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Dream Kitchen

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bakn4joy's picture
bakn4joy

Dream Kitchen

Okay,  I am finally getting to remodel my kitchen.  My question to all of you is what would you put in your dream kitchen?  I am planning two double ovens, a professional range.  I am thinking about built in refrigerator and full size freezer.  Center island with a full butcher block top "central work station".  What are your dream appliances? Ideas on storage, layout, countertop appliances? I figured this would be a fun thread and to do some dream building!

TableBread's picture
TableBread

Definitely double ovens!!!  And a gas range top and granite or marble counter tops!!!  Ahhh to day dream :)

Jo Rheta's picture
Jo Rheta

Jo Rheta

This is my 'maiden voyage' so hope I do this response thing correctly.

I would suggest considering 3 foot deep lower cabinets topped with 2 foot deep upper cabinets where ever they will work.  The extra depth of bottom cabinet gives you room at back of counter top for large equipment that you use frequently (bread machine, mixer, breadbox, whatever) with enough room left over in front of the equipment for a decently sized work area.  

Only found room in my small kitchen for a 5 x 3 footer but absolutely love it.  The extra drawer and cabinet depth give me a place back behind frequently used items for things not required very often.  Like pudding steamers and chopsticks!  If I could build my dream kitchen, all my cabinets would extra deep.

verminiusrex's picture
verminiusrex

Hobart mixer, tandoor oven, and my counters and sink would be stainless steel.  And a flush button to clean the entire room at once.

Dave W's picture
Dave W

Now this is our speciality, we are kitchen design and installation people, problem number one is we are in UK and you are in USA and funily enough we are about to redo our own kitchen in another room! after the festivities we may get around to doing something about it, unil then Cheers!

I'll have a think, and get back to you, but yes more ovens and clutter free work surfaces (dream on!)

Cheers

and a happy new year

Dave W

Rock's picture
Rock

If you're used to one it's hard to get used to anything else.  What can I say?

qahtan's picture
qahtan

About 3 years ago we renewed our kitchen. pulled out all the old cupboards etc...Although the kitchen is still the same size it looks a thousand times better as now all my cupboards are classic white. We have a Jenn air electric stove top with down draft, and a Kitchen aide built in 30 inch convection oven, new dishwasher, fridge etc .The floor is still the same, it's  Armstrong, looks like tiles in green. The workmen covered the floor with large sheets of cardboard to protect it. We bought it on sale at  Home Depot, and it was very very cheap, but it still looks new. after about 7 years.  We gave the counter lots of thought, yes I wanted stainless steel but  it scratches easy, So my next thought was butcher block, apparently that  stains easy, as does the marble and granite,,,, so I ended up with Formica in aspen grey, which we figured if and when it gets shabby it would be quite simple to put in a new counter.          All in all I am very pleased with the kitchen, as my daughter says it's not glamorous but its functional, and that's what I wanted. There is a fair amount of work space, plus a built in desk.My niece worked for Sanderson's fabric (UK) and sent me a pair of oven gloves that has roses on them and I have them on the kitchen door as decoration, plus enough material to make a window vallance, and a large piece if the fabric framed and it is on the blank wall above the desk, And finally a tea set for two same pattern, Little Chelsea. ;-)) http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y58/qahtan/framed.jpg

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

I thought this idea looked familiar. Here's another TFL thread on the topic.

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/2126/ideal-kitchen-baker

Rosalie

Ramona's picture
Ramona

The double ovens, large freezer, professional range, a VERY LARGE refrigerator (most wealthy people buy sub-zero refrigerators-well made and large) are definitely good starts.  Energy-star appliances (when possible) really help out with the electric bill.  A bread warmer is a nice extra also in a drawer type of setup.  I would not use marble or granite countertops, they scratch, chip, and can stain, if not treated every year - high maintenance.  There are countertops that look just as fancy and nice as granite, but do not chip, scatch, or stain, and they are a synthetic version, much better, but I cannot remember the name right now (I think they it starts with a C).  My main concern for a great kitchen is cleanliness and neatness, over prettiness.  I favor stainless steel for walls and maybe countertops, everything can be seen and easily cleaned.  I hate tile and anything that has areas to harbor debris or bacteria.  Stained concrete floors are a good choice.   I know that islands are nice looking in a kitchen, but they really need to have everything right there, otherwise the floor becomes a mess from constantly moving the food, containers, cutting boards, utensils, etc. back and forth to the other counters, sinks, ovens, or stoves.  It's also nice to have the hangers for pots above the cooking areas, but only if extra care is taken to ensure flies do not get into the kitchen, otherwise, I like everything put away.  I definitely think a walk-in pantry is very important.  A large kitchen is nice, but for practical purposes, keeping all the appliances close to the sink area will help to keep the mess down.  It is also helpful to have a mini-desk area with bookshelves.  Having one area of countertops for an eating area with bar stools is nice too.  Putting slides in all lower cabinets makes things convenient.  As for countertop appliances, if you can afford it, I would buy quality, only a one-time buy, usually.  A good mixer, food processor, blender, and grain mill.    Just some ideas.   I don't know how I almost forgot, but room for the right type of plants to clean the air and make the atmosphere cozy.

audra36274's picture
audra36274

My friend I used to work with had a sub zero, and had to have it worked on about twice a year. This whole blog has been a good thing. A lot of people have had a lot of experience with the good and the bad of a kitchen remodel. It sure is cheaper to listen to others before you have to find out the hard way. My only wish is that I'd had someone to tell me about tile as a countertop! I never used to be a germ-a-phobe, but that dang grout has me bugged! I will leave me as soon !

goetter's picture
goetter

In the last eight years, I've been through three houses with SubZero fridges, and two with granite countertops.  Both have been great: no service calls on the SubZeros and no maintenance on the granite.  I love dropping hot pots on the granite and later rolling out dough on the same impervious surface.  Hard on knives, yeah, but that's why we have cutting boards.

Main caveat on the granite I'd name is in selecting its pattern.  It can be hard to see when your countertop is clean if you have too much activity in its pattern.

I work in one house with plain ol' fragile Formica countertops, and pine for granite whenever I'm there.

edh's picture
edh

Ramona,

Was corian the product you were thinking of? It is pretty, but it is also a solid core, so if you happen to set a hot pot down on it, etc, you're stuck with the damage. I think I'd still lean towards formica, if only for the reason qahtan mentioned; it can always be pulled off and replaced.

In the lower cupboards, they make some lovely heavy duty drawer sliders that can be used to mount the shelves in the cupboards, so they can slide right out, to reduce crouching and peering into the depths of the cupboard for that pan you almost never use.

edh

audra36274's picture
audra36274

and it eventially stained and you could not bleach it back. It was wonderful at first but like every thing else, it too has its draw backs. Since it was white, the stain was red from all the tomatoes and sauce and such. Yuck. 

Ramona's picture
Ramona

But unlike most people, as much as I would love a pretty kitchen, I still prefer stainless steel.  Can't get more clean.  I have seen steel panels with pretty designs etched onto them.  I recommended corian to those who like granite, but want more reliability.  I spend probably more time in my kitchen than anywhere else.  So, I lean toward ease of accessibility, cleanliness, and able to maintain numerous tasks, with comfort and not stress.  I have learned through experience that a choice has to be made:  pretty or practical.  My first concentration is cleanliness, because if I can't get past that, then there is no desire.  Of course, if a kitchen isn't used much, then that is not a problem.   If you can manage to put sky lights into your kitchen or a bay window, then they really add to how cozy that kitchen is.  My husband likes a kitchen to open into the other areas of the house, to invite a homey atmosphere to all areas.  Remember when visitors would sit around the kitchen table and enjoy a cup of tea or coffee and some special bakery pleasure and good fellowship?  A kitchen seem to be the heart of all rooms in a home. 

Blueskylad's picture
Blueskylad

Blueskylad

Exhaust Fans, the bigger the better. Check your prevailing winds and have exhaust blown away from house.  You have no idea what you will be cooking in your dream kitchen and or burning, so get those smells outside not in your home!

Make sure you have great light, no shadows.  If you can't get any outside light then at some place put in a bank of grow lights.  Your kitchen plants will love it and believe it or not your body will enjoy this fake sunlight too!

audra36274's picture
audra36274

Bread is a good smell, fish is not. I have thought about a down draft exhaust fan. My up draft is not as adequate as I would like. It is not a pro model though. Any comments?

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

our agenda for remodel. I really would like "wood" type floor, which would go from kitchen into the dining room. My fear is that it would be unpractical for wear and upkeep. A top quality vinyl is probably a smarter choice. I would love granite counter tops..but worry about upkeep. What does anyone know about Silestone?

philoloaf's picture
philoloaf

Engineered quartz, like Silestone and Zodiaq, are excellent products: heat resistant, stain resistant, chip and crack resistant, etc. They'd withstand pretty much anything you'd normally throw at them. Their biggest drawback is that they are expensive -- more expensive than many granites. We just redid our kitchen and decided on a cheap granite despite the risk of staining because, we reasoned, even stained granite will look much better than engineered quartz. We ended up getting a dark-colored granite (that hides stains better) at about 1/2 price of engineered quartz, and so far have been thrilled. Upkeep is minimal: essentially wipe on a sealer every 6-months to a year, and you're done; it's no more difficult than giving it a thorough cleaning. 

chileangringa's picture
chileangringa

I just thought that I would pitch in with Ramona when she said that stained concrete is the way to go for floors- you can make them look like marble, wood, and if you ever decide that you want something else, they are just concrete and you can put down anything else over them.  I personally am having my countertops made of concrete as well, because I really like the way that they look and can be very functional.  We are going to build  in copper trivets in ours, since the sealer can become compromised with excessive heat.   And since my husband specializes in concrete stains at his job, it is much more affordable than about anything else!  For ideas check out www.concretenetwork.com  It has tons of good stuff!

AnnieT's picture
AnnieT

My son and his wife have stained concrete floors with underfloor heating in the new house he just built. They look fabulous, like well polished dark leather, and I was really keen to copy them if I ever have the chance. A couple of points - they are very slippery and I'm worried about a fall, and the thought of dropping a Pyrex dish is scary. They have 3 dogs and wetlands on their property and the dogs have to get their feet dried before they are allowed inside. I'm hoping he will lighten up - my pug sheds hair on them too! Maybe when they have lived in the house a little longer? Certainly easy to clean - we bought a house once that had indoor/outdoor carpet tiles in the kitchen. They had also had a 4H lamb in the upstairs room, but that's another story! A.

goetter's picture
goetter

I have stained concrete in my kitchen floor.  Two things to consider: if waxed, it's very slippery when wet.  Also, it's very fatiguing to stand on for long periods of time -- doubly so if you like to cook barefoot.

But it's so pretty, and so easy to clean.  Mine are very dark, so I can easily see spilled flour (pretty much a constant).

umbreadman's picture
umbreadman

I don't know how they would function in a kitchen, but I've become fascinated with the idea of earthen floors. They're cheap, retain heat well, are easy to clean, aren't dusty, can be treated to be waterproof I think....it's been a little while since I've read up on the latest developments in modern earthen flooring. A simple search online yields tons of info. The idea of walking barefoot in my kitchen on an earth floor sounds very inviting to me.

The only trouble is, it's labor intensive to install, and not many contractors have experience doing it. but then again, if you're into it, you can do it yourself with a little knowledge. 

-Cyrus

sphealey's picture
sphealey

=== Also, it's very fatiguing to stand on for long periods of time -- doubly so if you like to cook barefoot. ===

I always wanted a red quarry tile kitchen floor similar to that in the 1920s-vintage manufacturing plants where I used to work. Then I bought a house with a tile floor and I have changed my mind: it is uncomfortable to stand on for more than 20 minutes, makes my back hurt after an hour, and anything glass or ceramic shatters when dropped. Next time I will go back to wood of some type.

Just my 0.02

sPh

Brentsbox's picture
Brentsbox

I would most deffinately build in a wood fired oven. There not all that hard to build and are an amazing and atractive addition to a kitchen.

 

Wood fired OvenWood fired Oven

KipperCat's picture
KipperCat

1. I absolutely adore my cork floors. They are a bit more expensive than some other options, but really extend the energy of the cook, and eliminate a lot of pain in the feet, back and legs. They last forever (more than 50 yrs. in commercial applications), are easy care and if you drop something it's unlikely to break. You can get them dyed in just about any color, but I chose a rather neutral warm tone with a somewhat busy pattern. See pic below.

2. True granite countertops are practically indestructible. Mine (UbaTuba) never needs sealing. When our house budget skyrocketed, I wanted to just put in formica, i.e. laminate. I know there are plenty of beautiful ones out there. DH insisted on the granite and I'm so glad he did. I love working on it. Right now there are a lot of other stones marketed as granite that you have to be a bit more careful with. Your granite fabricator or the folks at the stoneadviceforum.com can advise you as to the durability of various stones and how to test those you like.

3. Use drawers for your lower cabinets. It makes storage/retrieval so much easier, and you get productive use out of much more of the space. Some people recommend keeping one cabinet as shelves. I don't regret having all drawers.

4. Look at IKEA kitchen cabs. Their quality is unbelievable, even without consideration of the price. Some folks don't like the fronts that IKEA sells. You can still come out way ahead financially if you have your own fronts make. There is a great online cabinet company that will also make fronts for IKEA. I can't remember the name but you'll find it if you look at the forum in no. 5. This cabinet company also makes fabulous cabinets and will customize to the nth degree for you. Also, look at the IKEAFANS forum (ikeafans.com) for all kinds of help and examples of completed IKEA kitchens. I've used my IKEA kitchen cabs without drawer fronts for nearly a year, and they have performed fabulously! The engineering is just that good. My island is posted below.

5. Check out the Kitchen Forum on GardenWeb.com The folks there will give you all sorts of great advice on layout, pricing, materials and things you've never even thought to consider yet. They also have a great blog of completed kitchens you can browse at http://finishedkitchens.blogspot.com/ My kitchen isn't there yet, but will be when finished.

6. Think out and walk through your layout a zillion times before building. While you're cooking, thing about the motions you'd be making if you were doing this in your planned kitchen. A good layout is at least as important as any other element when it comes to a great kitchen, much more so than cabinet looks or counter surfaces in my opinion.

7. Take a good look at induction cooktops before you choose another cooking type. They are fabulous. Also, the APPLIANCE forum on GardenWeb is a wonderful place to discuss pros and cons of various appliances.

8. If you can work a raised dishwasher into your design, your back will love you for years to come.

Cork Floor (American Cork Cleopatra plank)

Island with temporary top -

Closeup of self-closing drawers - yes, those items at the edge don't fall out, that's how gentle they are!

raised dishwasher next to dish storage

earlier photo showing dishwasher in context of kitchen layout

audra36274's picture
audra36274

You can access even the stuff that's way in the back. I love being able to pack my drawers and be able to pull them out and be in full view of everything on it not just the things that are on the front like in traditional cabinets. I have drawers that I have labels especially for my smaller quantities of my different flours (potato, clear, ect.) one for cookie baking (you'd be surprised how more often you will make cookies (or any other project for that matter) if you have all your ingredients at hand. I wish all my cabinets had drawers, at at least pull out drawers inside the cabinets.

  I'm glad you wrote in on the cork flooring. I have stood in my parents restaurant for years on a concrete floor, and have the purple veins on my legs to prove it! I have wood at home, but all that wood - cabinets, floor, blah blah.. is a little too much. I have tile in a few other places. The idea of dropping stuff and it exploding is a bummer, but mainly all I care about is the look and if its comfortable to stand on. I like the look of the cork but had never heard from any one who had it. Its a renewable resource, it's not very expensive, and your is very pretty. It sounds like it would be very comfortable to stand on. Is it permanently sealed? Easy to clean? It looks like it wouldn't show every little thing with its designing. I had a white high gloss linoleum floor when I had my first kitchen.I thought it was the prettiest thing I had ever seen when they installed it. It was soooo shiny. And WHITE, did I mention that is was white. I soon found out that I would be a slave to a mop. Bach then in my youth I would work 12 hours at the restaurant, come home and mop, EVERY NIGHT. It has left my house. Anyway... Love your floor ideas.

KipperCat's picture
KipperCat

The cork comes sealed with about 4 coats of polyurethane, which makes it very easy to clean with a damp mop.  If the poly ever wears, I can always add more.  I think the commercial cork floors that have lasted for several decades are unsealed.

My Mom had a kitchen floor that she mopped every day (before going to work in her case), hence my choice of a highly figured floor!    

cordel's picture
cordel

I too love my bottom drawers, installed in 1991 when we renovated.  I really wouldn't change my kitchen all that much, but I would like pull out pantry shelving in my pantry to replace my open shelves.  I think I could store enough on them to reduce the number needed, so I could install a window with a baking station right in front of it.

I would also love to install a cork floor, but I really don't think it is tough enough to deal with my two chows, my cat, and my husband who loves to cook, but never had a mother nag about dripping on the floor.  Actually, my mother did not nag, she just told me to sweep and wash it.

KipperCat's picture
KipperCat

You have a wise mother! Spills aren't a problem, I've no idea about the dogs. My 2 cats (with claws) don't damage it at all.

I am so looking forward to my pullout pantries. Right now I'm using a bookshelf and a small closet.

sarayale's picture
sarayale

Do not be afraid of granite.  I have it and love it and have no problems with staining or anything.  Home Depot now sells a granite (and I think there are others) that come presealed for 15 years.  I would just get a good quality granite, not from a cheap unknown and you should have no problem.  I have 5 kids and careless housekeepers and my granite still looks new.  The quartz based counters claim they are better than granite but I was able to scratch a sample with my car key and my granite does not scratch, so I think granite  is better.  Also, I think granite is more heat resistant.  I have always liked formica but if  you can afford granite it is the way to go.

Any dream kitchen should have at least 2 sinks.  It is so frustrating when I am trying to cook in a rush and someone is at the sink.  Especially if you have a housekeeper, or more than one person attending to the kitchen, it is crucial.

Also, if you have a big family or frequently entertain 2 dishwashers is great as they take so long to finish washing, you can start loading the 2nd one before the first is done to minimize the clutter and mess of stacked dishes.

Lastly, there are some new awesome vinyl floors that have fiberglass in them and have unbelieveable patterns.  IVC, Armstrong and Mannington have them now and they look great and are cushiony so I think it is great for people who walk barefoot, have babies, or kids who frequently drop dishes.  Also, they are not expensive at all.