Now that I have [X], I think I could have lived without it.

cate1337July 15, 2007

Hi, all.

I want to know what all of you would fill in for [X] in the statement, "Now that I have [X], I think I could have lived without it."

For background:

I just read the great thread "Fill in - Now that I have [X], I would never go back to [Y]." (Thanks for starting that, Shannonplus2. It was very helpful as I wrap up my new layout.)

Shannon introduced the thread by referring to "biggest waste of money in your kitchen" or "best low-cost idea" threads. Well, I did a search for those threads and didn't find them. (Please let me know if I missed them, know I'm a noob, did search from the bottom searchbox but didn't feel like scrolling through the 40-some pages that came up.)

And I just decided to move my cooktop in the new kitchen to an island, so I'll need an island vent, so I'll need to cut corners somewhere. $1600 or more corners. *gasp*

So would any of you say, perhaps:

Now that I have the new engineered quartz counters, I think I could have lived with formica for a few years....

Now that I have a new refrigerator, I think I could have lived with the old one for a while...

Now that I have a double oven and a microwave, I never use all of them at once...

Now that I have a single-bowl, 10" deep sink, I think I could've lived with a 7"?

I.e., what would you cut from your kitchen design?

Thank you in advice for the answers and honesty,


Here is a link that might be useful: Never go back thread

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I wouldn't cut things, but there are things you can put off till later, like a tile backsplash or a nice faucet (i.e. we got an $30 ikea one as I couldn't decide until I could decide - 6 month later I still have no clue what I want but since we are DIY and my husband is the plumber it isn't a big deal) or the light fixtures (I had $2 naked bulbs as someone called them on here while we are stripping wallpaper and painting till we bought want we wanted).

Also, not out of cutting costs but we wanted a sheet vinyl for the kitchen as I didn't want grout and the rest of the house will have hardwood and I don't like wood cabinets/wood floor look (I was originally going to go with wood floors/white cabinets till I decided against laminate cabinets). The sheet vinyls were $5 a square foot but I couldn't decide so after a few months of just the plywood subfloor (again DIY so no hurry) we went to Home Depot to buy ANYTHING and was going to get the stuff on those big rolls but couldn't find anyone to help us. So, I turned around and found a prepackaged remanent - $60 (minue 10% military discount that weekend)... it is a little lighter than I wanted but it looks great so it stays.

But, if I had to cut due to budget, I'd cut stuff that I can do later... backsplash (you don't need one now - we aren't doing one as we got lazy), lighting if you aren't doing recessed, faucet or expensive handles (they can be swapped out later), flooring (depending on what you pick).

I would not go cheap on my countertop, cabinets (in less you can pull out accessories or downgrade if you went crazy expensive) or appliances (I'd go midgrade - not the cheapest and I would replace them all at remodel as it looks funny to do 1/2 and not all in less they are newer).

    Bookmark   July 15, 2007 at 8:11PM
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Okay, this is a thought-provoking thread. And, as I think about it all (after the fact), I realize that I really ended up with such a great kitchen because of all the great advice and recommendations I received on this forum. There really isn't much I can think of that we ended up with that was a disappointment or overkill.

Here's what comes to mind when I really think about it:

1) Advantium 120 - I bought it because I was able to order Monogram at a VERY good price point. I have not really used it to its full potential so I COULD have lived with a regular MW. However, my 18-year old son, going off to college this year, loves to use its speed-cooking abilities and asked me the other day if he could have it for a college graduation gift in 4 years - I had to laugh.

2) Backsplash: my granite has lots of movement so I used a very plain, cream subway tile for my backsplash. The only design is a framed herringbone pattern behind the range. I used a handmade subway tile. It is very pretty but was also quite expensive. Machine-made subway tiles would have given a very similar look for a far less expensive price.

3) Polished nickel Perrin & Rowe faucets - they are beautiful in form and function but I could have probably gone with a less expensive, chrome faucet that looked similar for a LOT less money and been equally happy in the long run.

4) Subzero refrigerator - I bought a floor model at a great price, less than a comparable Monogram or KA. It does seem to keep produce more fresh and has very consistent temps but if I was paying full price, I would stay with KA or Monogram, which I've had before. They are ALMOST as nice for less $$.

The main thing I would try not to do next time around is to get so caught up in looking for the "very best" alternative in every category. I drove myself crazy and, while we ended up with great choices, I chose some things that cost more than we had budgeted for when there were good alternatives within the original budget. I love my Wolf range but the Monogram dual-fuel would have probably done a great job for me. I am glad I stayed with the Monogram pro-style oven and didn't pay more for the F&P or Thermador as I LOVE my oven and it does everything I need it to do. Now the double Shaw's farmhouse sink was worth every penny. And really, the Wolf range was so worth the splurge as was the Independent hood over it - a high-powered hood makes such a big difference in the kitchen.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2007 at 8:48PM
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I agree with zoe about my polished nickel faucet - chrome would've been less expensive and doesn't look much different. I also wasted money on a matching polished nickel flange ... ruined it right away with Barkeepers Friend.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2007 at 10:24PM
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Tip outs on the sink base. These aren't nearly as useful in reality as they are in theory. Go ahead and skip them because you won't miss them.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 1:30AM
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Convection oven. I'm not sure how much money we would have saved, though. We use the oven a lot, but not the convection feature.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 8:25AM
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You should really try your convection feature some time. I didn't use mine at first either but now I do all the time.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 8:52AM
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Tip out sink base definitely did not need...I knew it at the time too, but my SO thought we had to have it. Ask me how many times I've used it in the last year and a half??

Number one thing, if I had to do it again - I would've passed on the KA Ultima oven - I love it as a MW and Convection oven and use it all the time, but I have not spent the time figuring out the speed cook, and I could've saved some money there. (I would've just gotten the MW/Convection combo instead).


    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 10:03AM
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I was in the grocery line yesterday and saw Consumer Reports Kitchen issue...Great kitchens for less. As a KD, I couldn't resist buying it and seeing what they have to say. I'm not a huge fan of the magazine, I don't always agree with what they have to say. Here's what it said (in a nutshell).

Most hyped products and what to buy instead:
-Pro style range
Instead; Faux pro style range from mainstream appl. co.

-speed cooking
Instead: something w/ convection

-steam range/oven
Instead: Skip them!

-Multimedia refrigerator
Instead: Buy a good ref...and a new flat panel TV

-Turbocharged DW
Instead:Pick lower price DW that blends top cleaning, quietness and shorter cycles

-Appliance Drawers
Instead: French door fridge; regular DW; Over the range MW

-Pricey Faucets and Sinks
Instead: Faucets in chrome or PVD finishes (physical vapor deposition). All SS sinks resisted dents, scratches and heat whether thick or thin.

-Concrete or Limestone Countertops
Instead: granite or quartz

-Green Flooring (ie Bamboo, Cork and Linoleum)
Instead: Solid wood floors, laminate or vinyl flooring

-One Stop Shops (ie Home Centers)
Instead: Local Independant Stores. And shop individual stores for the specialy and pricing. Costco may be best for appliances...etc

There was also articles on best countertops, appliances and flooring in case you're interested. Quartz was top rated counter mateial. Solid surface was AFTER laminate. I'm not sure I agree with that.


    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 10:44AM
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I could have lived without the panel on my dishwasher. I was on a very tight budget, but felt I HAD to panel the dishwasher. My cabinetry overall was reasonably priced, but this panel was an upcharge. Also, the "panel-ready" DW, or whatever you call it, was a bit more expensive than a regular-front DW. Then, the panel didn't fit the DW properly, even though it was made precisely to specs. My contractor got it to fit by tinkering with it, so he had to spend a bit too much time on it. In the end, I don't think I even like the look. I think I would have preferred to have the DW look like a DW.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 1:00PM
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I agree -- that tip out "drawer" under the sink is something I could live without. I always forget what's in there. I rarely use it.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 1:19PM
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nys29, why don't you use your convection oven? When I bought mine, I thought all it was for was baking...NOT so. I use it for everything. I don't think I've used the non convection feature half a dozen times in the 5 years we've had it. I can use a lower temp and shorter cooking time. Food cooks more evenly too.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 1:27PM
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I have to agree about the tip-out in the sink cabinets too (I honestly couldn't think of anything else). We had them in our old kitchen and used them a lot, but for some reason we don't use them in the new kitchen. I think it's because the sinks are bigger/deeper, so you can't see the little suction-cup things I've put in there to keep sponges and cloths.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 1:29PM
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This is terrific! Thank you all for sharing. It's very useful information, plus I know it can be difficult, after the fact, to say that something wasn't all you hoped it would be. (I've had to do that more than a few times with appliances, to my DH. The breadmaker from the early 90's, the dehydrator from about the same time, the yogurt maker, the automatic shower cleaner...)

Interesting that the sink tip-out has come up so much. I was planning to get that, don't think I will now. And I'll think hard about speed-cook and convection and whether I would really learn to use them. With two small kids, faster cooking would be useful; but I often don't have time to actually read manuals.

Interesting, too, to do some temporary fixes - undercabinet lights from IKEA, perhaps, see if I like them, upgrade if necessary.

What do other people think about only replacing some appliances (since pcis brought it up - heh heh)? I've been flip-flopping on my refrigerator. It's mid-90's, still works, white; but there have been some energy upgrades since then; and our new appliances will be stainless or black. How terrible would it be to keep it for a while?

Zoenipp, good advice: "The main thing I would try not to do next time around is to get so caught up in looking for the "very best" alternative in every category." That's something I struggle with - obsessing with finding the best price X value - and it sounds like the polished nickel faucet and dishwasher panel could sneak in that way for someone like me. That also sounds like what Consumer Reports is saying (thanks for sharing that, Kompy).

I'm looking forward to hearing more!


    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 2:28PM
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Re: consumer reports--

What is a 'turbocharged' dishwasher?

I've been planning one with the little diagonally aimed sprayers in the back bottom corner. Sears has them, don't know who makes them.

Is that what they are talking about?

I'd be happy to spend double on a dishwasher that gets everything really clean with nothing more than a quick scrape for prep. I'd rather spend the dollars than the time, if there is actually a DW out there that works really, really well...

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 3:19PM
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The sink tilt out trays aren't that expensive. $25-$50? I've had one in both kitchens and we do use them. Great to stow away bottle brush cleaners and smaller things. I didn't really want one in my last kitchen, buy my DH really wanted it, so he won that argument.

I do like full height door sink bases....they look more great in both modern and vintage kitchens.
with the handles more at the top of the door, they are also easier to open. Yeah, you can see the sink, but I wouldn't mind.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 4:05PM
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Fori is not pleased

The consumer reports thing is funny. Sure, regular dishwashers clean just as well as dish drawers (probably better), but there's more to a dishwasher than dishwashing! I prefer drawers because they are ergonomically better. And for aging people, there is absolutely no comparison.

And I am pretty convinced that if you are serious about the features of a pro style range, you won't be satisfied with something that just looks pro style.

Funny how CR disses drawers saying it's just about looks, but where function IS different (ranges), they say it's just the look you need and you don't need the actual function.

Now, to answer the question, I had to have a double oven, 30". Well, I couldn't broil with that double oven (without setting off the smoke detector) and it was kind of big. This time around, I'll have my two ovens by getting a smaller single wall oven and a range for a bigger oven (with a conveniently-placed vent hood for broiling--hey, I burn stuff!).

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 4:43PM
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Warming drawer.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 6:06PM
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Re: the convection oven, I blame myself for not taking the time to educate myself on using it properly. When I first got my ovens, I made a baked vegetable/egg dish using convection and it did not cook in the middle. That was only one mishap, there were others. We bake a lot in my house, especially cookies and brownies. We ruined a few of those too! Since two posters took the time to ask why I don't use it, I feel like I might be missing something! I better dig out the manual...:)

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 6:51PM
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I *NEVER* use the toe kick central vac things in my kitchen or in my master bath. I have the little plastic Pampered Chef scraper things in my sink tilt out and the garbage disposal cover. Where would you put that if you didn't have a tilt out?

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 7:52PM
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I love the convection for baking cookies - it leaves them nice and soft yet crispy on the outside... yum. I don't cook a lot of meat as I'm a vegetarian, but the shake and bake I make for my husband he say's is usually better and more moist - but every range is different and some do a better job than others. It also depends on how you like your cookies and other foods which may be why you don't like the convection too.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 10:49PM
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Fori is not pleased

Or you have a bad convection. My convection oven was terrible. Uneven cookie baking! I should have had it fixed. O well.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 11:03PM
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I almost never use my warming drawer, so I would have to say that.

I like the tip out tray under my sink, I keep my sponges in it. I also love my wooden pull out cutting board, very handy. I have a plastic one that goes in the dishwasher for meat, but use the wooden one all the time.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 11:03PM
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Prep sink- never use it.
It might be great for others, but in my family I prep alone and use the large single bowl sink all time.

I totally forgot I have the tip-out sink thingy. That's because I NEVER use it...and I paid a fortune for it!

I could live without the furniture ball feet, pilasters, and Enkebol trim on my cabinets. That is very nice, but very pricey, and I could have found another style cabinet I would like just as much.

On the other hand, I love my SZ, Wolf range, Miele Incognito DW, and Marvel wine/beverage center, and would never trade them!

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 11:05PM
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One problem in switching out appliances is that especially for the frig, sizes differ GREATLY. You really need to think about being able to upgrade later, and allowing enough room. Your cabinets and counters will last a lot longer than the appliances will.

I didn't, and now it's "what fits into this space?" rather than buying what I'd prefer to have.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 11:23PM
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Several people have posted that they never use the tip-out in their sink cabinets -I didn't either until I discovered that it's a great place to keep heads of garlic. Now I would never do with out it.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 2:56PM
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Mullions on my glass cabinet doors. I only have 4 doors like this, I begged for them because they said my doors were too narrow and would not look right, they do look good, but what a pain having to have my shelves line up with those mullions. Plus I know I am losing a shelf of stuff in an already small kitchen. I love my convection setting on my oven. The first time I used it I made quiche for breakfast. I was thrilled. Never has my quiche looked so fabulous. High crown, brown, and oh so perfectly done.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 8:10PM
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Mmmmm, quiche! Thank you all for responding. This has been very useful. The garlic in the sink tip-out is an interesting idea. I think I will get a tip-out. Between the garlic, sponges, scrapers, bottle brushes, and neat little contraption we have for draining used bottles of stuff into the new bottles, I think it'll get used.

I don't remember anybody mentioning glass doors for their cabinets. I'm wondering, if I do that, if I'll regret it later. Guess it depends on how I want to use the space.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 8:25PM
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I don't remember anybody mentioning glass doors for their cabinets. I'm wondering, if I do that, if I'll regret it later. Guess it depends on how I want to use the space.

I have mullioned glass doors, four of them, on wall cabinets. I love 'em. I wondered if the other cabinets would look too plain that way, but they don't, they look fine. And I really do like the seeded glass and the way some of my serving pieces and wine glasses look behind it.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 10:12PM
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We do have one wall with glass doors on the upper cabinets. No mullions though, just a slim cherry frame with patterned glass. We didn't choose clear glass as you'd see too much of the mess behind if your china is not perfectly organized

Our old kitchen had pretty much the same layout and same number of cabinets, i.e. loads of cabinets! In fact, the amount of wood was just overwhelming. So we put in the glass doors to lighten things up. And that was a very good idea.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 11:58PM
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Just don't have TOO many glass-front cabinets, only here and there to break it up. Remember that it makes your storage much less versatile if your storage needs change later; you will never be able to use those cabinets for anything that doesn't look display-worthy.

We have one glass-front upper cabinet, which stores mostly wine glasses and dessert plates, at the far side of the kitchen, and one lower one (it's actually an upper cabinet used lower) at the end of the island facing the sunken family room. That one is lighted and contains only pretty things like crystal pitchers and bowls, ice buckets, etc. It really was more a visual choice than practical storage solution, but we have plenty of storage space and that cabinet is at eye level for people in the family room.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 10:55AM
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What a thought provoking thread.

I thought long and hard before I planned my nearly done kitchen. I read Consumer Reports and went ahead and bought the Wolf anyway LOVE it!

But I abandoned a dishwasher drawer and fridge drawer in my baking pantry. I'm happier with the space for baking goods that truly make it a contained operating space. I have to go to the fridge in my full kitchen for eggs, butter & milk but I don't have to constantly keep track of what needs replacing in various places and rotating duplicates so things are all fresh in two locations.

No exotic appliance lifts or garages for me either. All the appliances I really use are out on shelves within reach in the cooking or baking area as appropriate. A second wall oven in that area was essential and a microwave in that stack is out of sight of the full kitchen but just steps from the breakfast area where we'd warm and then sit to eat/snack.

Nothing extra at the sink  one faucet and one discrete air switch.

I've got some bells and whistles like a toe kick ladder, knife drawers at the sink for veggie prep & at the range for meat prep, Tapmasters at my full sink & tiny baking area sink and a drawer fitted with my basics in restaurant pans in my baking center but these are all things that make my kitchen a lean, mean, efficient working space. Those things were important to me but not an island to walk around. No separate prep sink  a galley footprint has the sink, fridge and range within steps of one another already.

It isn't finished but we're now up to counters and running water so I'm getting to work it and I'm just so pleased that it's a combo of sleek zen (operation not appearance) and the right options for me.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 11:35AM
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I ordered the tilt outs for my sink and it was only like $20. I figure if I don't use it, it's not a big loss but I didn't want the suction cup basket thing I used to use for sponges or to have to go rooting around under the cabinet for the sink plug on the rare occasions that I actually use it. And if you're trying to save $1600, a sink tilt out isn't going to get you close. I'd go more for a trim style or end panels or something. We figured out that if we ordered the matching beadboard end panels for our island and the back of our bar from our cabinet company it would have cost us $1200. You can go buy unfinished 4'x8' sheets of beadboard for less than $20 and stain them yourself or even paint them a contrasting color. We are doing ours in a distressed black to match our entertainment console in our family room. And things like the crown molding, too. You can easily do that yourself for a LOT less than the cabinet makers charge. You may even be able to get your stain from them so you can match it perfectly.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 12:27PM
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Wait until it is time to roast a turkey, the convection oven is WONDERFUL!!! Try it!

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 3:29PM
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cate - on the fridge, i've decided i'll keep mine (white) if i go with white appliances; if i go with stainless i'm buying a new one. i know it will bother me too much to have the mixed colors. helps that my neighbor wants to replace hers so i will just give her mine -- will feel like less of a waste. :)

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 4:33PM
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I would never get a gas grill as a section on my range-top, again. Total waste of good space; it produced mediocre results, compared to real charcoal grilling and is a incredible PITA to clean. Ten years ago I had the gas lines sealed and put a slab of granite over that portion of my range-top. It's nice having the granite there amid the burners, too. But I should have just gotten the plain eight burners and left it at.

I shouldn't have bothered to get a DW either, as I have never used it. Yup, in the 13 I've owned it, I have nevered even bothered to have it connected to water. I was ordering several European appliances from long-distance (no local dealer), and I thought with the trucking costs fixed, plus the discount for the total order size, why not? But I never considered whether I even wanted one, and obviously the answer was no since most of my stuff can't go in the DW anyway! The moral of this is, even if "everybody" has something, if you aren't going to use something, it's a waste for you.


    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 8:45PM
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Hmmm. Rmlanza, you have a good point about the cabinet end panels. I'm still waiting to see cabinet costs broken down, but I suspect they added towards $1000 to the cost. We'll have a lot of them around the island. I plan to ask the KD if we can take a pantry door and flip it on its side to cover the exposed island side. I'm tempted to not panel where the bar will be, because there will be either bar stools or people's feet, but I can't quite decide. The bar will be raised on those little metal legs; and the island wall will be flush across; so I, at least, will notice. Plus, I do want to try for a furniture look for the island to help the transition to the living room.

I've nixed the glass door, idea, too. :( It just doesn't work with our set-up (3 cabinets on one side of the sink, 2 on the other). I'm trying to find other ways to bring glass into the space: the hood, the bar, drawer pulls, a pendant over the sink maybe.

Sounds like the Tapmaster and trash can foot pedals are worth the extra expense. Wonder how my in-laws would react if those were on my Christmas wish list this year? :))

Glad - This will be terrible. The existing white fridge will be right beside a new stainless oven. Yech. Que sera' sera' until next year (unless I find a way to haul the fridge to and from a body shop to have those fellows paint it). That's great that you'll be able to pass your fridge on to your neighbor. I asked the appliance store what they do with our appliances that they haul away - sounds like they go to a place like those places where stolen cars are stripped, then the remnants to appliance heaven.

Jkom - I meant to thank you specifically earlier for the tip on "what will fit in my space now." It would make me crazy if the fridge that I thought was best couldn't go in my new kitchen. I'll make sure to plan for that.

Fori - I agree that Consumer Reports sometimes does things oddly. I rely on them (and very heavily, but sometimes I wonder what in the world happened. The floors report, for example, in which they slammed almost every "environmentally responsible" floor.

Too many people responding here to address every one. I'm really enjoying that this thread is continuing and appreciate all the thoughts and advice.

OT - The contractor came by tonight to look at our kitchen again and to look at our KD's plans. I think we've found a great contractor. I know I'm saying this before the work has been done; but he returns phone calls, initiates phone calls, understands that I'm on a budget, and tries to figure out what's happening with our bizarrely-built house and figure out if it needs to be fixed. Essentially, we have foundation and roofing issues (whee); and I should be burying my head in the sand like an ostrich (well, more than I am); but I feel good enough with the contractor to not freak out (much). Course, there's a teeny little part of me that wants a lousy contractor who'll just do the kitchen and let us find out about everything else when it falls on our head in a couple of years... lol!

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 9:22PM
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This is so timely. Regarding the end panels.... I am looking to update a very nice Kraftmaid kitchn which I still like, but I did pick it out 17 years ago and of course, the finish and door has been discontinued. Somehow the fact that the end panels had some crappy laminate on them has bothered me but lately I decided I need to fix that. AFter much correspondence with kraftmaid, we have narrowed down the finish and they can special order for me. I am still trying to figure out how to do it without breaking the bank. ORiginally I thought I could just have a carpenter do this, andmatch the finish but 2 did tell me they could not. So I do have to use Kraftmaid. I am trying to decide if their veneer would work. THe beadbord is over $400 for a 4 by 8 piece and I would need like 3 or 4 and it is too still trying to get creative ..............

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 12:26PM
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I'm telling you, the finished end panels are so outrageously expensive. That's where they rake in the dough, I mean litterally, it probably costs them at most $20 to make them and they charge hundreds. We always wanted to tile under our penninsula bar eventually anyway so it doesn't make sense to shell out the money. My husband was so thrilled that I saved us the $1200 it would cost to add those that we ended up buying new appliances, something we weren't originally going to add to our budget. I'd much rather have a new fridge, dishwasher, microwave and range (even if they came in well over the $1200 we saved on the panels) than some perfectly matched beadboard! It's definitely worth thinking about!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 1:17PM
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    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 8:07AM
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I got a Hamat faucet for my kitchen. It's attractive but it leaks for about 5 minutes after each time you use it. I'm told it's just how those faucets are. @@

Wish I'd known so I could have kept looking.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 9:45AM
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this (now) sounds a bit ridiculous to begin with, but I would have done a dishwasher and a SINGLE dishdrawer instead of a double. I use my Bosch most of the time and the top F&P dishdrawer for overflow or smaller loads, but NEVER the bottom one. Not sure what I would have put under the single drawer though and I think that and the price of a double/single being not that much different is how I ended up with the double to begin with. I do love having a second dishwasher though on those occasions where I need it (or when I just don't feel like unloading the clean one! LOL!). So maybe I should have done two regular Boschs instead of the double dishdrawer.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 9:50AM
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Now that I have Wolf range, I think I could have lived without it.
I think I would have been happier if I had stuck to my original layout with electric built in ovens and gas cooktop. I could have lived without my Wolf range. I like the look and the powerful burners, but am not happy with the gas oven at all. It really doesn't cook as well as electric. And I really hate the loud banging noise it makes when preheating. I contacted Wolf and they weren't any help at all. Terrible customer service.

Now that I have expensive fancy imported brushed nickel faucet, I think I could have lived without it.
I should have bought a chrome faucet at HD instead of this faucet. It looks nice but it way too high and splashes water everywhere. One of the first things we are going to change. I got caught up in the you must have a fancy faucet here on the Kitchen Forum.

Now that I have granite countertops, I think I could have lived without it.
I am on the fence about granite. Mine is cracking after only 9 months of use. DH says we should have got Silestone. That is what he was pushing for and what we were going to get until I saw all the beautiful granite countertops here on the forum.

I do like my big single stainless steel sink. I am glad all the Franke apron fireclay sinks came chipped and cracked so I became more practical. I also like my JennAir 48" built in refrig. I can see everything at a glance and it holds so much but doesn't stick out into the room. I love the ceiling to floor pantry and the island. Two things I did right.

So all my decisions weren't total disasters.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 1:21PM
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Great thread! My answer is a little different.....vaulted ceiling.

My DH saw a neighbor's renovation with a vaulted ceiling kitchen and had to have it. We have a 1960 ranchstyle house with 8 ft. ceilings, so this was a big budget buster involving moving structural beams and installing skylights. It's pretty but definitely something we and the future buyers down the road could love without.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 1:41PM
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When building a home (3x for me), or remodeling, it's easy to get caught up in all the beautiful options and conveniences shared by friends and forums. It's exciting, it's fun!

Exactly two years ago, we moved in...I'm going to change this wording a bit, if I may.

I thought I couldn't live without a pro range but I got a Sears Kenmore dual-fuel (like I had before) and my cooking hasn't been impaired at all.

I thought I couldn't live without hiding the fridge and dishwasher with panels, but ended up letting them show. Our sons have enough trouble finding the dishwasher with it hiding in plain sight! :-)


    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 1:56PM
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bump - these kind of posts need to stay at the top so everyone can learn from others mistakes. Things move so fast on the Kitchen Forum!

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 8:56PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

I too need to write in defense of the under little tip out trays on the sink front.

I have 2 and one holds 2 different bottle brushes, and the other has an assortment of different scrubbies. I use then daily and are so convenient to keep those things close at hand, but out of sight.

There really isn't much I could have done without since I had the house built and pretty well went with most things being pretty average. After seeing so many beautuful kitchen pics here though, I'm thinking of ways to pretty it up some.

Sue...a lurker and admirer.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 10:42PM
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Mine was the sink grates. I saw them when I picked out the sink and knew that they would be nice to have. My contractor gave me the final bill and they were $134! Now, I have no problem spending money on things that are really expensive but I have to really like them and think that they are worth it. These grates don't even fit properly over the drain holes.

Everything else is good, thanks.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 10:57PM
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Miele dishwasher. I like that it's quiet, energy efficient, cutlery tray and that I can put plastic and glasses anywhere. However I don't like that I can only use one cycle so not to have water so hot it etches my glassware. And I need to use not much soap so not to etch my glassware but then I notice my coffee cups don't get clean. Aside from the benefits I listed above, my 12 year old Maytag works better. DH wanted a Miele - in retrospect I probably could have found something else that I would have been just as satisfied with (or not) at a lower cost.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 11:13PM
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No idea why this stupid gadget gets such regular hype on this board.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 11:37PM
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janwad, which gadget?

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 12:10AM
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Hi--I've been lurking for a short time when other forums are slow. My husband and I have an old house built in the 1890's, so much of what is discussed on this forum is fascinating but beyond my frame of reference. We're rehabbing our house, but haven't tackled the kitchen yet. It has retained a lot of the original features, and it even had an old 1920's Majestic woodstove when we moved in. We have since taken that out, have it stored out back and installed a gas range/oven instead (the Majestic is a great looking antique, but I know my limitations!). I'm chuckling as I read this forum, as it almost sounds like you're all speaking a different language! I've got to ask: several of you have mentioned that you don't use your convection ovens much, or at all. This may be a dense question, but what then is the alternative? We use our convection oven just about every day in preparing dinner--I can't imagine using the microwave for major cooking--so I'm not sure then what you're referring to-???

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 1:41AM
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Many ovens will operate in either convection or conventional mode...mine does. I have a 12-year old GE Profile electric range with convection oven. It offers both convection bake/roast and conventional bake/roast. However, I use the convection most of the time.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 7:34AM
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Kim2007: You may be confusing convection with conventional/thermal...or you may have used convection all your life & didn't realize that many of us grew up deprived--we/our mothers only used the older conventional method of baking & roasting! :-) ...[Just kidding about being "deprived"!]

Thermal or conventional--a heating element above for roasting or broiling and a lower element for baking. Each element is used separately, not together.

Convection--there are at least 2 basic types of convection that I know of:
...Both upper & lower elements used plus a fan in the back wall of the oven to move the heat around OR
...A third element and fan in back wall to pull the air into the third element, heat the air, and move the heated around ("True Convection" or "True European Convection"
In addition, convection uses oven temps approx 25 degrees lower than conventional
(Note: my experience is that it can be even faster, I've had a 50% time savings when baking cookies!)

There are other "flavors" of ovens as well but it might be better to check the Appliances Forum for more information.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 8:34AM
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I have a micro that is also convection - sounds like that is what Kim is referring to.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 10:05AM
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Thanks for the definitions! That helps clarify it a lot. I seems we have a conventional or thermal oven, which is what my mother had as well. I didn't realize that there were other types available now. I can see how a faster working oven would be a great help for a large and busy family--mom would have appreciated it!

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 2:29PM
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    Bookmark   October 12, 2007 at 10:40PM
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I'm glad someone bumped this thread back to the top, as it had just started when I came onto this forum 3 months ago before our remodel really began.

Now that I have (x)....So far I'm glad we did everything we did. I haven't really found anything that I can do without...yet.

But as an opposite thought, I did NOT add a sink tip-out, and am planning to get one as an after-thought. My GC told me that our sink cabinet is built for one. I hate that little green strawberry basket on my granite counter top, holding the drain stopper and the green meanies!

Someone mentioned the fridge ... we did NOT replace our 14-year-old fridge or our 9-year-old dishwasher. We decided to save the $2000+ we would have spent on those, and go for the granite counter tops instead. As my dad is fond of saying, "Everything's a trade-off."

And I totally concur with shopping around for various things. While we bought our cabinets, sink, faucet, lighting, and flooring through a big-box store, we utilized the military exchange systems in our area for the appliances. We also used some other hardware stores in the area for smaller things. If/when the time comes to replace the DW and fridge, we'll go back to the military exchange and see what they have to offer.


    Bookmark   October 12, 2007 at 11:28PM
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I wish we had not replaced the planned 12" wide cabinet next to range (for cookie sheets & cutting boards) with a 12" spice pullout. I don't like bending down to get the oil, etc. Original plan was to have a narrow shelf over backsplash for oils & most-used spices. Now the cutting boards are in a drawer. Not ideal.

Someone mentioned the Kenmore Elite DW with turbo. Never use the turbo feature, as it's an energy guzzler. Got it because I wanted all appliances to match--what was I thinking???

Love the pedal trash can with soft close lid and print-proof stainless (Simple Human)
Love the pantry cabinets (24" wide and 12" deep), which allow me to see--and easily reach--everything. Wider would have been better, but we had limited wall space.
Love all the drawers! Only sink base and pantries have doors. No upper cabs. 3 drawer bases. Love them.

Wish I'd posted layout here, so I could have gotten input on pantry & fridge cabinet heights. Also wish we'd brought gas into house so we could have chosen a gas cooktop.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2007 at 12:26PM
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Thank goodness I found and read this thread back before we finalized our kitchen plans for this reno! Because of it, we changed some things and made some good new choices. I can't say for sure what I could have lived without with this reno, as I still have bare walls (cabs go in a week from tomorrow, I hope!).
Last custom kitchen (15 years ago) that's now just been ripped out:
~ kitchen desk: turned into the dumping ground/clutter collector. No desk with this reno.
~ prep sink: hardly ever used it.
~kitchen island was too long.
~ kitchen island had the main sink in it and people sitting at counter there were constantly getting spattered.

Things We Changed With This Reno, Because of this thread:
~ went with the KA French door fridge instead of the SubZero
~ no prep sink
~ no warming drawer: we went with KA's double oven that has temps low enough in both ovens to act as pseudo-warming drawers. I like the idea that I'll have a second oven that can I can use either way, depending on my current need.
~ changed out the mullioned doors to seeded glass.
~ did away with the above counter air gap: Yes, one less thing to clean around!!

Abbycat: you have me a bit worried, though. We've got two of those 12" wide pull-out cabss flanking our cooktop cab. I hope I don't end up regretting ours.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2007 at 3:05PM
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I LOVE my sink tip out drawer. It keeps the clutter off my sink top around the faucet.
I LOVE the slide out trash can with built-in compartment for the extra trash bags.
I LOVE my new double door pantry that replaced the built in desk. That desk was nothing but a catch-all for purses, mail, etc. anything important - phone book, pens, paper, fits in one small "junk" drawer.
I HATED the large tall Hansgrohe faucet I originally bought. The salesman told me I had to get it because it is the latest style and is great for cleaning big pots. Well, the water dropped so far into my new deep sink that it splashed and my mid-section got wet whenever I did dishes. DH hated is as well. I had it taken out and replaced with a normal sized Hansgrohe faucet, which we love. I have all the room I need to wash pots. Besides, it's not like I'm running a soup kitchen out of my house!

    Bookmark   October 15, 2007 at 3:19PM
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The only thing I have now that I would not miss is the warming drawer, but we found one for a great price and we had the room, so we got it.
I got rid of, and do not miss at all- the garbage disposal.
Things we added that I LOVE:
instant hot water
double ovens
Vent-a-Hood (I never had a vent before!)
Tons more lighting, including a solartube type skylight
outlets galore- let us have POWER!
my beautiful tongue & groove beadboard ceiling

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 12:36AM
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Suska, why'd you get rid of the disposal?

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 7:42AM
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I like my engineered quartz countertops, but in a future kitchen, I wouldn't mind doing formica again. Quartz is hard and I am cautious about setting things down on it, like glasses and plates. Granite was never an option for me, I think nearly all of it is too busy.

I didn't want a garbage disposal, and I am glad I didn't get one. I replaced my instant-hot, and I really like that.

I got a smooth cooktop with digital controls, and I love it for cleanup, but next time I'd choose knobs (they stick out but easier to turn off and on).

I didn't refinish my wood floors, and all the contractors dropped things and caused dents (the plumber tossed his wrenches down from a standing height, huh??) so I am glad I didn't bother to refinish them. They look fine anyway.

The KD told me to replace my 27" double ovens with 30", and I did, but with two ovens, I think 27" is fine. If I did it over, I'd get one 30" oven with a microwave above it.

I wouldn't spend $$$$ on a faucet. My Grohe faucet is very nice, but I paid a lot and I think it is actually too strong for my single bowl 7 1/2" deep sink (which I like btw, and I like the grid on the bottom). Even with the water saver in, it splashes a lot if I am not careful.

I got a plain cabinet style and plain countertop edge, these I like very much and it won't look dated soon.

I have a 13 x 13 kitchen with an island cooktop, and I wanted to keep my reno at

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 9:55AM
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Vac pans.

We already had a central vac system so when we were redoing the kitchen and adding a baking area I thought I'd have vac pans installed. I had looked forward to being able to have them for about 8 years but our original cabs didn't have a high enough toe kick.

When they went in I discovered that they're hard to see when you're standing up trying to sweep debris toward them, hard to open & close with your toe and you have to sweep directly into them. I could learn exactly where they are. I can develop the skill of opening and closing them but, of course, convenience, not new skills, was the point. But even if I do those two, their poor pick-up range will always be a disappointment.

It wasn't the most expensive "improvement", nor was it the most important one. Just a disappointment I'd avoid if I could have.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 11:40AM
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I got rid of the garbage disposal because, even though I barely used it, it seemed to be so grungy that I didn't think it was worth it. I also gained more than enough space under the cabinet to accomodate my hot water dispenser tank, which was a good move for my family because everyone uses it. My MIL doesn't know how I could give the GB up, but for me, it was good riddance.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 12:15PM
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since we had a central vac system already I thought me might as well add a vacpan now while the entire floor is ripped out. I was lucky that our carpenter recommended to locate it NOT in a toe kick because it is difficult to see and hit it there. Instead we put it at the end of the island where there is NO toe kick but the straight gable. That way it is very easy to hit the vacpan when you sweep into it.

Ours is quite easy to operate. In fact, I sometimes happen to open it up by accident when I walk by there. Not a big deal as it's closed easily as well.

In the end, I could have easily lived without it for the years to come without missing very much. But this was one of those things that were very easy to do now without straining the budget too much. Adding it later would have been a major operation.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 12:16PM
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abbycat9990 - do you have any finished pics? I too am trying to limit my upper cabs and am trying to figure out where to fit everything. Thanks

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 1:26PM
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malhgold - Here are pics:

We moved kitchen to dining room. Moved door a little to the left, recessed fridge into space formerly occupied by 1970s double wall oven (it was harvest gold!), and squeezed in 2 x 24" wide pantries.

Replaced full height windows with these 47" x 47" fixed Pella windows. See the problematic 12" spice pullout on the right of the range. Oh yes, another thing I LOVE - space for cookbooks.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 4:42PM
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My top three favorites are, in no particular order:
Second sink. It's great being able to do veggies in a sink that never sees dishes or handwashing and is always clean and ready to go.
Pro-style range. The large burners are lightyears better than what I was tolerating for 12 years. And the built-in grill and convection oven part is great, too.
I have to say that the little cuisinart convection/toaster oven is the best of it's kind (toaster ovens) under $150, and it has a good three-year track record with no problems. (my sister goes through a cheap B&D type toaster oven every six months!) This one features something called precision temp or constant temp, and it really is amazing for crisping up bread on the convection mode.
The flat panel 26" Aquos TV, Soapstone counters, fireclay apron sink, Jenn-Air CD FD Fridge, Advantium oven, Vinatta faucets, trash pull-out, and inset cabinet doors tie for 4th. /Insufferable gloat mode off./

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 6:03PM
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Now that I have an undermount sink, I think I could've lived without it.

I heard raves from other GWebbers, so I had my granite farm sink undermounted.

A lifetime spent wiping crumbs into my cupped hand under the countertop overhang is not a habit that went away when we got the undermount sink. I kept reading of the ease of just wiping the crumbs into the sink. But if you have large expanse of counter, most of the crumbs aren't near the sink anyway, so you (or at least *I*) end up wiping them into my cupped hand anyway.

Undermount just isn't all that nifty for me.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2007 at 7:05PM
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susan4664..." LOVE the slide out trash can with built-in compartment for the extra trash bags"

If possible, can you show a photo of this? Thanks!

    Bookmark   October 17, 2007 at 1:10AM
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I don't know if this is the one Susan has, but Rev-A-Shelf has several sizes/materials:

Prem. Sgl Trash Pull-Out 35QT WH
Prem. Sgl Trash Pull-Out 32QT SS
Prem. Sgl Trash Pull-Out 50 QT WH
Prem. Sgl Trash Pull-Out 50QT Silver

The link below is for the first one...

    Bookmark   October 17, 2007 at 2:02AM
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My slide out trash is a little different. It is more convenient than the one in the picture above. I will post the picture and give you the name later tonight when I get home.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2007 at 9:13AM
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Here is my trash pull-out. The bags sit conveniently behind the trash can so there is no bending. The brand is Rev-A-Shelf

    Bookmark   October 18, 2007 at 8:59AM
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We buy those "mega" boxes of trash bags from Costco. They won't fit in the one with the basket on top. We're getting one of the ones I posted so we can fit a mega box in it. It just depends on how you plan on using it!

    Bookmark   October 18, 2007 at 9:13AM
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Our trash can pullout is the one by Hafele (or made by Hafele for Hailo?). It contains two lge trash cans--one is supposed to be for recycling, but we don't keep the recycling in the kitchen. We store the box(es) of trash can liners in the second trash can, and since it's a big can, we can stock up and store a lot of boxes there!

    Bookmark   October 18, 2007 at 9:45AM
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Under cabinets lights are the only thing in my kitchen that was a waste of money. I have plug mold and have several small lamps. If I need extra light, so far I've not needed it, I will just plug in one of my small lamps.


    Bookmark   October 18, 2007 at 12:22PM
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Thanks for posting susan and buehl...

I would like to do the double for both
trash and recycle.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2007 at 12:29AM
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    Bookmark   November 6, 2007 at 9:26AM
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    Bookmark   January 9, 2008 at 10:30AM
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good thread..hope more will chime in...


    Bookmark   February 18, 2008 at 4:29PM
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    Bookmark   March 30, 2008 at 5:55PM
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I think the only thing we did in this kitchen that I won't bother with in the new house is the RO unit, which we removed after a couple years. We decided our water tasted fine without it and while one filter was inexpensive, the other was over $100 plus an ridiculous amount of shipping -- every year.

In contrast to some of the posters above, I would NOT give up my central vac dust pan! It's in a kitchen toe-kick, and yes, I have to sweep stuff near it to be effective -- BUT before my Golden Retriever died last Christmas, I used it at least every other day to deal with Sammy's tumbleweeds of fur that accumulated on the tile floor. I love it and will put at least one in the new house, probably more than one. I'm assuming the GR puppy I'll be getting will produce the same tumbleweeds.

Good thread! Lots of things to think about!

    Bookmark   March 30, 2008 at 6:32PM
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    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 12:20PM
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As a side note to the polished nickel faucets, I was pretty much set on getting chrome until I watched a video on HGTV that said polished nickel was "warm" while chrome had more of a cold bluish tone. I didn't even know a polished nickel finish existed (only heard of brushed nickel) so this gave my stomach a mini-leap thinking that I now needed to find the faucet I wanted in nickel...and of course it was pricier! Then I looked at my chrome faucet in my bathroom and realized that it looked warm as the paint colour reflects off of it anyway and decided to stick with chrome. Not only that, I did research and read that chrome is tarnish-free while polished nickel will develop a patina over time. Glad to hear that I'm not missing out on anything!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 1:12PM
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Just read through this thread and learned some MORE new and useful stuff. We are demo'd down to the studs and just at the framing stage so we can actually make use of this info. Thanks to all who posted.

Our first planned omission is a wine frig, as the built-in Liebherr has bottle racks already; we substituted a wine rack in the base cab. (Yes, I know, whites come out of the regular frig too cold, but we prefer mostly reds anyway.) Our second omission is a second dishwasher. We entertain seldom enough that it really didn't justify the space and expense. Of course, that may change once we have a beautiful new kitchen to show off!

We too decided on a combination of brushed and polished chrome for faucets and cabinet hardware, as it is less expensive than ORB or satin nickel, and timeless to boot.

I am still trying to get DW to omit the glaze on the cabs as I tend to think it could look as if we're trying too hard for a period look--and maybe not such great housekeepers...LOL

    Bookmark   April 20, 2008 at 4:36PM
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Panelled CD fridge: I wouldn't want to give up my divided cab above it in order to have a built in fridge, but I would rather have a built in fridge panelled. Go figure.

The CD with panels looks like her prom dress is too tight.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2008 at 6:15PM
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    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 12:14PM
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Love this thread!

Before we began our remodel, we planned on laminate countertops. The ones we ripped out were 10 yrs old and still looked perfectly good, so I thought this would be an easy place to save money. BUT the house we are renting during the remodel has granite counters, and now I AM SPOILED. I love being able to put a hot pan anywhere. And I love how they dress up the room. I also love that the counter can look clean but actually be quite filthy. :-)

I am also a recent convert to those tilt-out things below the sink. I always scoffed at them before, but now that I have them (in the rental) I find they are the perfect place for the rubber gloves I use when washing dishes. My husband and I actually used to bicker about where to put those gloves, so the tilt-out has been a major problem-solver.

I wonder how people feel about tray storage? They certainly are in all the kitchens now, but I have never had any and don't feel the need. I'm sure it's easier to access trays in dividers, but you can store more trays in the same amount of space if you stack them. And I don't really mind selecting a tray from a small stack.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 4:59PM
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mmme~~ Have you seen all of the choices that come in laminate now?...oh my, they look so much like granite that one would have to really examine it to tell the difference.
You asked about the tray dividers. I have them and really do like them.

The one thing(actually two) that I would HATE to do without is my pull-out trash containers...or my garbage them~~ And if I had to do without something (although it is great for a crowd), would be my warming drawer.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 5:20PM
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phoggie, I agree that some laminates look just like granite. But you can't put a hot pan on it, and I've grown to love that about granite. In my old (laminate) kitchen I was always shuffling things around trying to find space for hot cookie sheets, heavy pots right off the stove, etc. Now with granite counters I can really spread out--and no more balancing a hot pan while I fumble for a trivet. I love it!

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 7:35PM
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We need a new gas range and I'd like a 'true' convection (I do a lot of baking), but we don't have a lot of money to spend on it. I've read some good things and some very bad things about the Maytag and the Kenmore ranges, which are in the 700$ range. Anyone have any experiences they'd like to share? Or recommendations?

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 11:17PM
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buehl'd be better off either starting a separate thread here on the Kitchens Forum or starting a thread on the Appliances Forum.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 3:18AM
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    Bookmark   June 10, 2008 at 4:32PM
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    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 11:19PM
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I learned about the Gaggeanu Combi Steam Oven and the TapMaster here and had to have them in my kitchen. A year later, living in the house, I could have lived without both. I don't hate either, and I do use each regularly, but neither have turned into must-haves. I use the Combi mostly to steam veggies and defrost meat. I haven't been blown away by other applications I've tried, including bread baking, which I was really excited about before purchase. (I seem to get better results with the old pan-of-water-on-the-bottom-rack trick in my plain-old convection oven.)

The TapMaster is a wow item for people who come to the house, but it's just so-so for everyday use and I haven't really found it to be the full-hands helper I thought it would be. (Sometimes it's even quite inconvenient in everyday applications.) Again, nothing terrible, and it does everything it advertises, it just hasn't blown me away in every day use.

-Susan W.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 12:08AM
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Oh and, as for things I love ... I use my Advantium more than I thought I would. That "soften butter" setting is a godsend, as is the chocolate melt, since I love to bake. It's also a great microwave (we didn't have sensor reheat before) and warming drawer, as well as the perfect bread proofer.

My biggest things though are ...

-My gargatuen pantry--the size of a room and I use every bit of it, even though people told me it was terribly indulgent.

-The trash chute out to the garage. I intially thought it was too simple for what we paid for it--when it was first installed--and now wouldn't live without it. It's just great not to have a trash can in the kitchen, or be hauling bags through the house. I love it!

-Two dishwashers. I cook and bake a lot. I hate to do dishes, so 99.9999999 percent of what I own is dishwasher safe. The two dishwashers are literally used daily and, frankly, if I did it all again I might even add a third. Yep, I use them that much and there are times when both are full and running and there's stuff waiting in the sink. I think the "worst" thing about going back to my old kitchen would be having just one dishwasher.

-And, lastly, the "drinks" fridge--another "are you sure you need this?" item various people questioned during the design/build process. All of our beverages are in one place and my husband's athletes come over and help themselves. It's convenient to get to from the pool, the living room and the home theatre. I would never be without a "drinks fridge" again.

As for what I wish I got, that I didn't ... I still kind of wonder about induction, but I can't say I really "miss" it. The only item I've occasionally longed for is a stand-alone ice maker, but even that twinge of desire has been pretty few and far between, though it is something I might do if we were ever to do this all again (God forbid, as my husband would say).

-Susan W.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 12:21AM
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Susan, could you elaborate on your trash shoot? I'm thinking about doing one in the house we are going to build--something like this:

Is that kind of what you have, or is it something different?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 12:27PM
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The trash system I have is a Starco, it's a through-the-wall chute (mine is over a counter) that goes to a sealed system. They have a website that describes it all a lot better, and it's not a cheap item, though, like I said, I have found it to work well. If you're handy, you could probably put something similar together yourself. I actually saw it on HGTV and ended up calling the company and buying it on a whim. Be aware that it does NOT include the landing bin for your trash/recycling. You have to provide that yourself and, if you get it, don't do what we (unknowingly) did it and put it next to a wall--you need to be able to access all three sides, or it's difficult to get the bags on and off.

-Susan W.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 6:17PM
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Thanks Susan. We probably will do it ourselves (since we'll be doing just about everything on that build ourselves!) but it's great to hear from someone who has a similar system that likes it.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2008 at 12:41AM
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A two year old...

and a puppy on the way....

(thank god we planned a wine center in the new kitchen) :P

    Bookmark   July 12, 2008 at 1:07AM
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raenjapan, I have two pull-down doors to the trash and recycling bins in my garage, which do the same thing. I didn't have to buy a ''system'' and it's working out beautifully, for the last four years! Here's a picture of them on the far wall to the left of the light switch and the garage door, and under the big picture. We also use them as a ''communication system'' when one of us is in the garage. I really like that the doors are large enough to put more than one item through. We put felt weatherstripping around the backside of the doors to keep the cold/heat from coming in, and the painted surface is easy to clean. My goal was to stop the ''swing and fling'' from the garage door, which this did!

    Bookmark   July 12, 2008 at 1:45AM
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There's not one thing I would want to live without in my new kitchen. It is heaven!

    Bookmark   July 12, 2008 at 10:56AM
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Cate, where did you find the original post you referred to that was begun by Shannonplus2? I think you posted a link, but I'm having trouble finding it.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2008 at 12:36PM
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Wow, I can't believe that I sat here and read this entire post. I couldn't pull myself away, so I have tons to contribute and ask.

Things I'd do without:
Plug Mold. I'd rather have 2 regular outlets in my backsplash. Regular outlets are easier to reach, and for the coffee maker that sits out on the counter, the plug is above it rather than behind it. I find myself constantly adjusting where the coffee maker is to HIDE the cord.

Convection: It's a setting on both my oven as well as my microwave. I never use it, because as one poster said ealier, I've had several failed attempts and it would have been easier and quicker to just have used conventional bake.

Pull-out Shelves on Lower Cabinets: If I had to do it all over again, I would not have pull out shelves and doors on the lower cabinets. I would have deep drawers all the way around.

Automatic Dishwasher Soap Dispenser: Worthless. Our GE Profile top of the line dishwasher wouldn't get the dishes clean no matter what setting we used. As per the advice of a kind GW'er, we tried using powdered soap. Wah-Lah!
Clean dishes. Now we're back to putting soap in everytime we're ready to do a load. We really liked not having to do that, but the automatic dispenser is just a dinosaur now with no action. A dinosaur I am sure we paid dearly for. On that note, I would have skipped going top of the line in the GE Profile series and got a regular dishwasher without all the bells and whistles.

Cork Flooring: We've had an install nightmare that I won't go into here - but suffice it to say, I think we're leaning toward going with engineered hardwood to replace our VERY expensive cork that was installed improperly.

End Panels on the bar side of the peninsula: Very expensive add-on that is pretty well covered up by 4 large barstools. We could've just adding some kind of trim molding later and saved quite a few bucks.

Tip Out tray under the sink: We had one in our old kitchen and we used it all the time. We *rarely* use the one in the new kitchen for some reason. Not quite sure why. But, it cost around $60, so that was a tiny bit of dinero I could've saved.

Glass cabinet doors: We have 3. Two that are on either side of our flat screen tv/wine rack deal are really pretty and I'd do that all over again. But the one that's next to the fridge - I'd just as soon have a regular door so that I could store less pretty stuff and more practical stuff.

Re: Trash Pull Out: I couldn't live without it. Although I don't have an official bag storage place built in... I do have 1 trash can, and 1 recycling can. I have increased my recycling by 100%, and I was an avid recycler before. So much so, that I had to call the garbage company and request a 2nd 100 gallon recycling cart. It's amazing how much you can recycle if it's convenient. One little "trick" I learned reading Martha Stewart or Heloise or someone like that: put your extra trash bags in the bottom of the trash can, then they're always handy when you need to replace it. I too get the Costco huge box of trash bags, and they go on the Super Susan next to the trash drawer. But I always keep about 15 bags in the bottom of each can and it's great! Replacing the 15 is just a cabinet away.

Pull-out cookie tray divider thingie: I have no idea what I paid for that gimmick/gadget, but I would skip it. There are many other places for my trays and better ways that would be more convenient. I rarely pull the deal out even though it's a pull-out, and I must have too many trays crammed in there because I always end up fighting to get the darned things out.

Cate: Get the new fridge. Match your appliances. Just my opinion. :)

WANT: Foot pedal for trash drawer. Yes, I am obsessed with my trash/recycling drawer. :) It makes me happy!
It's probably one of my Top 3 favorite things in our new kitchen.

There were more comments I wanted to make, but by the time I finished reading through all the posts, I have forgotten about them. Oh well.. as if this isn't long enough.

Happy Saturday, Y'all!

    Bookmark   July 12, 2008 at 2:54PM
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Melissa Houser

WOW! I just read this whole thread and I appreciate everyone who has taken time to answer this. I figured I'd reply to bump it up...and I'll be asking a couple of questions in the forum. :)

    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 11:16AM
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Could folks post more? Still trying to decide what I "need" to have and what I "want" to have.

For those with all drawers-- what about heavy appliances like mixers, crockpots. Do those fit in the drawers readily?

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 2:53PM
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Good question, babbie. I was thinking about doing 1 base cabinet with a rollout to hold my heavy stand mixer, belgian waffle maker and food processor. Seems like lifting those heavy items out of a rollout would be easier than out of a deep drawer?

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 3:13PM
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Erikanh, that is my thought too, not that lifting anything heavy is easy! I currently have planned 2 drawer bases, and a couple of base w/rots, but I am having doubts. For that matter, I am currently having doubts about everything I have decided!

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 3:19PM
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aww babbie, I know the feeling. I seem to second-guess myself on even the littlest things. It's so frustrating because I consider myself a pretty decisive person, but this whole kitchen process has thrown me for a loop.

One thing that has helped me a lot is labeling every single drawer and cabinet with what I plan to store in each. Other than sink bases, my tall pantries and that 1 base for heavy items, I'm planning drawers everywhere.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 4:14PM
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Don't order easy retrofits from the cabinet company! Things like pull-out towel rack under sink or stainless caddy, drawer organizers etc. can be purchased for much less from companies like rev-a-shelf or Hafele usually for much less.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 5:22PM
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good point luisa, we are planning on purchasing some of the retrofits afterwards. After reading about the pros and cons of tilt out sinks (and the additional cost for us) we will wait and if I decide I want it, we will install ourselves for $16-- hubby is the diy and he is doing the kitchen. the larger rots will cost as much to special order so those we will have installed by the cabinet company.
now if I could only decide on the wood species and stain-- cherry, perhaps red birch, no, I want maple. All I know is I want a light stain to complement the red oak floors.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 6:32PM
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Thoughts on drawers vs rollouts (I stack/nest my pans 2 deep)--

In doing both a remodel and new construction in the last 3-4 years, I've found that

--I like 18" and 21" wide cabinet sizes best. Or 24" wide is fine if it's a bank of drawers.

--I prefer 18" or 21" wide base cabinets with 3 rollouts in each + top drawer on both sides of the cooktop. I don't like having rollouts in the island behind me opposite the cooktop--it just feels wrong with the additional move of turning around. Drawers would have been better there. There's more room in rollouts than drawers, which is why I used them where I did. I agree with erikanh about rollouts probably being better for larger heavier small appliances although I just keep these on the counter, but maybe someone else has experience with these.

--if space is at a premium, 27" wide butt door (no center stile) base cabinet with 3-4 (4 is great for putting canned goods on their sides so it's easy to see what you have) wide rollouts + top drawer.

--I really don't like having to open a deep 36" wide drawer full of pans or dishes. I think shallower or narrower might be ok. I got 24" wide drawer banks for the lower level kitchen--both shallow and deep--and I can see where those might work fine if I had pans in them. But a deep 36" wide drawer is perfect for plastic containers.

--I like having the stir fry pan, 5 qt dutch oven, lightweight 12" crock pot, and seldom used larger items in the super Susan.

Anyone else have specifics of their situation that might help others decide? I know this subject comes up a lot.

BTW, now that I have a large (to me) kitchen designed just the way I wanted it, it seems too large. If I still had kids around, it would probably be just right. I could have gotten rid of some things, and made it smaller, but I was designing for resale and it is a great kitchen to entertain in.


    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 10:00PM
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Can't say I regret anything. I bought a KA range with convection which I use. I got a middle of the road KA dishwasher which does a great job. I bought a Sharp convection MW. Love the convection on this as I can use it in hot weather with out making the house hot. We did get the Sub Zero which I though was too much to spend, but my husband really wanted. I am really happy now because my fridge blends very well in the wall of cabinets in which it was placed. Love my farmhouse sink and full extension drawers. I really can't think of anything I would do differently. Thanks again to everyone here who really helped us during our remodel.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2008 at 10:46PM
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I could have lived without my SS sink, and bought a Silgranit sink instead. I didn't know about Silgranite at the time. My SS sink gets waterspots instantly.

Having said that, I do like that my sink is single bowl style, and don't regret that choice one bit. Just wish it didn't have water spots all the time.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2008 at 10:09AM
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Now that I have - a JA CD FD fridge - I think I could have lived without it. Mainly because it's just too small, even for two people. The freezer is the worst - the top slide out bin doesn't pull out easily and the stationary bin attached to the door is way too small. The controls on the fridge part are too large and limit using the upper shelves for anything tall like juice bottles unless the lower shelves are lowered. But if that is done those shelves end up with very little head room, too.

We've been using the fridge for almost 2 years and the novelty of the FDs has worn thin. It was fine when the fridge was located where it open directly across from the island but then we changed the location to the end of a counter run. Now the left door pretty much needs closing before placing things from the fridge onto that counter. The island is still close by but I'd rather not have the door be a hinderance to the counter.

I have a feeling we'll be looking at new refrigerators in the near future.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2008 at 1:13PM
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hoping for more tips!

    Bookmark   September 9, 2008 at 8:08PM
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One more bump :o)

    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 9:26AM
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One more bump :o)

    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 9:28AM
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I have a grill on my current range top. It's an old Jennair so it's a cartridge and you can replace it with 2 burners. I always leave the burners in and never use the grill. It is just too hard to clean and creates too much smoke. I would rather go out in the cold and use the Big Green Egg than stay in the house and grill on that Jennair with the cleanup it entails. My next rangetop will be all burners or may-be a griddle -- no grill.

Great thread. Hope the ideas keep coming.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2008 at 8:55PM
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I just had to have the carousel in the lower corner cabinet and don,t use it since I have a large pantry. If we were staying here I would remove it so I could slide big idems in there. The other thing I did wrong was we put the plugin outlets in the bottom of the upper cabinets instead of on the backsplash. Its a pain to have to lean forward and bed over to look under the cabinet to plug something in , and the cords are impossible to hide.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2008 at 6:25PM
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Abita Queen Bee

Custom cabinets by xxxx custom cabinets. Yes girls and boys.. they are coming out. Here in downtown Soddy Daisy TN 19 miles north of Chattanooga. Getting a custom cabinet man here was a night mare. Tomorrow the man is going to put my check on the table and take the &%##&^ beautiful Shaker Cherry Custom Cabinets that developed a white haze all over them back to his shop.I checked this guy out up one side and down the other also. BBB and all. Now I am going to look for SECONDS and put them up myself. I will distress them paint them with every kind of stain and sand them with 60 grit.,rub chain over them and hammmer them till they look like hell. ARGHHHHHHH. Maybe I Won't have cabinets at all.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2008 at 5:04PM
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Hi, y'all.

I've had both a slide in range and the "standard" kind... and with my current kitchen project I'm going back to the slide in kind. (This is the kind with no backsplash, where all the controls are on the front). It's more money, for sure, but I think it looks SO much nicer and I don't have to reach over pots of boiling water or spitting oil to adjust the burner temps.

I should say I have had very small kitchens so I always opt for glass (sealed surface) ranges b/c they double as counter space when not in use. Maybe someday I'll have a big ole kitchen with a gas range... next lifetime??

    Bookmark   November 17, 2008 at 5:03PM
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The grill on our BlueStar 48" RNB Range. It is very difficult to keep clean if you cook a lot. It does not get hot enough to sear steaks. The gas oven has also been inconsistent and is diffcult to bake in and above 400 degrees the handles get to hot to touch. But I should also add that the six burners are great. The two SuperNova's really crank out the BTU's!

Everything else in our 4 yo kitchen is great. SZ's, WD, huge Herbeau farmhouse sink, 2 Miele Incognitos, limestone tops, only two glass paneled uppers for display, under and over cabinet lighting, and panels on everything except stove and MW. I used this forum a ton when we were building to help make the decisions. In fact I came back to lookup our garbage/recycling bin cabinet with the foot pedal. We have the Double Waste Bins from Hafele. After four years of heavy use (I mean torture) the kick pedal broke on Christmas. $57.42 to replace it is so worth it!

    Bookmark   December 26, 2008 at 12:35PM
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modern life interiors


    Bookmark   December 27, 2008 at 1:32PM
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    Bookmark   March 12, 2010 at 8:10AM
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I my first designed kitchen I had roll out shelves,the second time I put in deep drawers instead...and this time I'll stick with the drawers. They worked well even the 36" ones,and weight was not an issue. I stored my Le Creuset in a 27" one under the ovens with no trouble.Both are so incredibly better than cupboards but my vote goes for the drawers.
Now that I have a second oven I'd never go back...and I gave up a Gaggenau for 2 27" ovens [Thermador]....but in the post fire rebuild I'm thinking of replacing those with a 24" Miele speed oven and the 27"classic [cheaper if that's not an oxymoron with Miele] Miele wall oven....The thermador ovens were "fine" but not raveworthy.
I've never missed not having an icemaker fridge.
My induction cooktop would be worth worth giving up a Hawaaii holiday for.
Our windows go right down to the kitchen counter and were wellworth it to appreciate our outside view.
I've never missed having a wine fridge even though I drink too much wine.
I like having a counter depth fridge [F-P basic].
....In fact I can't wait till I get my kitchen back...about four months left to go!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2010 at 7:36PM
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-Prep sink. This may be useful in a multi-cook household or a huge kitchen, but I hardly ever used the one I had and it was just once more thing to clean.

-Garbage disposal. My worms do a much better job, don't take up electricity and never smell or require cleaning.

-Fancy multi-function toaster, oven, rotisserie, pizza, etc. Does nothing well.

-Trash can with a motion sensor. Everyone I know who has one has them break in under a year. Mine only took 4 months to break. A foot pedal is much more reliable and a lot cheaper to replace.

-Stainless steel sink. What a pain to clean. You can call it patina, butafter a while they don't look clean no matter what you do. (The one in my apartment right now looks positively foul no matter how much Barkeeper's Friend you use.) Of course cast iron will eventually chip and I don't know if the granite composite sinks will stand the test of time

-Range-top grill. Only pay for these if you have a bodacious vent system and no way to have an outdoor grill. They are better than the George Foreman-like grills but not a patch on a decent outdoor gas grill or charcoal.


As for sink tip-outs... since discovering them I have knocked the front panel off every sink in every home I've rented or owned and installed these. In the bathroom they are perfect for the tweezers and nail files and such. In the kitchen, the sponges, scrubbers, stoppers and the toothbrush you use for cleaning around the faucet plate are neatly hidden away but close at hand. Love 'em!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2010 at 11:12PM
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    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 10:56PM
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This is such a great thread and has been so useful to me as I plan out kitchen

    Bookmark   September 1, 2010 at 4:49PM
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[Note: Have only lived in new kitchen for 2 months.] Now that I have two sets of same-sized cabinets adjacent to range...I am thinking about how I should have not worried about that look and done a different configuration that would have put two single large cupboards next to range and two smaller ones farther out. I was too hung up on the idea that this end of the room needed to feel like the other end of the room.

Now that I have four openable windows on the same side of the room, I think I could have saved money by having the middle two be unopenable ones, perhaps a large single window.

Now that I have an oak kitchen floor and a tiled lobby floor, I wish I had pursued the option of doing cork to see how it would have compared in cost and in comfort. I have a flare-up of plantar fasciatis right now and the floors are a problem for me, even with special shoes and shoe orthotics. (I am glad that I put in all those breadboards so that I can sit to work, although I'm beginning to wonder if I should have had all 4 be large sized instead of 3 that aren't.)

    Bookmark   September 1, 2010 at 5:25PM
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stainless steel appliances--I KNOW I could have lived without them.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2010 at 6:27PM
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    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 10:59PM
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