Kitchen Design
mpfam7
June 2, 2013 in Design Dilemma
I need help with the kitchen design We are using a design build firm and we discussed an L shaped kitchen with an 8x5 island. To me this seems to be a U shaped kitchen. I would like to relocate the frig/freezer so the space along the wall is open, leaving space so the island could be oriented the other way (with stools backing to eating area). By leaving that wall blank, we will lose storage but it seems with a pantry and dry bar we should have enough storage.

My questions are: How could I arrange the kitchen to get the island the opposite way? We have five kids and feel the island seating is crucial.
2. Do you think this kitchen should have more windows?
3. Would it be odd to have the sink and stove on the same wall?

Any other ideas are welcomed- I want to get this right. Thanks!
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Lori
I agree with changing the layout of the island -- with all those kids it would be much better. You can
move the frig down - do you have a separate frig and freezer? I would just get an all in one unit and move it down. Also when you turn the island you still might have room for like shallow cabinet storage on that wall that went floor to ceiling with no counter tops. You would have to see, but it could be as shallow as maybe 10 inches, which would give you great storage but also not interfere with your island.
I would not move the sink or stove -- they seem fine there. I think one large window and the slider/french door in dining area should give you plenty of light. Although I would not do a garden window. i would just do a nice large window as drawn that extends beyond either side of the sink.
June 2, 2013 at 7:32AM   
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mpfam7
I had not thought about the shallow storage idea- would probably keep provide storage and not take up as much room- I think we will be okay on storage though - just not sure if an empty wall would look bare. I hadn't thought about the type of window above the sink- what are the pros/cons of garden vs. regular? I'm not tied to either, just what the designer put there so looking for which is better. Thanks for your ideas!
June 2, 2013 at 7:48AM   
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lefty47
HI -- Take the angle of cabinets that has the fridge - off . Put the fridge (maybe one fridge with freezer bottom drawers) in the corner , right of the stove ,- the stove needs to be moved to the left a little closer towards the sink . Now you can turn the island the other way and have the stool seating backed to the dining area and you may be able to add one more seating area to the length of the island.. With the plan shown the major appliances are too far apart. The window over the kitchen sink could be expanded going left and there is also room to add to the base cabinet and counter or you can have a larger patio door . Your not really losing that much cabinet space , there is still a lot and the island should have lots of storage also .But this will work better for you and the family . Perhaps the butlers section could be better used with half of that used as a full pantry cabinet. When putting the fridge in that corner have a narrow full height pullout cabinet on the right side so the fridge doors function properly. Make sure you have a full depth cabinet over top the fridge and a panel on the left side ,so the fridge looks built in.
June 2, 2013 at 7:55AM   
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Lori
I think an empty wall is okay, but shallow storage will look nice -- and let's face it, you can never have too much storage.
As for garden windows, they are old-fashioned. A nice large beautiful window would be so cool! As for the stove, I would leave it centered on that wall.
As for the frig, once you turn the island you don't have to move it as far down as you would think - but I would leave it on that wall, make sure it is fully enclosed with nice panels, put shallow storage next to it -- it would look great. See if your kitchen people can give you a 3d plan - you will be able to see how it will look and I am sure that would help. Also, you could put some open storage in the shallow part of the wall if you wanted, maybe for cookbooks and maybe just a space to hang some pictures/kids art/etc.

I agree that you could totally add bottom cabinets to the left of the sink towards the french door - you just have to make sure your walkways are still adequate. You could also then add one or two upper cabinets. I would put glass doors in the two cabinets on either side of the sink.
Keep thinking things through and don't do anything in a hurry - I have always found this to be the best advice!
My only other question is are you only going to have one oven? If so, I would suggest that you rethink that. When we were redoing our kitchen, we were only going to hvae one oven, but my good friend kept hounding my how I would be unhappy if we did that. Finally after listening to her I relented and we put in a second oven. We have a 36 inch gas stove with a gas oven and a 24 inch electric wall oven. I am so glad I listened to her. We have never regretted this decision and seeing as we have a big family and entertain a lot I really wonder "What was I thinking!" Of course, I needed two ovens. If your cooktop is a stove/cooktop you can just leave that and then I would put an electric oven in the island . Just food for thought!
June 2, 2013 at 8:15AM   
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Lori
I should say gas cooktop/ stove and an electric wall oven
June 2, 2013 at 8:17AM   
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PRO
Oellien Design, Inc.
I would flip as you island as you suggested. Have the bar stools on the side of the breakfast table. Then, I would consider moving the sink to the longest wall and install a larger bank of windows. Move the range and hood to the area where the sink was located. I think the simple symetry of having the island with the sink opposite and everything centered on a large bank of window would be outstanding.
June 2, 2013 at 8:25AM     
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Lori
depends on what that windows overlooks -- if you have kids and the other sink position overlooks the backyard, you would want to leave it there. If that is not an issue, I think that is a fabulous idea!
June 2, 2013 at 8:43AM   
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Fred S
It does not sound like your builder was listening to you at all.
June 2, 2013 at 9:07AM   
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mpfam7
I appreciate all of your helpful suggestions.
Lori- we are going to include the additional oven- good thought, also going to nix the garden window
Oellien- we are going to keep the sink and stove as is because the view from the sink wall is very nice where the stove faces another house. We are going to incorporate additional windows on the sink wall though-great touch
Lefty47- yes, the work triangle is too large so we will have the refrigerator on the long wall and put the extra oven along the short wall.

I think with all of these switches, we should be able to flip the island and make it at least 8 feet long.

Any thoughts on..would extra oven be better off as part of island or around the corner from new refrigerator placement?

If I need to prioritize- should I include butler pantry or turn it into a desk for computer/work station?

Also, I have seen double sliders, where two sliding glass doors come together but slide away from each other to create a larger opening, it turns out to be an 8-10 foot glass wall with a 4-5 foot opening. Any reviews on these?


Thanks for all of your help!!
June 2, 2013 at 1:58PM   
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Lori
I think the oven could go either place depending on how it looks in the layout. Have both options shown in 3d and then make a decision.

My sister has those double sliders -- they are beautiful. Expensive,but they sure look nice and really open up the space.

I think you could do one tall pantry and then a small desk next to it, if that is what you need. You need to figure out if you need the additional storage. When I did my kitchen before I even started it, I made a diagram and planned where "Everything" would be stored. That way I knew that I had enough space. Each drawer was designated like dishtowel, pots and pans, tupperware, etc. Also all along the bottom of my kitchen I only included big drawers, not doors ( not even doors with slideouts-- these are not that great). The only exception was under the sink. These big drawers make such a difference as they can store so much. They may cost a little extra in the beginning, but this is an expense that is well worth it. I will attach a picture so you can see what I mean.
June 3, 2013 at 6:11AM   
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Lori
sorry the picture is so fuzzy and I will see if I have a better picture of the drawers.
June 3, 2013 at 6:12AM   
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Lori
so there are a lot better pictures if you search "large drawers" in the kitchen section of Houzz. I found a few really good images, but did not know how to refer them to you. Look especially at the really long drawers -- they hold sooooo much.
Actually in my picture here the second drawer in the middle section holds my ceramic/glass serving bowls. I just counted them - they are various sizes from large salad type bowls to small dip bowls -- and I have 28 bowls in that one drawer. It is also much easier to see what you have stored in a large drawer that pulls all the way out versus a cupboard that you have to reach in to. Good luck in your decisions -- I hope someday to get to see a picture of the finished project!
June 3, 2013 at 6:40AM   
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Dar Eckert
Have you considered putting the range in the island? I love mine because instead of facing a blank wall, you face the windows, people at the island and TV. Then you can put the refrigerator on the long wall but not directly behind the range.
June 3, 2013 at 6:59AM   
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Lori
Hi Dar - do you have kids? I know this isn't my kitchen, but I would never put the range in the island with children. It is so much nicer to be able to use the whole island for kid stuff -- and then also you have to worry about cooking at the island when they are sitting there.
June 3, 2013 at 7:13AM   
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Dar Eckert
Yes, I do (did). But I actually like them sitting at the island while I am cooking and I like sitting there when my husband is cooking too. We've never had an incident but the counter is bar height with sets you away from the cooking at counter height.
June 3, 2013 at 7:29AM   
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Lori
cool! We just all have to figure out what works for us.
June 3, 2013 at 7:40AM   
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mpfam7
Dar- we did have a range built into an island in a previous house. It worked out well but we didn't have kids at that time. I can see if your island is different heights it could work really well. We kind of want a "pretty hood" with it so it will have to be on a wall.

Lori- It sounds like drawers are the way to go- I haven't thought that much about where all of my things will be stored- one more thing to do- will check houzz for more images of large drawers.

Thanks -
June 3, 2013 at 8:10AM   
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
I don't know if this was already thrown out there, but you don't even need to change the direction, just make the island a little wider and add seating for two at the end, so your seating will be L shaped.

That walkway is too wide anyway between island and fridge.
June 3, 2013 at 8:16AM   
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Like this..:)
June 3, 2013 at 8:26AM   
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Lori
I dothink Aggie's option is doable and would be fine. It really all depends on what you want. If I did that option, I would put the extra oven maybe inthe wall by the frig and put a microwave above it.
June 3, 2013 at 8:58AM   
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mpfam7
Hi Aggie, That is definitely an idea and the island would then seat all of the kids. I thought we would be tight on walkway space- I was planning on 31/2 ft. for walkways.
June 3, 2013 at 2:00PM   
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Hi:) Are the measurements accurate? You can have larger walkways than 3.5ft if I am reading the plans correctly. There are other ways to solve the seating issue as well, if you wanted a better symmetry, by placing the seating counter with two base columns at the end with (3) seats, facing range and (2) Seats facing each other. If these are die hard measurements, I can lay it out.
June 3, 2013 at 2:17PM   
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Nick Dellos Creations
What if you put something on the island?
The stovetop for example. A hood floating in the center might be fun. Or a small sink. I would move the fridge closer to the other items. If you are spending so much money I might ask them for 3 different concepts and then hire a rendering in 3d for your favorite. Good luck!
June 3, 2013 at 2:30PM   
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mpfam7
Hi Aggie, the measurements we have is that the kitchen will be 17'6" from the long way. I had measured 2' counter + 3 1/2' walkway + 8 foot island+ 3 1/2' walkway-and maybe go with some very shallow storage like Lori suggested (under a foot) to round it out - or increase the island to 8 1/2'- that's why I was hoping to relocate the refrigerator. But maybe I am missing something..?

Nick- I don't want the cooktop there but have thought about a prep sink but don't know if I would really use it. Is it something you use often?

Thanks for the ideas
June 3, 2013 at 2:42PM   
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
You can have a beautiful space here, like your inspiration photos, I would do down to counter dishes storage with glass doors on the other side by the sink (like in one of your idea book photos) , and leave the basic layout alone. Drawing time!

Is this custom cabinets, what is the ceiling height, and what size are the Fridge Freezer?
June 3, 2013 at 2:57PM   
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lefty47
HI -- I promise , you will love a prep sink on the island . Great for trimming veggies etc. and entertaining - makes a great ice bucket . Also because the island is fairly large,- also put in a pop-up electrical socket fixture . Search on Houzz for one to see what I mean.
June 3, 2013 at 8:13PM     
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Well basically, hard to explain in words...

But Island seats 5, Oven in the Island, and back up sink, storage, maybe another trash bin there for prep from fridge,


Sink Elevation, two dishwashers to the left from sink, empty them in the dishes storage above, trash to the right,

Wall Cabinets, appliance garage,

Microwave is in an open wall cabinet next to fridge,

Magic Corners in Both Corners,

Lots of Drawers,

Tray Storage Base next to range and maybe pull out spices, etc on the other side

Bar is Bulters Pantry, Regular Pantry, Beverage Fridge, glasses storage,

You know along those lines :)
June 5, 2013 at 9:49AM   
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PRO
Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Dishes Storage
June 5, 2013 at 9:52AM   
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Lori
Love it -- I think this is fabulous. The only thing I would change is more drawers. You still have a lot of door storage. I would change it all out to drawers - even in the cabinets by the table I would put banks of three drawers on the bottom left and right. I also would add drawers in the two sections to the right of the sink. I do think this is a wonderful plan. Hope that you mix up finishes and countertops -- that will look great. Keep us posted as you make decisions - can't wait to see the outcome!
June 5, 2013 at 10:08AM     
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mpfam7
Hi Aggie, I love your ideas! Especially the down to counter dishes storage. We will probably opt for only one dishwasher- unless we have a party, it is ample. Our ceilings are 8'. Currently, we have a full size refrigerator and full size freezer that appear to be one unit - 64" across. We trying to decide if we should keep or not. We got them as floor models so they were just under $1000 and have worked out great but they are 7 years old and will take up so much wall space. If we plan our cabinets around them and one or the other breaks down any time soon, I don't think we would want to replace again with such large units. We are considering going with a larger french door unit. They are Kenmore Elite.
June 7, 2013 at 6:20AM     
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PRO
ACProducts
Do you still need help with this design? Try an island like this if you relocate the refrigerators to the stove wall.
June 12, 2013 at 4:17PM   
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PRO
ACProducts
File did not upload trying again.
June 12, 2013 at 4:19PM   
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tingeofbay
Hi, the most important thing in a kitchen is to consider the distance beteewn the stove, refrigerator, and sink---think of this as your working triangle the distance should be reasonable for active cooking, you don't want to traverse the kitchen to get the milk. For this layout I would move the stove down and put the refrigetator-freezer all on one wall with a 30 to 36" space between them (counter and cabinets) then rotate the island. If you have little kids or teens consider an under the counter refrigerator just for drinks and kid snack this will help them learn to be more independent and keep them out of the large fridge. I personally don't like cook tops on an island the venting hoods always make to much noise and hinder active conversation. This is such a great way to plan a kitchen. Good luck!
June 12, 2013 at 5:12PM   
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mpfam7
Hi ACProducts, I like that idea, it looks great! Unfortunately, my eyes are so bad- I'm having a hard time reading it on the screen. Is there a way to enlarge it so I could print it out.
June 12, 2013 at 7:06PM   
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laralynn1217
I love the idea of having stools on two sides of the island. I have three stools in a row at my island and I find myself standing across from or perpendicular to the people sitting there so I can see them when we are talking.

I would really consider a larger space between the island and cabinets- closer to 48". I am so happy we did that spacing because I feel the island can breathe and the space allows people to move around the kitchen without running into each other.

If you do a desk area, I would suggest a bank of many drawers below a counter top, not an open desk. With your table and your stools, you may not really ever "sit" at a true desk. Plus you add more storage to hide all that ugly paper clutter we all have and the drawers work well. I had my counter guy cut a hole in the top that allowed me to place all my phone and iPad charging wires through the hole to a plug underneath inside the base cabinet. Love to hide those wires!
June 12, 2013 at 7:43PM   
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PRO
ACProducts, inc.
We are glad to see you are getting some good advice from our pros after we posted your request on our FB page! Here is another kitchen cabinets dealer that wants to chime in: 'Salvatore A Vigliotti - If you go to http://cabinetsandflooring.com upload the pdf of your blueprint I would be glad to design your kitchen." Good luck!
June 26, 2013 at 9:39AM   
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mpfam7
Hi All, I have really appreciate all of the advice- it has given me alot to think about. I 've been reading articles on Houzz on kitchen layouts. We decided to change the dimensions of our kitchen from 17'6" x 14" to 21'6"x 10'. All of the U shaped layouts that I liked had a longer center wall with two short walls. By doing this, we should be able to have a center island about 8' long. I will post a picture tonight and to see what the experts think. This website has been very helpful!
June 26, 2013 at 1:32PM   
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