oven plus a cooktop will be that much more expensive than a nice oven range--especially if we want an induction range (REALLY expensive to get an induction oven/range).
So, I did this. It makes the pantry A BIT smaller, but maybe more useful, with a nice counter to put groceries down on, and shelves above and below the counter. Thoughts?

I really don't want the main mudroom entry to be in the kitchen, especially if that puts the pantry off next to the hallway. Just seems weird to me. I think this gives the best of both worlds.

Lavender, I think this includes a lot of your suggestions. Both of our parents live in town, so I'm not sure I want to sacrifice much for a shower downstairs. We'll think about it--let's just say its the least important consideration. And I agree about the door from the den to living room.

Thanks again everyone!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2012 at 11:39AM
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Cam- It looks great! And if your parents live in town, the powder room will be fine. At some future time (if necessary) you could take out the closet and move the sink to that side and add a shower...but you probably won't need it.

I like the pantry! The only thing I would change is the prep sink. Usually, I like it further from the main sink, but if you moved it to the other side of the island you could use the island as a landing area, for the wall oven. Otherwise, the desk might end up being that...which I don't think your wife would like.

Have you thought about a broom closet, to the right of the fridge? Nice storage and frees up a little more room in your pantry and mudroom :)

    Bookmark   May 18, 2012 at 12:39PM
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I showed my DH your amazing plan last night. But now it's even better. : ) One thing he noticed, that I did not, was that the stairwell as drawn looks rather narrow. You might want to consider widening it to 4' (making an 8' wide hall, total) to make it easier for people to pass by each other going up and down the stairs at the same time, and to make moving furniture a little easier.

I really like the walk-through pantry, and LL's idea of the broom closet next to the fridge.

If you don't want to move the island sink down for landing space from the wall oven, it looks like there is enough room to move the desk toward the hall and put in a small stretch of counter between the oven and the desk.

Again, are you sure you want a fridge/freezer in the mudroom, or would it be more convenient in the pantry?

    Bookmark   May 18, 2012 at 9:35PM
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You know, if you moved the freezer to the pantry, you would have more space in the mudroom...for the closet. If you turned the closet and had it where the freezer and bottom half of the closet are would have room for a larger bath or a linen closet opening in the bathroom, where the top part of the closet is, now.

The advantage to this is that you could have a pocket door into the mudroom, from the entry...and still have space for an entry table, in the hall. Just an idea, but it would be nice to have the closet in the mudroom and a larger door into the bathroom.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2012 at 10:28PM
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Hi, Cam. It's all coming along so nicely. I personally like Lavender's tweakings.

Desirable as a piece of furniture for display in the entry would be, though, to me Laughable's point about the need for a wider stairway is a very important one. You might check out existing staircases, noting also the width taken up by the banisters. Our staircase is open to the dining hall, and the outsides of the balusters are set about 2-1/2" from the edges of the treads. I'm guessing the width is currently at the minimum allowed by code? Each and every inch added beyond that would be very positive, functionally of course, but also aesthetically. Right now it's not only physically cramping in your otherwise spacious home, it also LOOKS very shortchanged, an afterthought inappropriate to the nice home it's going in.

Seriously, your mudroom and pantry, and powder room, are so extravagantly endowed with space that they can easily spare some inches (or even feet if they were needed!) for this critically important function. Stair design should be a priority 1 item in a two-story home, after all.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2012 at 1:01PM
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Re Prep sink: I have had two that were in the corner of the island, and it is true that there are issues with that, with less to no landing space on one side. However, the reason I did it was so that I could maximize the uninterrupted island project area, and optimize my island drawer layout. I also had the prep sink as close as I could get it to the range in both situations even though in the first kitchen it was just across the aisle from the main sink. Overall, having lived with this set up now for a total of 6-7 years, I don't miss the extra space on the one side and have adapted to that for the most part (every now and again I wonder if it would have been better the other way, but it is probably rare that I wonder). But the one thing that I can say I would have regretted in a major way is to have the prep sink farther from the stove/cooktop. It gets used a LOT during food prep and cooking. Just some thoughts, YMMV

    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 3:11PM
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Sigh. I love homes with mudrooms. And walk-in pantries. If I had either I'd be thrilled nearly to death, but both and I'd be in house heaven. Now I know this thread isn't really about the mudroom, but I wanted to throw this out there in case you'd never seen it or thought about it before. One of the coolest things I think I've ever seen in a mudroom design is a knee wall shower. (I think knee wall is the right term). The shower spray sits low and it's open at the front. Its main use is as a space to wash dogs - or just rinse them after they have been out in the yard or walked in bad weather.

That seems like a lot of space for a doggy bath, but a small tiled space with a floor drain has many really practical possibilities. I would set wet shoes and boots in it in winter and use it to rinse off muddy shoes, toys, or sporting equipment. I would keep a collapsable wood drying rack nearby to use in there for things I didn't want in the dryer. In summer, it would be a handy place to dry bathing suits and towels. Can you tell I've given my imaginary mudroom a lot of thought?

    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 4:02PM
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Oh I can just see my dog slinking past that shower every time he goes in or out.... Still, what a GREAT idea.

Camg - I may be the sole dissenter but I truly LOVE my desk in the kitchen. I have two teenagers and want to keep an eye on what they're doing online. I currently have two computers in my desk area (side by side) and nothing makes me happier than when my kids and their friends are busily working or playing online as I cook. We also watch shows online from the island.

I use the desk all the time, too.

Am enjoying the development, great plan, love the large pantry!

    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 9:14PM
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Two pictures of our desk area, for your wife :) Sometimes we have one chair there...sometimes two. Location of dog, varies. DH built a channel which hides most of cabling. Desk is 27" deep and we designed the space around an existing piece of furniture. From edge of desk to island is 51". This is tight at times (we have stools on this side of the island) but doable. Left hand computer is visible; right hand one is in the cabinet to the right.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 9:37PM
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Wow oldbat, that is a beautiful Guard Dog Of The Kitchen! I think s/he is asking for gourmet snacks to be prepared.

Where is the NKBA guideline for that?

    Bookmark   June 7, 2012 at 12:49AM
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