Vestabul Design Experts have designed hundreds of kitchens over the years. The following are some examples of solutions that they have developed. All of the designs are Functional Designs with the Kitchen Zones of Food Storage, Prep, Cooking, Serving and Clean-Up identified. Vestabul is here to help you achieve these solutions in your kitchen too!
Dealing with the Post
As seen in the Before pictures of this space, there was a support post in the middle of the space that could not be relocated. This had been causing challenges for the homeowner to work out a functional kitchen design. Here is the Vestabul Designer’s Solution.
The design started by moving the range to an outside wall so that the microwave space saver hood could be vented to the outside. This allowed more space on the side wall so that the Food Storage Zone could be outfitted with a pantry and a bottom mount paneled refrigerator. The sink was angled into the corner providing a Clean-up Zone with dishwasher on one side and a the Prep Zone on the other. The Cooking Zone received a bonus shallow pantry that was recessed into the back of the existing front door closet. This “pantry” stores extra supplies that only need 9″ of depth.
The center piece of this design was the movable island. It’s primary function is as the Serving Zone but it also acts as a secondary Prep Zone. The homeowner loves that she can move it around to fit her needs of the moment. It can be angled across from the sink for a tight work triangle, placed perpendicular to the post on the right or left to direct kitchen traffic. It can even be rolled over to the patio for alfresco buffet service!
This updated kitchen was also fitted with rollout shelves in the pantry, tray dividers above the refrigerator, sink cabinet accessories, drawer dividers and a condiment pullout. In the end the post in the middle of the space helped develop the concept of the rolling island. Maybe it was meant to be!
Updating a G-Shaped Kitchen
At first glance this G-Shaped kitchen seemed like it would be functional and offer a lot of storage. The reality was that all of the corners in the design was making it very inefficient. The Vestabul Designer suggestion was to develop a plan based on angles that echo the existing breakfast nook window placement.
The final design placed the cooktop and the sink on angles and opened up the entire room. The wall oven was placed on the end wall outside of the main Cooking Zone since this household primarily used the cooktop.
Each of the Kitchen Zones were designed for maximum functionality. A pantry was placed beside the refrigerator in the Food Storage Zone. The Cooking Zone received deep pots & pans drawers under the cooktop, a condiment rollout and utensil drawer dividers. A great Prep Zone was created between the cooktop and the sink with ample storage and accessories. The Clean-up Zone placed the dishwasher between it and the Serving Zone for easy clean-up after meals. A large recycle center was specified beside the sink. The Serving Zone was placed at the end of the run with upper cabinetry that comes down to the counter top to allow the children to set the table. Cutlery is stored in a drawer immediately under the upper cabinets.
Some additional feature to make this kitchen very family friendly included a built-in table and a cozy window seat. Everyone can now gather in the kitchen and have a place to be without interfering with the cook!
Warming Up an All White Builder’s Kitchen
The initial reaction to the 5 year old kitchen by the new homeowners was that it was too white. Once they moved into the space the family also realized the layout was not working for them. The Vestabul Designer came up with a plan to both warm it up and make it more functional.
Warm wood finishes in two different stains were first specified to warm up the space. It was now time to tackle the functionality. The original U-Shaped main kitchen area was opened up by angling the peninsula into the great room. Placing the range in the corner and topping it with a custom wood hood made it the focal point of this area. This placement also produced ample counter space on either side of the range for cooking supplies. The sink was moved onto the peninsula and the cabinetry was accessorised to deal with clean-up activities. Food Prep now had two options: the large counter expanse of the peninsula or the more compact area under the window between the sink and range.
The Food Storage area was placed where the pantries were originally located. The unused desk was eliminated and a microwave pantry replaced it. The refrigerator was moved into this area with the angled peninsula acting as the drop off space for the refrigerator. The Vestabul designer treated this whole Zone as a furniture piece with pilaster posts capping off both ends and an open shelf and mesh inserted upper doors completing the look.
The new Serving Zone was placed where the refrigerator had originally been. The doorway beside this unit accesses the formal dining room so this set up is ideal. This expanse of countertop is perfect for setting up a bar or coffee station during entertaining. The added bonus is that diners who have a view of the kitchen now see a beautiful hutch rather than an old refrigerator.
Adding An Island
A Kitchen Island is the #1 asked for element from homeowners for their new kitchen. This was the request of this client and the Vestabul Designer was tasked with redesigning the tired U-shaped plan into a more modern and functional L-shaped with Island design.
The new island design for this kitchen produced a large prep zone in the center of the space. It actually produced 9 lineal feet of counter frontage for prep that accommodates multiple cooks in the kitchen. The back wall has a large food storage zone with a 33″ wide refrigerator and a matching 33″ wide pantry. The pantry is fitted with 5 rollout shelves allowing all of the families food to be stored in this area.
The cooking zone is in the corner forming a focal point for the space. A space saver microwave is above the range putting all of the cooking activities in one area. The clean-up zone is centred under a new large window above the sink. The view out this window is spectacular and the homeowner actually enjoys the activity of clean-up now!
At the end of the cabinet run is a raised counter that functioned as a Serving Zone. This bank of cabinetry is out fitted with pullout wicker baskets that store table linens that can be carried directly to the dining table for table setting. This area is also an excellent area to set up a coffee/desert bar while entertaining or a prep zone for taller cooks.
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