Kitchen Addition Layout Advice/Opinions/Suggestions Please! (Pic)

chrstnamarieOctober 2, 2012

We are doing a 12x18 addition on our one story 1287 sqft house. Our house is one big rectangle and we will be pushing out the back (off of the current kitchen, which will become a dining room as it is planned now).

I am having trouble thinking of the best layout for the kitchen. The picture included is what I have in my head, except I am now thinking the range can be in the corner and the refrigerator can go on the wall the range was on. I'm not really worried about wasted space behind the corner range because we can turn it into a cubby for wood on the other side of the wall (fire place is in the room on the other side, which will now be the dining room - currently the kitchen). Have I completely confused you yet? Haha!

Anyway, here are my questions/concerns:

-is a 216 sqft kitchen too much for a 1,500 sqft 4 bedroom home?

-would it be better to make it an eat in kitchen and use what we would have made the dining room just extra living space?

-would you set it up differently? (I have the sink facing the LR/DR because I'd like to watch over the kids.)

Any other suggestions/advice/opinions are very welcome. I am getting a little overwhelmed at the moment!


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Here is an idea of what the entire LR/DR/Kitchen space will be after all said in done.

The dotted green line is not a wall, just the walkway and division of the rooms - the space is completely open.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   October 2, 2012 at 3:46PM
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It's difficult to know without seeing a thumbnail of the rest of the house and where car parking is located and stuff like that.

Off hand, I think I'd look at putting the kitchen near the front door, put the dining room in the middle and make the new space a new family room. I guess that's because I could add a bunch of glass to the back of the house and move the noise makers (TV, music, gaming) further from the bedrooms.

If that doesn't appeal to you or your family, then I would definitely explore more designs. I would not like having to walk around that peninsula and the area around the back door doesn't seem to have enough clearance. Walking around the open dishwasher to go back and forth to the table area is giving me the vapors.

This is just a concept sketch of a different floorplan that still keeps you mostly facing the direction you'd prefer.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2012 at 1:18PM
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My thought first is actually less about kitchen function than about what the addition will do for the feeling of your entire house. The plan you designed curls in on itself, dividing the addition into 2 areas, and doesn't feel all all spacious, but rather pretty closed up. A bit like a room overfilled with furniture that makes you walk around it to get to a chair.

I would try to develop a simpler layout that contributed to a newly spacious feeling for the house as a whole. BMore's design illustrates what I mean. I personally would want some visual separation in my kitchen, without everything on full display, and I like the degree of separation your layout has with that left wing wall, but her design does suggest the sort of simplicity I think might pay off nicely for you.

Maybe keep a left wing wall and match it on the right, hiding some mess there but letting the view sweep right across the kitchen and on out windows in the middle?

    Bookmark   October 3, 2012 at 2:01PM
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I thought about putting the kitchen up front, but was worried about people walking into the kitchen from the front door. That was actually my first choice though and my husband talked me out of you have me thinking about it again!

It definitely would be nice getting the noise out of the front by the bedrooms. I think that would mean I had to pretty much do a 12x12 kitchen (the room is 12x16, but I would leave 4' for a "foyer"). Also with a kitchen that small would I be able to have a walk in pantry?

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 11:52AM
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This is what was in my head if we moved the kitchen up front - the window is movable on the front of the house since we will be changing it out. Also, you'll notice I can't figure out where to put the stove/oven... Basically I have a hard time using up space - right now there is 8 feet from the front counter to the back - that just seems like a lot of wasted space.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 12:43PM
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Getting rid of the walk in pantry is the way to go, but I really wanted that.

As you can see, I'm not sure how to do the sink and DW in the island (that's not even shown here...).

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 1:04PM
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We decided we definitely don't want the kitchen in the front of the house. I came up with another layout, inspired by bmorepanic's drawing.

Sorry, the picture/drawing is not the best - my scanner at home isn't working.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2012 at 10:46AM
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    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 7:17AM
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the middle section which contains 2 doorways/fireplace and bedroom hallway probably needs attention. Explain the doorways and can the bedroom hallway be changed-and how much protrusion into the room does the fireplace occupy..any changes to the fireplace surround,do you use it? This section, with all those openings makes it like the center of a wheel with spokes radiating outward.I don't see how this could be a decent dining room. In particular-the 2 doors on the right-what's up with those? If you are set on a 12 by 18 bumpout[seems too big without adjustments in the old space]I'd probably do a U kitchen-top of U is the 12 foot wall on right side, the sides of the U are about 5-7 feet which leaves the area round patio door cleared for a island without any inhibiting cutbacks on it's side. the lower arm of the U would divide the kitchen from that mid section of old space-might be beneficial. If those 2 unknown doors could morph into one,then this general area-[opposite the fireplace and away from bedroom hall] could be an improved zone to call a dining area. If you are going to stick with the last sketch you have,place the pantry at top left, move fridge down into pantry area, and get an island without unusual cutback like that. What you show is basically an L kitchen with island,but for the size of bumpout you have a constraint if you need an island configured like that....the constraint is the pantry in that spot. For a 12 by 18 bump this should be a state of the art kitchen /dining outcome.Keep working on it.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 8:19AM
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Thanks for responding herbflavor,
The bedroom hallway cannot be changed. The fireplace sticks out about 3'Dx4'W, we have a wood stove insert and it is our main source of heat in the winter. The 2 doors to the right cannot be combined: top one is to laundry room and bottom one is to master suite.

This is why I am having such a hard time figuring things out. I had originally thought about making it a U shape, but I just can't seem to work it out, and my original thought did not include an island. I have had it worked out like the first drawing above and the reversed way. Too many ideas in my head and no idea what will work best. I also thought about making it an eat in kitchen and the fireplace room into extra living space, but again, I have no idea how to work that out...and what I would put in that room.

One thing to note is that it will not be a formal dining room, really just a place for us to have family meals at (right now all we have is a breakfast bar).


    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 9:20AM
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why don't you bump out from back wall of laundry room?kitchen is further off to the side ,then work on the middle section for aesthetics.The little laundry door is gone and you get a better straight flow through from front door for living/dining.laundry opened up can be something better as you'll gain space,combine it with pantry and this is adjacent to kitchen off to the back,further right than where you have it. Put up the whole footprint of the home.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 10:48AM
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The laundry room and master suite are an addition done by the previous owner - they made the roof a different level (and pitch), and I have no idea why - not sure if this will be a problem.

The drawing is a rough sketch of our house layout, measurements are approximated. I have them somewhere around here, but I cannot get my hands on them at this time.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 2:27PM
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A agree that more consideration of where to put the addition, size, etc., perhaps professional design advice, might be an extremely valuable investment.

It looks as if your active living areas have no relation to the back yard, with the access a zig-zag through a utility room. Even when people don't actually like to use a back yard very often, this is a significant flaw; it's actually pretty common in a lot of older homes and should be corrected in a remodel like this.

Having the new addition across the living room wall would also block all direct sunlight to that area, usually undesirable. People are drawn to sunlight, so it's a big asset to a home when those cheery rays are able to stream invitingly into the main living area. A lot of times when people talk about how charming a house is, sunlight is a big factor. What direction does that back wall face, though? And what's your climate?

    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 3:22PM
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The addition would be in the back, so the family room would still have natural light coming in with the front windows. We do use the back yard a lot, se we'd really like a nice big door. Our back yard faces South and we are in the mid atlantic climate.


    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 4:13PM
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I had a rectangle home (cape cod) and just finished a kitchen extension. It took me a vey long time to decide on the best way to design the new space and incorporate it for good flow in my existing house. What I decided to do was to join my kitchen with my outdoor space. I built my kitchen extension on the right side and I put my new porch on the left. This worked for me because it allowed me to connect the porch to my living room.

You might think this is a crazy idea, but if this were my house, I would build an extension for a master bedroom suite starting at your left side rear and bring it forward to your utility closet. I would then bring your patio over to the end of the extension. Then I would move the kitchen to where your current laundry and walk in closet are located and keep it open to the existing family room / fireplace and incorporate a dining area in your current kitchen space. I would reduce the size of the current master bath to a half bath opening to the foyer and use the existing master suite space as a home office or mudroom / laundry.

Renovation overload perhaps.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 5:14PM
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Dilly_ny, that seems like a good plan, but would probably be way out of our price range, and it was hard enough to finally convince my DH this was a good idea :)


    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 6:50PM
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Also, we have a huge oak tree just past the 10ft concrete patio (probably about 14ft out). So, we are limited there as well.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2012 at 7:28PM
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So, this is what DH and I have come up with. Opinions?

Is 8' too much space in the "triangle"?

The area in the top right corner is a walk-in pantry, but I couldn't figure out how to put the door in.


    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 9:48AM
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any room you design, you need to work from outside in at the same time you design inside out.

The extension you put on your house has to go with the existing look of the house. Right now, I envision an ugly nose stuck in the middle of your current house without other information to go with. The window over the sink is not even centered on the extension as is. The roofline of the extension has to tie in nicely with the extension. This can be quite expensive depending on what you do. If the rooflines are not tied in well, you can conceivably create leak points. If the additions are not done well structurally, they tend to sag and fall apart from the existing house over next several years. You can see this when you look at old houses that had 'suboptimal' additions put on them.

First, the esthetics of the extension from the ouside has to look harmonious and well designed with the existing house. This is what makes you look at the house and say 'that house looks ugly' or 'that house looks nice'. People will have a gut response to the exterior of the house immediately. A well-done extension will improve the look of the house. If not well done, it looks like an ugly sore.

You also have an opportunity to improve the way the house relates to the natural light coming into the house. I see tiny little windows added to the extension. This is a wasted opportunity IMHO. Ourside corner windows can be used beautifully to add wonderful architectural interest to the house. In your case, you have put a pantry there.

Try to get some 3D software and try to envision the exterior of the house first. There will be many iterations as you work the exterior as well as the interior at the same time. This type of design is NOT EASY...

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 1:13PM
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