Premier, one of our cabinet manufacturers, has featured our newly remodeled showroom in their most recent blog post. To see it, click the link: http://premiercb.com.s136952.gridserver.com/blog/2013/07/jennifer-gilmers-style-statement/
We put this display in to
show how one of our custom cabinet lines Premier can not only create contemporary design, but, that they can
execute it like no one else can. The
wood is flat cut figured walnut and the exotic grain is book matched throughout. The high gloss polyester finish makes this
display shine. The hood is curved with
an asymmetrical duct designed to fit the change in ceiling height. The entire display speaks for itself, totally
unique and timeless! This display also
illustrates the epitome of blending old with new. I like to refer to this display as “shabby
chic”. What looks like old barn wood is
actually made with new wood but is very expertly finished to look old.
These white painted cabinets were inspired by mid century architecture like the Empire State Building. This is a nice way to get a Transitional kitchen with some flare. The walnut interiors are standard so, we are showing it off with glass and lit interiors. The wood top is solid walnut that is actually 1 ¼” thick with ¾” hidden behind the drawers. This makes the wood top more stable through time, and, less likely to ever warp. The armoire next to it is made of a combination of rift ash and walnut.
Our bath display serves two purposes, a display and closing area. The tub is free standing, yet, built in with the same stone tile that is on the back wall. The white cabinets are Greenfield, showing that they can also create contemporary cabinets. The off white tall cabinets are Décor, and shows many accessories as well as solid wood vs. metal drawer options. The table is mobile, and, we do roll it out from time to time for large meetings or for events in our showroom.
Jennifer Gilmer, CKD.
New Corner Showroom-
After having been in
our location for over 12 years, we were delighted to be able to take over the
corner space when that tenant moved out.
This space allowed us to have much more exposure because of the corner
windows which are visible for traffic going north and south. Décor was developing a new contemporary line,
Zonavita, so, it only made sense for us dedicate this space to that line of
cabinets. This European style is about
half the price of its competitors and, thankfully, is selling very well
Around the corner is our Miele refrigerator/freezer and full height wine cooler. Since Miele’s signature color is red, we made these two large pieces that same red. We moved these fairly close to the window so that they would demand a lot of attention – and that they do!
We have put the Miele steam oven and speed oven display side by side and made this 2/3 high to get that European feel. The top doors are in plexiglass
in a white opaque finish set into an almost undetectable aluminum frame. The rest of the cabinet is made from
thermofoil. The bright orange is a show stopper and with the added color under the breakfast bar, it has a happy presence.
The old photos on the walls
are of my family. My grandfather had a Maytag appliance store back in the 1920’s, and,my mom is
shown drafting planes for the war back in 1942.
The Bellini chairs are a classic.
Clients find the history very interesting.
The tub display is not quite finished yet, but, what we do have shows some more innovative hardware.The Corian countertops are backlit, and, especially glow at night. The green cabinets are made of Abet Laminati laminate and were purposely chosen to have a retro feel. These doors are on servo drive and open sideways. The wall is planked reclaimed wood, a trend that is very hot at the moment.
The coffee station display is made by Quality, a different cabinet line. We wanted to show a high gloss paint finish custom cabinet in a contemporary style. The coffee machine is working and is used for clients when meetings are held in that showroom. The white cabinets have a slight hint of yellow in them, and, the quartzite countertop compliments this color. The wood is engineered rift oak with a soft matte finish on the shelves and a gloss finish on the back panels.
Any comments/questions please email us email@example.com. Would love to hear your feedback! You can also visit our site for more ideas at www.jennifergilmerkitchens.com
Jennifer Gilmer, CKD.
This home is a stately brick town house on Embassy Row in Washington, DC, built in 1908. It was an embassy at one time, but had been abandoned for some time when our clients acquired it. They initiated a total rehabilitation and turned to JGKB to design their kitchen.
s Three tall cabinets for dish and pantry storage on the wall opposite the windows make up for the lack of storage on the window wall. They also hide the microwave oven behind retractable doors.
s Cabinetry panels on the refrigerator and the pantries align to create order and linear continuity.
s Desk fits in nicely as a niche between the refrigerator and tall cabinets and breaks up the run of too many door panels.
s Glass inserts with brass wire details in the wall cabinet doors above the desk area complement the historical feel of the house.
Other details added to complement the style and time period of this house were custom made metal brackets under the breakfast bar as well as curved pot racks on either end of the window wall. We replicated corbels that were found elsewhere in the house to support the hood and the Cape Cod shelves.The clients searched far and wide for just the right pendant lights and found this pair of antique fixtures. The grandeur of this space speaks for itself, and, is well suited for this family and their impeccable taste! Click on any image to enlarge it. Tell us what you think or ask questions about materials used or recommend us!
Ambra Lake blue Limestone honed and polished dimensional field tile.
This sculptured limestone provides extraordinary texture and depth in this kitchen below-
The Wenge wood eating bar set into the counter top adds warmth and brings an interesting contrast and balance to the design.
With imagination and creative brainstorming we were able to transform this kitchen into a beautiful artsy space! Clients loved it.
For more projects designed by Lauren Gagnon please visit us at www.jennifergilmerkitchens.com
Would love to hear your comments, email Lauren at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have you ever noticed that styles come in waves? New clothing fashions, interior design styles, even film genres seem to roll in every once in a while, inspiring a burst of frenzied production/imitation – and then suddenly, everyone’s got one? A good idea that catches on so fast, inevitably burns itself out. Everyone tries it, tires of it, and looks for whatever’s… NEXT.
In the world of kitchen design, we’re not immune to this. The glossy pages of home magazines are dog-eared, ripped out, and posted up – sometimes for many months – until finally a client has found someone to fit and build what they’ve already seen, loved, and dreamed of.
And after all of those months of hard work to bring this emulation about – is it still what they want? Is it still in fashion, still relevant?
Has it already begun to date itself?
When I meet a client for the first time, this is often one of their big worries. “How can we make a beautiful space – no, a STUNNING space - but also make it timeless?” There’s a lot of energy, and money, at stake in this – so hopefully, every designer is asking and answering this question, for themselves and for their clients. For me, the answer is twofold…
Take some direction from the surroundings.
This may seem obvious, but somehow a lot of the kitchens being ripped out for new ones have ignored this idea. People don’t usually remodel because their kitchens are falling apart, but because they were designed in a passing style that is now out of date. More and more these days, the kitchen is opened up to adjoining living spaces, becoming a central piece of a home’s architecture, and the life of its inhabitants. It’s not just a room anymore – it’s a centerpiece of a home. An expensive one! So, whether you’re the client or the designer, you’d better get it right. Not just right for today, but right for a long, long time.
So, how? Well, just as you wouldn’t want your architect to plan an exterior addition that didn’t complement the rest of the house, neither should you do so on the interior, with your built-in architecture. The kitchen (or pantry, or bookcases) should feel natural and at home in the house. The design should carefully balance elements that are true to the surroundings, and yet also add a few new tricks and twists.
That brings us to trick number two…
Turn something on its head.
Bring in something unique and unexpected to give the design life, richness, and spontaneity. Blend materials, colors, styles that you wouldn’t usually see together – that “something” that makes your design a little different than everyone else’s. Put something modern in a rustic design – put something bright against your neutrals. If you can’t exactly typecast the design – if it doesn’t fit neatly under a single label or passing trend – then chances are, you’ve got something that will bridge passing styles, be truly special, and become timeless.
The project below is a beautiful example of this. In it, Jennifer Gilmer created a butler’s pantry for her own home, inspired by the context of the Craftsman Bunglow architecture. The design looks like it grew out of the house… and yet, not exactly. What is it? Craftsman? Asian? Southwest Fusion? How’d she do that?!
She used materials that were historically appropriate to the style, expertly blending wood, copper and stone. She kept the design balanced, the lines simple and clean. The sink area feels like it grew out of the house particularly, because she’s enclosed the window and ceiling soffit in matching paneling. She used a sculpted stone sink that reminds one of the Southwest, and set it out from the counter so that it almost looks like a rock growing out of a hill. She cut sleek angles and arcs into the copper countertop… an unexpected, lovely, and exciting detail.
On the opposite side, Jennifer used the empty space under the stairs to create a custom hide-away space. The angled cabinetry doors complement the lines of her house wonderfully with their repeating rhythm. The translucent fern screens bring in a subtle Asian influence, emanating a soft light, and offering another deft design twist. Functionally – this area also serves a wonderful purpose – it opens to reveal a hidden beverage station, perfect for entertaining.
When you’re embarking on your next project, whether you’re a designer or a homeowner, try to balance both of these principles in your plans. Remember the context – honor the architecture and materials of the surroundings – but also be sure to add the unexpected twist! This is where your creativity can really flow, and where the design can truly sing. The results are sure to be stunning, and relevant, for years to come.
Lauren Gagnon, Kitchen & Bath Designer.We would love to hear from you, please feel free to leave comments or email Lauren directly at email@example.com with any questions.
When they arrived, they had a large task at hand. Sifting through the memories and relics of
the last generation also revealed the need to offer the house itself some new
life. Thus began the delicate process of honoring the past, while also
re-imagining what the house could one day become.
Click here for more images.
To support the dynamic family life this new generation desired, the first task became clear – open up the energy and flow of today’s main living spaces – the kitchen, family eating table, and den. Removing the dividing walls allows light and life to pass through effortlessly.
Secondly – create a palette that is crisp, clean, and classic enough to complement an American Colonial home, while also fresh and modern enough to excite a forward-thinking, globe-trotting young family. We chose the fresh modernity of white-on-white materials, balanced by deep, rich wood tones, and accented lightly by marble, linen, and chrome details.
The re-imagined cooking, eating, and living space has truly been transformed. State of the art equipment, elegant finishes, and a gracious layout has truly breathed new life into the home, and the new generation living within it.
Lauren would love to hear your comments or answer any questions you may have at firstname.lastname@example.org
Contemporary kitchens are hot these days. Designing kitchens in the minimalist style is especially popular. Clients are asking to leave wall space, to use floating shelves in lieu of wall cabinets or to exclude wall cabinets all together. Having more wall space allows the homeowner to display artwork or photographs, using directional lights or picture lights to enhance the focal point. Other materials are being used to create accents, like translucent panels made out of resin and acrylic which may contain grasses, ferns, other organic or recycled materials and other items that add color and texture. When these panels are back lit, they add a glowing accent that will enhance the space. Check out our portfolio www.jennifergilmerkitchens.com for ideas and couple other sites- www.lumicor.com or www.3-form.com to see some examples of what is available and their applications.
Email me your questions or comments at email@example.com
Jennifer Gilmer, CKD
The humble backsplash isn’t just for practical purposes anymore. Besides catching water and dirt from touching the walls behind sinks and stoves, backsplashes can also make a strong design statement. But what was once fashionable is no longer much used, and backsplash trends have changed over the past few years.
There are many backsplash treatments available, but tile still remains the favorite. Keep in mind, however, that tile trends are ever changing. Tumbled marble and small square glass tiles are not as popular as they once were. Stone tiles are still in, but the treatment of the stone, along with its size, shape, and color, has all changed. Where stone mosaics were once all the rage, it’s now all about installing stone tiles in a uniform color, either cut very small or very large, and either of the same or varying sizes. Instead of the previous focus on the interplay of color, the current focus is on the play of shadows as the light hits this beautifully simple yet textured wall.
Glass tiles (other than the small square ones) are still popular. If small tiles are desired, choose ones that are irregular in shape, rather than 1-2” squares. Larger, rectangular glass tiles that range from 3x6” to 12x24”, and any size in between, are now available and very popular in contemporary kitchens. This type of tile opens up a space, creates less interruption with grout lines, and adds to a pared-down style of kitchen. To make a glass backsplash that’s even more restrained, use glass sheets that are back painted in whatever color you desire. These are made by glass specialty shops—but not all shops can do this successfully, so be careful who you choose to do this work. Read the full article at http://www.cultivate.com/articles/backsplash-trends
To view more backsplash images click here.
Whatever your budget, from small to sky-high, it’s entirely possible to get a gorgeous new kitchen. The key is finding a great designer—someone who has a passion for excellence, an eye for creativity, and the ability to discover what will work best for you. Even projects with extremely high budgets can turn into disasters without a skilled professional to help guide design choices, while projects with more modest funds can have beautiful outcomes with the right help.
Don’t be daunted by so-called “high-end designers,” either. There’s nothing more satisfying than having someone who thinks that they can’t afford design services walk into a showroom and discover that they can redo a kitchen within their budget. Some hard choices might have to be made, and some concessions allowed, but it’s possible to spend the same amount or slightly more money by working with a talented designer as you would shopping by yourself at a big box store and, as a result, get much more bang for your buck!
How is this feasible? Consider the design process. First, a designer might sit down with you and draw your current kitchen on paper. You would talk about your likes and dislikes of your present set-up, as well as discussing a wish list and anything else the designer should know. After working together for an hour, a design plan could be created that would show how your ideal kitchen would function, where the appliances would be located, and which appliances might work best. After establishing a floor plan, the designer would have an idea of linear footage of cabinets, countertops, and the types of appliances needed. Using all these details, the designer could then work up a project cost estimate with budget limitations in mind. Once a designer’s services are retained, the final design and price would be set.
Read the entire article here.
For more kitchen & bath ideas visit us at www.jennifergilmerkitchens.com
The most popular kitchen style request these days seems to be simplicity. From a desire for clean lines and understated elegance to a dislike of anything overdone or flashy, people are getting back to basics in their design decisions.
The reason for this restrained aesthetic is two-fold. The first is a response to the overly ornate kitchens of the 1990s and early 2000s, when money was flowing and people wanted to see and flaunt the fruits of their success, and at the same time, the kitchen industry was constantly introducing innovative technology, details, and accessories for people to try. The second explanation? In a fast-paced world that’s ever more complicated, people want their homes to be beautiful, calm retreats—and simplicity is equally well suited to contemporary, transitional, or traditional styles.
The flat, frameless cabinet doors and lack of patterns that are characteristic of contemporary kitchens naturally create a simple, uncomplicated look. To integrate this kind of kitchen within a more traditional house, standard or exotic wood cabinets, perhaps mixed with white cabinet accents and stainless appliances, will help the kitchen blend in with other woodwork. The woodwork in classic bungalows, for example, is typically dark, so using a flat door in a dark wood will resonate with the overall architectural feel. Top this off with a classic Carrera or Calcatta marble countertop and, voila! The kitchen would be a perfect fit for this type of historic home. Click here to read the entire article.
Visit us at www.jennifergilmerkitchens.com
Though some interior design trends come and go, other style elements become instant classics. Take stainless steel, as one example. Often associated with commercial kitchens, neutral in terms of color and aesthetic, stainless appliances and counters now work in almost any application. Other kitchen fashions last only a short time or are quickly deemed impractical. So what are the current hot items to have, what’s on the way out, and what is here to stay?
One appliance must-have right now is a built-in or integrated refrigerator in high-end kitchens. Many manufacturers make them, and you have the option of wood panels to blend with surrounding cabinetry to make the fridge look like a piece of furniture, or you can buy them in stainless steel to be a shining accent in your kitchen. Also trendy are old-fashioned style refrigerators put in traditional and/or whimsical kitchens, or installed in contemporary spaces to add visual interest. These refrigerators are great when they’re paired with an old-fashioned style range like an Aga, La Cornue, or Bertazzoni, all of which come in fun colors to match the refrigerator.
To read the entirte artcile please visit http://www.cultivate.com/articles/appliance-trends
View more kitchen projects visit us at www.jennifergilmerkitchens.com
times, clients want to have a breakfast table to accommodate four to six
people, but their space is limited. When a table is in the kitchen,
it’s required that another five feet in addition to the table size is
available. This is because when the chairs are pushed back, they
inevitably will take up another 30” for the person to be able to get in and
out. This is the minimum space to allow, a little large space is better
so that when the chair is in the out position, a person will still be able to
walk by, or the chair won’t hit a wall, island or peninsula.
are a great idea since the bench eliminates the need to have an additional 30 –
36” for clearance. This also keeps the table closer to the wall and out
of the way. A banquette does not necessarily have to be set up against a
wall, consider putting it on the back of the island. This idea works
especially well when the kitchen is open to the family room.
Try nestling a table into the back of the island and put the table on casters so that when more space is needed, the table can be pulled out to accommodate more people. This solution is cleaner and looks great in a contemporary kitchen; it also works in tighter spaces than a banquette since the seat of a banquette will take up a minimum of 21 additional inches. It’s important to plan for the table pulling out, make sure that there is enough room to do so or that furniture, a chair for instance, isn’t too close or can easily be moved out of the way. Stools can be tucked under the table against the island so that when the table moves forward, the chairs are automatically in position and ready for use.
October 14, 2009
In recent years, wood and butcher block counter tops have made a come back. These countertops are not like the ones that you grew up with, they are new and improved. Well, I can't say "new" since they have been used for hundreds of years, but, what is new is that they come in a variety of standard and exotic wood species. Most people relate butcher block with maple since that has been the most used wood for this purpose. Now, you can tailor your wood top to match or blend with your cabinets and other countertops. Other wood species to consider are walnut, cherry, oak and for more of a punch, check out teak, bamboo, wenge, mahogany, zebrawood, eucalyptus, bubinga, rosewood and more (see pics below)... There are three different applications for the construction of these wood tops, end grain, edge grain and flat grain. To learn more about this, go to www.glumber.com which is the Grothouse Website, the leading company in quality wood tops.
In the past, the maple butcher blocks that most of us are familiar with, they didn't hold up that well. The reason for this is that a top coat varnish was applied in an effort to protect the wood, however, this top coat would break down in time with knife cuts and burns. Once the varnish is penetrated, it opens a wound in which water, food and dirt can seep in which can be destructive to the look and function of the top. The secret to a long lasting beautiful wood countertop is to not put any top coat finish on it, simply oil it with mineral oil. Some people think this is a drawback, but I have a wood top in my kitchen and it's a simple and quick process - certainly well worth the look. If a knife should cut it or a burn occur, simply lightly sand it and then oil it again. It's important to continue oiling the top every couple of months or so, this helps the wood to stay healthy and less penetrable to liquids. In contrast to what you may have heard about wood being unsafe because it's being porous which may lend itself to absorbing or holding onto germs, the reality is that wood is very safe. It still has it's natural enzymes in the wood which actually breaks down food particles almost overnight, a fact that few people know about!
There is a furniture finish called "Durata" that can be applied to the counter, this finish will resist any and all water, but, it can show scratches. This finish is best used on a counter surface which will not be in an area of heavy use, perhaps on a table, a desk or an accent area.
Visit the Grothouse Lumber design gallery to see the many options that are available for your new wood top. Make sure to use a reputable Kitchen Designer to create the design around this wonderful material.
Gilmer, CKD, is an award-winning designer whose eponymous Washington,
D.C. firm has designed more than 1,000 kitchens in a variety of styles
and won more than 15 national awards, including the “Pinnacle of
Design” for the best overall space at this year’s annual National
Kitchen & Bath Association convention in Atlanta.
With kitchens remaining many homeowners’ favorite rooms to remodel, there’s a stronger chance of recouping dollars spent on this investment than several others. Here Gilmer discusses the latest trends, including how to pare the high cost of remodeling and her latest venture, Kitchen Design OnLine, which helps homeowners plan their dream kitchen wherever they live.
Question: You're used to designing fairly high-end kitchens. What are the essentials that differentiate them from lower- and mid-range kitchens?
Answer: Better quality kitchens have more character, like open shelves that float or are suspended by cables, pantry cabinets or islands designed to look like furniture, stacked cabinets almost to the ceiling with interesting moldings and thicker countertops. They also have built-in refrigerators, double side-by-side instead of stacked ovens and more specialized appliances like steam/convection ovens. Finishes are also more custom, such as milk paint, crackle and exotic woods. Backsplashes are more intricate or custom. Lighting is improved with smaller low-voltage recessed cans or an antique chandelier over an island or table.
Q: You've recently developed KitchenDesignOnline.net, where you help homeowners bridge the gap between high-end showrooms and home improvement stores by providing design plans online. How does this work?
A: I developed the idea after hearing people talk about not being able to find a good designer at the discount cabinet store where they were planning on buying cabinets. Our service offers a few levels of design from basic drawings to detailed plan views, elevations and a three-dimensional drawing.
A client fills out a questionnaire about the style they prefer, appliances, their lifestyle, number of family members, number of cooks, entertaining needs, et cetera. We also ask clients to measure and sketch their kitchen, and we have a section on our site that explains how to do this. Once that sketch is uploaded to our site, we draw the existing space and send back drawing(s) to be checked. We work on the floor plan until they’re satisfied.
Next comes elevations. The process continues until clients approve the final design. They can take it to the cabinet showroom where they’ll purchase cabinetry or use the design to shop around and choose a cabinet dealer.
For the full article, click here
For the full article, click here
This project is situated on the Atlantic coast, and, the house was built by the top real estate agent in that area. It was very important that her house has all of the features that her clients are looking for when they want to purchase their beach house. She wanted to have open spaces that took advantage of the beautiful view, yet, it had to be warm and cozy. She also wanted to have a unique cabinet design since she was tired of seeing the predictable “shaker” style cabinets in cherry that have been so popular for the last 10 years.
saw in my showroom the door style that she wanted, a unique, sculpted door with
an Asian flair. She also loved the
walnut wood which is very rich and warm and different from any other kitchen
she has seen. She loved the 2” thick
Valley Gold marble in this display, and, even though it was risky as far as its
maintenance, she was willing to take the risk.
We decided to incorporate quite a bit of frosted glass in order to bring
in the soft blue/green color of the ocean into her home. With the materials selected, we were ready to
move on to designing her kitchen.
The Kitchen was open to the family room, and, did not have enough space for a table to be freestanding out in the space at all times. We had the challenge of getting a table that could seat at least 6 people in a space where we really didn’t have room. Also, the dining room is behind the range, and did not have a view of the ocean. The only windows in this room were on the side of the house, looking at the neighbor’s home. She shares her home only with her husband and their dog, so, she didn’t require a lot of refrigeration, so, we reconsidered the big side by side refrigerator which was in the original plan. She also liked the idea of hiding the oven and microwave since her kitchen was so open to the family room. Then, she wanted a pantry, however, the wall that was left for that had a window in it which cramped the pantry space. These were the design challenges for this space.
We decided to have a butcher block table made to match the walnut on the cabinets, and, it had to be a large one, 72” round. In order to have it fit in the space, we have it “attached” to the island most times, but, the casters make it possible to move it out when she has more company. Under the table and attached to the island is a built in booth which is automatic seating and allows for the table to not have to be pulled out too far when in use. We could not center the island in the room, so, instead, we centered this very large and beautiful table. The asymmetry that was created really complimented the mild Asian style of the kitchen!
To solve the closed off dining room, I recommended that we delete the walls on either side of the range and put “floating” shelves suspended by cables which would serve both the kitchen and the dining room both in function and style. This worked like a charm!
We eliminated the large refrigerator/freezer unit and instead, we used a 27” built in Sub Zero all refrigerator on the side closest to the sink and complimented that on the opposite side with a tall cabinet which houses the oven and microwave. This balanced and tidied up that elevation using some ingenuity so as to keep the space open and airy. The Sub Zero freezer drawers are next to the refrigerator under the counter.
The pantry problem was resolved by incorporating the window inside it. By creating very large slider doors with frosted glass, the window added some beautiful natural light so as to have the pantry glow during the day. The soft/blue green color of the frosted glass is further complimented by the backsplash tile, a perfect combination.
A good designer enjoys designing challenging spaces. Seek the help of a professional kitchen designer in your local area, or, work with a designer from the comfort of your own home at www.kitchendesignonline.net.
This is my very own kitchen. The room is an addition to the house which has floor to ceiling sliding glass doors in the family room side. In the kitchen, I opted to not have any windows with the exception of the clear story windows above the pantry. To be able to obtain the design, it was necessary to not have windows in the kitchen (not a good view on that side of the house as well).
To make up for the lack of
natural light in the kitchen, I added back painted full glass panels on the
backsplash. The color is a light yellow/green, so, when the hood and under
cabinet lights are turned on, the entire backsplash glows! In order
to get outlets on the backsplash, I added a fairly high, about 9" backsplash of
the honed black absolute granite in which the black outlets were
installed. The island also has the same black granite, but, it's also
surrounded with wenge butcher block. A sliding butcher block board can
slide over the sink to increase counter space when needed.
The pantries not only store food but they also house the steam/convection oven and microwave. When in use, the doors bifold and slide back so that the entire space can be opened and left open during food preparation. Putting the counter inside this pantry allows me to store and use some countertop appliances in there as well. The custom hood lines up with the ceiling beams and is very wide and spacious to accomodate the 36" gas cooktop, deep fryer and grill/griddle.
This kitchen isn't a really large one, yet, it stores all I need and functions beautifully. A medium sized kitchen is all that one needs, and, they are more functional since it isn't necessary to cover a lot of ground when preparing dinner and when cleaning up!
Small kitchens can be challenging, but, it is incredible the ways in which you can open it up more to make it seem larger or how you can pack the space with storage and appliances and still have a great looking kitchen!
Think about taking down a wall to open up the kitchen to the dining room or family room. There is no need to push the kitchen out into the adjoining room, just simply taking the wall down and putting in a peninsula of base cabinets and countertop will make the kitchen seem much larger. Maybe adding some floating shelves above this peninsula where dishes, serving bowls and platters can be stored would be a good idea to make up for the wall cabinet space that is lost by taking down the wall. Use of a pot rack can conserve precious storage space in large base cabinets. Also, consider reducing the depth of cabinets so that they can fit in lighter spaces, like behind doors or next to windows. You can also explore sinking cabinets into walls where it's possible in order to get some additional storage. Make sure that the cabinets have layered storage such as spice racks or canned storage on the backs of the doors. Order extra shelves which allow for more storage since typically there is much wasted space in cabinets due to too much space between shelves. To get more ideas visit KDOL's portfolio.
Using smaller, European appliances can help, for instance, a 24" under counter oven that has a rotisserie in it from corner to corner for cooking a large turkey will save a lot of room. Any size cook top can go above this oven with a little design innovation with the cabinets. For the hood, you can use a combination microwave and hood which doesn't always look the best, but certainly conserves space. Smaller built in refrigerators are a great idea too, and, you can separate the refrigerator from the freezer by using under counter freezer drawers. This will allow enough refrigeration space without taking up too much counter space. Dishwashers can also be found in 18" wide and based on the design of the racks, they can accommodate a lot of dishes and glasses.
A good designer enjoys the challenge of designing in smaller spaces. Seek the help of a kitchen designer in your local area, or, work with a designer from the comfort of your own home at www.kitchendesignonline.net.