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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The too big kitchen

I know it seems impossible that there are kitchens that are simply too big. Hard to imagine, especially since most of my clients call me in because their kitchens are too darn small! However, there are kitchens here in the Bay Area that are equally a problem due to their size - too big, too many cabinets, too much useless space.

To be fair, the problem is not entirely due to their size, but mostly due to poor cabinet layout and lack of kitchen planning. This kitchen is a prime example...

Looks great...yes, but upon unpacking, not as useful a space as you would think. For starters, the stove top in the island took up all the bottom cabinets with vents, pipes and false drawer fronts. Pots and pans had to be housed on the opposite side and in cabinetry actually built to hold large platters. In fact, most of the island is actually false fronted drawers and cabinets.

Two of the upper cabinets actually housed giant spice racks - which means standing on a step stool to get the cinnamon down and the heavy wooden racks attached to the cabinet doors weigh a ton. The upper cabinets above the dishwashers (yes, there are two - side by side), turned out to be too shallow to hold the large dinner plates and pasta bowls, so they had to be stored in the cabinets below.

Most of the lower cabinets contained fixed shelving and a strange configuration of wire racks. For the life of me, I couldn't figure out what was meant to go in them. No where for a garbage or recycling cans to go. Drawers are either too shallow or way too deep to hold utensils and flatware. The perfect drawer across from the main sink which should hold dish towels actually had a built in bread box.

The appliance garage has no plugs and, in fact, there is only one wall plug per length of countertop smack in the middle of each wall.

So, the next time you have "kitchen size envy" remember that all that size does not necessarily translate to usefulness.

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