Help with my kitchen design!

garrytblackMay 3, 2013

Attached is a photo of our design. Currently the range is on the wall where the fridge is but we were going to put different freestanding units on that wall from a store where we get "primitive" furniture. Our plan was for a desk hutch, and jelly cabinet with bronze colored punched tin insets.

On the wall where the fridge is, it would actually be scooted to the corner. There is a 32 inch wall there that isn't shown on the picture.

It might just need to remain free standing for now.

The doorway to the left of the range is really only a walkway to the pantry area and washer/dryer. It is open. I checked measurements and placements and am sure pan handles won't stick out to the doorway.

The bar will have 3 cabinet doors in it.

Our pantry is huge. We store no food in the cabinets and that's why we don't want to just throw built ins the whole way around the room.

So, what should we do? Ideas? Like it? Hate it?

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Pretty close to what it should look like. We will have a drawer stack to the left of the sink on the bottom. That's all that's different.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 9:41PM
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Sophie Wheeler

The range needs to stay where it was. It's a safety hazard where it is. Not enough landing space and with a walkway there is just asking for a trip to the hospital burn unit.

Or, move the door to the pantry over so you can get at least a 15" cabinet to the left of the range.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 9:48PM
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I measured and drew exactly where the burners are on my old counter. Then I put a pan on and it is blocked by the door trim by a few inches.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 10:11PM
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This setup is a little over 2k more to do.

Now we could either a desk or the jelly cabinet but not both.

This post was edited by garrytblack on Fri, May 3, 13 at 22:26

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 10:24PM
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I like your 2nd layout much better. That puts the stove in a safer location. It also looks to give you some much needed extra storage space.

Don't do a desk, unless you don't have an office space in your home. We are ripping ours out as it just collects clutter. We'd rather have cabinetry there, for extra storage.

Not sure about the valance over the window. It really serves no functional purpose and may be considered dated.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 11:04PM
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Garry - the 2nd location for the range is better. Where you had it in the first is a hazard for sure. Also, in your first layout, you had no landing space for when you access the fridge, in the 2nd one, you at least have space on the one side.

A desk sounds appealing in the kitchen, but in reality, I've seen that most people just don't use them and it's on the chopping block when they remodel.

I'd also nix the valance over the window - it does seem a little dated. We have one that we'll be removing from our 1970's kitchen. :)

Can't tell exactly what all the bottoms are for your cabinets, but you'll find almost everyone here will encourage the use of drawers, drawers, and more drawers. If you are planning on using doors and then roll outs behind those, save yourself the additional hassle of two separate movements to access things and get drawers.

I'm a little surprised that you don't want to store any food in the kitchen - not sure where the pantry is in reference to the kitchen since I don't see it in your layout, but if it's not pretty convenient, it would annoy me to have to head there for everything I need to make a meal.

Have you considered a regular hood rather than a micro-hood? You'll find that most of us here suggest against it since the microwave in that location is typically not the most convenient and the hood in them isn't usually of great quality.

Have you figured out where you will be putting things (dishes, pots, pans, flatware, glasses, garbage, etc.) in your kitchen? That helps a lot when trying to figure out if a layout works for you.

You mentioned that the 2nd layout is 2k more...I'm figuring that it's because of the increased cabinetry and counter and that doesn't really sound out of line.

The peninsula looks like it has a very skinny base to it. Is there a particular reason you have it that way? I'm wondering about the overall safety of that as well since it seems like not enough of a support area overall for a slab of granite and I would expect that additional bracing would need to be done at the least, so I wonder why you wouldn't have deeper cabinets there.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 7:19AM
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I like your first design a lot better, Garry, BUT with the doorway moved so the stove and its pots of water, grease, melted sugar are, as suggested, more separated. You don't need to consider just pot handles sticking out, but also people handles. Swinging arms, shoulders, things that are carried past the stove, people who are bumped toward the stove, cooks losing control of stuff they're picking up...

Since there isn't heavy traffic into the pantry/laundry area, it wouldn't be the worst thing to leave as the drawing shows if the doorway couldn't be moved, but it is a genuine dysfunction and I'd fix it as part of the remodel if possible, and it'd also improve the function of the stove area.

BTW, speaking of safety, what on earth is so safe about moving the stove to the left wall so that traffic not only runs right along the front of it (cook's not always standing in front it after all), but also CROSSING the path of all those pots of boiling water, etc., as they're moved to the main work side of the kitchen? This is and always was as serious hazard, worse than a stove by a doorway with very light traffic. Big NO for keeping the stove to the left. Put it on the safer and far more efficient work side.

As for working, I imagine almost all of it would take place between the stove and sink. You wouldn't schlep everything from stove, sink and fridge to that nice counter and peninsula to the right of the sink and back. If it were mine, I'd slide the sink to the right to create more work counter where it'll be needed. I'd also move some of the overhead cabinets from where I'd be standing and chopping to the area right of the sink. Just a personal preference for openness in front of me.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 7:48AM
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Thanks guys. This site pops up every time I research something so I felt I should come here.

As for now we have a very nice sized walk in pantry just on the other side of that walkway by the range.

It has shelving that is 24 inches deep and there are 3 sections on each side with plenty of room to turn around, etc. What's not in the fridge is in there.

I know there is no landing next to the fridge. We never use that area for squat from the fridge anyway (our current setup is almost exactly like setup 2 on here but goes clear to the end of that run). With the way it is now you set stuff on that bar. The double door fridge makes the landing beside the fridge almost useless. You have to set stuff out on the bar first and then move it there anyway.

The current location of the stove does make it weird in conjunction with the sink. You have to watch your step when carrying things across the room to the sink. Design 1 gives us lots of workspace to the right of the range. We could also put some cooking supplies in the lazy Susan. Right now it shows doors to the left of the sink and we have switched to drawers thanks to this site. Pots and pans would go there.

This picture linked at the bottom helped me come up with design 1. It was posted here. At best I can center the range in that 47 inch space. That means I'd have a full foot from edge of range to doorway. It also means I'd lose the lazy Susan and the upper cabinets would each be about 8 inches wide.

The bar bottom is currently 12 inches with seating on both sides. Normal there isn't seating inside the kitchen but that's how it was when we moved here and we love it because it opens to the dining room. There would be doors on the bar inside the kitchen making it similar to 3 wall units to store rarely used materials. Our plan is to make the bar 36 inches wide so we can have seating on both sides. We never eat at the dining room table. I stand on the dining room side and my wife and son sit at the bar. Sometimes I'll eat at the dining room table but we would prefer to be together. The addition to seating on both sides makes 12 inches of leg space on each side and then a 12 inch base. Maybe only 10 inches is needed and we can get the base unit to 16 inches????

Moving the sink away from the window doesn't seem like it would work. That's the only window in the room.

Here is a link that might be useful: Oven close to doorway

This post was edited by garrytblack on Sat, May 4, 13 at 8:33

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 8:22AM
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Regarding your last paragraph, I don't understand. What's one to do with the other? :)

(Don't bother answering.)

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 9:54AM
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Anyone else? Now I heard both ways and that has me flustered haha. I'm a wreck about this.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 4:17PM
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Sophie Wheeler

You didn't respond to the suggestions to relocating the pantry door. That would be a simple solution.

Do you have a layout of the adjacent rooms? Knowing the traffic floor and where space can be "robbed" can be key to getting you a good layout.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 4:20PM
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I don't know about anyone else but I'm having trouble following this. Garry, I would try to clarify a little so you get more feedback.

1) "Moving the sink away from the window doesn't seem like it would work. That's the only window in the room." Explain this? The sink does not have to be at a window.

2) "Now I heard both ways and that has me flustered haha. I'm a wreck about this." What is both ways?

As hollysprings said you need to respond to the pantry door question and post a layout showing adjacent rooms. You don't need to put it in your design program just use graph paper if you want. Take a photo of the graph paper to upload easily.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 6:26PM
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1. Aren't most sinks under a single kitchen window?

2. My home is built and I can't really be moving doorways. On the other side of the opening is a small room. The left side of the room (as you face out is a walk in pantry. On the ride side is the washer and dryer. Straight through there is a door to our deck.

That "walkway from deck to pantry to kitchen to dining room to hallway for bedrooms is pretty close to being a straight shot.

The dining room, iff we had no bar would be wide open to the kitchen. It is a nice sized room. We had it redone as soon as we moved in to get rid of carpet and we put a hardwood floor down.

Both ways means some people say to go with the option where the range is across the room from the sink. Another person said they liked the stove on that short wall (no landing space on the left though.). I can't move the door though so it pretty much is what you see. The only thing I can really do us move the stove to the right about 4 inches. I still couldn't fit a pot and the upper doors would be about 7 inches wide. The only good thing is that it would be a little further from the walkway. With the range across the room you have to sometimes navigate across the floor to get water, dump liquid, etc. you are also basically standing in the through way (but there is tons of space to go around the cook and that's never been an issue before).

Option 1 is cheaper and allows an open wall for us to work with. It gives us a quick turn to the sink and lots of workspace.
Option 2 costs more and gives us about 6-7 more feet of base cabinets and uppers. It gives us the current design and allows the fridge to be built in easier. It gives us a walk across the room to the sink and less workspace.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 10:35PM
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I've seen some people put their stove in a corner, so it is at a 45 deg angle to the rest of the cabinets. Not the most efficient use of space, but maybe it is an option worth exploring.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 11:24PM
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You could also put the stove on the peninsula with or without a bar area to block the view and for seating.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 11:39PM
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For the peninsula option, you could use a slide in range if you don't want just a cooktop. I actually prefer those to the regular style, as you don't have the possibility of reaching over hot pots when accessing the oven or timer controls.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:10AM
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The corner stove might not be a terrible idea in this case. In my current kitchen, my stove ends with no cabinet between it and a doorway and if I could do that over I'd sure have moved that stove down further to have a little cabinet next to it. My stove is about 9" away from the doorway, not right up against it like in your first drawing. That would make me nervous. Do you have little ones running around?

I like a window over the sink, so I know what you mean but it doesn't have to be that way is what people are saying here.

Can you make the peninsula base cabinets wider and still keep your seating space or are there space constraints to that? I had an eating counter with about 10" of knee space and it was NOT enough, although people say different stools work better with shorter overhangs.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:15AM
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I like having the range on the same run as the sink. The corner range might be the answer. Explore the peninsula option as long as you don't mind the hood hanging down.

If you do the corner range I would consider switching the DW and sink. The sink would not be in front of the window then but you would have more prep space between the range and sink.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 8:10AM
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Thanks for the tips. Some corner ranges look great. I'm working on a new idea and I'll need feedback.

BASED IN OPTION 1- range on same run as sink.
Current measurements of cabinets on the wall as is shows me I have 58.5 inches of cabinetry. On the bottom to the corner, I have about 46.5.

Knowing symmetry up top looks good I first centered the hood. If I do that I can have a 14 inch upper cabinet on each side of the hood along with the two short doors above the hood. On the bottom I can have the range and about a 14 inch drawer pull stack.
That takes care of that wall. I lose the Susan and the corner cabinet up top. I gain landing space but I have a nice symmetrical design with lots more landing room on either side. I could actually fit a full size pot to the left now.

Now picture just to the right (where the sink is). From the bottom corner of cabs to the sink I have around 36 inches. I could make a cake pan door and then a 27-30 inch drawer stack. That would be a great size and would put pots and pans an arm's length away. Up top I would have like 49 inches of space for cabinets. I would have 3 doors. I'm thinking I'd have the far left one (closest) to the stove full of oils, spices, etc. and then other two could house baking dishes, casserole dishes, corningware, etc.

Sink could stay where it is as there will be a lot of workspace.

Would this work well? I can try to sketch this up later...

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 9:38AM
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Garry, windows are lovely to look out as one works, but in today's work room most sinks are under windows for obsolete reasons that have almost nothing to do with anything, with, of course, the exceptions of numbers 1 and 4 below.

1. They're there because "everyone else" does it.
2. Regarding how that came about, once upon a time many people spent a great of time scrubbing dirt off of and cutting insects out of fruits and veggies, including whole weeks when preparing harvest for canning, as well as preparing new kill in bad weather. (Not exactly like today's brief spurts of time mainly for getting the stuff into the dishwasher and a quick rinse for a few leaves of lettuce). If I were going to spend hours cutting worms out of apples, I'd want the stimulation of a window to look out of too. If I weren't sitting at a table to do it, of course.
3. AND, a real biggie, once upon a time, many kitchens were lit by one fixture hanging in the middle of the ceiling that had a tendency to cast the cook's shadow on the counter, or the sink. This meant the light from a window was very valuable for finding those worms and pin feathers.
4. They're there because "everyone else" does it.

There are down sides to not placing a sink under a window, of course. You can't silhouette a high-rise handle charmingly against the garden outside, and you totally miss all the fun challenge of choosing your cabinets and layout just to get it perfectly centered. People ask you why the sink isn't under the window. And instead of sliding your gaze sideways to see the view outside in that direction as you chop veggies, you do it while rinsing dishes. Although I don't quite understand the difference, according to many posters over time losing the view directly ahead from the sink would be a tremendous negative worthy of almost any sacrifice to prevent.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 4:04PM
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