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Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Posted by dccurlygirl (My Page) on
Tue, Jan 14, 14 at 13:37

I live in a 4 level split and am finally emotionally ready to renovate my kitchen. I grew up here, saw both parents through terminal illnesses, but I haven't wanted to change anything. I know it's time.

So, I love my work space (small as it is), as I find it quite efficient; but, more cabs and counters are really needed. I have a cute nook for casual dining and it's great for 3 people, but when more enter my kitchen, it's quite snug. (BTW, I live here solo.)

Really, I want to remodel my entire first floor to include a kitchen open to a living/family room, but not wide open to the dining room. I have considered removing the small wall at the end of my entry and the one between my current Kitchen and DR. Then, I would rotate all 3 rooms counter-clockwise. I don't want a huge LR anymore, just a small place to sit with a couple of friends and chat before dinner. Also, I have a very large family room about 6 steps down, so there's plenty of extra room to move into, if need be. I do, however, want to keep the formal dining room. I would also like to incorporate french/sliding doors to the back or side yard (it's a corner property). I would consider an addition, but would rather keep my costs down and work within the current footprint.

Thanks for helping me turn my family home into one I can live in and love as a grown-up.

PS - If you click on the floorplan, you can scroll through pictures of my home in it's current state.
Floorplan photo b92283b5-281a-4367-9e93-1d158da73a8a_zps910bac48.jpg

Kitchen photo Kitchen_zps5df613aa.jpg
Kitchen Nook photo 83b0ecbd-209a-4b0d-90c2-aa73c7f94bf1_zpsafda75d1.jpg

This post was edited by dccurlygirl on Tue, Jan 14, 14 at 14:11


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Is this a deco-modern(e house?

If you are reworking this entire level I would consider putting the formal dining room in the radiused front corner of the house and making the former dining room and the upper part of the old living room into the new open kitchen.

It may not work because the new formal dining and entry may end up still being larger than you want. But it's worth a shot.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

No dishwasher?


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Some food for thought. TC = tall cabinet.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Ineffablespace -- Not modern from the outside. Maybe a little cottage-ish. Many split-level owners do open up the walls and stairwells to take advantage of the split floor plan. It's sometimes called a tri-level, but mine has 4 floors.

Gaucho -- Dishwasher is between the sink and fridge. I forgot to include it in the drawing.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

I was thinking along the same lines as Gordo - opening up the kitchen to dining might make a huge difference.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

I think what Gordo did is a good layout. Having it on the (present) DR side, would give you more cabs b/w the sink and the range.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Hadn't considered tall cabinets .. interesting idea, Gordo ... but I lose a casual space to eat.

I would like to keep a formal dining room, so I would need to have an island, peninsula or table in the kitchen. That's why I'm considering moving the rooms around.

What would happen if I moved the Kitchen to the DR, the DR to the LR and the LR to the current K?


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Are you willing/able to go all-in on open concept and remove all the interior walls? I think that's the only way to have multiple dining areas and a non-claustrophobic kitchen in your footprint.

FWIW, I'm a kinda-open-concept guy. I like spaces that feel open with large aisles and whatnot, but removing all the walls in that place would be too open for me.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Here are a couple of possibilities for putting the kitchen in your current dining room. These are quick sketches and aren't totally to scale. If you did 3' aisles, you'd have room for about a 2' island in the middle. You could possibly do a shallow pantry between the studs. It's amazing how many items can fit in a stud cavity.

Corner sinks can be controversial here, but with your window configuration the way it is, and since you usually don't have to share the sink with anyone, it might work really well for you. : )

Oops, just realized I forgot to put the opening in the middle wall for the doorway.

This post was edited by laughable on Tue, Jan 14, 14 at 20:47


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Another option

If you'd prefer a tighter work triangle, this plan might be better. I would consider removing the corner windows, or putting shelves in front of them, to gain some more upper storage in this plan if necessary.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

One more idea...I think you have a little more room than depicted here, for some reason I had a really hard time staying true to scale, probably because I was drawing in a blank room (and fingers are only so accurate anyway).


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

I like williamsem's plan--it is what the OP is asking for.
As a variation, I would put the fridge backed up to the china cabinet in the DR, then the stove along the wall by the back door--better for the venting, and you get to prep in front of the corner windows.
Then you could recreate your banquette and round table in the corner of the original kitchen, but with more room to spare and maybe more chairs.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Wow, that is a wonderful window. What a nice spot to enjoy a meal, spread out work or projects, and be bathed in light.

Can you remove the center wall, or would you have to put in a support beam?


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Is OP willing to forego a living room?


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

From the original post:

I don't want a huge LR anymore, just a small place to sit with a couple of friends and chat before dinner. Also, I have a very large family room about 6 steps down, so there's plenty of extra room to move into,


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Something like this?


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

You guys have been busy, overnight! Thank you for continuing to help me think this through.

GauchoGordo - I am not into a full open concept for this house. At night, when you look in from the outside, passersby can see straight into the LR/DR (one reason I would rather move the LR space to the back -- I can move around in my PJ's) To answer your question about keeping a LR, I would like room for a few comfy chairs/love seat + chair and a coffee table -- sort of a "landing" area for when guests first arrive.

Laughable -- I like your 2nd plan. And removing or adding windows is acceptable to me. Something I feel I will have to do, anyway.

Williamsem and Junco -- this reminds me of Breezy's plan (which I love). No room for an island in the K, right?

Bpathome -- Those windows are pretty awesome -- because they are in the LR, and I don't spend much time there, I don't get to enjoy them or the wonderful light that comes from them. The front left corner of the center wall is supporting the roof on that side of the house, but I wouldn't mind burying it in the ceiling....

Sena01 -- I've never thought of adding a wall there! Interesting idea that I need to spend some time digesting.

You all are goooood! I'm loving your creativity. Thanks (and I'd love to see more!)


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

So, I've been really considering Williamsem's plan with Junco's additons and I have a couple of questions.

1. Is there space for a narrow island?
2. Junco, the banquette and chairs in the corner of the original kitchen -- do you have any thoughts on how to make that area be dual function for both everyday eating and casual seating? I can't visualize how I could have both.
Thanks, again y'all!


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Maybe a multi-use and/or expandable table? Drop leaf, gate-leg, they even make tables with adjustable height that could go from coffee to dining use.

I think you need a detailed measured floorplan and a layout expert to help with the island question.


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

Well, I'm assuming you have 11ft2in top to bottom, minus 2x25 inches for each side leaves 7 feet to divide between two aisles and the island. With 36 in aisles that leave a 12 inch island. Even cheating to 33 in, which may not meet code (I can't recall if it's 30 or 36 in, I'm thinking probably 36?) that leaves 18 inches for the island edge to edge, so you would have to use 12 to 15 inch deep cabinets.

Now there might be something different that would allow for an island, you never know what kind of creative ideas might pop up!

I just wanted to add some of my reasoning about the fridge and range placement I suggested, so you can decide for yourself what you want. My first thought was range by the door for venting also, but with the corner cabinets that made for a bunch of little cabinets. Your needs may be different, but I like my larger drawers, which are 27-30 inches.

The red shows the difference for you to see.
Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Then this occurred to me, a little less conventional, but the fridge is centrally located, you get a utility closet, and tons of open counter.
Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

So, I asked a contractor to give his architect an early look-see at my floorplan and throw some of your ideas into it. This is what he came up with. Thoughts?
 photo SmileyPlan_zpse1744e19.gif


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RE: Ready for a challenge? Split-level needs you (so do I)

I don't care for it. The island looks awkward and not very useful. I think island work best parallel to the range/stove . If the idea is to have an open space why would you put a tall appliance on a peninsula breaking up the open sight lines?


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