Our Kitchen Renovation: The Layout(s)

Happy Monday, guys! I hope you all had a great Valentine’s Day. Andy and I celebrated with waffles for breakfast and crab legs for dinner, yummm. Joey celebrated by keeping us up half the night. Party girl!

So last week we started talking about our upcoming kitchen renovation that we’re crazy excited about. We don’t know exactly when construction will start, but it will probably be in the next couple of months, which means right now we’re busily making a TON of decisions. Kitchens have SO MANY details to think about. Over the next few weeks we’ll be going into the nitty gritty of our plans, and today we’re talking about one the biggest things — the layout!

Actually, we just changed our minds. We thought we were sure. For months we thought we were sure. But then suddenly last night over dinner it was, “what if this moved here and that moved there….” This is real life, guys! Ideas change. So we’ll show you both current plans.

When we renovated the kitchen in our old house, we worked with a kitchen designer who helped us with all the details and either made recommendations or went ahead and made decisions for us, but this time WE are the designers — and it’s fun!

Remember this is what the room looks like, and we’re taking down those two walls around the kitchen, eliminating the dining room and opening everything up to the living area. This view is from about where the couch is now:

kitchen/dining/living room before

Here’s our layout option #1. This is the one we’ve been tentatively planning on for a few months…

kitchen remodel plans - option 1

In both plans, we want to have a long row of lower cabinets along the back wall with the sink under the window in what is now the dining room. We decided not to do any upper cabinets for a few reasons: 1) we think we’ll have enough storage between all those lowers and the pantry, 2) we can save a lot of money, and 3) we loved the look and convenience of the open shelves in our old kitchen and wanted to have them again. We figure we can always add uppers later if we decide in a couple of years that we need them. So instead we’ll have 2 or 3 open shelves on the back wall and a couple of tall pantry cabinets on the side wall. There will also be a 7×4-foot island with the stove, a couple of cabinets, and seating for three stools on the opposite side. Also picture a vent hood above the island.

In Option 1 the fridge is along the back wall, but then last night we suddenly had an idea to move it to the side wall, which is Option 2…

kitchen-kitchen remodel plans - option 2

Pretty much everything else stays the same … the sink under the window next to the dishwasher, the oven in the island, and the tall pantry cabinets. But in this plan the pantry cabinets are shifted a little bit farther down to make room for the fridge.  This makes for an awesome 8 feet of counter space along the back wall! We also like how clean and open that back wall is in this option and how the pantry lines up nicely with the front side of the island.

You might wonder about that table on the left in both layouts. Since we’re getting rid of our dining room, we’re thinking about adding a built-in banquette with a small table, which might be a fun project (I always think projects sound “fun” that end up being a horrible amount of work for Andy, ha!) We probably would eat most meals at the island, but it’s nice to have a table sometimes.

Ok, so those are the plans… What do you think? Which one of these layouts do you like best?

Next week we’ll show you our cabinet choices!

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3 thoughts on “Our Kitchen Renovation: The Layout(s)

  1. option one seems more balanced.

    are you stuck on the stove in the island? we love having huge open island for homework, rolling cookies, making valentines, etc. with no fear of hot surfaces or burners.

    1. I agree option 1 feels more balanced, but I also feel like option 2 feels a little more open. I’m worried that in option 1 the fridge will feel sort of out of place, plopped at the end, with no uppers to help box it in. But I also worry that option 2 seems a bit cluttered on the non-open end. So hard to decide!

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