What would the perfect kitchen layout look like----KD's?

joaniepoanieNovember 5, 2013

This questions stems from another thread....everyone submits plans and then KD's, as well as we mere mortals, go about tweaking them within the existing confines.

While this is a fun exercise, it really got me thinking....is there such a thing as a "perfect" kitchen layout, since we all use our kitchens differently? And, if there is, what would it look like?

It would be great if the KD's on here would post their versions of a perfect kitchen layout...either by itself or in relation to adjacent rooms---FR/DR(table space) as is usually the case.

This would be such a great lesson for all us amateurs!!

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I'm going to take this question as a philosophical one rather than a concrete one. :)

THe thing is, we don't use our kitchens differently! At least, not that differently. :)

Food comes into the kitchen, and gets stored. Dry storage and cold storage. For that, you consider the traffic path and any possible encumberances from the exterior all the way to the primary storage spot. Now, the amount of each type of storage can change based on family size and real estate available, but the need itself doesn't change.

Then, food is removed from that storage, washed, and prepared for consumption. If all that's being prepared is box mac and cheese, then you don't need a lot of space to spread out the prep for that, but you still do need access to the measuring cups, pots and pans, and water. You'll always need some counter space and water during prep. And if you're doing Thanksgiving dinner, the more prep space the better. There's not really any such thing as too much prep space, as long as it includes access to water designated for that prep alone. This consumes the most time spent in a kitchen, and therefore should receive the lions's share of space. It's the only true work space, really. All other counter space is secondarily occupied if at all.

Then comes applying the fire to the food. That can be a microwave heating a freezer dinner, or it can be standing and stirring a roux for 20 minutes while it reaches it's perfect brown color. Actually doing this step takes much less time than people think! Even if you do a lot of slow cooking sauces, if you've got the right tools to keep them at a simmer, you don't need but to periodically stir.

After you've started to make a pile of dirty prep things, then comes stowing them away in the cleanup zone, or, if you've designed the kitchen correctly and have a partner, the partner can take the dirty prep items and be loading the DW with them while you are still chopping up a storm. That's what separating the prep and cleanup functions well can do for you. And it's not necessary to have that second source of water in a kitchen to do that, you just need to get over the idea of symmetry in a lot of cases and allocate the majority of space for the side that serves the prep.

There have been many kitchens that have been designed here over the years that have done a good job of keeping the zones distinct and separate, yet compact, and minimizing outside intrusion into the high traffic areas while actually allocating enough space to those high use areas. That's all that good kitchen design IS, actually! Breezy's kitchen and Bee's kitchen both come to mind as being fairly close to "ideal" as far as the mythically perfectly designed kitchen.

But reality is that no one designs the perfect kitchen and then designs the home around it! There are always tradeoffs. Money and space always come into play, and never in a good way! LOL! Even in homes that are being designed from scratch, bigger usually doesn't generate better. 50 steps between the prep sink and range is so much worse than having a step and pivot. It's like biology, when an organism reaches a certain size, the actual volume enclosed makes it so unwieldy that it's just not successful.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2013 at 1:02PM
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Live---thanks for this lesson....it does make more sense to me now..the "zoning." Any way to get to pictures of Breezy's and Bee's kitchens? I know I have seen them but it's been a while and I'm not finding them in a search. Thanks again!

P.S. My kitchen would be the opposite of the perfect layout....a smallish galley, almost no counter space, 4 entrances, kitchen table in front of a slider with almost no walk-around room....but I do have a triangle....even though that triangle involves the stove opposite the sink. Oh well, at least it all looks pretty!

    Bookmark   November 5, 2013 at 3:39PM
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Can't add anything to what LWO said so some fun instead.
Looked for pics when out in the wilderness but all on this machine are bedrooms instead- here's two- VBG :)
Second smallest I've run into (and we added 11"!! so no whinin) and mid demo on a DIY

    Bookmark   November 5, 2013 at 5:27PM
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Perfect kitchen -- for who?

It's so much a function of client, existing space or space that can be created somehow. It's a function of budget, taste, style and aspiration.

What's a "perfect" kitchen to one KD or client may be flawed to someone else. Expectations of what's acceptable/necessary are so very different.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2013 at 5:44PM
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Many people like an L-shape kitchen...with a big island that includes a prep sink. Often this is fridge and range on one side, with prep sink and island across from this...clean up sink and dishwasher on second side of L, across from short side of island.

Just one example...hope this GWer doesn't mind me sharing their plan.

From Kitchen plans

I plan to use a kitchen table rather than an island, but still need extra prep for the baking area. So, I'm thinking something like this...with a fireplace, if possible :)

From Drop Box

    Bookmark   November 5, 2013 at 7:48PM
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