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  1. #1
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    Default Kitchen functionality

    KITCHEN FUNCTIONALITY
    Has anyone really thought about kitchen design? I'm not sure that those who supposedly are designers do. (I often wonder if they have kids and cook) Have you ever gone to look at model homes? 4 bedroom home with maybe 15 feet of counter top, including corners, and sink area. Hello? if its a 4 bedroom, wouldn't you assume there might be more than 1.5 kids? I guess they all go out to eat, and don't really cook, can, have a garden or make cookies for classes etc.

    My house is 250+ yrs, but had been stripped of anything that would possibly be interesting. I have hated my kitchen since the day I moved in and used it 30 years ago. With 5 kids, there were other priorities than redoing the kitchen but I dreamed of it late at night. The kids are just about gone, (one left) but no extra monies so I will be trying to redo my kitchen in dribs and drabs.

    What happened to the broom closets of the 50's? I constantly trip over the vac, it seems like it's never put in the same place twice because it really doesn't have a 'home'. I miss broom closets - I remember having a house with one that was the full depth of the counter (24 inches deep) so it fit all the mops, brooms and vacs, and on the other side was shelving for cleaning gear. I would love to eventually build a mudroom airlock with an area for the vac. Since I am in Maine having an airlock makes financial sense, and would have helped keep the house cleaner too. Mud getting tracked directly into house by kids and dh would have been eliminated. Have got to figure out if I have to move the exterior door to do what I want so still thinking on how to do it.

    Today most areas must recycle, where do you put the recycles if you don't have a garage? I don't have a garage, I can't be the only person in America with recycles and no garage. I plan on building a combo recycle cabinet and appliance shelf. I want it to look like a giant jelly cubboard, but deep enough for my nesco and dehydrator. I almost have all the wood for the sides, found some shutters that I think will work for doors, still looking for back and hardware.

    Kitchen drawers are proportionally right when you look at them, BUT a 6-7 inch deep drawer has a lot of wasted space if you only put your silverware in it. I ran some lumber through the table saw to get strips of wood 3/4 x 3/4 I screwed these to the sides of the drawer, now a plastic silverware drawer sits on the 'runners' and I can access the stuff below. The serving spoons etc for holidays. The other drawer was like a junk drawer for kitchen stuff, I found a wood divider tray that fit in there and put 2 in, one on top of the other. Now the top tray has the can openers, the peelers, the other odds and ends that I use all the time. The other tray is the weird seldomed used stuff. I had a really wide drawer about 30 inches wide, every thing got lost and it never really worked for anything. But its great for kitchen towels and clothes, extra hot pads etc, so now I finally have figured out its purpose.

    I know base cabinets are 24 inches but unless you have littles to crawl in there the stuff in the back just ends up covered in spiderwebs. For the cabinets I made I put in shelves/drawers on sliders, I also put on sides and a back on the shelf because you know stuff will fall out the back side. I love it and wish I had in the other cabinets. I refuse to do much to them because I really really hate them - dark dark stain Jacobean. They grab all the light like a black hole, horrible in the winter. Bert said in shock " but honey they are WOOD why would you paint them" arghhh grumble grumble.

    Sometimes I think the 24 inches might be too much, too deep for real usability. I made what I call the coffee bar its about 18 inches (the width of the bathroom counters BTW) fits the coffee maker, crockpot etc on top and the lower is easy to get to and find stuff. I offen wonder IF I could actually design a kitchen with proper storage would I need 24 inch deep counters everywhere?

    I put in a eating bar when the older kids were teens, it was great. Only a 2 seater. It was just as deep as a placemat, but I had a cabinet on one end and a small bookcase on the other. It got used for homework, a place for cooling 5 loaves of bread, lunches, etc etc. Once the littles were moving around more I needed more space and pulled it, I regretted its loss for quite some time. I bought 3 bar stools about a year ago at a super good price - I plan on putting in a eating bar again.

    I love the idea of a baking center, uppers having all the things you normally use. The lowers having the pans including the vertical cookie, pizza pan racks. Don't you hate having to lift fourteen different things to get to the one on the bottom?

    So what would be in your dream kitchen?

    And what do you hate about the current kitchen? Maybe someone can come up with a cheap alternative.

    Ria

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  3. #2
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    I really love my kitchen that I have now. I use to have an old house (built 1888) no kitchen to talk about. Someone put a bathroom smack dab in the middle of the kitchen. It worked while we lived in that house. Was one of my first requirements when we shopped for a new house in a new location-had to have the kitchen that I wanted. I love it I practically live in my kitchen now!

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  5. #3
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    Kim,
    what do you love about this kitchen?

    what works etc?

    Ria

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    my kitchen absolutely sucks!!!! LOL It is a strip stove, washer, dryer and frig on one side
    turn around literally and I have my sink and a small counter. I have two cabinets over the sink and countertop a cabinet under the sink and 6 drawers under the cabinet i can't even fit a organizer for my silverware in. We put a small pantry like cabinet at the end for canned goods and I use a fern shelf (you know one of those things they hang ferns on in a store) to put all my pans, pots etc on. I have told my other half when we buy us another home I dont care what else it has in it but it must have a kitchen.
    Mdowdy

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    First it is large and opened to the dining room area which helps it to appear larger. There are around 20 cabinets plus two sets of four drawers. There is an island in the middle with tons of storage underneath. My first house had three cabinets so I am in total heaven! LOL. There is also a pantry closet that is large with shelves to hold lots of canned goods and other food items. The flow is perfect everything is within about three to four steps of each other (The stove, fridge sink area) the great triangle! My island has an electrical outlet on the side so it works wonders to be able to use it for baking, putting a griddle there for the pancakes etc. I have hardwood floors so clean up is a breeze if something spills. Plus just off of the kitchen is my laundry room and a freezer in there also. Above the freezer (the chest type) we added shelves for storage of paper goods, light bulbs etc. It is so easy to find what we need and even easier to keep track of what you have when you can see it all. I am a little bit of an organization freak type-I want to know where everthing is and be able to see if I need to add it to the list. Most of my items are stored in clear plastic containers so I know exactly how much I have.

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  11. #6
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    mdowdy,
    so you have a galley kitchen .. yep they are rough to deal with

    do you have any counter to side of the stove? or just stuck with the tops of the W/D?

    There are skinny plastic trays that would probably work individually in the drawers for silverware. At camp (no room) I have a tote that sorta looks like a cardboard 6 pack carrier and have the silverware in it by the table.

    Is this your place or rental? can you take out 2 of the drawers and make them one deep drawer? would that help with pots etc?

    I put shelves up on the kitchen window. This at least gets some of my odds and ends up on wall.

    Ria

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  13. #7
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    I love my kitchen now. The only thing I don't like about it is there is no broom closet and the utility room is at the other end of the house along with the pantry! a few years ago we went house looking and there was a whole sub division that had 5 bedrooms and the kitchen was a little hole with a half sink, a microwave, dishwasher and refrigerator and maybe 5' of counter space and no dining room! They said no one eats at home any more so why bother with a kitchen! I don't know what planet they came from or maybe I've been living in a closet for the last 30 years!

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    Kim, thats exactly what I mean. """whole sub division that had 5 bedrooms and the kitchen was a little hole with a half sink, a microwave, dishwasher and refrigerator and maybe 5' of counter space and no dining room"""

    I love looking/checking out new homes for ideas, but generally NOT the kitchen. I don't think the designers and architects are 'real' people. Yuppies from NYC perhaps (no offense to those from NYC). But no real life experience in kitchens.

    I realize that everyone has different ideas of 'perfect' which is sorta why I started the thread. But there is probably some commonality to the ideas. Who wants a stove with only 12 inches of counter on one side and maybe 15 on the other? (I have actually seen a model home set up like that)

    Certain things are probably not really thought of like: a space to unload groceries directly into the fridge. So some counter top next to fridge.

    If you are building a kitchen for a home with a family - then have an area near the door to dump the backpacks, and coats. Enough room to ditch the muddy shoes it would be a plus.

    I would actually love to have an extra sink, I had a deep single basin (*my DIL thought it was trash ARGHH) that I have been saving for the rebuild. I can see that having one for dumping stuff from the garden would be handy and near the coffee maker/nuker would be nice too.

    Ria

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