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Kitchen Remodel

Posted by JLMW (My Page) on
Sat, Feb 1, 14 at 19:33

We have been contemplating remodeling our kitchen. It is 10.5 feet across and 12 feet from the wall to the back of the cooktop. The space behind the cooktop is a small breakfast room (blank exterior wall to the left and window wall to the right by the table) with a utility room behind that (all of which I have tried to capture in the drawing). I have no clue where to start. We have spoken to different contractors, but all note we need to come up with a plan for the room. My main goals are to open up the kitchen to the den behind it (along the oven wall) and to have a kitchen where I can open a fridge door without hitting the dishwasher or the bifold door at the bottom or the pantry doors for the pantry next to the oven (the oven is where the x is on the left). I am not sure if this is even possible if I open up the room. My husband wants an island along the oven wall looking into the family room (there are currently 18 inch built in 9 foot tall cabinets the length of the den side of that wall until you reach the door way) but then says if it is not possible because the kitchen is too small and we will loose to much cabinet space, why bother. We could gain about a foot of space by making cabinets go to the ceiling along the sink wall. We are not great cooks, and we have 3 individuals in the house (2 adults, and a 5 year old). The microwave is the most used appliance, but we have a microwave hood (which I hate because it does not remove smoke or smells when searing or frying). The L peninsula is the most used space where everything takes place currently (between the sink and cooktop). I am open to any and all suggestions, and am currently looking into kitchen designers in my area as well, as I have no vision. Thank you in advance for any assistance.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Sorry - one other thing I should add. We use the breakfast room table for breakfast and family dinners, so we cannot extend the kitchen into that area too much (unless it is a wall of cabinets on the blank wall).


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

How big is theden area you want expand into? Any chanceof getting those dimensions in relation to your picture?


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Can you repost your plan with some dimensions written on it, as well as indicating where all these other rooms are (the den for example). That would help us see what you're seeing.


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

The den is 25 x 15. The 15 feet is a bit wider than the kitchen and doorway to the den, as it partially abuts the room on the other side of the kitchen and not pictured. We do not want to expand into that room, as it would make us loose a room that all of the other houses in the neighborhood have. I am attaching another drawing that I hope shows what things look like (except for the foot plus or so that does not overlap with the kitchen).
Also there are French doors from the den onto our back patio that are right next to the doorway to the kitchen.


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Ate you willing to consider making the kitchen larger and the den smaller?


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Sorry, we would only be willing to go into the den a couple of feet (and maybe change the French door to a single door). The den is my favorite part of the house, and why we bought the house 11 years ago. Just past the French door is a giant wood burning fireplace that I love, so we really could not go too far. The den is the room in which we live - big screen tv, coffee table where we play board games, doors out to patio and grill. We looked at bumping out the exterior wall along the breakfast room, utility room, and then enclosing the 11 feet between the utility room and garage, but the estimates were far more than expected. The cost of adding the equivalent of 350 square feet in an L shape would be the same as adding an entire second story we were repeatedly told, and we just cannot see doing that.


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Ok, just thinking aloud - I understand the live of a big family room - we had one all the years our kids were growing up. I'll look at your plan tomorrow, and hopefully others will too.


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Thank you sjhockeyfan!


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Can your utility area be condensed? I don't know how it would help exactly but you could steal some space from it. What do you have there? A washer, dryer and sink?

If that area was condensed you could slide the table down which would give you more room for the kitchen or you could use the extra space for a pantry.


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

What's behind the bifold door?


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

The utility room area cannot be condensed much. There is a washing machine, dryer, and freezer. The other issue is the half bath cannot be moved unless we add on to the back. So the side next to the table could be moved a small amount, but the wall next to the half bath cannot be moved (and the half bath is used all the time when people come in from the pool outside, so we do not want to remove it).

Behind the bifold door is a formal dining area. I have thought about trying to move the door where the fridge is, but I do not know if that would help or not. While really only used for holidays or when entertaining, the formal dining is a small room to begin with (11x10.5) so not much space we could take from there. Plus, all the homes (both the old houses like ours and the tear down new builds in our neighborhood) all have formal dining rooms, so I hate to remove it.


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RE: Kitchen Remodel layout help

So I have been talking to different contractors and designers. It appears something along the following lines is what is being recommended. A pantry in red would be added along the breakfast room wall, the fridge would move to where the peninsula now is so that the doors have more room to open (hopefully) and are not bumping into the dishwasher, and the cooktop moves to an island. What do you all think - is there a better place for the fridge? I worry about it being too close to the table for opening, but it would help with people cutting across the kitchen to get milk, water, etc. It would also allow for a straight shot from the den. Also, while we thought about placing the cooktop on the empty wall at the bottom, that left no reason for the island. Plus, I hate looking at a wall when doing anything in the kitchen (probably why my peninsula is used so often) - I often place baking sheets or other things on top of my cooktop while prepping and use the counter next to it. Thank you in advance!


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

There are some problems I don't like here, but there may also be some ideas you can play with. Can you, do you even want to, take down the wall between den and kitchen?
 photo jlmw_zps29a9bffd.jpg

This gives you great prep room. I do urge you to add an extra sink if the idea of an island appeals to you. You will love it.

If you don't want seating at the island and if you don't mind moving another foot into the den, the island could be double-sided with cabinets facing the den and the kitchen.

Biggest problem: fridge is far away from pool traffic, and fridge and DW somewhat interfere. Not a great problem if you usually work alone in the kitchen.

For me, biggest plus: you would have prep area facing an attractive room instead of a wall.

Personally, I would go no deeper than 18" in the storage opposite the kitchen table, and even that is crowding passage when someone is seated at the table. But the storage there, and an 18" deep cabinet top for toaster and such like would be very nice. I would prefer this to floor to ceiling pantries which would really crowd the feeling of the already small eating area.

It is a tough area to work with. Please let us know what you finally decide to do--and share pics when you finish!

This post was edited by Bellsmom on Sat, Feb 15, 14 at 10:55


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

If needed you could condense the laundry area by going with stackable units in a cabinet.


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Thank you Bellsmom. Sorry my picture was not great. Yes, we plan on tearing down the wall, so there would be seating on the "den side" of the wall. The cabinetry side would be on the current "kitchen side" shown in the picture.

Thank you debrak2008. We have been considering how we might get more room there - stackable might work - but the wall could only move back a foot or two before we would have an issue with the powder bath on the other side having a door into the breakfast room.


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Sorry - one other thought. Should we put a drawer or undercounter fridge in breakfast room (right behind French doors to pool)? I know that would end up making some of the cabinets deeper though than suggested.


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A few suggestions, re your layout of Feb 15, 14 at 9:33.

Do you plan to leave something around 6' b/w the sink counter and the island? I think that would be too wide a distance b/w sink and range. If DR door can be moved down towards the den, you can keep a narrower aisle (maybe 42-45" from the handle of the fridge to the edge of the island). That way, you can also increase the depth of the island and then have the bar (maybe you're already considering this, but in the drawing it looks like bar seating would be right behind the range).

I assume there's a window on the sink wall, but would it be possible to have a narrower cab b/w the fridge and the sink, and a shallow tall cab facing dining table (maybe just 9" deep, with shelves for books, decoration etc.)? That may help with the issue of having the fridge too close to the table.

For UTC fridge maybe you can consider the island.


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Couldn't resist playing a bit more. Again, there are many problems in this layout, especially in tight passage areas.
But there might be some ideas to consider.

I started with the idea of moving the table to the other side of the room and moving the opening into the laundry room to give a bit of usable wall in the laundry room for a drinks fridge.

The idea of the banquette was just for fun, but I think I might like it. If it were mine, DH and I would sit on the upholstered seats, and the chairs might well be stored in the DR until needed for guests. I think 6 could sit at a banquette in this space, but I am not sure.

 photo jlmw2_zpsfaf8d097.jpg


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Thank you sena01 for the suggestions. The dining room door could be moved over about two feet toward the den or three feet the other way where the fridge is. I had not thought fully about the width of the aisle from the sink to the island. Thank you for raising that issue. Also, if we make the island two cabinets deep with an overhang, I think that would be about 5.5 feet. Is that correct? Yes, you are correct that there is a window over the sink.

Thank you Bellsmom for continuing to help. I like the idea of the banquette. How deep should a banquette be? Is it about 2 feet deep per side?


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

If the idea of a banquette interests you, search for info on GW. Or post a separate thread asking for info. There have been a lot of investigations here on them. Not something I was interested in using, so I can't really help. I don't think they need to be 24" deep, though.

I urge you to continue to gather ideas, new thoughts. Something may just CLICK for you,

BTW, we have about 36" clearance between island and sink on one side, and island and wall on the other. That is plenty for us (there are just DH and me).

The problem in your layout is enough clearance between island and fridge. If the island is shortened to 5', it might be moved to the right another foot or so and still leave enough clearance in the tricky corner between fridge and island. The problem is clearance for the fridge door, which needs to open to more than a right angle.

Have fun. It is really interesting at this stage when someone presents you with a new idea.


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RE: Kitchen Remodel

Also, if we make the island two cabinets deep with an overhang, I think that would be about 5.5 feet. Is that correct?

Yes, 15" for o/h + 48 for cabs+ 1,5" for o/h on the cab side.

If you move the DR door that may give you an L and an island, but since the island would have to be about 4' wide you can have 2 seats only.

Here's a drawing showing what the L/island may look like. If you have 13' b/w the corner of the bottom exterior wall and the DR wall, there'd be 36" b/w the corner and the island (48+(2x1.5)) and 43,5" b/w the cabs and the island.

I also tried a bench for the eating area. I assumed you have 7'6" width there and 5' on the laundry wall, and the bottom wall is 6'6". I have a 20" bench but assumed a total of 24" from the wall. Table is 30x48, so 36 b/w the edge of the table and the fridge.


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