A true inverted L-shaped kitchen - HELP!

Cayce21August 4, 2014

Hi -
First time poster here - as you can see by my crude designs - I have an inverted L-shaped kitchen - the "before" shows how it is now and the "after" is the best layout I have come up with to date. This layout sucks but it is what I have to work with so - ANY ideas/suggestions would help me.
I wanted an island but as you can see there isn't quite enough room so the peninsula probably stays although I did add another peninsula in the breakfast nook so we can sit and eat and watch TV. I desperately need more cabinet and drawer space so I could put a wall of cabs and drawers in the breakfast nook - I guess - so - what do you think?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It's really hard to tell what you've got here. Can you do a sketch that shows not only dimensions but where things are in relation to each other? For example - doors and windows, what is on the other side of each of these 6 walls?

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 1:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Are you open to moving electrical, gas and plumbing?

Where is your dining room in relation to the kitchen?

Do you NEED the breakfast nook?

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 1:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks - here is another view of the layout I have right now - I have labelled windows, doors and what's on the other side of each wall -
as for would I be moving gas, electric and plumbing - answer is yes if my heart was set on a design that called for it - my dining room is to the right of the kitchen through the door - I have labelled it -
as for do I need a breakfast nook - NO! (this was decided pre-marriage!) - however what should I do with the space then? I thought maybe putting the sink and DW underneath the window in the breakfast nook and the rangetop (which will be a 48" Viking stovetop on the wall to the right of the sink and DW -

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 2:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Much better :-) I can't look now, but hopefully others will. I do think that if you don't need the breakfast nook (although I personally would like to have one), you'll have lots of good layout possibilities.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 2:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

No clue if this will help you but we have a similar L shaped kitchen. Here is a photo of most of the layout. One end of the L has the sink and range, the other part has the fridge, small pantry, and w/d closet. If more photos or details would be helpful to you just let me know.

Note that the top of the diagram does not show the rest of that part of the L.

Here is the old L diagram.

We extended out the back (top wall 6.5 ft) but it is still and L shaped kitchen.

Here is a photo of part of the L not shown on the "new" kitchen diagram.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 2:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Glad to know you are good with moving things.

I'm on my phone right now and can't post pics or do a layout for you but I reccomend turning the nook area into a U with cabs and counters running the whole way around. Putting the sink under the large window in the nook was my very first thought.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 3:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think the true layout gurus here on GW would have a lot of advice to give you. Hopefully my post will bump you back up to the top! Knowling that you do not want or need a eat in nook in the kitchen opens up the possibilities.
I also think it will be very helpful if you provide information about your family, lifestyle and how you use your kitchen. How many people are in the household, what are their ages, will there be more or fewer soon? Do you entertain, how often, what size crowds, casual or more formal, do you like guests in the kitchen? How many cooks in the kitchen, simultaneous, any canning, freezing, butchering, baking, catering business to consider?
When I look at the space I feel like you are not really thinking about 'zones'. When you eliminate an eat-in nook there is so much space you can get a great kitchen. I might put the cleanup zone across from the DR with the DW and a dish cabinet (for easy unloading) . This would make removing the dishes from the table easy. But, I dont know if there is a swinging door between the kitchen and the DR and so I dont know if that means guests at the table have to stare at my sink - I wouldn't like that.
If there is no door, a focal point from the DR could be glass uppers and a base cabinet, flanked by pantries. This would be a good unloading area since it is near the garage hallway.
I might put the clean up zone under the large window and center the stove between the window facing the yard and the door to the foyer. The nook becomes a u-shaped kitchen with the pantries across from the DR. If you want an island, dont put cabinets or put 12" deep cabinets on the garage wall, put an angled island. Your fridge run is in same location.
So those were some quick thoughts but getting rid of the eatin means you dont have an inverted L.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 7:17AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

How high are the windows off the ground?

There are a few of us with low windows (mine from a previous nook, which I feel the kitchen isn't big enough for) who have solved that issue in different ways.

I dropped down the cabinets there.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 8:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Can you move the door to the dining room to the bottom of your layout? Then you can move the range and fridge wall up and you will have landing space on both sides of the range. I would also move the fridge to the end of that run.
On the opposite wall, you cwould move the sink and DW up and then wrap your cabinets around the L. The pantry can now move to the wrap around section.
If your windows come low to the floor, then you could have low cabinets like cal_quail/or top it with cushions and set a small table in front of it to use as a breakfast nook. Depending on how many seats you need etc, you might have to do a shallow pantry but that probably works better anyway. To use the space between the windows on the south wall, I would put in a breakfast/beverage bar.
You could then have a separate zone for cooking, casual hang around and snacking/breakfast.
Sorry, I don't have access to my program to make a sketch for you. I am sure the layout experts will weigh in soon.
Have you seen the layout questionnaire thread? It is an invaluable resource (as are other threads in the FAQs)..Going through all that made me think critically about all that I wanted out of my kitchen. And you will get the most help out of the experts here when you provide all the information.

Here is a link that might be useful: Layout questionairre

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 10:55AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks to all - keeping it coming!
Now - it's just me and my husband in our 60s, no kids, we do occasional small dinner parties - no more than 6 with us included and our dining room has a very large table so we would eat in there.
We don't cook every night but we both like to cook and I love to bake. I get the afternoon sun through the big window - I live in San Diego so it is really brilliant in the breakfast nook area in the afternoon. I want to be able to eat at a counter and watch tv - I like the idea of a coffee station - and the kitchen is a walkthru kind of place meaning we walk through the kitchen from the rest of the house and from the front door through to the garage and a bathroom beyond the opening.
My windows in the nook are 32" from the ground but I could raise the larger window because we are replacing it.
As for moving the door to the dining room - there is already a door at the southern end of the layout that comes from the foyer.
Abd - thank you for the link to the questionnaire - I will use it. My biggest problem is my problem visualizing. I do better actually seeing rather than visualizing which is a big handicap when it comes to remodeling.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 11:32AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I played with this a bit and cannot come up with anything I like. I hope some of the design gurus who are really good at layout will join in.
It really is a tough 'un. I can see why you are frustrated.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 9:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you - I thought it was just me! I too hope design gurus will give me ideas because this is a true challenge. I keep hoping I will wake up in the middle of the night with a "Ah Ha!" Moment ...or two!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 10:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Can you close off the door to the foyer? I'm assuming you can get to the LR from the foyer, do you need to be able to get to the kitchen directly, or are you okay with getting to the kitchen via the LR and DR?

I'm thinking a fairly compact main kitchen space where the nook is now. Fridge by the foyer door, sink looking out on the front yard, range to the right on the garage wall. Wrap the counter around and extend it through where the pantry is now, or keep the pantry with slightly less counter space. You can put a small table against the LR wall for having your coffee and watching TV, and still have room for additional storage. Without moving or closing off any doors, that's probably what I'd do.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 10:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I did a VERY rough floorplan to hopefully spur some ideas for you.

I put your sink on the wall looking out the front, with the dishwasher beside it and a narrow pullout by the wall.

The rest of the U is banks of drawers which wrap around to the fridge.

I put a narrow island in that area so you have somewhere to sit and eat or chat while cooking. I only put 12 inch deep cabinets and then you could have an overhang where the bar stools are. Another option would be leaving that area in front of the smaller window open and putting a table and chairs there.

Your Viking is on the LR wall with banks of drawers on either side and the corner between the 2 openings has a single cabinet I thought might be your coffee station.

Here are a few 3D views, note I didn't put fillers, uppers, etc. Just a basic idea. Maybe it will help spur other ideas.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 11:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Another thing I forgot to mention was I was thinking maybe a smaller prep sink near the fridge. It would be less distance for carrying a pot to empty, plus then you could easily rinse veggies when they come out of the fridge.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 11:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My gosh! Thanks - you gave me a lot to think about - the 3d images really help me visualize - let me think about your suggestions -

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 12:14AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Let me know if any other 3D screenshots will help.

I didn't save the plan but I do still have the tab open on my laptop and I can take more screenshots if it will help.

Also, you might want to post photos of how it looks currently.

You said you enjoy baking...are you tied to the 48" cook top? Have you thought about a regular cook top with a separate wall oven or double ovens?

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 1:39AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yes - I do have a Viking 30" double oven as well as the 48" viking stovetop that go into the remodel - your 3d images cover the kitchen well and I thank you - I thought the double oven would go next to either the refrigerator next to the 9 ' opening or next to the stovetop.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:47AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

There is a lot in this sketch I don't like, but I liked the idea of a small banquette for tv watching instead of an island which I couldn't really make work. Scale is probably not right on some items, either. Just a quick sketch.

I notice I didn't locate DW. OH, well, this is just for ideas. Certainly no shortage of storage in this kitchen!

So--just for ideas. Might spark something that really works.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

BUEHL - you out there? heeeelp!

IIRC, we've had something similar to this before.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 1:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think I like where Bellsmom is going. I would switch the fridge and cooktop so the prep sink is right there adjacent to the cooking zone. Then I'd switch pantry and ovens. This would make the ovens easier to get to from the cooking zone and make the counter between fridge and pantry an excellent snack zone by the banquette. Put the microwave in this area, and store dishes and silverware there as well to make setting the table easy.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 2:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I really really hope some of the GWers who are really really good at layout come in on this problem! This is a tough 'un.

I hadn't realized how similar my layout is to Texas Gem's. Sorry, TG.

Controlfreakecs, I think I would keep the fridge close to the garage door with pantry and landing area nearby for convenience in bringing in and putting away groceries.

One change I would make to accommodate both the banquette and a DW is to move the sink off center on the window wall and put the DW beside it.

I would put super susans in both wall and base cabinets in the corners on either side of the sink and DW if there is room. Are you OK with a single cleanup sink that is wide enough for your largest pans? If so, susans, DW and sink might work on that wall.

I also considered putting the banquette table on wheels (lockable ones, perhaps) so it could also be used elsewhere as a prep table. Not that you would be lacking in counterspace with this layout or Texas Gem's.

This post was edited by Bellsmom on Thu, Aug 7, 14 at 9:03

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 8:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

how about posting a layout on graph paper using maybe 1 sq per ft - leaving out any markings for sink, cabs, ref, stove etc (just a bare room)

do list measurements for all walls, windows and doorways

a blank canvas will be easier to visualize I think.

if you don't need the booth, going on bellsmom's version I'd put the stove between the windows on lower wall and refridge on wall where she has the stove. your stove will be closer to the sink for filling a pot, draining one and clean up.
If you put cabs on the wall where she has the prep sink, I'd surely round the counter top on that corner.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 2:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

If you don't need seating, I would focus on the cooking and baking. Maybe something like this? Two pantries should give you enough storage that you could (if you want) eliminate the upper cabinets around the cooktop and prep sink.

You mentioned that you could change the size of the window...which would be great! But just in case, I kept the cabinets a few inches from the wall on that side. Just a few ideas :)

From Kitchen plans

This post was edited by lavender_lass on Thu, Aug 7, 14 at 15:56

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 3:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here's a blank layout - 3 squares = 1 foot - I left only the doors and windows and door openings -
Many of you think the sink should go under the window facing the front yard and that makes sense to me - initially I put the rangetop to the right of the sink however that would eliminate much of my prep area so it probably makes more sense to put it on the living room wall - looks like most of you like the fridge over by the opening into the hallway to the garage -
I don't see any islands out there so maybe I should let that idea go - (darn it)

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 6:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

If you want an island, maybe something like this? It's too hot to garden, so I got a little 'plant happy' with your big window :)

From [Kitchen plans](https://picasaweb.google.com/113704953485102437421/KitchenPlans02?authuser=0&feat=embedwebsite)
    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 7:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Will this help?
I used the OP's graph and traced straight lines up from the bottom and the right side to for one foot squares. There is some distortion due to the photograph's skew. But it makes it easier for me to see the scale.
So, each large block is 1 square foot. Each small block is 4" square.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 8:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I hope this makes sense:

Regarding an island:
Your inverted L's base is between 9 and 10 feet wide.
The perpendicular part is 9 feet wide.
Do the numbers:
Cabinets are 24" deep plus 1 1/2" overhang for 25 1/2"
Aisles should be 40" plus or minus wide at the minimum.
The narrowest island is usually 24" plus two 1 1/2" overhangs for 27"

Perimeter cabinet--25 1/2"
Aisle on one side 40"
Aisle on other side 40"
132 1/2" which is a minimum of 11 feet.

You need a minimum of 11' of width to have a perimeter cabinet run, an island, and passage on each side. You can fudge it a bit (I did it with 10 1/2'). But you cannot do it with 9 feet. The aisles are just too narrow.

There just isn't room for cabs on one wall and an island with aisles on each side in either part of your kitchen.

I like lavender lass's sketch. I can see a lovely little sitting area by the windows with plants, a comfy chair, and maybe a small table or bookcase.

This post was edited by Bellsmom on Thu, Aug 7, 14 at 21:09

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 9:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Going off Bellsmom last post, that is why I drew my layout the way I did.

If your heart is set on an island, it is certainly possible, you just won't be able to have cabinets on both perimeters.

I drew mine the way I did b/c you mentioned that you could raise the large window up but you didn't say you could/would raise the smaller window so I didn't want to put cabinetry in front of a window that is only 32 inches from the floor.

If you eliminate cabinets on that wall then you have a 9 foot area with a run of cabinets, a walkway, a narrow island (maybe 18 inches) and then a walkway behind it and the wall.

I don't think your 48 inch range top will work on the 6'8" wall considering the sink cabinet facing the front would be 25.5 inches.

25.5 plus 48 is only going to leave 6.5 inches.

I hope this makes sense. I'm on my phone right now so no pics.

I think a mash up of my and Bellsmom plans might be closer to your liking.

FYI, on my plan, the narrow pullout at the end of the sink run next to the dishwasher, I was thinking a pullout broom closet.

I've seen so many great little pullouts like that here on GW and I don't have one in my kitchen so I put one in yours. :)

The other corner next to the sink (near the 6'8" wall) I put a Susan cabinet.

Last note, you might try making a new post that says layout help in the title to attract the attention of all the layout gurus. Until then, I'll keep commenting so your post stays near the top! ;)

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 1:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

is opening the kitchen up to the LR/Dr area something you'd want to do?

are the windows on the lower wall high enough up to run cab/counter under them?

do you need 2 pantries?

do you have a pet that you need to consider space for food/water dishes and food storage? probably not a big problem if a cat or small dog, but a large dog would consume larger amounts of food and need larger dishes.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 1:32AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Answers to desertsteph's questions:

Yes, as a matter of fact we very much like our contractor's idea to open up the living room wall from the dining room door to about 6 feet over to the foyer door. It would be an opening from halfway up the wall to the ceiling. Cabinets could go under the opening with a counter and another stone counter on the opening - if that makes sense.

Both windows are 32" up from the floor but I might be able to raise those to have regular sized cabinets underneath them.

Yes - I think I would like 2 pantries - I have 2 now and need and like them.

Finally, I have a Golden Retriever and she eats and drinks in the hallway going into the garage. That has worked out well. At least it has for me. I don't know what she thinks!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 1:40AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have seen people put prep sinks on corners similar to the corner nearest to the prep sink I sketched in on Aug 6 at 10:14. That might work very well for you.
You would position the controls to be within reach from either side of the corner, thus handy to range, fridge, and prep center.
I am posting this for the idea and to bump you up once more, hoping for someone with fresh ideas to join.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 3:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yes, Bellsmom - I definitely like your prep sink idea and thanks for posting to keep me near the top!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 5:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Can you show me what the larger context is? I would like to determine flow just a little better...

My first thoughts are actually to put the range out of the way, which is to put it on the "front wall" (where there are a lot of sink placement suggestions)...

But having a better idea of the floor would help me (for example, what does that door on the "bottom" lead to? I see Garage, and living room marked. And, is there circulation between the LR door and that bottom door?

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 9:34PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Why is a backsplash so hard to choose?
Got the counters in place today...love my Taj Mahal...
Need advice on how to remodel this corner of kitchen
Hi all Just purchased a home and does not have budget...
How big of a range do you need for 13+ feet of wall?
We are narrowing down our kitchen design bit by bit,...
Faucet for kitchen remodel
I am having trouble finding the right faucet to go...
Odd Shaped Kitchen Remodel
I cross posted this in the Design Dilemma forum, but...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™