Separate kitchen/dining or country kitchen?

lavender_lassOctober 7, 2009

I'm fairly new to the forum, but I'd like to ask a question? Do many of you have separate dining rooms and kitchens? Or do you prefer one bigger room, that combines the kitchen with the dining table? I have two small rooms, that could be opened into one (wall is not load bearing) or left separate? Any suggestions?

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It really depends upon your lifestyle. We prefer the country kitchen effect, and have kind of achieved that in our current home. We have a small galley kitchen that is open to the family room. The family room has been decorated to be part of the kitchen, with kitchen antiques such as Hoosier cabinet and pie safe. My wife's collection of vintage utensils are on display as well. This house has a small dining room, which has become the computer room for lack of another purpose. All of our guests congregate in the kitchen/family room and visit with us while we cook.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2009 at 4:28PM
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Mine are separate, but I wish they weren't. I prefer the open plans.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2009 at 5:05PM
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OH flgargoyle I would love to see a picture or six of your kitchen. Sounds so nice.

We have had the kitchen dinning room country kind of kitchen in almost all of our houses and like it very much. I did have a house once were I opened a bedroom up to create the country kitchen and it made the house feel so much nicer.


    Bookmark   October 7, 2009 at 7:41PM
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Yes, it does depend on your lifestyle. Eat-in kitchens are great when you have kids at home. If the wall is not load-bearing it should be relatively simple to remove.
I prefer my dining/kitchen seperate. Not that I ever entertain enough for that to be an issue, lol I know this is not the norm now-a-days. What I would really love is to have a living/dining combo again.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2009 at 10:31PM
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I have an open plan and separate dining area, but not a dining room. My 48" DR is the only thing that will fit in that space that is obviously made for dining. I eat everyday at the kitchen island while the DR table is for more formal (for lack of a better word) occasions.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2009 at 8:35PM
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Thanks for the input. After a lot of suggestions and advice from family, friends, forum, etc. I've decided to open up the kitchen to the dining room. However, I want to keep some of the division by cutting out a big pass through to the dining room from the kitchen and having a raised breakfast bar and two stools. This will help hide the mess when I to cook, but always make a mess :)

    Bookmark   October 12, 2009 at 12:19AM
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Good plan Lavender Lass. Please don't forget to post us a pic when you are done.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2009 at 10:04AM
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Sounds like that will work Lavender Lass. I am a messy cook which is the only reason I am glad my kitchen is separate.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2009 at 11:27AM
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I am in a larger home, 1675 sq ft. It it that style of ranch where the garage is what you see when you drive up, and the front door is in an indentation next to the garage. The living room is in front, next to the front door, but the living room does not come out as far as the garage does. I have heard them called "snout houses" because of the way the two-car garage looks, sticking out past the rest of the house Like a pig's snout.

Behind that garage, there is the stairway to our basement, then the eat-in kitchen, then the family room. The dining area is defined by a funky ceiling. Remember how in the late 70s, people lowered their kitchen ceilings and had recessed fluorescent lights behind plastic, so that the whole ceiling appeared to glow? Our kitchen ceiling has an oblong space like this, and the dining area has a square one. Along the way, someone took off the plastic and put in light fixtures, then put a wallpaper border print on the inside of the soffits.

Now-a-days, people build these into very tall ceilings and call them tray ceilings and they add to the value of the house. Mine are so low that I can touch the soffits defining the ceilings without getting on tippy-toes.

Other than the dropped ceiling, I love my kitchen with the dining area on the side. I have an antique waterfall-front little buffet, a kitchen table, and leather-cushioned chairs. None of the woods are the same color, but the pine table's wood tones can be found in the distressed finish of the chairs, and the darker colors on the chairs tie in with the quarter-sawn oak of the buffet. We can have the table set up to go north-south without the extra leaf, or east-west with it. When the table is north-south, the rolling island is between the sink and the table. When the table is east-west, the island sits on the edge of the 6 inch drop-off into the family room, below. The dining chandelier has a couple of hooks in the ceiling, so it can be centered over the table, depending on the orientation.

We have the east-west configuration going now, it is nice because the table is right in the kitchen (and extends into the dining area) and it feels very homey. Country-kitchen style. The other configuration feels more modern, and I like having the island near the sink and fridge.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2009 at 7:08PM
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Nancy, our house has that same garage thing out front. I've never heard it called a snout, but it fits.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2009 at 11:40AM
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i have both, i have a small round table with 4 chairs (leaves stored) in the kitchen dinette area..with a walk out to the back garden..and then there is also a snack bar on the far end of the kitchen with 2 stools.

but I also have a smallish dining room that is separate, it is very elegant but honestly we don't use it much to eat..i have a computer hutch in one corner of this room, and it is more a place to use my pc and it's components and occasionally we 'll use the table and chairs in has a lovely view of the gardens..and is in the main flow of the house open to the living sometimes guests will just plop down at the table and chairs to talk or to do a small paperwork or crafty something..but it isn't generallly used for daily meals

    Bookmark   October 20, 2009 at 12:39PM
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In my previous house, I had a small kitchen with an eat-in dining space. I also had room for a small bookcase (for cookbooks), an antique pie safe, and a tiered muffin stand. It did get a little crowded if I had more than six people, but I liked the bigger feel to my kitchen workspace because of the eating area. My china cabinet had to go in the living room. I had to find space for that cabinet and measure to be sure before I bought that house or any house.

This house is old - it will be 100 next year - and has a larger kitchen and a separate dining room. It's still a small house, only about 1565 ft. but the kitchen feels quite large. The only thing is, I don't have a lot of counter and work space. There is a small awkward area that I think was for a small kitchen table and a couple of chairs. But I wish I had the money to build in more cabinets and storage in that space. The dining room is large with plenty of room for an antique buffet, a china cabinet, that muffin stand and the pie safe, and plenty of room for 6 chairs around my oval dining table.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2009 at 7:11PM
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Thank you for all the responses :)

I've decided to combine the kitchen and dining room, because I think it's cozier and a better use of space. If I use the same width for the rectangular table for the "work island" and the square dining table at the corner banquette (both with rounded edges, not sharp corners) I should be able to push them together in the middle of the kitchen and seat up to eight comfortably. A tablecloth over both tables and hopefully it will look like one big table. Also, I plan to have the banquette table on a pedestal, so it's easier to use the banquette (no legs in the way when you're sliding around the table).

Ronbre- Since you have eating areas in your kitchen and dining room, have you thought of using the dining room table as a game table or library? You already have the computer in there and a gorgeous view of the garden. Is there a place for a window seat or maybe some wall space for a few bookcases?

    Bookmark   October 21, 2009 at 6:51PM
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