Need advice on island layout

kathryn77July 29, 2013

I have posted to this site before when I was trying to decide on cabinet colors with our stock builder. Well, we decided against the builder for a number of reasons, and are now set to close on a resale in 3 weeks. I really want to add an island to the kitchen, it currently has a 30 " w x 40" L Island like table,Like you'd find in a commercial kitchen. Thankfully it is totally moveable.

I went to HD over the weekend and they suggested a large island with a sink leaving 36" around it. Seems like that would be about 5 feet x 6 feet, which seems huge!

Can anyone take a look at my floor plan and suggest what we should do?

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Here is a picture of the kitchen

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 4:12PM
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Here is a 2nd view from the "eating section"

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 4:59PM
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I think I'd try flipping the table - so the 40" side went in front of the cooktop and see how I felt about it.

If you have ~127" between the CABINETS, you have 124" between the counters that narrows to 118" or so at the refrigerator. If you had 36" of cabinets, you'd have 39" of counter top (+/- 2 inches). 118"-39" leaves 79" for two aisles (in front of sink and refrigerator). So, if one aisle is 39" wide, the other would be 40".

This is not enough to have seating, but if you don't have multiple cooks, that part should be fine. Seating in front of a work area needs at least 5 feet of aisle.

In the other direction, it's very tempting to leave the entire 48" aisle in front of the range. This is because the aisles between the refrigerator and the water carrying a lot of traffic of various kinds - drinkers, snackers, people doing more formal meal prep, etc. In your case, also people in search of silverware and dishes. Again - something that rehearsing with the table and a few cardboard boxes will tell you if you should do that or bring it a little closer.

For length, it could easily be 5.5 feet. I dunno about seating on the end towards the table space either. It looks like that would restrict your table space too much.

Lastly, and I know this will suck to hear, I would not pay for a fancy island until I had lived there for a while. I'd wait - not because what you're thinking about is wrong, but it's always different once you're in the house.

I'd be afraid of rushing a decision about the cabinets without having spent at least a month in the house, but preferably a year. The first year is about learning the ins and outs of your new house and its floor plan. You might find some other stuff you'd like to tweak or you might decide you're better off waiting.

You might try Ikea's flyetta cart ($179) for a temporary fix - or add a matching table if you can find one (should be less than $300).

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 10:32PM
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Thank you for the advice. I had wondered the same thing, about living there for a while first. It is hard because I like to get things settled.

We definitely don't have multiple cooks. Usually two for clean up :-). I hadn't considered the countertop overhang.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 10:40PM
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I have this layout but with a bit more width. The key to this layout for me is the prep sink and ensuring you don't end up with a barrier island. It looks like your fridge will line up with your range aisle, so that's good.

It's really a matter of preference for which way to face the island. I wanted more space for my great room which is encompassed in kitchen "room" as there are no walls, similar to what you show. I met with a designer and she stated that running the island parallel to stove wall was not advised because people sitting on stools island will have their back to great room. I didn't take that advice and I have no regrets. I just point it out to you because it's something to think about.

On the other hand, If you run the long side of island parallel to your sink wall, then if you want seating, 30" Width is about the max you can go (42" aisle by sink, 30" island, 55" aisle by fridge - 60" is recommended for aisle with seating, but I think 55 is doable). So that's about a 30" x 6 foot long, Island.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2013 at 10:26AM
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Would it look weird to have a long one only 30" wide?

    Bookmark   July 30, 2013 at 8:13PM
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I don't think so. If you are concerned that an overhang for seating will look disproportional to the island cabinetry, you can put sides on the island that extend past the cabinetry and supportthe countertop. There's a lot of different ways to design the island.

Maybe some other GWers can comment on aesthetics.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 10:59AM
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