We’ve got a fully functioning kitchen. It was almost everything we could want: plenty of storage, big fridge, soon-to-be dream range, dishwasher, big eat in space. What it doesn’t have is a permanent island, and since we want a prep sink, we’re going to get one. What I’m having trouble with is, what do you put in a center island in a kitchen that has almost everything?
I got thinking about this while reading The Kitchn’s 10 Easy, Low-Budget Ways to Improve Any Kitchen, because I like idea #6 for pull out shelves. We don’t really have a pantry, so those look like good alternative food storage sites. But I want to hear your ideas. What do you love most about your kitchen (or your friend’s, or the display model at the design center). What do you wish you had?
The potential real estate: around 6.5′ by 3.5′. It must include a prep sink. We want to know: if you were designing your dream kitchen, what “extras” would you add in a new center island?
I do like the idea of pull-out drawers, especially as the two that I have are way too deep, heavy and jumbled. I also like this idea, for bread & root veg storage: http://byyourhands.blogspot.com/2012/11/organize-vegetable-drawers.html
But if I were to design my perfect kitchen island, it would have the following: one side would have an overhang and a couple of bar stools so people could hang out and sip wine while I prep; my side would have open shelving for my most used mixing bowls, kitchen scale, a tall, slotted spot for cutting boards, knife block, and if there was room, jars of various dry goods (like these: http://localkitchenblog.com/2011/01/21/space-solutions-tower-shelf/). I would want a butcher block surface so that the whole island could be a chopping surface (which, yes, means cuts and stains and such: but I like the weathered look); in an ideal world, one end would be dropped slightly and include a cool marble surface for working with dough, and all of my flours could live beneath that end. The other things to think about are electrical outlets (you can never have too many) and good task lighting (often forgotten about over islands).
I was thinking about butcher block, but that’s a BIG block and I wondered if it would look too informal. I LOVE those storage drawers for vegetables, and I like the bar stool idea. I need to get over my fear of bar stools. I fell off one when I was a kindergartner and broke my collarbone. I know…I’ve come a long way! Thanks for the links and ideas!
You can get them from different woods: some are quite lovely and not all that casual: http://www.thekitchn.com/all-about-butcher-block-countertopscountertop-spotlight-166471 However, maybe stainless steel with a butcher block set-in? Or concrete? Something sort of modern and neutral, to offset the casual butcher block? I also love the idea of a slot for storing knives: http://www.thekitchn.com/smart-knife-storage-design-inc-153810
I hadn’t thought of fancy butcher block, but those photos are sooo pretty. And a built in knife block has to happen!
How about a built-in cutting board? A lazy susan on the countertop so you can reach things easily? Also, my parents have a really nice kitchen island (I’m jealous!) and my mom stores all of her serving dishes for entertaining in the cabinets underneath.
We have a big china hutch in the eat-in part of the kitchen for serving piece storage, but I like the cutting board idea! We had one that slid into the counter when I was a kid.
Moreover, the kitchen island’s counter top
can function as a surface for serving meals. In comparison, the downside
to switching is so minor as to be negligible.
A large, fully loaded kitchen island can weigh hundreds of pounds.