Where to end counter?

dljmthNovember 26, 2012

Oh wise ones -

Working through the last details as subfloor is in and I need to get the cabinets ordered soon. My original plan was to have the counter next to the range run to the end of the wall (note in the picture you can't see the angled corner cabinet that finishes the run - it would be more finished than it appears in the picture) but I had a last minute thought that it might be better to make the run shorter and have it end at the window. The short run is 3' 9" from the range. The long run is 6' to where the counter angles to the wall. Another consideration is the backsplash (posted in another thread). The windows are counter height and the plan was to tile the entire wall. The scheme is more contemporary. Cabinets will be some form of rift-cut oak with a quartz counter. Island will be painted grey. Backsplash tile will be a milk glass type of subway tile. If you think the shorter counter works better, how far beyond the window would you go with the tile?

I maybe just second guessing myself having looked at this so long. The reason I had planned the long run was for the extra cabinet space because as you can tell there are no upper cabinets. Plus the long run made a nice serving area to the table. I guess this is sort of a form/function question.

Original (note the cabinets would have an angled finish not shown. Entire wall tiled.):

Shortened version (what would you do with the backsplash? Tile only the full column of the range to ceiling and then paint the walls?):

Thank you for your thoughts!!

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I think it looks better with the cabinets to the end of the wall. The reasons you gave for making it that way are valid. What would you do with that 2-3 feet of wall space if you shortened the cabinet run? Probably nothing. You might as well have the use of more storage and a serving area.
Don't second guess your self you were right the first time.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 2:08AM
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End of the wall. It looks better. It gives you more counter space. It gives you more storage. It makes the decision about where to end the tile obvious and I think it will look much more dramatic. It gives you a great landing space near the dining table.

If you don't run the cabinets to the wall, you'll have space there that won't be doing anything for you. What would you do with that space? I think it looks a little awkward if you end the cabinets short of the wall.

In short, I think running the cabinet to the wall serves both form and function best. Looks like you're going to have a really nice space when you're done. Love all those windows!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 3:36AM
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I agree with Badger and Pooh. I'd take the storage over a dead space there. Plus, I think tiling the whole range wall would look better than just the strip behind the hood, which you'd likely do if you shortened that run.

Side note, are you really planning so many lower cabs instead of drawer bases? I see an awful lot of doors, and I think you've been around here long enough to have heard us frothing about drawers before. Just trying to be helpful! :)

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 5:05AM
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It is certainly normal to maximize storage and stick a cabinet there, but if you don't need the storage I think I like the open space.
First thing I thought of was what a great place for a tree, it is really healthy to have plants in your house and especially in your kitchen.
Next I thought that if it was counter I would dump things there.
Then I thought about how I always think it is nice to have a planned dog bed space near where I am working, so they don't plop on my feet.
Then my mind went crazy, hooks on the wall to hang my purse, umbrella stand, magazine basket, coat tree...
My point is this, don't feel obligated to put a cabinet there. A cabinet looks nice, but is relatively permanent, the space it also looks great, and in my opinion better without one, and then you have so much more flexibility.
Form v Function Both forms are great, functionality is specific to your lifestyle and needs. Ask yourself what you might do with the open space, what your space -the whole first floor living space might need, is it a place for your broom, apron, books, dog, plants, etc....
PS I love rift sawn oak, it was a top contender for me, but we went with walnut instead. Can't wait to be done, just a few more weeks!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 7:00AM
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Extend to the end of the wall with the cabs. If you did not, would you tile the entire wall - down to the floor?

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 7:44AM
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I would install a lowered height base cab-probably open shelves with feet...the stuff that people bring in can land on the shelves-or cookbooks/etc/ and the lowered height means the items like keys, purse, mail, cell phone that land there won't interfere with fingers approaching the switches.It's a functional useful ledge is how I see it, but I wouldn't extend or curve the counter beyond whatever carcass size sits there.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 8:09AM
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Looks better with cabinets to the end of the wall.

However, localeater made some great points and, if this was my kitchen, I would probably stop the cabinets at the window and use the open space for the dog food bowls & water.

Also, I agree with herbflavor in that I wouldn't curve the end of the counter out beyond the end of the cabinets.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 9:08AM
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I vote for--
No curve on counter at end.
Cabs to end of wall.
Tile the entire range end.


Would you want to use outlets that disappear under the countertop and eliminate the eyesore of the outlet in the middle of the island end?

I would consider bookcases and maybe a cabinet or two behind the built in bench. Looks like you have plenty of room there. The top would be a place to display art.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 10:16AM
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I also like it to the end of the wall. If you don't have additional storage in the dining area, it would be a handy place for drawers for tablecloths, napkins, placemats, serving dishes, etc., that you would primarily use at the dining table. (Your table-setting helpers, if you have them, would be able to get to all these things without walking into your work zone.)

You could also consider a drawer or cabinet with power for a hidden charging station.

Looks like a great space!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 10:28AM
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I think this is a perfect spot to extend the counter and put a stool, like Beekeeperswife did in her former kitchen. just trying to be difficult, lol.


    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 11:27AM
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I like it all the way to the end of your wall. Looks like you have plenty of clearance so it won't make for a tight squeeze or anything.

To me the only reason not to do the full wall extension would be if it made entering the room a tight squeeze. Since it doesn't, indulge in the extra counter space!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 12:34PM
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Thanks so much for all your help. Don't know what I'd do without this forum! I always second guess at the last minute. I think it will work well to run the cabinets and counters to the end. Now to determine how to finish the end. The cabinet plan called for an angled end to match the other angled end (see whole layout below). But after reading the responses, I think it might be better to have a non-angled end with a faux drawer front and an opening on the table side for the dog dish. That would be a really good use of space as we always seem to knock over his water. On the other side of the kitchen I would eliminate the angle too - just to be consistent - and maybe do the same thing with a faux front but then shelves facing the entry to the room. I would also just eliminate the angled upper too and just have the top and bottom align. I think I have enough room for everything.

We are excited about this because our 70's kitchen that we've had for the past 18 years has about 10ft of counter space so this will be a great improvement.

breezygirl - yes! We are having mostly drawers - per pictures below. And of course this is thanks to gweb!

localeater and ci_lantro - thanks for thinking of the dog! I think it will work great to have his dog dishes there. Then I can shoo him out the door. :)

springroz - I thought of that and it would be nice to have an extra stool there - but I think the dog wins out because I completely forgot to think about a space for his dish.

chicagoans - Got the napkins, etc. in the drawer layout and I might put that charging station at the other end of the kitchen where you walk in from the garage. Thanks!

Bellsmom -Yes! I don't want an outlet right there as you walk in so I have to consider some type of plugmold. Still need to vet the electrical plan. Note that since we have no backsplash on the range wall we may have to put outlets in the front fascia of the cabinets :( Trying to talk with contractor and inspector to see if there is a way around it. I've seen all the posts on mockets, etc and will figure out something to do.

This is the original plan. I will clean up the angled ends. and we might have to change the last cabinet from a 36" to 33" to fit a dog station. Will work with cabinet maker to figure out that detail.

This is the sink wall. I will probably eliminate the smaller of the upper cabinets and make the remaining one larger to meet the bottom cabinet.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 1:00PM
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One more note about the island - turns out there is a few more inches in our space so we will have 44" island to refrig and 42" island to range. That includes the 1" overhang on the counters.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 1:14PM
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