House Plans

Zen and the Art of Kitchen Design

Our kitchen is rather small. 3650 x 2860 or thereabouts. There’s also not much in it that we can keep, see Tanya’s blog for pictures.

Firstly, we decided to move the door(way). That opens the kitchen up, or splits it down the middle, depending on how you look at it. The opening can’t be too far to the left, because the electrical distribution box (DB) and prepaid electricity meter is there. Also, it gets too close to the semi-private area. And it can’t go too far to the right, since that infringes on my (I’m the cook in the family) work space.


Currently I’m thinking that either the fridge or the oven should go in the corner. I’m also thinking I can steal some space by using the hole in the wall where the door currently is. Putting the fridge way over there splits the work triangle, but keeps the kids out of my hair when they do the “let’s stare at the inside of the fridge” thing. Putting the oven in the corner means that the fridge has to go somewhere else, which in turn means that the new door will probably move to the left, which takes it further away from the living room on the right.


Hey! Where’d the kitchen door go?

So there we were, sitting, talking, drinking red wine (this is the planning stage, see?)… and we talked about which way the bathroom door should swing. And a few minutes later we’d moved the kitchen door.

OK, to understand all of this you would need to look at the rough floor plan. See that area labelled “Hall”? It’s semi-private space — between the bedrooms and the communal bathroom. But the kitchen also opens up into it. So what happens when you have a party? I don’t know about you, but our friends hang out in the kitchen. And that makes the “hall” public. Not good for the kids who maybe want to withdraw from the party.

So, we decided to close the existing kitchen door, and to relocate the doorway to the wall between the “entrance” and the kitchen. I’ll then build a cupboard or something into the dead corner — unused space has always bothered me, and in this house design, the “hall” area is not used for anything more than a glorified passage. A good house design doesn’t have passages :-)

Plan B

After we put in the offer on the house, I fired up my architectural CAD package (of which I have several, all quirky in different ways) and drew the floorplan as I remembered it. I then figured out how to add what we wanted to the basic plan without going so far as breaking the whole place down and rebuilding.

It’s scary how close that original floorplan I drew matches the place, once we took possession and measured everything and CADded it up. (pic <- background is my original drawing, foreground the rough actual measurements).

But we looked at the place, and firstly Tamsyn’s room (Bedroom 3) was frightfully small, and secondly there’s a huge big electrical box of frogs on the wall where I wanted to break through to extend the main bathroom.

So plans B and C were hatched, plan B being that the existing activity room (which started out life as a single garage) becomes the main bedroom, with Tamsyn going into Jessica’s room (Bedroom 2) and Jessica going into the main bedroom, and plan C involving building. Which relies on plans being approved. Which may or may not (with a large bias towards “may”) lead to old age terminating the waiting process.

OK, Plan B it is. The existing activity room is 6100 x 3050. We want a queen size bed, cupboard space, and a full bathroom (bath, separate shower, toilet, and of course a basin). Plans B-A, B-B, B-C, and so forth, and so on, were hatched. We’re currently on B-lostcount, somewhere around H.

Stay tuned to our exciting programme to find out whether we can fit all these elements into the available space!