more kitchen design work

illinigirlJuly 7, 2013

I've been working more on my kitchen layout....I came up with two more options. One has the main sink in the island, the other along the range wall. With the second option, if the sink is along the wall, I'm not sure if it will be able to have a window or not.

Here they are, let me know if one is more functional, or if either is functional enough.



for both of these options the islands are all one height, not sure if my overhang lines would cause confusion on that.
The writing on the top left may be difficult to read- that is a coffee, toaster oven, snack prep area. I realized I probably have room for a 42" fridge so I may opt for that over a 36" depending on cost.

In the first plan I have offset the sink to the left side so I can maximize island space for large projects.

About our family:
family of 5- 3 school aged kids. I do most of the prep/cooking, much of it when the kids are at school. Island seating is essential as we currently eat at our peninsula about 85% of the time- breakfast, lunch, dinner. The dining area shown here is the only other eating space- no formal dining room.

Let me know which plan may be more functional and how I can make it better. Thank you.

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I think either is functional enough if you are the only cook most times. I do like the first plan better, as I like the main sink on the island. I would swap the prep sink and wall ovens. I do not like major appliances or the main sink out there by the sliding doors, all by themselves. If the prep sink was there you could outfit it with a hot/cold/filter faucet and it could double as a bar area for the table/dining, and its still handy for the range.
If you keep the prep sink on the left of the rangetop I doubt you'd use it instead of the main sink for prep.
Check your fridge requirements, counter depth really have small Sq Ft and you wont gain much storage over a 36" built in. If you don't need the built in could you recess the fridge area and fit a full size 36? However,I understand if you want the built in panel look. Just not sure I'd go with the 42" expense for the minimal gain in storage.
Where are your windows located?

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 9:39AM
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thanks ppben,
good point about the prep sink. it is close to the main sink and may be better served on the other side of the run.

as far as fridge, I'm going to do a full size 36", build out the counters to around 30", and then make up the rest of the depth by having the builder recess it into the wall like you suggested. I haven't looked into a 42" at all. I just realized I think I have room for it if I want because the 6 feet I have for coffee/toaster oven/snack counter is plenty.

Thanks so much for the input.

I am the primary cook, but in the evenings husband and I are both in the kitchen moving around, even if both aren't prepping. Not sure how that changes things.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 10:58AM
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I think I would square the island with perhaps a large semi circular edge for the 2 [seating dedicated] sides...a nice large curve. And the 2 squared off sides provide the cook side of things better options. Move this kind of island forward into [great room?] a bit and on the right end of long back wall , increase depth giving a bump out look/staggered depth/some variety on the wall cabinets to go with this change at the base. You need something to pick up the look quotient. By abandoning the 10 foot long island for a different configuration, youwon't have that back side stating"storage".....but it is a cumbersome setup anyway...... don't care for 2 different depths of overhang, wonder why your huge pantry won't give you enuf storage along with everything else???

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 11:58AM
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I'm not sure I'm totally understanding but I drew out what I think you mean. Please correct me....I know the island can't be what you are thinking- it looks awkward but I don't know how to make it what you are thinking.



    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 1:22PM
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I was thinking 7 feet on each straight side, or 7 feet by 5 and move it over to the left-you get counter across from fridge area and across from back wall.....more zone creation..If you don't like curved seating- do a square. You'll clear some sq footage between range and slider and try deeper base cabs there.......perhaps extend wall cabs to counter or close to need some interest there.The island you started with is actually not that usable for its grandesse....I would play around with different island sizes/shapes/even 2 islands and note how you get zone creations that this lacks so far.The space you have is uber-large so appliances will fit in no matter what....think differently.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 2:25PM
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I really appreciate that you are giving me input....but when you say vague things like "think differently" that is frustrating because I am trying very hard and I am just unable to understand these things.
My husband wants a huge angled island perhaps with a second island right behind the rangetop. I have posted these pics before and everyone said it was a disaster.

I thought with the main sink over to the right I had a cleanup zone quite separate from the prep and cooking zone but close to the dining area. I can prep at the island or next to the rangetop. So I guess I don't understand how I don't have zones.

I just don't know what to do. We have a ton of space to work with and I can't come up with anything.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 2:48PM
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Why does your husband want a huge angled island? If you are not sure yourself, ask him. Be specific. Somethimes people say they want a big island because it looks cool. Well sometimes it does but it might not actually work very well.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 5:37PM
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i have no idea why he likes it so much other than he saw it in a house we toured and loved the overall space. i have tried to convince him, explain the zones and everything, but he isn't very receptive. he thinks it would be fine if we move the sink or add a prep sink.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 6:09PM
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do you want to dine with the sink a couple feet away?......when people are entering /exiting from mudroom/into/out of garage and folks are getting toast/coffee and others are in/out of fridge, how would that be? when folks are entering space to grab a snack and do a small prep for say,meat/cheese on crackers/small salad/etc, they will have to come around to the main aisle so I would expect it will be overloaded with activity. You can't make a sandwich or similar on the bar stool sides, and the side opposite fridge is questionable.I didn't catch the previous posts about your space...I'll look back.....

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 9:06PM
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what changes to the whole house plan have been created since that image in May? did you eliminate the dining room for one casual dining zone only? is the "mudroom" indeed the sole pathway to garage? take a few secs and put up where you are at with the first floor you have chosen so far....I see this is a new build project, but what changes from the blueprint have you done?

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 10:23PM
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thank you. there never was a formal dining room in the original plan. We have our first meeting with the home designer tomorrow so i have been working off the other home plan which i can photograph and post tomorrow. Not a lot of changes with regard to relative position of rooms to each other. The main change is the other plan is an angled ranch while we want a straight ranch.

You asked about access to the garage....yes the mudroom leads to the garage and that is the only way to get to the garage. Is that a bad thing?

Do you have any slight preference for one of the kitchen layouts over the other of the two i posted? Main sink on or off the island?

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 10:36PM
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Preference would be sink on the island [of these 2 plans].

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 11:27PM
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here is the original plan that I'm working off of. we would like to maintain the dining, kitchen, and family room spaces similar (with the exception of the layout within the kitchen) to what is shown here.

As I mentioned earlier, we are planning a straight ranch which would square off all the wonky angles in the mudroom areas in the original plan. Other changes:
-eliminate the open staircase near the foyer. we will perhaps have a stacked staircase in the mudroom area closed away from the main part of the home. this is by design as I want my special needs child to have no access to the staircase.
-I would like to figure out a way to maintain the formal entry to the home to the right as in the original plan, perhaps by extending the pantry sideways instead of towards the front of the home, then having a coat closet around the corner from the pantry and a recess for either a table or bench.

- instead of the "office" in the original plan, we'll have a study/bedroom, which will be so our special needs child can also sleep on the first floor near us. Again I'd like to square this space off rather than the angled way it is now.

-there will be two beds and a bath upstairs over the garage, and 2 more beds in the finished basement where my other two children will likely sleep. We are planning on zoned heat to keep it comfortable in the basement.

-also off the dining area there will be no "porch" as shown. That will likely be our patio area.

-master bath space reworked

-fireplace wall made more symmetrical

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 7:49AM
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1.for seated overhang at 30 in height: 18 in of depth for knee clearance and 24 in of width for each major traffic lane shall cross the work triangle. These are 2 points from NKBA guidelines. I think the entry/exit traffic on the left would be a deal breaker for me.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 8:31AM
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Island will be counter height-36" so requiring 15" overhang. I have more than accomodated the 24" width per person seated.

I will think more about the traffic pattern. Is your primary concern the fridge being on the perimeter? Im not sure if that will bother me, my gut says no but ill think on it.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 8:38AM
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Picture is my attempt not to speak a thousand words.

I like the your second drawing more and upped you with another two options.

I would place the ovens over by the ref. Maybe negotiate some agreement over the types of ovens in the stack to kill off the toaster oven. Like maybe a wall oven + a speed oven.

Part of the reason I would move the ovens is that it would just kill me to have a tall object that prevented sight out to the back door and the eating area door. I had a ref in that location and I resented the h-ll out of it.

Not drawn but maybe the pantry to 66". This would let me have 14" shelves on both long walls with a small section of 2 ft. deep across the back. Metro Shelves are 14" and Crate & Barrel Max Modular are 16" deep but would need pantry to be more like 70". I am sort of drooling thinking about how much stuff could be packed onto 16 feet of either one.

I might run a 24" deep counter across the 5'6" width in the back and have it partly supported by the two other shelf units. Maybe with a single drawer and then leave it open underneath for tall items like whole bags of pet food, Or maybe park a small cart (like 2' x 3') for ferrying stuff.

I can't tell if there is storage for cleaning supplies or the vacuum in the mud room or laundry - it not, I'd leave a spot for it, its attachments plus some brooms, mops and whatnot.

What's on the drawing may or may not appeal to you for layout. I like the bottom one better but I'm not sure I understand what you want.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 4:08PM
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thanks for your input! Really good point about the sightlines being blocked by the ovens. I hadn't thought about that.

One thing that is a must for me though....I cannot have the cooktop on the island due to safety reasons (special needs child). I really want the large island for large baking projects- bread, multiple pans of cookies, etc. I tend to spread out.

Lots to think about for sure. I also plan to bring this all to a professional to help me since I'm not cut out for this. My reasonings for some things (large island space for big projects) seem to preclude good function in other areas. I knnow there has to be a solution.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 10:35PM
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So, think a bit on your priorities before you see your professional. Again, not trying to invalidate - more to help you clarify.

What do you bake? How often do you do large baking projects? How often do you bake per week? How much time do you spend baking per week?

What do you cook? How often do you do "large prep" multi-step meals vs. quick throw together? How many meals do you make per week? How much time do you spend baking per week?

The answers will help you prioritize for the most frequently performed activities. Don't be too worried if the most frequently performed thing is pouring cereal - whatever it turns out to be is just information.

How much storage do you need for food? Prep stuff (bowls, mixing bowls, small appliances, manual gear)? Things that may get used in baking (pans, cutters, big mixers, mats, cooling racks)? Cooking stuff (pots, pans, lids, tools)? General use things like can openers and knives?

What needs special care in storage or access because of the child?

What other activities take place in the kitchen/dining area? Homework, watching tv, reading, etc. These may change a bit over time - for example, kids grow up and their activities change.

When you see the new kitchen and new house in your head, what qualities does it have? Like "warm and friendly", "full of family", "place for everything", "easy to clean", "baker lives here". Pick a maximum of 5 of the most important phrases for you.

Your design should meet 100% of the special needs and then list in order of importance to you, the cooking, baking, and other specific activities. These are your spacial or functional priorities.

Then take the phrases and make a big compound sentence or two like.

"You can tell a baker lives here", our kitchen is "warm and friendly" and "filled with good smells". I feel good in my kitchen where " Everything has a place" - even the sunlight.

These are your kitchen design "mission". The physical design should fulfill the mission as much as possible.

This is not meant to invalidate your concern, but I'm not sure I understand the difference with the cooktop positioning - unless it is to remove access from crawling across the island from the seating area? It has the same level of access to a child in the aisle. I would have thought it would help to be able to see out while cooking?

    Bookmark   July 10, 2013 at 7:09AM
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Check out the kitchen with two islands featured in the current July/Aug Cottages & Bungalows magazine.
I just keep thinking if your DH likes the concept of two islands this one just might be a good compromise.
The inner island is the workhorse with sink, DW and outer island is the one with seating. The outer takes the place of a half wall separating LR from Kitchen.
I see in your first floor plan you had the big angled island there, but that does seem too big, The two in the magazine are straight and access to work zone seems easy
I like the idea of a "buffer" between the living area and the kitchen work area especially when the area is very open and the cook likes to spread out.
Sorry can't find a link to a picture

    Bookmark   July 10, 2013 at 8:04AM
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thanks, yes, i have thought about some of what you asked, particularly storage. This is why I desire a very large pantry which will be lockable. All non perishable foods will go there, no foods in the rest of the kitchen cabs except spices. Locking knife drawer, lockable pocket door from the kitchen to mudroom, so I can keep him contained to the first floor and not wandering to other levels of the home.

I will try to get to the bookstore this week to look for the magazine. I have been thinking on this layout some more and i came up with another idea...moving the entrance to the mudroom a bit. It takes the fridge out of the walkway that herb hated so much.

I didn't put any sink/trash/dw in the island because I don't know what positioning those should have, so perhaps some suggestions on that....but those elements would all be somewhere in the island. I changed the seating a bit but I'm open to a 3 on one side, 2 on the other arrangement, or all 5 seats being on one side also, though I see how that isn't ideal for socializing.

I also think maybe the wall ovens should go where the prep sink is located but I'm not sure. I just thought the ovens may balance things out across that wall.

here is the newest layout idea:

    Bookmark   July 11, 2013 at 7:37AM
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hope you find that magazine. I think it makes more sense to swap the fridge and wall oven placement. That way you could recess the full size fridge into the mudroom. and the ovens don't seem as bulky on that back wall.
Now that I see it I don't care for the prep sink over by the table.
Are there any windows on the range wall? Other than the sliders?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2013 at 11:33AM
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hope you find that magazine. I think it makes more sense to swap the fridge and wall oven placement. That way you could recess the full size fridge into the mudroom. and the ovens don't seem as bulky on that back wall.
Now that I see it I don't care for the prep sink over by the table.
Are there any windows on the range wall? Other than the sliders?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2013 at 9:14PM
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