Please Help With Layout

skaritaSeptember 29, 2013

I have been reading the appliance and kitchen forums for months now, and am ready to try and make some decisions on the kitchen renovation I would like to begin in mid January (when two of my children return to college after the holidays). I am excited, and very overwhelmed, at all the decisions that will have to be made. My DH "likes whatever I do". Not much help there. I am happy to have found GW, and know that I will get some real good advice.

Although the renovation is being done mainly because of the floors, cabinets, appliances, etc., there are a few layout changes I think would be helpful after living in it for 22 years.

We have 5 children ranging from ages 15 to 24. The 24 year old lives in NYC but comes home often. The 21 and 19 year olds are in college right now. At home there is a 17 and 15. God willing there will be many years of me cooking for them and their families. I entertain for small groups of friends occasionally, and for anywhere between 21-28 family and friends for the holidays. We eat in the DR during those meals, but I can't seem to move anyone from around he kitchen island during appetizers. Lol. They would all prefer an island for 20! We do eat at the island when it's 4 of us home, and move to the round table when there is 5-7 of us. I move a chair from the desk over. I would like to know if anyone has any different seating configurations to suggest.

Can't move the sliding glass doors or the window. Can move plumbing and electrical. No walls are coming down.

I like the window over the sink as I do most of my prep to the right of the sink or sitting at the island which allows me views from both places. I also definitely want to keep the island.

I don't like the 2nd pantry in the work zone as the kids are always in it for snacks, cereals, etc. I also don't like not having a bar/beverage area when entertaining, especially because getting into the freezer to keep up with ice is a problem with someone sitting at the island. I am going to put a bev center with refrig/freezer drawers in place of the desk. I don't know but maybe coffee there too? That would mean a sink there, and really not sure if that is necessary, as we are not big coffee drinkers, and only a handful of our usual guests are.

The appliances I am getting and not sure about layout for are a second oven, warming drawer, microwave drawer. I can do a double oven instead of range and second oven and I can also have microwave not in a drawer if that's best. I do not want the warming drawer low, as I feel I will use that a lot. I think I am downsizing to a 42" side by side refrigerator. I also would like a place for a 19" TV which is right now on the counter. Would like to get it off if possible.

Thanks for any suggestions!!

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Are you going to be happy with aisle dimensions? What is the short side dimension of the island?

    Bookmark   September 29, 2013 at 6:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Herbflavor. The island is 6' by 35". On the sink side I have a 3 ' aisle and on the fridge side I have 37 1/2". Ideal? No, but widening is not an option unfortunately, as I would have to decrease size of deck which we use a lot. Will just have to deal with them.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2013 at 7:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You've given us some information to help you but not enough. We need more dimension information, plus I need some clarifications on a few of the dimensions you've provided.

The 13' 5' is from corner to corner? Or just corner to DR opening? Is the 20' 7" from DR wall (by pantry) to the end of the desk or is that the length of the whole space, extending beyond the desk to the FR opening? In other words, is the kitchen table space part of the 20' 7"?

How far from the corner (DR wall) is the window? You say it's not moveable; is that because you have a brick sided house? Can you reduce it and add another window on the same wall?

Is the 8' 3" slider right up against the corner of the space or is there some wall between it and the corner? Is there a partial wall or a whole wall between table and FR? If there's a wall, what is its length?

I have an idea but I really need answers to the above to know if it's a viable idea.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 12:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thought an image might help you understand what it is we need:

Tell us the dimensions for each of the letters on the above. Thanks!

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 1:08AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks lisa_a. The dimensions are:

A is 20' 4"
B is 4' 8" to the sink, but 4' to the window
C is 5' 4" from window to slider
D is 20 1/2"
E is 5' 3"
F is 7' 8"
G is 6' 10"

The 13'5" is corner to corner. It is 20' 4" (sorry 20' 7" was mistake) from the DR opening to end of small wall past desk.

The house is natural cedar sided. I said the window couldn't be moved because of the budget, however maybe it can if not too much.

I hope I've given u a clearer picture of the layout. I have attached picture looking out from the kitchen. The powder room is in between kitchen and family room. That door is to the garage.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 10:42AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I would flip flop the pantry and bev center(desk). Most likely kids are coming from family room for snacks in the pantry and wont have to walk to the other end of the kitchen. The bev center near the DR makes a little more sense for entertaining although the doorway to the DR might get congested, but then it is also tucked out of the way when not entertaining. For me, it makes sense to configure the kitchen for everyday living and just make do when entertaining, especially since you aren't blowing out walls, adding on, etc..

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 11:01AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Fogot to add...I would do a MW drawer next to the fridge or an OTR convection MW over the stove...this would serve as a second oven and MW freeing up space instead of having wall double ovens. TV angled in that corner between range and sink?

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 11:07AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Joaniepoanie this is a layout of my current kitchen. My plan is to replace the desk with the beverage center and put a pantry right next to it with snacks. I can then put the microwave draw between pantry and fridge. I really need a 30 " second oven for entertaining. Maybe on the other side of the fridge? A warming drawer I guess could go u see it or I could put it in the island. Good spot for TV. Thanks.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 7:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for getting me your dimensions but they do not add up. Unless your room is oddly shaped and not a rectangle as your drawing shows, the top and bottom numbers should be equal and left and right numbers should be equal. They are not.

The top wall is 13' 5" but the bottom dimension, based on the numbers you gave me, is 12' 11" ( 7' 8" + 5' 3").

The left/right side comparison is worse. The left side is 27' 2" (20' 4" + 6' 10") but the right side is 24' 2.5" (4' 8" + 4' 3" + 5' 4" + 8 ' 3" + 20.5"); off by nearly 3'.

I need you to check your measurements and get back to me, please.


    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 8:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I righted the photo you posted (it was sideways on my screen) but I can't tell if the FR wall lines up with the kitchen wall or not.

If it doesn't, if the FR opening starts about 3' over to the right (on the photo), that might account for the discrepancy. (Where does that door in the photo lead?).

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 9:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

lisa_a sorry for the confusion. I hope this picture clears it up. The 3' discrepancy is because the powder room is in between the kitchen and the family room. The door on the right leads to the the garage. The door on the left is a closet. This new picture was taken from the entrance hallway. Not sure why but your picture is flip flopped. Look at mine a few posts up. When you are standing in the kitchen looking at the FR the table is on the left and the water cooler is on the right. Also that 7'8" should have been an 8' 2". Top and bottom are 13' 5". Thanks!

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 12:50AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Are you using an IPad or some device other than a PC? For some reason, non-PC users' pictures are often posted topsy turvy to us PC users. The 1st pic you posted is sideways for me, the one above is upside down. Unless I want to stand on my head - and I don't - I have to save the image, flip it in paint shop and save it so that I can make sense of it. I uploaded it so that others will see it right side up.

This answers my question. I thought you had a rectangular space to work with - that's what you drew, hence my confusion - but you don't. I see also that you have base board heaters. That might throw a wrench in the idea I had but I'll have to play with it and see what I can come up with.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 1:06AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

How wide is the hallway entry from the foyer? I assumed that the desk ended at the corner of the wall but your above image shows bare wall and a water cooler so that suggests that perhaps the desk ends short of the entry. Is that correct? If so, then there's more space on that wall for cabinets than your dimensions indicate.

I'm glad to help you but I need your help getting the measurements right and understanding the space you have to work with. I don't want to spend time coming up with a plan that falls short of what your kitchen could be because I don't have all of the information. Thanks!

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 1:28AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Sorry I will try taking picture from my iPhone. On my original picture there is a small wall after the desk. That wall was included in the 20' 4" dimension. There are light switches there which could be moved. The hallway entry (from railing to wall is 5' 5"). The door you see next to the stairs is the basement. Thanks so much for your help.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 10:34AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I don't know if it's GW's old software or what but for some reason Apple users' posted photos don't show up the right way for us PC users. The above photo is sideways for me. I'll copy it, right it and digest it later. Thanks!

I don't think you understood my question above. Does the kitchen desk end at the corner of the wall where the entry from the foyer enters the kitchen? Or is there some blank wall space next to the desk? Is that where you park the water cooler and it must stay? I need to know this before I start playing with your plan. Thanks.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 1:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The kitchen desk does not come to the corner of the wall. There is some blank wall space next to the desk, where water cooler is. Yes water cooler must be somewhere in new layout, not necessarily there. Thanks!

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 8:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think this might work for you.

I left the peninsula and sink wall as you have it now since you seem to be happy with that arrangement.

At the fridge wall I have wall oven+ warming drawer, then fridge. The following cabs have a depth of 15" to give you slightly wider aisles. I have 80" pantry cabs at each end and base cabs in the middle. Wall cabs are regular 12" deep cabs but they can also be 15" deep.

MW drawers are on the island nearest to the fridge and at the other end of the island there is an under counter fridge.

Some of the seats on the island would be quite tight but since you mostly use only 4 of them it might be better than what you have now.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 8:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you sena01. I'm excited about the idea of being able to have 7 seats at the island. What is the length of the island? Can I have my bar/bev center on the fridge wall at FR end? Or do you think it will be too tight? Really wanted one with some glass cabinets and fridge drawer.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 9:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I started to post and then forgot to finish before going out to dinner. Oops.

What's on the other side of the fridge/pantry wall? Living room? Any chance you might be able to steal a bit of space from that room, say to recess the fridge and only the fridge? I'm trying to gain your larger aisles to handle your large family. 36" and 37 1/2" (with seating) is tight, tight, tight. No wonder you have traffic jams. ;-)

Glad to know you are okay with island seating only since I was going to propose that, too. I won't be able to give you the 3-D like sena01 but I will provide dimensions so you can assess how well something will work for you.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 10:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

lisa_a that would be the entrance hallway coat closet. So recessing the fridge is definitely a possibility. Do you think all island seating is ok for resale? Not that that's happening anytime soon. DH not so sure about it.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 11:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I wouldn't be keen on having only island seating but that's my personal preference. I have a friend who is thrilled that she gave up her kitchen table for a larger kitchen and island seating. She said that they use the dining room so much more now and she's happy that the room, once nearly unused, is no longer wasted space.

Since you plan to stay in your house awhile, I don't think it's as huge a concern as if you were selling soon. By the time you sell, the kitchen may be due for a remodel anyway. Do what suits your needs.

I was thinking about recessing the fridge further along the wall. I'll draw up a few ideas for you to mull over. Look for them tomorrow. More options is always a good thing at the planning stage. ;-)

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 12:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh, I forgot to ask. What is the measurement of the wall next to the desk where the water cooler sits? And what are the measurements of the water cooler? Is there anything above it? Can there be anything above it (for instance, wall cabinet)? What is the actual measurement of the hallway entry from the foyer? It's hard to draw a plan with fuzzy edges. ;-)

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 12:26AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Be careful about seating at the island. Keep in mind that two seats cannot share a corner - you need 15" of clear leg room for each seat. If the island "bottom" is at least 63" wide (24" for seat one + 24" for seat two + 15" for leg space for the seat around the corner), then you can fit the two seats on the "bottom" of the island.

Since you plan for this to replace table seating, then be sure it will be comfortable for more than a few minutes. That means at least 24" of linear space per seat and at least 15" of clear leg room/overhang - after accounting for cabinets and the 1" decorative door/finished end panel on the back & sides of the of the cabinets. If you are not planning any cabinets in the seating area, then you may have plenty of leg room and the only concern is the # of seats on the "circle" (and whether you really can fit that many). [Without accurate island measurements, I cannot tell.]

Also, be careful of aisle widths - especially for those aisles with both seats and working areas (cabinets/counters/appliances) behind the seats. From what I see, you should have 51" or more on those aisles - especially considering they will be your only kitchen seating. If there's nothing behind the seats but there is traffic, then at least 48" would be needed (more if at all possible). With no traffic behind the seats, then 36" to 42" would be fine (the wider, the better!)

Also, keep in mind a few things:

When measuring aisle widths, measure from counter edge-to-counter edge or handle of an appliance. Do not measure from cabinets or appliance bodies.

Example #1: While standard base cabinets are 24" deep, the counters that go on top of the cabinets are usually 25.5" deep - so you need to measure from the counter edge, not the cabinet.

Example #2: While a refrigerator body + doors may stick out 28" from the wall, the handles may add another 3" and the required air space behind it may be 1", so the depth is 32" (28" + 3" + 1"), not 28". (Check refrigerator specs for the true depth, including handles and then add the amount of air space needed behind the refrgerator - this is the depth you need to work with/measure from.)

Just some things to keep in mind when designing your kitchen and reviewing designs from others.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 1:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here's the layout with measurements. I hope it's easy to read and more importantly I got your measurements right.

As I mentioned before island seating will be tight and your aisles, only slightly wider. If the under counter fridge and DW has no handles then same aisle width can be kept. I used 1" for counter overhang. As I wasn't sure about the width of the appliances, MW/fridge part of the island is 6' 7".

I have 15"x16" and 30"x30" cabs under the eating area for rarely used things.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 6:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

5 foot by 5 foot for the seating part of island is quite oversized for the space. Many people have a dinette with patio door adjacent to kitchen setup,myself included.Maybe some comments about that size will reveal real-living experiences...but I would scale that down a table out of the question?

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 6:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This can be better, Stools are shown as 24" wide.

Left part of the island is 6' 7" not 6' 9".

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 8:11AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

lisa_a the foyer to entrance hallway measurement is 5' 5". The wall next to the desk is 2' 4 1/2". The water cooler is 50 1/2" tall and 1' wide. So yes it would fit under a cabinet.

Buehl, herbflavor, sena01. Thank you all so much for your comments, seating measurements, etc. This is why I love this website, I have decided to go back to an island and a table like I have now. My current floor plan is on the top of this thread. Like I had mentioned my company loves to hang in the kitchen, and I now have 11 chairs. By going to all island seating I have 7, maybe, comfortably. I can actually even move my round table closer to the corner (I never did that before because of the light hanging over it to be centered. Of course I can change that). The right side of the slider is stationary, so The table moved wouldn't be in the way of traffic.

My aisle measurements are from counter to counter. Ideal, but it works. If I have a bar/bev center at end of cabinet run closest to the FR, when I am entertaining no one should have to go in my fridge (not constantly anyway) except me. By moving the pantries, I would also be moving fridge further down from the island. I am getting a built-in sub zero 42".

Buehl do I remember reading somewhere in this forum that you have Omega Dynasty cabinets?

I just got back from my first trip to a local kitchen place. They didn't have much Omega on the showroom floor, but what I saw I really liked. Are you happy with them? The KD is coming here tomorrow to take measurements so he can draw up a plan. I will share that with you all for suggestions when I receive it from him.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 2:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I had insomnia last night (grrrr) so I spent my time drawing up plans for you. Oops, I see now that you're thinking of going back to island and table seating and my plans are all island seating. Oh, well, here they are, anyway, 4 of them, each in its own post.

These are definitely not to scale but all measurements are included. My goal was to give you aisles larger than you currently have (how you've managed with so many in your household with narrow aisles is amazing to me), create more defined social and work zones and fill your wish list as best as I could.

Plan A

This was my first attempt and it's definitely not my favorite although it has some pluses. Let me walk you through it. There are two structural changes: the DR door is widened and I changed the window set-up. The left hand window uses the existing header, the right hand window will require a new header. You'll have the cost of new windows and materials plus costs for labor for framing, siding repair and drywall repair.

I moved the fridge into the work triangle but since it's at the edge, it's still easy for family and guests to get items out of the fridge. There should be less traffic congestion because the aisle is larger than your currently have. There is a MW drawer in the island across the aisle from the fridge (facing the fridge), convenient for family, convenient for food prep.

The 2nd oven is below counter to give you more counter space around the range (it's lower than a wall oven set-up but it's higher than an oven in a range). There are two 6" pull-out cabs on either side of the range for oils, spices, etc. I realized just now that I forgot your warming drawer but that's doable. Ditch the 6" pull-out on the right side of the range and combine it with the 24" drawer base and you'd have a 30" drawer base, warming drawer in the top slot, convenient to both range and 2nd oven.

The range is centered between 2 windows.

The sink and DW moves to the island, DW to the left of the sink to keep it out of the way when the range is open.

I reduced the depth of the cabs on the upper end of the left wall to give you more aisle behind people seated at the island (44" is the NKBA recommended minimum). There is room for 3 seats at the island in this area (I remembered that you wrote that you like to sit and prep and look out the window. You'll also have views while working on either side of the range.).

I rounded the bottom end of the island, hoping for 5 seats but I think IRL, it's going to seat 4 comfortably, 5 in a pinch (I think this configuration gives you room for 4.5 seats). That gives you 7-8 seats at the island but not all together, unfortunately.

The left wall has 196" of shallow pantry cabs, providing 114 cu ft of storage. This will be for pantry goods and storage of other items since you won't have a lot of storage in the working part of the kitchen. At the end of the pantry is your beverage center. I guessed at 18" for the wall where the water cooler is and you actually have 8.5" more than that. You can leave some bare wall or make your beverage center longer.

Oops, I lost track of time. I need to run an errand for my oldest son so it will be an hour or more before I can post the rest of the plans. I hope they'll be worth the wait!

This post was edited by lisa_a on Wed, Oct 2, 13 at 15:04

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 3:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I realized that I forgot to tell you about the color coding. Blue are upper cabs, green are floor to ceiling cabs.

I also forgot to tell you how to read the dimensions. Aisle widths are counter to counter, counter to wall or, in the case of the fridge, counter to fridge door (not handle). If your fridge is deeper than 27" or you panel it, you'll need to adjust the aisle widths accordingly. Numbers within cabs are cab widths. These do not include the 1.5" counter overhang at the end of a run. I provided the cubic feet of storage for the pantry cabs, calculated at width x depth x height (84", if you have high ceilings and have the cabs go to the ceiling, you'll have even more storage space).

R/F - refrigerator/freezer
O - oven (below counter)
MWD - MW drawer
DW - dishwasher
BC - beverage center
WC - water cooler
WD - warming drawer
T - trash pull-out
P - pantry
CF - cubic feet

Here's Plan B:

There are many similarities between this plan and Plan A. Fridge, range, wall oven, warming drawer, MW drawer, sink and DW are in the same locations.

Here are the differences:

I straightened out the island, which allowed me to add a trash pull-out cab to the left of the DW. A straighter island (at 127.5" long, it's more like a continent, lol) allows for seats for 7 MOL all together. It's mostly straight seating, though, and that's not really conducive to visiting, not like sitting at a rounded counter or a regular table.

The whole left wall is floor to ceiling pantry cabs, recessed into the kitchen/LR wall 3" (you put the cabs between studs, can also add headers along the wall so that cabs can be wider than stud space width). The cab depth is still 12" but it only protrudes into the actual kitchen by 9", which gains you 3". I used that for a more generous seating overhang (oops, I forgot to adjust the island width, it should read 43.5" not 40.5"). You could also stick with the 15" counter overhang (this does not include panels on the back of the cabs - that would eat up 1" of space) and increase the work aisle to 42".

The pantry cabs can be a combination of glass and wood doors like this:

Traditional Kitchen by Cincinnati Architects & Designers RWA Architects

I moved the beverage center and water cooler to the powder room wall. You'll need to replace the base board heaters with toe kick heaters. Since this placement likely makes the water cooler visible from the front door, you may want to add a cabinet end panel with some shelving above to screen it. IOW, give it its own little cubby. I'd add a small MW (the GE Spacemaker fits in a standard upper 12" deep cab) and beverage fridge to make it function even better for large gatherings

I swapped out the patio sliding doors for double swing French doors, giving you a 72" opening between kitchen and deck. You would use the same header - left side lines up with left side - but you'd need to do some siding and drywall repair. You gain more space in front of the beverage center. You don't have to replace the door. My plan should work even if you don't (I'm assuming that the 99" included framing and door molding and isn't just the door opening).

There are no jogs in the island or in the cabs on the left wall to create traffic jams. There is a generous aisle between the island and the beverage center as well as in front of the new French doors (can you do out swing doors in your area?)

Okay, on to Plan C.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 5:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Plan C came about because I was having fits working with all the window and door openings on the far right wall of your kitchen. They really eat up lots of space. And then it dawned on me: Flip the kitchen! So I did.

Fridge, range, sink, DW, MWD, oven, warming drawer are in roughly the same locations, just mirrored.

The L lay-out is book-ended by pantry cabs and fridge. The 60" pantry cab can grow by 10", giving you 81.5 cu ft of storage (I assumed 18" when there's actually 28.5" where the WC is in your existing kitchen).

The longer span of wall allowed for the addition of a prep sink with trash pull-out next to it between fridge and range. You can prep here, you can prep on the island, you can prep to the left of the range (could be your baking center). You also have more upper cab storage than in Plans A or B.

Without the need for any cabinetry on the exterior wall, I was able to stretch the aisles in the work area to 44" (should feel luxurious after your 36" aisles) and the seating overhang on the island, curving it from 15" overhang to 22" overhang to make it easier for people to visit while seated at the counter.

I show a small MW in the BC in this plan, forgot to add a beverage fridge but I'd recommend it.

This plan shows the double French doors but as shown in Plan B, you don't need to make this change. You also don't need to change the window. You could swap out the existing window for a taller window that starts 1' to 2' above the floor or you could do something even more fun. I'll show you that in Plan D, which is next.

The big pluses with this plan is that traffic can move between DR and kitchen and deck and FR and powder room fairly easily, all the while staying out of the kitchen work zone. And you have oodles of uninterrupted counter space, which would be so useful during your large family gatherings.

Oh, I forgot to add a note about the large island. If you go with a granite that has a lot of movement, be sure to ask for the slabs to be bookmatched so that the seam will be as undetectable as possible.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bookmatched granite images

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 5:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Nice move Lisa A! The other designs are step and congestion maximizers.

It's funny that traffic patterns are just as critical in a large kitchen as a small one.

Oversize islands feel really awkward to me. I can see where I want to go, but can't get there directly. I would stick with the table and chairs but make it rectangular with extensions or leaves for large parties.

Obviously there is no way to seat 20 people in this space. Limiting the seating to 7 where you now have 10 would be a step back.

You might miss all those kids in the kitchen at the same time!

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 5:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Plan D is very similar to Plan C.

Here are the changes:

I created a galley kitchen with the fridge at one end, pantry cabs at the other. No corner cabinets, which is nice. I moved the clean-up sink and DW and dish storage to the far right side against the DR wall. The prep sink and trash pull-out moved to the island. As with Plan C, you have generous counter space to prep in multiple locations. Plan D also gives you lots of island space to set out meals, buffet style.

I swapped out the existing kitchen window for a window seat, giving you more seating for family gatherings. You can buy a bay window kit - it comes with support wires, frame, window and roof. You'd need a new header but otherwise, it's fairly simple install, as compared to building one on-site.

Mediterranean Bedroom by West Hills Interior Designers & Decorators Barbara Stock Interior Design

You could do the door and window changes at a later date. Neither of Plans C or D are dependent on window and door changes.

There are many great things about this plan but it has a serious downside and I don't see any way around it. The quickest route between DR and FR is through the kitchen's work zone, not what should be encouraged. As much as I like this plan, if this were my kitchen, this would be a deal killer for me.

Plan C is my favorite of the plans I've proposed for you.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 5:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Okay, one more plan. This one has island and table seating for a total of 10 seats. I do need to clarify something. My understanding is that when it's just a few of you for meals, you sit at the island and when there's at least 5 or 6, you sit at the table. When there are more of you, you eat in the DR. Is that correct? Or are you really trying to seat more in your kitchen? If so, you're going to have to give on something - appliances, beverage center, seating, storage - because while you have a nice sized kitchen, it's not large enough to do it all.

Plan E (scale is really off in this plan so check the dimensions, don't rely on your eyes only).

Brown is table. Orange is banquette bench.

It's a modification of Plan C. I moved the fridge and pantry together on the left side, against the DR wall. I like having my food stuffs in one place but that's not a big deal to others. These items are on a wall by themselves with a galley lay-out for the rest of the kitchen (no corner cabs).

One side of the galley holds the range and wall oven/WD stack with ample counter space around the range. The beverage center/water cooler is on the other side of the wall oven/WD stack. Sink and DW are still on the island with a trash pull-out. Seats for 4 at the island. You'll notice the island is shorter, just under 9'. Still probably longer than most slabs but not quite the continent of the other plans.

The only way I could figure out how to add table seating was to do a banquette (lavender lass will be thrilled ;-) ). Oops, I see a dimension I forgot - the length of the long side of the bench. It's 72". It does extend beyond the PR wall. I tried to avoid that but I couldn't figure out another way. The banquette seats 6 so you can seat 10 in your kitchen at a time. The banquette is sized for 24" width per diner, which is the minimum, 30" would be better but that would have placed the long side of the bench another foot into the FR/kitchen entry way.

The banquette will need toe kick heaters, same as the beverage center when it was on this wall. Benches are padded, seat and back, 24" deep, 4" table overhang.

Here's an inspiration pic for you:

Traditional Kitchen by San Francisco Interior Designers & Decorators Tres McKinney Design

The above banquette is not built-in but it is custom built to fit the space. If you did something similar, you might not have to replace the baseboard heaters. There's more information about the bench and banquettes at the link below from Tres McKinney Design, the company that designed this banquette.

To do the banquette, I had to swap the placement of the window and slider door - you can use your existing window and door to save money. You'll need a new header for the slider since it's wider than the window is. As I've drawn it, you'd need a new header for the window but if you move the window south by 16", you won't. You could use the existing slider header.

One concern I have is whether the bench extending into the entry area would direct traffic through the work zone and not around the island to get snacks from the pantry and fridge. That could be a visual thing - the scale is definitely off. You could reduce that short cut tendency by adding a beverage fridge and snack items to the beverage center.

Here is a link that might be useful: See answer to first question

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 8:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks lisa_a for all your great suggestions and hard work. I like C and also the banquette idea very much. However, I cannot switch or widen the DR entrance. I just last year had built-ins made for the DR that would be affected, so that just is not a possibility. Other than custom width cabinets on the fridge side, I really can't see wider aisles for me, and that will be fine. I hope you sleep better tonight. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 12:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You're welcome. However, I wish you had stated in your initial post that the dining room doorway could not be moved and included the dimensions of the opening and the wall space on either side of it. Instead of working on plans that won't work because of that fixed situation, I could have been working on other ideas for you and on plans for others.

I hope I sleep better tonight, too!

This post was edited by lisa_a on Thu, Oct 3, 13 at 1:15

    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 1:14AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"...I really can't see wider aisles for me..."

Don't give up yet. Plan D above should work, based on your initial drawing, your DR entry, while not as wide as I perhaps drew it, must be close to where I show the DR entry on Plan D. So that plan is a contender. You did say that you were willing to move electrical and plumbing.

Here's one last plan, not as thoroughly drawn out as the others but you'll get the gist. This plan does require replacing the slider with a French door and a new header (placed the door at the corner, needed that 20.5" ;-) ).

Plan F:

I'd rather have 60" between table and wall so there were nearly 72" from center of far right diner and wall corner - essentially 36" between table edge and door edge as it swings open - but that would have shrunk the aisles and the island more. If someone is seated in this spot, he or she may need to scoot an inch or two or three forward when someone comes in or goes out but since the door can swing wide against the wall, there is plenty of room to move past seated diners.

The island is counter and stand for seating only, no storage. Something like this:

Contemporary Kitchen by Boucherville Kitchen & Bath Designers Gepetto

Or this:

Traditional Kitchen by San Francisco Architects & Designers Mahoney Architects and Interiors

The downside of the above is that it's not possible to push the stools under the counter, out of the way. btw, this is the kitchen that inspired me to draw up the above plan.

Here are two more pics for you:

Contemporary Kitchen by Seattle Architects & Designers David Neiman Architects

Traditional Kitchen by Marblehead Interior Designers & Decorators Molly Frey Design

Hopefully you get the idea. I did a search for narrow bar height tables and found several for reasonable prices so you might not need to do anything custom. I linked to one below. You could wrap the top of one with stainless steel for a great work surface. I looked into doing that. Not nearly as expensive as I'd feared.

One other option.You could make it a 36 x 24 island with a seat at the side (for you to sit while prepping) like this:

Contemporary Kitchen by Edina Kitchen & Bath Designers The Woodshop of Avon

Here is a link that might be useful: Safavieh Paisley Pub Table in Dark Espresso (Set of 4)

    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 4:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Grrr, can't sleep tonight either. This is one the worst bouts of insomnia I've had in ages. I'm exhausted but I can't get my brain to shut up so I can sleep!

Since I needed to find some way to occupy my brain, I came up with Plan G.

It's similar to Plan F but this banquette set-up doesn't have the issues that the one in Plan F does because I bumped out the bench with an 18" deep cab behind it with a 12" deep cab above it to the counter. Now there's not a chance of any issue with anyone going in or out the door while someone is seated in the far right chair.

I reduced the length of cabs on the left wall so that I could extend the peninsula and banquette. You can now use a 42 x 60 table (seating for 6) that can extend to 84 (two 12" leaves, seats 10). There isn't as much island seating in this plan but you get better aisles for your crowds and more seating than your kitchen currently offers, ditto for any of the plans presented so far.

I moved the fridge to the U (had to reduce the island so I rounded the end to still seat 2), range between two windows in the middle with the sink, DW and dish storage on the bottom part of the U. You have plenty of room for a below counter oven, warming drawer and MW drawer.

If you want more pantry storage, you can recess a pantry cab in the coat closet (when I asked earlier about recessing something in that wall, you said it was possible).

Here are images of banquette benches up against a peninsula. btw, the thick black line at the back of the peninsula indicates a raised lip (several inches) so that water from the sink doesn't drip on someone seated on the bench.

Traditional Kitchen by San Francisco General Contractors Moroso Construction

Contemporary Kitchen

This is against an island but it's the same concept

Contemporary Kitchen by Indianapolis Interior Designers & Decorators Jeff Sheats Designs, Inc

Another banquette bench against an island. This one has a raised back, probably for looks, but it would offer protection for diners.

Eclectic Kitchen by Morristown Interior Designers & Decorators Marlene Wangenheim AKBD, CAPS, Allied Member ASID

Maybe if I start singing "Mr Sandman, bring me a dream...." I'll be able to fall asleep!

    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 7:13AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you I'm going to leave my seating as is in my current kitchen. I seat 11 and have great view of the woods out our window and large slider. Not willing to give that all up for wider aisles. I'll post my layout in a few days for any ideas on moving appliances.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 10:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Before I read your last message I had this layout. I'm posting it anyway, in case you can use an idea or two.

-- I have the oven+warming drawer on the DR side of the L. It can be next to the sliding doors, leaving your range+DW at the same spots you have now. Or it can be double wall ovens, then warming drawer in base cab and corner cooktop (not sure about sizes though). 15" cab b/w sink and cooktop, DW, and cabs.

-- I have the DR wall from corner to opening as 96.5" but not sure if this is correct.

-- Base cabs have 1" overhang.

-- Island has 2 24" and a 9" cabs (don't know if 9" is standard or not, there's another 9" b/w DW and oven).

-- I couldn't find a way to bring fridge and MW closer to each other.

Edited to add corner cooktop option.

This post was edited by sena01 on Fri, Oct 4, 13 at 9:05

    Bookmark   October 4, 2013 at 5:49AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

sena01 the plants behind the island stools is a really good thought. Will definitely consider!! I have to figure if I have enough storage without cabinets there. I think I would need to have the DW on the right side of the sink as it seems it might be a little awkward for me to load and unload from my left side. Thanks so much!

    Bookmark   October 4, 2013 at 9:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Wow! Not to hijack this thread but the suggestions in this post have been helpful to confirm that my new kitchen plan will work! My new kitchen plan is almost identical to your current layout. (I'm replacing a peninsula layout.) Our holidays include about 20-25 guests and we will be able to seat 10-12 in the kitchen. My plan has the same sink/appliance/table locations and an aisle that has traffic that moves from one end to the other (in my case from a garage entry hall to a FR) but my kitchen is only 138" wide. The Fridge will be where your double pantry is, then 12" wall cabs for the rest of that wall (total length of about 64" then there is a Foyer entrance). The island will be 25" wide and will begin at about where the DW is so it leaves a very open work triangle and no worries of narrow aisles for the cooking area. There is about an 18" section where the island overlaps with the 12" wall cabs. In this space, the aisle is 39 1/2" but there is no seating here. I had asked about recessing the bottom 12" cabs to give me a scootch more room where they overlap with the island. First 2 GCs didn't like that idea because that is a stairway wall. Does the stairway wall carry more of a load? Or maybe the cost doesn't justify the 3" gained? There are 2 stools beyond where that overlap ends and then a stool at the end of the aisle. MW will hopefully be a pullout drawer and fit at the end of the island with no seating. The full length glass and wood pantry cab photo and the narrow farmhouse table island were some of the inspiration photos for the plan.

We have just a large window behind our table. Our access to the deck is from the FR. We are thinking of bumping out that window 2' for a window seat with a rectangular table running parallel to the wall or a walk out bay with the table placed perpendicular to the wall. Either scenario will move the table further away from the island. The walk out bay will give more seating options. If you could or were willing to have your deck access from your FR, you could probably fit a longer rectangular table perpendicular to the wall and not intrude into your traffic zone into the FR ( realize you can't do a bump out with your deck off the back.) You may not need to even close off that access if you had a slider. My kitchen is longer (26' 6") and the wall at the end (your PR wall) is a half wall. I plan to put a 15" to 18" length of cabs to accommodate a bar and apps when entertaining. I won't have a sink but maybe I'll consider a small fridge. Although once we set up the bar we only need to replenish ice occasionally.

Would a rectangular table (with leaves for special occasions) and a narrower island solve your seating and narrow aisles? Can you fit a beverage and snack center behind the table? I did not figure all your dimensions but since your current layout looks so much like my new layout thought I would share! I'll post a pic in another thread

    Bookmark   October 5, 2013 at 4:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here is my plan. You may not be able to move your island down as much as mine but even a foot might relieve some congestion near your fridge. It looks like it can extend further down on the other end since it does not currently end where your sink wall cabs end! Good Luck!

P.S. Just an idea that requires more thought but would you prefer if your Kitchen table was closer to your DR? Can you flip your kitchen so table is at the other end? Our DR is where your Foyer entrance is so when we have a large group and need to split into 2 different tables/rooms we are still in close proximity.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2013 at 4:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

magarden1 I have to say we've been living with this layout for 23 years, 5 kids and a lot of entertaining, so I think you should be very happy with yours. I posted only to see if anyone had any great ideas for seating the 11 I have done with a different configuration. Seems like what I've had is probably the best you can do with this space. Yes, when I entertain, the aisles can get a little tight, but you do the best with what you have. It's fine. With my renovation I know for sure i am going to to move my fridge down to the left a bit. Having a bev center with fridge/freezer(ice) should really help a lot. As far as flipping the kitchen, not really necessary for me. My living room is very open to my DR, just a step down. When I serve for the holidays, I set up a table in LR parallel to DR. It works out great .. We can be 30 all together. I may narrow my island a bit too to help out with the aisle width. I just had the KD here a few days ago and I am waiting to see what plan he comes up with. I am adding some appliances too to existing kitchen along with the bev center. A second oven, mw drawer, warming drawer. Adding these in seamlessly is what I'm looking for now.

Good luck to you. When does your renovation begin?

    Bookmark   October 5, 2013 at 11:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

As someone who has been encouraging you to increase your aisle widths, this is going to sound strange coming from me. ;-)

If you go with sena's plan above, you need to decrease your aisle width between sink wall and island. Why? Because the plan has two serious pinch points (see red circles, aisle widths marked inside circles):

You can also address this by going with a narrower aisle, as you wrote above. Either way, I think you will want to address this or you'll have a nasty bottleneck in your kitchen, one that could easily direct traffic through your work zone, instead around the back side of the island.

Sorry my plans didn't work for you. I misinterpreted your initial post about your seating needs. This is what tripped me up: "I entertain for small groups of friends occasionally, and for anywhere between 21-28 family and friends for the holidays. We eat in the DR during those meals....We do eat at the island when it's 4 of us home, and move to the round table when there is 5-7 of us." I took that to mean that you only needed kitchen seating for 7. btw, my last plan would seat 12; 10 at the table, 2 at the island. But it does require exterior changes.

Good luck to you.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 12:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

lisa_a thanks for pointing those dimensions out. I haven 't done my homework yet to figure out if I can even be without cabinets where the plants are. Unfortunately, I doubt it. Also, I am getting either a 36" range with 30" 2nd oven or a 36" rangetop and 30" double ovens. I don't know if one configuration makes more sense over the other as far as my space goes. I may have to put the wall oven to the right of the fridge (near DR opening). I want my DW to the right of my sink as I am right handed and feel having it on my short wall to the left would be awkward. I had a KD here the other day and he really got me thinking about my fridge size. I currently have a 48" sub zero side by side and was thinking about down sizing to a 42". After seeing how full mine was, he really got me thinking as to whether I could be happy with a 42. I really wish exterior changes were a possibility. They are just not. Oh well. Thanks again for all the effort you put into my space planning!!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 10:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oops, sorry. I've must gotten too accustomed to using my 25" porch door that the 30-32" distance seemed quite good to me and so I omitted to mention.

I don't know if it's practical, or you'd want one, but since some pros seem to find (and some don't) corner range/cooktops useful for some kitchens, it might be considered to have both the cooktop and ovens on the short side of L.

Here is a link that might be useful: corner range

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 12:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You're welcome, Sherry.

Sena, while a 30-32" clearance may be doable for some, there won't even be that much clearance because the counter stools will likely take up a few inches of that space. I've shopped for shallow, backless stools and so far I haven't found one that will fit completely under a 15" counter overhang (the seat might fit but the legs stick out). I'm staying away from stools with backs because the back will prevent the stool from fitting fully under the overhang.

(btw, I have a 27" wide DR doorway that I've made do with for 19 years but I *can not* wait to change it and make it wider. I hate going through the door way sideways when carrying trays of food).

Sherry, are you sure that 12" deep cabinets lining your left wall (behind the island) aren't an option from the cabinet line you're considering? Ask the KD, there may be a way to use 12" deep uppers, stacked, to do this. You won't need pull-outs in a 12" deep cab. That would be one way to gain a little bit of aisle space without exterior changes.

One last note: if you haven't shopped for appliances lately, you may not realize that today's appliance doors are taller than they used to be. DW doors go top to bottom. That little bit extra height will affect your clearances when the door is open. Hopefully the KD will draw the plan showing appliance doors open so that you can see whether you'll have enough clearance and where the pinch points might be.

Here is additional information about corner ranges provided by an award winning kitchen designer:

A reader asks: A cooktop or range in the corner?

A Design Reader Asks: Help with range in the corner?

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 1:12PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Just got my kitchen remodel photographed by a prof. What a difference!
For some reason a couple of the pics double posted....
Tamara Hadji
Copper sink for kitchen remodel?
Does anyone know of a really good quality copper sink...
WAC vs. Seagull vs. Kichler or what else - "best" LED UCL
can someone please help/advise i feel like a fish out...
Need blackish paint suggestions
We have assembled most of our Barker cabs. The wall...
New to Kitchens? Read Me First!
Welcome! If you are new to the Kitchens Forum, you...
Sponsored Products
Brushstrokes Blue BRS03 Rectangular: 5 Ft. x 7 Ft. 9 In. Rug
$424.15 | Bellacor
Personalized Photograph Cutting Board - Extra Large
$249.00 | FRONTGATE
Zuo Daytona Espresso Rocking Chair
Euro Style Lighting
Stainless Steel Shower Panel Tower System with Body Jets
Hudson Reed
ELK Lighting Medina 3-Light Pendant 31042/3 - 16W in. Polished Stainless Steel M
$328.00 | Hayneedle
Taiji Outdoor Patio Daybed in Espresso Orange
$889.00 | LexMod
Cusworth Resin Natural Wood Table Lamp
Modern Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Artistic Weavers Rugs Equinox Rust and Green 5
Home Depot
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™