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first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Posted by dojey (My Page) on
Sun, Dec 16, 12 at 13:38

(this is a re-post... thought that the remodeling forum was a subset under kitchen)

I've read up on things here, and have spoken with people. But it seemed a bit ignorant for me not to post and directly solicit all the expertise that is here...
The Players
- single male new homeowner, likely with another roommate (so two people)
- I do enjoy cooking, and enjoy cooking and entertaining as well (though I don't do it too much I must admit)
- future-proofing for family in future (maybe/hopefully/wishfully)

The Field
- 50 year old craftsman style house, one floor
- completely clean slate... appliances, cabinets, and floor all gone

The Dream
- would like to keep in open, and on the more modern/contemporary side (not too much)

The Game Plan
- I've included what I'm thinking of doing it... but feel like there's a lot that's wrong with it. That's why I'm on here... hoping you guys could help me out
- the one thing I'd really like is to have the kitchen peninsula... I'm taking out a wall (you can see the remnants of it) to make it happen
- ummm... I think that's about it.. everything else I don't really know...

Budget... oh dear... well.. I guess budget is independent of layout... though preferably I won't have to move the plumbing too much (electrical I need to redo since absolutely nothing's to code)

Any help is greatly appreciated!!!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Adding in one plan that I have so far. They did some of the dimensions wrong, but this is along the lines of what I'm looking at.
(right side will be for dining table)


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Moving plumbing slightly isn't at all a big deal. This will keep the main traffic patterns clear, and give you two work zones for prep while keeping snacking out of your way. I'd do the cabinets in a quarter sawn oak in a simple shaker style that would go with the home's history as well as your preference for a more modern style. Soapstone counters, or a recycled glass composite counterswith some amber and green elements could work great. 6x6 glazed green ceramic tiles with some color variation for the backsplash would finish things off. For the floor, a sheet linoleum or a wood parquet.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Are there decks or yards or views beyond the window walls.
You may not be familiar with electrical induction cooktop and ranges. They will offer more flexibility for your layout. More info on those on the Appliance forum.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

I should have included in my post to replace the window in the dining area with french doors to let in more light and to give you a better connection with the exterior. That's why I put the banquette in the opposite end. If you didn't want to do that, the window in the kitchen area could be made into a door, and then the dining window would be an ideal location for a banquette.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Loving greendesigns' layout! It's a great design for entertaining, keeps your cooking area free of traffic while providing a great space for guests to gather and have access to coffee & drinks and snacks at the bar, and when you have a family it will let kids easily access snacks from the fridge and micro without being in the way of your cooking space.

In your original, it's not bad if you switch the fridge and range. You definitely don't want the range across a traffic aisle from water, needing to get past someone at the fridge when trying to empty a large pot of boiling water. I redid my entire kitchen because of just such a problematic layout.

But I do think greendesigns' layout is far superior for entertaining and family living.

Good luck with your new home!


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Bahh!! Always forgetting key points to point out.

So the two windows in the kitchen actually lead out to the front of the house. The garage is to the left. The right side (outside the kitchen) is essentially the walkway to the main entrance. Sorry for not clarifying!
(so... IMHO I'm going to veto the changing windows to doors *^.^*)

Some additional points based on GreenDesigns' feedback:
- the new design assumes a wall is still along the bottom of the room... one thing I'd really like to do is open that up to the living area (e.g. microwave in upper and full pantry doesn't quite work)
- not sure about trends, but would prefer to have a full dining table in there

Otherwise I do appreciate taggie's insight and greendesign's inherent correction of the range to sink travel. Though the fridge will also cause the issue of not opening up the island as much.

I do want to move the range against a wall.. just not sure the best way to enable that. I could presumably put it there, put the sink against the island, but then the fridge is left without a decent place to go. I'm hoping to have a bit of counter space both sides of the range (gives some breathing room)


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

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This is set up in the IKEA 3-D planner.IKEA, with its high-quality hardware, is a great value for the bones of your kitchen. If you prefer a door style they don't carry, you can purchase the doors, drawer fronts and cover panels from a 3rd party, like Scherr's, semihandmade or cabinetnow.com.

I didn't want a barrier between the door to the garage and the rest of the house, and instead went with a small island in a compact work area. You have a second zone (a small sink under that window would be fabulous) for breakfast, a sou-chef or a bar.

The banquette is comfortable for 4, but with a leaf or 2, could seat 6 - 8.

Here is a link that might be useful: IKEA 3D Planner - link good for 7 days


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Dojey, I'm not liking any plan posted so far. A big part of it is trying to work around the garage door. No important part of your kitchen should be separated from the rest by it and a trafficway, and as you want that to be an open peninsula you can't even line it with storage and fridge so you can keep the main working areas grouped together on the window side.

Any chance of sliding that door down where the peninsula is currently shown, to give more space to its "north"? Or even farther south? I feel this would probably be a very good place to invest some budget and would completely change the space you're working with. How about drawing it that way and playing around with the possibilities a bit?


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

@tbb: Thanks for putting that together for me. It's a really neat idea that you went with there. I'm trying to think if there's any way to make that table bigger and more formal - somehow have a potential to 6-8 on a regular basis (I love me some board game nights). Also, there's tons of storage you have there (good thing), but does it make the kitchen feel a bit small?

@rosie: I think you're bringing up a good point. From a budget standpoint I think moving the door will really eat into things quite a bit, so for now I'd like to find a solution without having to do that.
I've attached a photo of my current place (renting a room), that also breaks it up but so far we haven't had any major issues with it (garage entrance isn't typically a high traffic area during meal times). The door is actually right behind the fridge. Dining table is essentially where the photo is being taken from.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Forgot to add... it may be that I just need to revise my expectations a bit. I'm really hoping though that I can get away with having everything I want *^.^*

(And thanks for all the input so far.. it really is much appreciated)


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

If Dojey wants the area where the Fridge is situated in Greeen Design's layout to be open, why not flip GD's design 90 degrees so that the sink is against the wall with windows (without the overhang for sitting). Make the stovetop run parallel to it, with openings to enter from either end - near the basement door or at the other end. Instead of having uppers on the stovetop run, have a bank of storage cupboards where the storage hutch/entertaining bar was in Green Design's layout. You might need to start with shallow pantry cabs near the window up to counter height(to set things on from the fridge), then the fridge at the end of the aisle between the two runs of the working kitchen space, then another small counter space that could be a drinks bar when entertaining. Finish out that wall with whatever you need most, either cabinets or a seating area for friends and kids when hovering in the kitchen. The dining table will have to straddle the opening between the living room and the kitchen. I hope your living room can spare the space and that it does not impede flow between rooms. This design gives the cook a view of the living area and the wash-up people a window. It also keeps traffic in the cooking area to a minimum while not banishing the cook to a corner. Folks can get to the fridge without bothering the cook. You would need to be able to put a hood in the center of the room, though. If this does not work, switch the two runs, the range top will have to be between the two windows. This design also assumes that tbb123's window above the banquet was added. I don't see it in the original drawings.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

So what's the most common free layout tool that you guys can recommend? I spent a lot of time with SketchUp but I'm not proficient enough to do the quick edits I'd like to make to try things out. Wanted to draw up Nancy's idea to see if I understood it correctly.
I'm not concerned about eating into the living room, as there's quite a bit of space available. Though I do have some reservations about entering a house and being directly in the dining room...

To give more understanding to the layout of things, I've included the whole house here. Kitchen is the SE corner and includes the garage entrance. One patio door, three bedrooms, and two baths.

(btw: am I being too greedy?)


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Decided to also post a pic of what I've managed to do with the place so far.
That's looking at the wall that I plan on removing along with the garage door (actually same angle as the house picture I posted).

Just like it looks, I'm not living in there yet. Still renting a room right now but as things drag on I just feel like I want to get it done so I can move in (~40 days and still no progress aside from the little demolition I've done). At the same time, hoping to do a decent job with it. In my late-20's but I plan on growing into the house. We'll see how it goes...

The entertaining I tend to do is either one of two things:
1. Fancy dinner nights. These aren't really fancy dinner nights. It's just when I get excited about cooking and prepare a nice 4-6 course meal for some friends. I try to go outside my capability for these meals... cause it's fun!
2. Board game nights. Usually a bunch of friends sitting around a table playing Euro-style board games. Typically around 8 at the table.
That's short term. Mid to long term.. not a clue.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

It's not a particularly big kitchen for formal eat-in. I actually thought, with the banquette, that it would be a really good party room.

Lighter-colored cabinets and excellent lighting helps for a sense of spaciousness. If you can give up the storage, the island-as-furniture (moveable would help) would open things up and give you more flexibility for larger groups.

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What if the part of the wall you removed was closer to the entry?

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A paneled fridge would go a long way toward a more formal look.

Here is a link that might be useful: IKEA 3D Planner - link good for 7 days


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

I do like tbb123's designs, especially with the island being mobile. The placement of the fridge is your big difficulty in this kitchen, with three windows and wanting the wall to the living room to be more open. The placement in tbb123's plans is really the most realistic place to put it. I wonder if you could get by with a counter-depth fridge? It would still block off the work area next to the sink, but not stick out and trip you as you go to use the counter space on the other side of it quite as much as when the fridge sticks out.

My design was assuming that there was no window on the banquet side of the kitchen. The only place to put the fridge in my arrangement would be at the end of the stove run. I have also not measured to see if there is enough space between the garage door ad the side wall (with two windows for the galley kitchen to run in that direction. Maybe I will go see if I can clone that design on Ikea and make a design there without changing tbb123's....


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Nancy got me thinking of a way to make both sides of the counter more useful. I centered a large stove on the big wall and featured it. I'd prefer not to have the dishwasher between the sink and stove, but kitchen design is all a series of compromises.

Now the banquette uses the corner, like GreenDesign's. Nice spot for 8 friends.

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Here is a link that might be useful: IKEA 3D Planner - link good for 7 days


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

A less-crowded corner.

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Here is a link that might be useful: IKEA 3D Planner - link good for 7 days


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

So... this is kind of blowing my mind right now. I've rewritten this post a couple of times.

I really do like tbb's latest mock-up. There's bits of GreenDesign's and Nancy's ideas worked into there and I think it works really well. It adds a ton more counter and storage space than I had initially thought of. Best is how it draws attention to the range + hood, which I'm a big fan of.
I'm actually a bit giddy right now, and trying to hold myself from clicking any "Buy It Now" button available. Checking out the different options for different facing on things, but otherwise feel like I'm going to go with something extremely similar to this.

Some additional questions:
- choice of a round table.. is that to provide contrast and not have everything square? or flexibility to fit more people
- leaning towards doing a double-bowl (more statement than anything else)
- what would you guys do with the lighting? I'm leaning towards a pendant on the dining table, and cans everywhere else?
- was talking with my roommate just now and she warned about storage. said that given the design that's probably the best use, and the other alternative would be taking out a window (which I'm not necessarily a fan of from the cost and lighting perspective).


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Yes, that is much more open, tbb123. I like it with the range where the fridge used to be. As a matter of fact, I drew my version up on graph paper tonight while relaxing in front of the TV. Tomorrow I will photograph my drawing. My long wall is much like this new one of yours. I have a second aisle 48" out from the one on the long wall. My fridge is on the window end of the run, then 6 ft of counter space. Dojey, I have an option of putting a breakfast bar on the living room side of this, so 3 or 4 people could sit there. That essentially puts the dining table entirely in the living room, though.

I just went on Ikea and did up a kitchen there, and the floorspace looks far more crowded than on my graph paper. Not sure why. I think I like tbb123's latest version better than my mock-ups, though, mainly because mine make getting to the fridge difficult.

As for your questions, Dojey, there is a major difference of opinion on the one or two bowl question in sinks. Do a search at the bottom of the Kitchens subject page and you will find lots of reading, I am sure. I am a one-bowl person. I like to fit big pans in the sink. I also had major disposal problems when I had two bowls.

For lights, I went with cans. I spent more and got the LED cans from Cree. They now say they will last 25 years! A nice drum shade pendant over the table would be modern and give you good light for games.

I would tend to get a rectangular table. I don't understand the use of oval tables with banquette seating, either. You get more table surface with a rectangle. But oval is what is done, I guess. I see it everywhere in pictures with banquette seating. I just am not a fashionable person.

I am not sure what your roommate is saying, could you explain more? Your banquette seating can have hinged lids to give you loads of storage inside the seat boxes, or you could do wooden boxes with padded tops and do a "morgue drawer" on the short end of the bench seating. Search for "Morgue drawers" on the finished kitchen blog and get a few good laughs.

Be sure and look at the Finished Kitchen Blog and read the Sticky at the top of the Kitchens forum.

I don't think I will bother finding my camera and getting my drawing on here. It really is not as good a design as what tbb123 has done. That keeps the kitchen table in the kitchen. I also cannot save my IKEA kitchen because of a mix up with my password. The "forgot your password" function is not working.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Glad you like it. That stacked-stone wall gets your attention, doesn't it?

As far as oval tables and banquettes - just a bit easier to slide in and out. You can always go to restaurants with banquette seating and check out the comfort of the tables they use.

IKEA offers a lot of value for the money. Their hardware is Blum - used in high-end European kitchens. If you can't find a door style you like, you can get the frames, drawers, hardware and innards and have doors made by a 3rd party: Scherr's, cabinetnow.com and semihandmade, among others, are very experienced.

Perhaps the most valuable feature in using IKEA is the affordability of the drawers. Consider how much more accessible full-extension drawers are than base cabinet shelves. No more hands and knees with a flashlight.

This post was edited by tbb123 on Wed, Dec 19, 12 at 3:17


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

We have an almost identical layout to tbb's 12/19 (0:11) design. We love it -- my advice is to keep the windows -- you have plenty of storage, and (2) put a prep sink on the counter run to the right of the range (right of cabinet #5). This was suggested to me by the GW gurus and it was the best advice ever -- it is amazingly useful, and is in continual use and when there are two people working in the kitchen it is wonderful as well, since one can be at each sink. With your sink in the corner, you will not like sharing your kitchen otherwise.

Also have to make a plug for a giant single sink on the left (main/clean up sink). It means you can wash the big dirty pans (baking sheets, roasters, etc.) without getting a wet shirt or leave them soaking out of sight, too. I switched and would never go back to a divided sink.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Oh my - it's so similar! I must have been so impressed with your kitchen, Kris_Ma, that I subconsciously copied it. Beautiful job!

Here is a link that might be useful: Kris_Ma's kitchen


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

tbb123's design with the range in between the windows what I was thinking of too. It looks really nice. I would definitely add a prep sink under the other window. I would actually put it all the way to the right so there is the maximum amount of space between it and the range.

To my eye the island seems a bit small and awkwardly placed to be very useful, so I would consider making the range wall counters 30" deep and even maybe (don't hate me) nixing the island all together. With Ikea cabinets, you would just build a 2x6" frame against the wall, install the cabinets in front of that, and run the counter over both.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

I really like tbb123's "Less crowded corner" design from 0:31 this morning because it gives you very usable cupboard space near the dishwasher. The pantry was moved to the other side of the garage door, though. I am not sure if you noticed that, Dojey. A tall pantry cupboard is very helpful in a kitchen. In this kitchen, you will likely be using kitchen drawers as pantry space, too. This works well, see Ikea's base pull-outs. They have pantry pull-outs at counter height as well as drawers. Just look at those things to make sure that you will have enough storage for you.

Kris Ma's kitchen is like a combination of my design and tbb's. Kris, I love your kitchen in your home, it is beautiful! Your use of the island as the kitchen table is also how I designed my latest kitchen. Dojey, I don't think this design works for you as well, because you want to be able to sit all around your table space.

Dojey, you do have room to put a tall pantry cab at the end of your cabinet run, like Kris has. You can either put it in place of the corner base cabinet in tbb's last plan and do not have a cabinet right next to the banquette seat, or use it next to the corner cabinet, so that it abuts the banquette seat - but it shortens the banquet seating. If you put it at the end of the counter run, it has to be the 15" version due to the window on the range wall. You can use a 24" one if you place it next to the banquette, but it will take away 2 feet of banquette seating. Ikea makes the 2 ft deep pantry pull-out in 15" or 24" widths. I have a link below.

If you put a pantry pull-out at the end of the counter run, you will have an opening (no cabinet) next to the banquette seat and it will be easier to access it to slide in. Then a rectangular table is less of a problem.

If you need more storage, especially if you need shallow storage space, you have the option of putting some storage between the studs in the wall separating the banquette seating from the entry hall. For this, you just remove the drywall between two studs, line the space with something to keep it neat (Ikea sells a wall board that would work fine), put in a series of shelves, and cover with a door (again, Ikea will sell that to you). This is a space that is great if you have a gazillion spices, special occasion glassware, or other items no larger than about 3" in diameter. It would be best if you can make this in the wall past the banquette seat, but if you make them in every stud space behind the banquette seating, they become the backing against which people would lean while seated. You would just start them an inch or two higher than the seat cushions on the banquette seat. They are not that accessible, so they are best for long-term storage.

Dojey, if you need to break up the job for financial reasons, you can hold off on the beautiful wall of stone that tbb designed. It can wait. Our kitchen remodels sometimes wait months or years to get the backsplash "jewelry" done.

Here is a link that might be useful: Ikea pull-out pantries


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

I put the small island in, mostly to keep the schmoozers from being underfoot. A while back, I read one architect's account of her kitchen planning in Fine Homebuilding magazine. During phase one of her construction, her work triangle was open to the rest of the room (much like Dojey's kitchen without the island.) While she was preparing a meal for friends they were constantly in her path. Once she put in a counter for them to stand behind/lean against, she had plenty of folks to keep her company - even help her out - but they were no longer in her way.

I like a slightly deeper counter that overhangs the cabinet fronts - keeps them cleaner.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

So only now did I realize I didn't even finish my last post. I had meant to say it's mind blowing how much help and assistance everybody gives. Really appreciated!

I'll be going with two sinks... grew up with that and I think it allows more flexibility for prep. That said, it's unlikely I'm going with two sinks. I really like the design that Kris has... but from a budget standpoint I'm guessing I'll need to take it out (will keep it in if I can afford to though!)

I'm definitely going to make a trip to Ikea the next chance I get. Will read up more on their stuff and also spend some more time on the sites that tbb recommended for getting new facing. Some questions on that though, how do most people handle the insides being so different from the face? Does it look tacky? (I'll admit, I haven't done my side of work on this... will be reading up on this after the post)

I will take the advice of the tall pantry to heart, though need to think a bit more about the best place. I was a fan of the "crowded" corner just because it does keep the other side of the garage door clear and more open (and doesn't have a pantry sitting by itself).
As for putting it by the banquette, I'd lean towards having it facing the banquette. This would eat into some seating but would keep the wall/counter in one continuous piece.

Some bad news is I may have royally messed up by not "measuring things twice". Need to double check that I can remove that wall because somebody came by today and he was of the impression that the wall was load bearing. I know a nice hefty beam can take care of things... both in terms of design and budget though.

As for island... I am a fan of having one. Never had one myself, but with the places I've visited they sure do come in handy.

And thanks for the comments about dressing up the wall later on for a budget. Something I'll definitely keep in mind. That said, I'm actually not a huge fan of the stone wall (sorry tbb *^.^*) Was thinking some concrete/slab/something of that style would be really nice to modernize it in there. More my style. What do you guys think?


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

"new facing. Some questions on that though, how do most people handle the insides being so different from the face? Does it look tacky?"

You don't see the insides. Their drawers (metal sides and back, thick laminated mdf bottoms) are ingeniously designed to have the face attach directly. Their boxes come in white or beech, and the drawers and doors completely cover the face. If any peekage bothers you, edgebanding takes care of that.

Whatever tile/stone/etc. you put on your stove wall - it will be beautiful and dramatic with the windows and the symmetry. Good bones.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

If you want the pantry on the dining end, you can position it like this and your banquette sitters can squeeze by.
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I'm thinking it might be better for the banquette to extend from the corner cabinet on the left all the way across to the right. Then you might consider, on the garage end, the support for your new header as incorporating built-in storage.

You might think of putting your table on wheels!


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Haha... good bones! How many times I must say I've heard that. Expensive bones to boot.

So far I'm heavily leaning towards the "crowded corner" layout. It keeps the full wall pantry close to the action and doesn't have to deal with the awkwardness of having the pantry right by the dining table. This way I can also have the banquette extend all the way and do it's mini-wrap around.

I did take a second look at the wall and am getting a feeling it may be load bearing. Next time I go by the house I'll have to actually go all the way into the attic to check it out.
But IF it is the case, it looks like this design still works rather well. I could fill that wall with full height pantries, and then go with the "less crowded" fridge area. Even if it is load bearing, I'll see how much I can open it up by (maybe can get a little bit still). Not going to go for the half wall or anything like those.. always felt they were a bit awkward.

Back at home home now visiting family for the holidays. Will be trying to make a trip out to Ikea to check out their stuff.


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

I must apologize for having disappeared... it's embarrassing to also say I literally haven't gotten anything done with the kitchen. (read: I have been living for a good number of months with literally no kitchen).

newest design:
http://kitchenplanner.ikea.com/US/UI/Pages/VPUI.htm?LoadDesign=00b0bb93182a4942bd3c217160dd8ab2&UIContext=Kitchen&IsSharedDesign=1

Borrowed extremely heavily from all the feedback I've gotten here. The changes I've made are as follows:
- the wall I initially wanted to remove is load bearing, so I've opened it as much as I could "easily" do and added a pantry there
- garage door shifted slightly so I can fit the pantry, so that corner has a bit less than previously
- all wall cabinets changed to horizontal opening... hopefully more ergonomic
- note this is just the layout... will likely go semi-custom fronts so just trying to nail down the layout so I can buy during the Ikea sale now

Please let me know your thoughts.
(especially those who have helped out already, since you've been superstars in helping out... I've been telling everybody who will listen about how good these forums are)

Here is a link that might be useful: Ikea kitchen planner (good for five days)

This post was edited by dojey on Mon, Jul 1, 13 at 3:57


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Dojey - don't be embarrassed, I think sometimes that we can become so accustomed to having our homes in a state of disruption and dysfunction that we forget how we used to cook and have real food in the house. I think that happened to us last time. We still have not reverted back to getting into cooking everyday, and it has been two and a half years since we got the kitchen back functioning. Sometimes renovation just sits and we do other things instead. I still have one kitchen cabinet door to sand and stain. Out of 30 doors and 20 drawer fronts, I missed one. Turns out it was sitting at my carpenter's shop. Two summers I have not gotten it done. THIS summer, I am going to do it. And I will sand and re-stain old trim and install it, too. I used a re-used kitchen in my remodel.

I like your plan. The work area is big enough to not feel cramped. You have the island to "defend" your space from interlopers, you have extra space on the right side of the stove, and you have LOTS of storage. The horizontal upper cabs are nice and modern.

In my first kitchen remodel, in 2003, I had 6 running feet of 8 ft. tall pantry cabinets. They were just cabinets with shelves, no pull-outs. We only had room for 12 inch deep cabs, and they worked fine. I did have room at the end for a utility cab, and it was 2 ft deep. It held the vacuum cleaner and other cleaning supplies. In my experience, a 2 ft deep cabinet that is just shelving is TOO deep for storing foodstuffs. Cans and boxes will get lost. Your cabs by the garage look like they might be that deep, so I wanted to warn you. If you use pull-outs for food, that deep is good.

Deep cabs are good for appliances, but not for food. My current home had a horrendous 40" deep by 30" wide pantry cab. I had to stack foodstuffs on stair-step shelves along the sidewalls, put anything in the middle in baskets, and use a grabber to pull baskets to the front to get things. It was one of the reasons we remodeled. They should make the builders who create such stupid designs live in them before they sell them to an unsuspecting public!

Welcome back. Are you feeling excited to get working on your new kitchen?


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RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Nancy,

Thanks a lot for the feedback and warning with respect to the pantry. I've actually been a bit conflicted on what to do there:
- the maximum depth I can actually do is 24" (e.g. distance from wall to door trim)
- GC recommended moving the door a 6" to allow me to go with the typical 24" deep pantry (will likely be more costly as he says, since it's likely to be a load bearing wall, in addition to having to move the firewall)
- I'd actually prefer not moving things and installing a 16" pantry (as per reading online and also your comments)

Right now I'm planning on going with Ikea. I'm just a bit concerned about making the mods to the full height pantry to turn it into a 16". The initial concern was with pullouts... but if I do 16" with just shelves I guess it will be much easier.
(with the current design my last one is a utility cab like what you mentioned... I have a smaller stick vacuum so it fortunately still fits... mostly hardwood so mop/swiffer is an easy fit)

Getting excited! Just need to make sure I manage to hire a good GC. Still doing more interviews now. And I'm planning on having the GC do everything short of the cabinet install. I've heard Ikea cabinets are tricky on their own right so want to hire somebody who works a lot with Ikea cabs.


 o
RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Well, it sounds like saving the money by not moving the door, not getting the pullouts, and going with the simple shelved pantry is the smart thing to do! Use the money you save to make storage in your bench seating or for that wall of tile behind your hood.

Finding the right GC is always key. I wish you the best. Are you finding that the contractors are familiar with Ikea?


 o
RE: first time owner: kitchen layout ideas (need some coaching)

Yeah I agree... the simple shelved pantry just stacks the savings with so much less work to do.

Bench seating will definitely be storage (gotta put my board games somewhere ^.^). But money saved will probably go to the wall of tiles like you recommended.

GC is scary... so nervous with this one.
I'm going to get a different contractor to install the cabinets (it's all done at the end anyway). Will likely go with installers contacted through Ikea... since I'm guessing they would have a ton of experience.


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