Wall coming down - new layout! Feedback please!!!

spartans99November 8, 2012

Hi everyone - we have been working on our kitchen design for a long time now and I have learned a TON from this forum! We have made a big decision to tear down a wall between the existing kitchen and dining room and expand the kitchen significantly. The old living room will become the dining room and we just lose a formal living room space that was never used anyway.

I am working with a KD on the best layout for the space and the latest design is here. I am looking for feedback on the general layout - especially the angled peninsula and open space near the sliding door. Please note on the wall directly across from the fridge, we are opening it to have second access point to the stairs, thus no cabinets on that wall.

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Sorry - posting a couple other views...

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 2:57PM
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view from dining room

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 2:59PM
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view from sliding doors

note - the wall on the right in this picture is where we plan to open up a second entry to the upstairs. It will be on the far right side of that wall.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 3:03PM
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this is the last view.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 3:16PM
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I'm not crazy about the angled peninsula. It leaves a lot of dead space in front of the slider - or do you have some other planned use of that space? If you want an eat-in area, it seems like it would make more sense to take out the peninsula and put a table at the end down by the slider. Take out that bank of cabinets on the wall at that end to give you more circulation space around a table. You could make up for them with cabinets on the wall where the peninsula is now.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 3:44PM
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I'd lose the peninsula too. Turn the island 90 degrees and add perhaps 18 inches to it and move it down a little toward the slider. Then you could have a prep sink on the island. Have straight counter under that window with an upper cabinet to match the cabinet next to the fridge. Then you could have eat-in table in front of the slider.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 4:11PM
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Which direction does the slider move? If it is from right side to left side (interior view), then you might be able to push the cabinets farther along that wall, then turn the table/penninsula at a right angle. Have you considered an enlarged, rounded end to the pennisula, a bit more like a round table? That might fit well in the space you have, and it would be fine if a few of the bar stools stood in front of the non-operating side of the sliding door. I also agree with llb1630 about turning the island 90 degrees so that you can make it a bit longer and fit a prep sink. Such nice sized rooms give you lots of choices!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 6:22PM
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Thanks for the feedback! I am not crazy about the angled peninsula either. We will probably eat most of our meals in the dining room going forward, but we are really struggling with the space between the fridge and the sliders. I wanted a bar/entertainment area with cabinets to support it as we do a lot of entertaining, and that is why the KD added a peninsula with seating and the cabinets on the other wall with wine fridge. Plus, I think the KD was trying to fill some of the space. It just isn't exactly right just yet.

The reason we did not turn the island the other direction and extend it was because of where it would run into the spot along the wall which will get opened to the stairs. That is the wall without cabinets in the current drawings. These drawings do not help show it, but I am not sure how I feel about walking down some stairs with the island right in front of me. Of course, maybe the functionality of the island turned in that direction would trump any look/function of having a second access point to the stairs. Something I will have to chew on.

I will see if we can include a drawing or mock up something on paper to show how the opening to the stairs would impact the layout.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 7:31PM
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The fridge shouldn't be stuck right in the middle of the kitchen. It belongs on a perimeter. And you don't need two awkward places to sit.

Frankly, I'm not sure that tearing down the wall is helping you very much with usable space here.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 8:01PM
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live_wire_oak you make excellent points! The concern about leaving the wall in tact is that I then have a formal living room, formal dining room, small kitchen (12x11), eat in area (10x11) and family room of which we don't use the living room and dining room in their current state but maybe 4-6 weeks of the year. If the space at the back of the house where the current kitchen sits was not so narrow (only 11'), then I would consider just remodeling the kitchen in its current state. Unfortunately, it's just next to impossible to have more than one person working in the current kitchen and since we entertain frequently - its just too tight for everyone to be in such a narrow kitchen and eat in space.

I am definitely opening to completely different designs and have another KD that is going to provide an alternate option next week. I am hoping that helps. Otherwise, we might consider doing a basic remodel and selling to get into a house with a more friendly layout for our lifestyle. But I love our neighborhood and don't want to leave.

I greatly appreciate everyone's input!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 8:12PM
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Try posting a blank floor plan with a full set of measurements...widths of each wall/window/doorway and the distances b/w each wall/window/doorway. That means each wall segment, no matter how big or small.

If you're opening up the wall to the stairs, show that as well...and indicate the direction the stairs are going (up/down, landing pad). Perhaps we can help you come up with a few alternatives.

Include a list of your needs and must-haves, and then your list of wants or would-be-nice.

The "Layout Help" topic in the "Read Me" thread has more information.

Here is a link that might be useful: New To Kitchens? Posting Pics? Read Me!

    Bookmark   November 9, 2012 at 1:44AM
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Sorry for the delay and thanks for the advice. I should have posted a blank floor plan to begin with. I have attached it here and hopefully this helps. I had to free hand it because I don't have the contractor's drawings yet so the numbers could be a few inches off.

With regard to opening the stairs on the other side - I am really looking for some feedback from this group. The more my husband and I talk about it, it seems like for the added cost, the benefit isn't really that big. Also, that limits what / how many cabinets we can put along that wall that backs up to the stairs. So, we aren't going to be disappointed if we don't do that part of the project (which probably means we should just forget about it now).

Needs/Must Haves:

1. Island - I like to bake so I prefer flat islands where I can spread out with no raised bars

2. 36" gas cooktop with ample area on either side ~ 21-24" (we have next to none now and it is painful to cook).

3. other appliances: counter-depth refrigerator space, convection microwave / oven wall unit (do not want under counter ovens), dishwasher

4. single bowl, silgranite sink

5. Pantry with pull outs - at least 27" wide but prefer larger

6. Bar area / place for wine fridge / barware

7. Buffet/serving space (could be the island or multi-purpose counter space)

8. Kitchen table with space for at least 4 people (not counter height)

Wants / Would-be-nice:

1. Seating at the island
2. Warming drawer
3. Prep sink
4. Pot filler
5. built in coffee machine / coffee area/station
6. Walk in pantry
7. desk area (not full desk - but counter height area for using laptop/phone/storing cookbooks, etc.)

I am also putting some links here that show some "inspiration" photos related to layout.


    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 2:18PM
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I just remembered a couple additional items worth noting:

The window and sliding doors in the current kitchen / eat-in space will remain the same size. The bay windows in the current dining room are almost floor to ceiling today. We can either leave those as is (if there are no cabinets in that space), or replace them so they start at the counter.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 6:44PM
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Any other thoughts on the layout? I am heading over to talk with the kitchen designer next week before Thanksgiving so we can revise plans. Any suggestions / input is greatly appreciated! Thanks everyone!

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 2:43PM
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Sophie Wheeler

I think you could do a much better job within the current constraints than taking down the wall. That isn't helping you "fix" the space at all.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 2:54PM
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hollysprings - do you have any ideas if I didn't take the wall down? I don't want to have wasted space by opening up the wall, but the current space just feels so tight and difficult to use when we entertain so frequently.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 3:43PM
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Hi all - we took another stab at the layout and have come up with a design I think will work well for our family. I am posting some pictures of the design here for you to see. Any feedback is appreciated.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2013 at 5:39PM
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Another view

    Bookmark   January 11, 2013 at 5:40PM
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final view

    Bookmark   January 11, 2013 at 5:41PM
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