I think our layout is pretty well set

andreak100May 4, 2013

A few tweaks here and there depending on what I hear back from the cabinet maker, but I think this is our kitchen layout unless someone here comes up with something being horribly wrong.

Wondering about my 5-drawer drawer stack by our cooktop...he said that I had 30" to work with (which makes sense). He said that the 6" drawers will have approximately 4" depth inside...so, I don't need deep drawers in that stack and think the 5 drawers will work well...but I don't remember seeing one with anyone else.

Before anyone asks, we do have narrow aisles - 36-37" from countertop to countertop with the island. I'm okay with that...the functionality of the island is worth the tradeoff since it's really a one-cook kitchen. The kitchen is our old kitchen and dining room - we're removing a wall to get the extra space. You can't really see it, but from the area of the camera in the first two images, we will have a banquette and table.

Looks like our cabinet maker believes he will be making our cabinets and they will be ready for install around mid July, so this is about my last opportunity to make changes.

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Can't tell but do you have counter top between your stove and sink?

Someone here has 5 drawer stacks... Breezy maybe? Badgergal? Can't remember either.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:01AM
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deedles - thanks...I'll look to see if I can find pictures of Breezy and Badgergal's kitchens to look for the 5-drawer. And yes, there is a 24" span of countertop between the cooktop and sink (there's a DW there) and 21" countertop to the left of the cooktop.

12" broom closet is to the left of the oven. MW is concealed behind a pocket door above the oven. And to the right of the oven, the middle unit is a small appliance area with pocket doors. Garbage & recycling will be located in the island in the roll out closest to the fridge. The middle of the island is a 30" 3-drawer base. And then the one closest to where the banquette will be is where my appliance lift for the KA will live.

There are a few things that I'd do differently if we could make the kitchen a bit wider, but budget just won't hold for that, so we are working within the constraints of our footprint.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:13AM
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Are you okay with the DW between the stove and sink? I'm guess you are trying to keep it out of the corner to the right of the sink?

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:18AM
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The 5 drawer stack is located in the spot closest to you dining area. In my similar location, I have deep drawers for dishes. I love that the are close to the table.

Aside from that, I would not want 5 four inch high drawers. The bottom 2 are going to be low down for the small items you will store in those drawers.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:26AM
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Yes, I'm actually quite good with it between the sink and stove. I have a 36" drawer bank that is to the left of the fridge that will hold plates. And trust me, that location is 5000 times better than where it is in our current kitchen (coincidentally, it's exactly where you mentioned...in the corner to the right of the sink). I imagine opening the DW standing in front of the sink and pivoting to place plates in the drawer. I don't keep the DW door open while I'm cooking. I'm (unfortunately) the only one that really puts dishes in or out of it so it's not as if anyone else is going to get in my way while I'm cooking because DH's main wanderings into the kitchen are to get something from the fridge or get snacks. Aside from the garbage and some occasional hand washing, I don't think that my DH will really venture over to the side of the kitchen that has the cooktop and sink! :)

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:33AM
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that little seating area cries out for a pair of casement windows, instead of double hung. :)

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 11:38AM
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Looks like you are making great use of the space.

We debated on whether to hide our microwave behind pocket doors or not. We decided to save the money and just get a microwave that had an available trim kit. The pocket door would have been left open the majority of the time anyways.

Maybe do a 4 drawer cab instead of the 5 drawer. Then you have a larger one on the bottom.

I assume that you will put your spices in one of the uppers next to the stove.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:01PM
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Sophie Wheeler

I would personally prefer to move the cooktop to the wall where you have the refrigerator and to put the refrigerator at the end of the run where you have the cooktop, by the window. It would make a much prettier feature of the cooking area, plus it would separate the cleanup and prep areas much better. You may be the only cook for now, but with a new kitchen, that could change. And if you want it to work for multiple persons, it won't do that in it's current configuration.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:06PM
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dilly - the 5-drawer stack is intended for spices (I have a lot of them...may need two drawers), hot pads, spare hand towels, and aluminum foil/parchment paper/plastic wrap, ziplocks. (the wrapping stuff will probably go lowest since it's where I've always kept it in other kitchens when I could and I use mostly glass containers for leftovers. The top things are things that I need around my cooktop.

logastellus - that is NOT our view from the windows...it's a default from the program. The view from our window is the side of our neighbor's house. We're keeping the double hung window because we don't have central air in the house and the air conditioner unit goes in that window. We will be putting on an addition, we hope, in a few years and plan on central air at that time, but until then, the air conditioner needs a place to stay.

gpraceman - we're doing the best we can within the confines of our footprint. There are definite concessions. We don't use our MW much and personally, I don't care for the look of them in a trim kit, so we're hiding that puppy! haha We do have a good number of deep drawers in the layout - 6 deep and 2 medium deep, and then 4 deep ones in the banquette seating area. I don't have a lot of stuff that requires deep drawers and the things that do, I have accounted for. Spices are going in the top two drawers to the left of the cooktop. Sprays, oils, etc. will go to the upper to the left of the cooktop.

hollysprings - a potential issue with that is that the fridge is deep, it's not counter depth and we have narrow aisles, so I'm not sure that I can make that work. Will try moving it and seeing what happens.

And, no...absolutely NO chance that there will be additional cooks in this house. It's my DH and me and he doesn't even boil water. He doesn't help with prep. He doesn't really do clean-up. It is my domain solely when it comes to cooking or baking. In our over 10 years of marriage, the only time he has done anything that resembles "cooking" is when I've been out of town and he's reheated something in the MW or oven and I can probably count the number of times he's done that on my hands. We don't have kids. And if we have company over, they won't be cooking, but rather sitting and enjoying being company. It is, and will be as long as we live here, truly a 1-cook kitchen.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 12:47PM
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Your L is very similar to our L.
Cooktop, DW, Sink, corner, drawers.
I am so happy with the DW to the left of the sink and then just pop open the drawers on the right L to empty plates, silver, and glasses.

And your DH is a mate to mine - he only cooks pizza - he picks up the phone to order on his cook nights LOL
I wish I could have put in your island but alas - just not wide enough for us. With the new kitchen, I have taught him how to reheat using the speed oven and he can even use the speed function to reheat the pizza as it is so much better than MW alone!

One thing we did with our banquette/bench - we put a piano hinge back on it - so we can have a back and tip it down when we want to access the windows. I might have made the bench deeper than what we have but like the idea.

Here is a picture with back up and pillows on

And with the back down

BTW - love your comment about the view - when I met with the KD - she asked what I wanted and I showed her a window view of the mountains...

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 1:05PM
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I just want to echo hollysprings' suggestion. I think the fridge would be handier down there on the other end, too, as people could access a beverage or condiment or whatever without having to go through the kitchen.

With a little imagination, you can see how it would look here.

Or, here in the link.

Here is a link that might be useful: First pic

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 1:36PM
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a2g - we've talked about your DW/dish drawer set up before. Actually talking with you was what made me realize that this configuration could work for me. So, thank you! :) I hope to avoid the issues you had with your side wall! Of course, I've also learned from you there as well, so hopefully that's a non-issue.

The funny thing is, we actually have a fairly nice back yard view (not as nice as the computer program one, of course) and we will be eliminating it by closing over a window. Will miss it, but keeping it didn't make sense and we plan on putting an addition on in the future, so trying to design the kitchen around the window was not an option.

Oh, and we are REALLY pushing things to get the island in. Narrow aisles (36-37") and a narrow-ish island. But, it really was a key item for me because of the workspace. Common wisdom here may have eliminated it, I think.

What you did with the back for your seating was genius! I think that our windows are up a little higher than yours and will allow for a mid-height back just a little shorter than what our chair backs are with our current seating.

Steph (and Holly) - so, when I moved the fridge, it doesn't work. The fridge sticks out too much and my already narrow 37" aisle becomes 30'-ish. The island can't move far enough to keep from overlapping the walkspace.

Also, I forgot about this until I tried changing things around, but originally, we had the cooktop where the fridge is, and decided against it due to hood venting - we will be placing an addition off the back of that wall and it was going to wind up being a problem for us then in needing to reroute the venting.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 2:27PM
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It's looking quite nice to me overall, Andreak.

Regarding your 5-drawer stack, I have two 18" drawers of spices and could use more space. Are you sure you want your wrappings at the far end, though? Aren't they used most for prepping for the oven, readying food for storage, and readying it to take somewhere? Most of those functions don't seem best served from the far end of the counter.

Also seems like storing such short items close to the floor should be avoided if possible, even if you've done it before. Bottom cabinets work great for taller items that don't require so much bending down, also ones that don't require boxes to be pushed around to set stuff back in. I think building some bending in is good for those who of us who aren't disabled or too deconditioned to bend over to begin with, but shallow drawers close to the floor just seem like overdoing a good thing.
3. Foils, wrappings, bags, etc. also don't have to be stored together. Most are quite small. Foil could go in the prep area or by the stove, parchment paper could go with baking pans. Plastic wrap and baggies could go in the prep area or by the sink, or both, depending on what you tend to use it for. Storage at point of use for all often used items as much as possible.

I like your fridge where you have it. I didn't put mine in what would have been the most efficient place where the counter ends by the dining area, not because there might not be room for it to stick out but because I just couldn't have its mass looming into the room there and separating the two areas from each other. I wasn't about to have to step back from working to chat with whoever was sitting by the windows. Plus, the very thought of its mass there bothered me, and it would have made not just my cooking area but the dining area seem smaller and closed in, spoiling the spacious feeling of the room.

I also like setting the island 36" from the counter. For those for whom it feels right, it isn't a trade-off for better function elsewhere, it is good function in itself. Ours is a very deliberate 35".

Regarding oils, vinegars, other condiments, FWIW I have mine in a 12" pullout. This was sort of a default decision forced on me by limited space and cabinet options. I wasn't sure at all that I'd like it (this happened to be a cabinet that pulled out the bottom shelf with the door, leaving a middle shelf and upper tray to be pulled out by hand). I do. It works extremely well because it's a pullout. Everything's very visible from top and 3 sides and easily accessible. It isn't at all too narrow for bottles that average 3" or so in diameter. A terrific use of 12", which BTW, has no problem holding a large jug of peanut oil on the bottom.

Regarding your comments about limitations of storage space in the cook area, are you planning to put drawers under the sink? If all the space isn't taken up by a hot water heater or other items, why not chat with your cabinetmaker and plumber about optimizing use of this space? That area's typically badly wasted and horribly, repusively used. A bottle of liquid detergent, can of scouring powder if you use it, and box of DW tablets take how much room? How about storing the chemicals and other sundries that are used once a month or year outside your cooking area. You could then store your towels in a nice drawer there, cleaning stuff in another drawer alongside, plus additional items used for cooking in a wide drawer below those. Or silverware could go in a top drawer under the sink, or plastic wrap, or glasses, or...

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 2:45PM
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rosie - good things to think about. You are, of course correct that all "wrappings" don't need to be in one location! That's me being programmed to where they've been because of lack of space for them to go elsewhere. This rethinking...that's the thing that I appreciate so much about this forum...the people here help challenge me to rethink the things I *think* that I know. :) It helps me come to peace with the decisions (and sometimes tradeoffs) that I need to make.

So, the parchment paper and aluminum foil will take up residence over by the oven where they are most likely to be used. Plastic wrap might get a home in the top drawer in the island...although, I use it so seldom that a bottom drawer really does seem fitting for it. The ziplock bags will move to closer to their use...I've seen a gadget that allows you to store those type of things on a door...that might be something I think about. Thanks for making me rethink my preconceptions of all the stuff needing to stay together. :)

The 5-drawer stack is primarily to keep cleaner lines - a 4 drawer unit that had deeper individual drawers didn't line up with the cooktop drawers - I have a 6-12-12 unit going in for the cooktop. So, then for the 5-drawer stack, I tried 3 6" and then a 12" bottom drawer and I didn't like the looks of it. Maybe if it was a wider unit, I would feel better about it, but it just felt "off". So, then I put in the 5 6" drawers and while there are more diagonal lines, it felt cleaner to me. Strange, I know.

My cabinet maker is planning on putting a narrow pull out in our upper cabinet for oils, etc. I showed him a unit like what I had in mind and he said he's used one like it before and wasn't happy with it, so he said that he's probably going to do a custom one for my needs.

For the sink area - we do have a GD that will take up a fair amount of most of the one side. The other side will have a roll of paper towels (I use maybe a roll a year, so they don't need to be out nor to take up a prime spot for me). Most of my cleaning supplies will be located in the broom closet that is to the left of the oven. I am thinking of having a small compost bin under the sink, probably using one of the NeverMT things with a big container of detergent, DW detergent, BKF, baking.

This really resonated with me: "I didn't put mine in what would have been the most efficient place where the counter ends by the dining area, not because there might not be room for it to stick out but because I just couldn't have its mass looming into the room there and separating the two areas from each other. I wasn't about to have to step back from working to chat with whoever was sitting by the windows. Plus, the very thought of its mass there bothered me, and it would have made not just my cooking area but the dining area seem smaller and closed in, spoiling the spacious feeling of the room." Putting the fridge on the cooktop wall really felt like it was breaking up the room in a way that I wouldn't like.

It was also very nice to hear from someone who has narrow aisles say that they are working. I would probably go a few inches wider with them if I had a choice, but I don't feel like it's going to be a big issue. This will sound funny, but I went to IKEA to walk around in their kitchens, open and close stuff, mock that I'm using the kitchen and measured various aisles...the ones I felt most comfortable "working" in were less than 40" wide aisles.

This post was edited by andreak100 on Sun, May 5, 13 at 15:53

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 3:45PM
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I don't know if it's helpful seeing elevations - I've also put on here notes as to where most of our stuff will reside.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 6:20PM
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This is the sink and fridge sides.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 6:22PM
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Andrea, was wondering what software you used for the elevations with the "what goes where" notes? We need to get to that level of detail,but are not quite there yet. These will help!

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 6:48PM
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Andrea - glad we were part of your inspiration -I wanted an island and I think it could have been if we knocked out a wall. I like what you did (gee - wonder why)
On the fridge - ours is close to our DR and the right L - so it is convenient to use and take to the DR.
BTW - I was so naive when I started or might have done some 4 or 5 stacks for drawers - they work fine but a 4 drawer bank for our zips and bags might have been better - but then, that was one of my changes after moving back into the kitchen, so it would not have made a difference anyway.
I will be watching for your progress :-)

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 6:58PM
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While I'm usually a big advocate for getting the DW out of the Prep Zone, in your case it will probably be fine. Since you're the only one who ever preps, cooks, and cleans up, obviously it won't be an issue of colliding with other workers or someone being in the way.

Ditto for your aisle widths...with just you, I don't think it will be an issue. Just make sure you have enough room to remove appliances. E.g., if the refrigerator is 36" deep, try for at least a 42" width on that aisle so you don't damage your cabinets or countertop moving the refrigerator. (You can remove doors, but it can be more trouble than it's worth.) Besides, if your DH does use the refrigerator, that's probably the one aisle you want a little wider anyway to accommodate you both!

DWs are usually 24" or so deep, so a 36" aisle is probably fine. And, again, since you're the only one working in the kitchen, not being able to pass b/w an open DW and the island probably won't be an issue.

That said - can we assume this is your "forever" home or at least your home for a good number of years? If so - design the kitchen for you!

Good luck!

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 7:53PM
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Lori - for the drawings, I used Home Designer Suite (it's an old version that I bought when we were going to be building a home about 6-7 years ago). There is a very limited text editor in that program, but at least with my old version of the program, you can't use the text function when viewing the elevations. So, since I'm a professional photographer and I work with Photoshop, I just saved a PDF version of the elevations from HDS and typed up my notes in Photoshop. You could probably accomplish something similar with any photo-editing software that will open PDFs. If you don't have that, I'd just use a word processing program or a spreadsheet to help get everything organized.

a2g - as much as I *think* I know where everything should go, I'm sure I'll wind up like you and moving some things around once the kitchen comes to fruition. Please keep your fingers crossed for us - this remodel hasn't been easy for us thus far...let's hope we got the tough stuff out of the way before it started and it'll be smooth sailing the rest of the way. That said...we're removing a wall from a house built in the 1950's...I'm expecting hiccups.

buehl - thanks for your response. I tried getting the DW out of the prep zone, it just didn't work. And with it being just me, as you mentioned, I won't collide with myself!

We did allow for extra space in front of the fridge - able to easily remove it from the case that will surround it and still have some clearance. Getting it out of the kitchen will be tight and may need the doors removed to get it in place. Since it will be likely that it's moved back into the kitchen after the remodel and the next time it would be likely to move again is when it needs replaced, I hope it will be okay if the doors need to be removed.

I don't keep the DW door open for any length of time so moving around it in a narrow aisle situation should present minimal difficulty.

This house wasn't what we *intended* originally as our permanent home, but our money was tied up in our house out in Vegas that we couldn't sell (ultimately sold for 1/3!!!! of what we paid for it) and we had to buy what we could get approved for. As it turns out, we love our yard and the location is quite convenient. The house was built in 1950 and we are the second set of owners...the original owners thought pretty highly of their home and we're learning to love it also. So, resale isn't a real factor for us. Of course, things come up...but at this point, we plan on being here for quite some time. Our renovation will actually over-improve the house as we wouldn't get back out of it what we are putting in. But, we're going with the belief that we will be here. And should we have to sell, the average person who would be looking at homes in this price range would be beyond thrilled with the kitchen and probably never once wonder if it's a 1-butt or 2-butt kitchen!

    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 12:33AM
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I personally prefer to move the stove to the wall when it is in the fridge and the fridge at the end of the race where you are on the roof, next to the window. Would be much more beautiful aspects of the kitchen area, plus it would give the cleaning and preparation areas better.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 7:48AM
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