harrymarcus

The great Kitchen Debate

Harry Marcus
last month

Hi All,


A few years back we successfully gutted and renovated our place with the help of the Houzz community (link here).


We're now at it again having purchased a new house with a kitchen requiring a redo.


We are considering removing a wall that is between the Kitchen and the Formal dining to create more open space (potentially an island?) but think this may actually limit "wall space" for oven/fridge.


We think we're actually stuck with the current configuration, but not sure if we're missing something...


I've attached a video walk through, floor map and pictures which will hopefully mean you wizards can help us out!


Thanks guys














Comments (44)

  • Lorraine Cobcroft
    last month

    The only change I would make is to remove the little angled wall at the end and the second pantry that is placed against that wall. Your kitchen is already open to a very large living/meals area. Personally, I prefer not to see the kitchen mess from the formal dining area, but maybe you don't make as much kitchen mess as I do!

  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Thanks Lorraine, we are trying to expand the size of the kitchen but it doesn't look like a possibility

  • Related Discussions

    1940's NZ kitchen - small, awkward-ish layout.

    Q

    Comments (121)
    I would suggest you take out the cabinet that is to the right of the stove and use it elsewhere in the house -- perhaps in the bathroom or dining room with a hutch above it. Then, I would suggest you have someone install a lazy susan cabinet in the corner between the sink counter and the stove, meaning you would move the stove down a bit and have a small cabinet/counter top to the right of the stove. I would suggest you have the cabinets refinished in white and then paint the walls a pastel you like. If you would prefer white walls, then add white-painted crown molding and paint the ceiling a light neutral blue, such as Sherwin Williams Niagara Falls Blue. Then, I would suggest you choose a favorite accent color and use this sparingly in accessories like towels, pot holders, small vases or floral arrangements, and a valence above the triple windows. For a genuine 1940s look, you might have white ceramic square tiles with a rectangular red border installed as a back splash behind and above the stove. If you are replacing counter tops, I would suggest a light color such as white with a beige or light grey vein or striation for some sort of pattern. You might be able to find the same color and design in floor tile OR opt for a wood floor as another poster suggested.
    ...See More

    Kitchen Reno for Retirement

    Q

    Comments (13)
    These houses were designed to look good from the street, regardless of what the orientation was for the Sun. Everything depends on your budget and how far your prepared to go. A friend's house in Queenstown faced the street, the toilet and bathroom had the best view of the lake and the Sun. They got a house removal Coy in, jacked it up put it on the truck drove out and turned it around and reconnected all the services. It then faced the North and West great views and warmth, doubled its value in 3 days!. I replaced my storage water cylinder with a outside gas one, picked up enormous space in our laundry. Another tip is to draw up your "dream" plan, then overlay it over the existing and see what you can really do, your then not influenced by what is already there, and often get a much better insight and removed from the existing. Good luck, its very rewarding and make it fun!
    ...See More

    Please critique our kitchen design

    Q

    Comments (6)
    Thanks for your comments everyone. We've taken your advice (Luke and NH) and changed the island to a rectangle (1200 x 3000). We lose one breakfast bar seat but gain storage and dining room space plus it shortens the distances from the island to the cooktops. It also removes the need for a corner carousel. We're much happier with this result. Dairy_maid, we've done what you suggested and walked through some common tasks. Overall it works reasonably well although we may keep some coffee spoons and butter knives in the scullery drawers for morning toast and coffee. We've also invested in a "silent" rangehood which has the motor on the outside of the house behind the fridge and we've upgraded the scullery sink to one that is 600 x 400 (internal size). Fabrication starts tomorrow. Woohoo. Once again, thanks so much for taking the time to respond. The design has been significantly improved with your input.
    ...See More

    Kitchen Makeover Before & After

    Q

    Comments (0)
    The client wanted a refreshing upgrade to their kitchen with plenty of bench space and storage to accommodate their family. The kitchen is a great space to work in and very functional with enough space for their family of six. This contemporary kitchen ticks all the boxes! BEFORE AFTER Let us know what you think!
    ...See More
  • pottsy99
    last month

    I'd look differently -- do you need a formal dining , a meals room , a formal lounge , a living , a family , a formal living a kitchen and a study ? Which of those 2 can you amalgamate , or which one can you do without ? How different is the formal dining and the meals area in reality ? Could you move the kitchen to the meals area , keeping an eye on anyone in the living and family areas , and then have one large 'eating' area in what was the kitchen and formal dining areas ?


    Assuming you don't have a priceless 300 year old table that may collapse if used too much , could different cutlery and tableclothes make it versatile enough ?


    May not work , I'm assuming it is a concrete floor so maybe technically more difficult , you mightn't want kids near the formal lounge , but then again , it may work -- I have no idea of your tastes and lifestyle .

    Harry Marcus thanked pottsy99
  • siriuskey
    last month

    Something basic to start with


    Harry Marcus thanked siriuskey
  • Lorraine Cobcroft
    last month

    I do think that is a great alternative, siriuskey. Makes for a much more spacious kitchen while still visually separating the formal areas.

    Harry Marcus thanked Lorraine Cobcroft
  • dreamer
    last month

    So....apart from the door profile, which is bit dated, what is actually wrong with the kitchen?

    also, do not know your lifestyle, but you have plenty of dining spaces and living spaces to expand the kitchen into.


  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    siriuskey to the rescue again! your suggestions in our last renovation really shaped our final outcome, you may have just done it again. I cannot unsee your suggestion....

    In this plan, I presume oven/microwave combo can go next to the stove? or would you potentially put the stove on the island to free up space on that wall for oven etc?

  • siriuskey
    last month

    Hi Harry, I would love to have a look for you tomorrow. This kitchen gives you easy access to the formal dining via a door and keeps the formal part of the house separate. That family room will be a great Media/rumpus room, wonderful big home for your family

    Harry Marcus thanked siriuskey
  • Kate
    last month

    So much living space and a small kitchen. But I wouldn’t open up to both living zones, need to keep some separation.

  • Kate
    last month

    What about moving kitchen to the living and laundry becomes pantry, then laundry moves to current kitchen

    Harry Marcus thanked Kate
  • siriuskey
    last month

    Hello Harry, I think I will call your lovely new home "The House of Bays", drawing it was quite a challenge,. At the moment the kitchen family is quite open to your formal rooms this layout still gives you access to service the formal dining via a pocket door , ie: main meal change over to dessert made easy.. A suggested Banquet setting in the family room and or a separate dining setting. I know you are very talented with your reno experience so you will understand what I am suggesting


    Harry Marcus thanked siriuskey
  • pottsy99
    last month

    In Britain , you'd call it Homebays . . . . . . . . . . .

  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Hi @siriuskey,

    Amazing - that proposal still creates easy access to the "Formal dining" (which will more than likely be a kids play zone while they are still rug rats) whilst still offering privacy and not opening up the house too much.

    I am not sure if the fridge works in that spot given the depth will be greater than the width of the sink run. I also need to ensure this leaves enough of clearance for the island. A slightly tweaked view may be having the fridge on the wall where you have the stove (and have the stove on the island).

    I love the pantry idea too.......... certainly makes the most of the space. It's time to get some proper measurements done to see what is possible with this.

    Thanks again so much for this.......... I think we owe you a bottle of wine (or two?).

  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Hi @Kate,


    Thanks for that - given we're trying to limit costs it may not be feasible as that drastic change will mean a plumbing nightmare. If costs weren't an issue we'd certainly explore!


  • siriuskey
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Overnight thought, you keep mentioning an Island cook top, The following floorplan would give you that, because the width of the kitchen isn't as wide as I would like. I'am not a fan of the kitchen window and suggest turning that into a a door to match the one in the Family space, so removing the cabinets across the window will allow you to have a 900 x 2700 island with approx 1200 between it and 3 sides of the kitchen ( my walls are 100 and used to show room sizes). I have my cook top in my island, it's the second kitchen for me with this and love it. But having said that you are open to swapping the cook top with sink.





  • dreamer
    last month

    Another good design, Siriusky, but there is hardly any bench space, and am I missing the oven and microwave?

  • siriuskey
    last month

    Thanks dreamer, bench space is slightly less but better to use, the existing rear wall with fridge is the same as the other layout, but will depend on the size of Marcus fridge the sink is approx 2400 x600 plus the short return which could be 1800 x 800. Basic details shown firstly to see if Marcus likes it. Cook top is 900 and could as I have the oven under, the MW to suit Marcus either on a shelf on the wall , or under the bench on in the island

    The Fridge could also be fitted into the Pantry under the staircase end, just depends on what is preferred, this would give more bench space and less pantry, choices

  • siriuskey
    last month

    This has the fridge position changed which takes up some pantry space but gives more bench top. Your Rug Rats which we call Ankle Biters will love it Harry (showing two choices for either cook top & sink) The STORE coud be used to store the kids toys for a quick clean up by opening into the dining room


    Harry Marcus thanked siriuskey
  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Hi siriuskey,


    Another great design (great renders BTW!) although I share bigreaders concerns in relation to the lack of bench space. It still feels like a small kitchen and I'm not sure I'm keen on converting the window to sliding doors.


    I've created an amalgamation of your ideas into the below (pardon the crappy powerpoint mock up) but I presume you'll get the idea.


    The only concern is that based on my math, it will only leave 900mm clearance on both sides of the island. I'm not sure if that's too tight?


    I'm not sure whether there is a way to create more space around that island... Not I presume I wouldn't want anything less than a 900 island given we want the stove on the island?


    P.S. "Oven" on the island in the picture below is clearly meant to say stovetop.......


    Thank you as always all!






  • siriuskey
    last month

    Hi Harry, just a quick note, I calculate that in my new layout you have 3.300 x 600 along the LH wall plus 2700 x 900 island benchtop, so I think that gives 6.350 bench space. What does your current benchtop space measure, I'am guessing it will be approx the same but the 2700 x 900 wide part gives a much better work top.. The kitchen space isn't large and one way to make it feel bigger would be to add doors, they can be sliding. Bifold or French. What would be outside those doors, possible Outdoor kitchen BBQ Pool ?


  • Jane Monte
    last month

    Hi, just a thought, if its easier to modify the bay window slightly wider and extend below to create more floor area, than you could do something like this, a penisular island with sink + dw, feature cooktop with windows either side and wall configuration as shown with a wall return.

    the curves on the island could be a contemporary look but ties in with your arches. I would avoid touching the staircase walls which appears to hide the low head height and already partially sticking out from your ceiling.

    anyway good luck with reno!

  • Lorraine Cobcroft
    last month

    Opening the Store into the kitchen and making it the pantry could give you more bench space. I don't know here this house is, but if it's in a location where outdoor living is a thing I would certainly open the kitchen to the outdoors and make an outdoor kitchen which could include extended bench space. Alternately, put a bench in the bay as shown in Jane's sketch above and put a servery window over it. Reading siriuskey's calculations, I think you would find the bench in her design adequate. Personally, I feel the curved bench closes the kitchen in too much and makes it feel smaller, even though it does provide more bench space. But it comes down to personal taste. I like my kitchen very open, with a strong flow to the outdoors.

    Harry Marcus thanked Lorraine Cobcroft
  • C P
    last month

    This doesn't really help with kitchen but I'm desperate for there to be banquette seating in the family room bay.

  • C P
    last month

    I mean meals area bay and somehow incorporated into kitchen

  • siriuskey
    last month

    That was incorporated into my first plan @CP until I saw that the windows were full height

  • siriuskey
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Hi Harry, This new floor plan has the cooktop/oven in the island with both tall units, fridge and pantry on the back wall, the sink and dish washer in the 3300 LH wall. The Island needs power points for baking appliances when making cakes etc which also has easy access to the pantry for flour etc.

    I have added French Doors into the Window bay which will look lovely either opening in or out plus this will add more space to the kitchen.

    There's a negative difference to the benchtop space, I'am sure that you would find that this is more than ample. My Kitchen is 2400 for sink, DW and 2 x 600 draws plus a 1200 x 2700 island with the cooktop and oven . The tea coffee making is done on the sink bench




  • dreamer
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Harry, you have mentioned the cooktop in the island, and having the oven there as well.

    have a good think about the practically of having the radiant heat from both the oven and the cook top, while adults or children are sitting at the island.

    i know that Siriusky is a lover of the cook top in the island, but I could never consider this set up. My concerns are safety with pots and handles, and hot splatter. Standing at the island cooking something, while the hot oven is cooking some other creation, with your legs and lower body, getting hot from the oven. My preference would be to have the cooktop and oven on the other bench, with the sink. The oven, as a wall oven. Very similar to your current kitchen.

    the island would then be a free space for prep of food and gathering.

    Harry Marcus thanked dreamer
  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Hi @siriuskey


    I hope you're enjoying that chocolate Easter cake!


    I think we're 90% there with that last tweak.


    @dreamer has fed some pretty healthy debate about having a cook-top integrated in the island and we've actually landed at it not being ideal regardless of it not fitting. Saves a bit of cost too thankfully!


    The only slight tweak we'll look at is having an oven / Microwave stack in the corner (marked a) and given the pantry space is approx 1.8m, splitting it to 1m pantry and then 0.8m of a hidden appliance centre.


    Thanks so much for your help. Those renders have done wonders in terms of visualising the space!





    [CURRENT OVEN / MW STACK]







  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Hi @dreamer


    You gave us an incredible amount of food for thought. We're definitely going to run with a wall oven (which is actually what we have in our current home, not the new home we're about to renovate).


    Thank you for bringing those considerations to light, they really weren't top of mind at all.


  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Hi @Lorraine Cobcroft

    I think your point around creating some form of link to the outdoor area is a great one.

    We're going to explore changing the window for a stacking bi-fold window with a servery shelf of some sort. Later down the track, we will look at creating an outdoor extension to make the most if it


  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    This is the style we're exploring






  • dreamer
    last month

    Glad I could help with your decision making.

  • siriuskey
    last month

    You appear to have posted about removing any decorative ceilings? but it only shows in your activity and when you open it, it appears on a page that you have to sign in and responses are by people I don't know, so I'am thinking that perhaps you have posted on another Houzz, ie:USA or such?

  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Hi siriuskey,

    I'm not sure what happened there although I think you're right, I posted the question on the Houzz U.S. website.

    As we're modernising the whole house, we're likely to remove decorative ceiling medallions throughout and remove all light fittings in favour of downlights.

    This would be in conjunction with removing the arches and architraves (replace with shadowline and/square set).

    I just don't see how they can coexist with the modern look we're after, although our gyprocker thinks we're nuts for removing them all.... quite the connundrum.

    I've attached some photos to illustrate.... do you think we're on the right path?

  • dreamer
    last month

    The facade of the home is wonderful, and the internal decorative detail is matching with that exterior. If you have the budget to replace everything, then, it's your home.

  • siriuskey
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Your house from the outside says Hamptons to me

    I agree with your gyprocker keep those very expensive ceilings just add your new lights and modern furniture, Paint walls and ceilings white they will look excellent and make the architectural features pop and work beautifully with your timber floors as they do in the photos. Just by doing that and changing out the furniture and updating any window treatments as shown in the Agents photos will make a big difference keep it simple. If you really want to show an update (not modernising) have your sectional windows painted black.

  • siriuskey
    last month
    last modified: last month

    I love your inspiration picture, but I have say that if you are considering that door between the formal dining/kids play area and the kitchen I wouldn't position a wall oven there, terribly dangerous when oven is being used, hot and open, a child playing and running through the door would be badly injured.

    I have had another idea, so as to not take up any of the dining room space plus saving costs of doing this, would be to open up this wall with full height square set pocket doors, when open expands the kitchen and when closed directs the traffic from the dining through the kitchen between the island and doors, keeping them out of the kitchen proper. The fridge is placed so as the family has easy access, you could even add a small sink into the 900 x 3000 island with the cooktop, which gives you heaps of bench top work space

    My CAD program was produced in 1997 and as you can see that what goes around comes around with the old but new slatted island

    The first foorplans show the cooktop opposite the doors but I think it works much better to have it at the other end










  • Lorraine Cobcroft
    last month

    Don't do away with those lovely ceiling features, please. They match the style of the house perfectly. If you sell, in the future, buyers who love the facade will expect the inside to be compatible and look for those ceiling roses, arches, etc. Modern square lines will disappoint. Styles come and go, anyway. What's 'in' today won't be in a few years. The classic style (which your house is) never really dates. And I think that curved end on the island in siriuskey's drawing is the perfect compliment. You can still have nice clean simple lines. It doesn't take much to give a nod to the style, but I think it always pays in the end to be consistent and faithful to the the architectural style.


    I just wish our house actually had some style! It has no character at all. Your house makes a statement, and I think it would be sad to change the interior to contradict it.

    Ultimately, it's your house, though, and you have to be happy with it. I just can't help having an opinion when I see a photo of a house like that. It's truly lovely.

    Harry Marcus thanked Lorraine Cobcroft
  • dreamer
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Harry, Looking at your whole house exterior and interior and actual house plan.

    are you going to square off all the bay windows?

    are you going to get rid of or the decorative cornice and ceiling work?

    are you going to square off the arches?

    are you going to remove arched window from bedroom?

    are you going to replace the balustrade?

    The inspirational picture you posted yesterday, of the kitchen, is a wonderful idea. But, to achieve that look you will have to raise the ceiling a great deal. And, did you notice the detailed cornice work in that photo. which is what you have mentioned you are going to take out of your home.

    I agree with the others comments. Yes, change the lighting, and update the paint colour and put your modern furniture into home. Maybe square off the internal arches. But think seriously about keeping the other components of this beautiful home. I can also visualise the look your going for, but don't throw the baby out with the bath water.

  • dreamer
    last month

    After having a bit of a thought, would I be correct in saying you are trying to achieve a "Brown Stone New York Apartment Style".?

    If so, I think that may work. But, still keep the cornice and ceiling work.

  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Thanks Dreamer, you raise very valid points.


    We've definitely come around to keeping the ceiling work and cornices but squaring off the arches and also installing new higher skirting (I think this will give it a fresh stronger look).


    I absolutely love the "Brown Stone New York Apartment Style" look that you've just posted. It's very close to what we're trying to achieve.


    Siriuskey mentioned somewhere above in this thread having our windows painted black. They look brilliant in the photo you posted, although I wasn't aware it was actually possible to paint aluminum windows. After some googling, it turns out it's possible.


    That may also be a way to give the place a really fresh look...!


    Thanks again, your help is really appreciated






  • Harry Marcus
    Original Author
    last month

    Hi Lorraine,


    Your points are extremely valid and given the orchestra of disapproval of our plan in this thread, we'll now be keeping the ceiling work/cornices.


    It's been a tough one for us to get our head around (as we've always liked the ultra modern look) but in the end, it's hard to argue against the arguments the experts in this thread have put forward :)


    Thanks so much


  • siriuskey
    last month
    last modified: last month

    This is an American Steel Door and Window company which might give you an insight into what changing the colour of your windows to black could do for your new home, steel doors and windows are very expensive, and classy

    https://staging.eurolinesteelwindows.com/evening-canyon/