Home & Garden Renovating Kitchen - cost cutting ideas?

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The hands of stone

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Sep 13, 2020
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We did ours 18 months ago . We were going to do part DIY and then get someone in but it just wasn't feasible for us at the time so we got someone in to do it.

Best advice I can give is whether your going DIY or employing someone or a bit of both don't skimp on anything.
Going cheap will most likely end in pain , we have had friends learn the hard way and its just not worth it .

A decent well layed out Kitchen makes life so much easier , good luck !
 

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Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
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You too Scotland please?
U-shaped, open at one end. Had a breakfast bar wall thing separating the kitchen from the living/dining area so knocked that out and put in back to back cupboards instead with an overhanging bench top. Don't have the CAD plan or any photos on this laptop, must be on my old one or my old phone. With the wall in place the old kitchen had something like 2050mm of room to squeeze the U-shape into and the previous owner tried to do it with cheap flat pack cabinets. Layout didn't work and nothing fit nicely, one of the corner cabinets didn't even open.

Anyway plan view something like this. Fridge alcove, bit of bench, oven/stove, bit of bench, sink under the window then the main bench area with dishwasher roughly opposite the oven. A row of wall cupboards on the wall above the stove, nothing on the wall with the window. Standard base cabinets are about 600mm deep, I used wall cabinets (about 350mm deep I think) on legs as the back side of the floor cupboards and then 150mm or something extra bench so there is room to put stools under it. I have noticed a few designs with island benches just have fake cupboards on the opposite side. Wasted space. You can never go wrong with more cupboard space. They are perfect for bottles of liquor or small appliances or anything that doesn't have a home that you rarely use.

1610460739219.png


Used to have electric stove, single sink, no dishwasher and no rangehood (just a ceiling extraction fan). Never going back to burnt steak, smoke filled house and no rinsing sink while I wash my charred frypan by hand.
 

melbournemartin

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U-shaped, open at one end. Had a breakfast bar wall thing separating the kitchen from the living/dining area so knocked that out and put in back to back cupboards instead with an overhanging bench top. Don't have the CAD plan or any photos on this laptop, must be on my old one or my old phone. With the wall in place the old kitchen had something like 2050mm of room to squeeze the U-shape into and the previous owner tried to do it with cheap flat pack cabinets. Layout didn't work and nothing fit nicely, one of the corner cabinets didn't even open.

Anyway plan view something like this. Fridge alcove, bit of bench, oven/stove, bit of bench, sink under the window then the main bench area with dishwasher roughly opposite the oven. A row of wall cupboards on the wall above the stove, nothing on the wall with the window. Standard base cabinets are about 600mm deep, I used wall cabinets (about 350mm deep I think) on legs as the back side of the floor cupboards and then 150mm or something extra bench so there is room to put stools under it. I have noticed a few designs with island benches just have fake cupboards on the opposite side. Wasted space. You can never go wrong with more cupboard space. They are perfect for bottles of liquor or small appliances or anything that doesn't have a home that you rarely use.

View attachment 1039700

Used to have electric stove, single sink, no dishwasher and no rangehood (just a ceiling extraction fan). Never going back to burnt steak, smoke filled house and no rinsing sink while I wash my charred frypan by hand.

Good stuff. A quick thought: in this configuration it feels like three of the most high traffic areas are all right next to each other, i.e. the sink, oven and DW. I also imagine that if you opened the oven and DW at the same time they would hit.

Maybe you could stagger it a bit, maybe moving the stove/oven next to the fridge? That would mean someone could cook whilst the other does the dishes.
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
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Good stuff. A quick thought: in this configuration it feels like three of the most high traffic areas are all right next to each other, i.e. the sink, oven and DW. I also imagine that if you opened the oven and DW at the same time they would hit.

Maybe you could stagger it a bit, maybe moving the stove/oven next to the fridge? That would mean someone could cook whilst the other does the dishes.
Fair comment. It's a rough sketch, but if you open the oven and dishwasher at the same time they would clash. Alternative would've been to put the dishwasher under the sink (changes sink arrangement) or next to the oven. Or move the oven next to the fridge. In all the 'kitchen triangle' arrangements they always seem to focus on fridge, stove/oven and sink and not the dishwasher.

Current layout I have (different house) is a 2-3m along one wall with a window and then an island opposite. As it it has stove, dishwasher and sink on one side, fridge alcove and island with oven on the other. Probably going to combine the oven/stove so will end up with a lot on one side. Many modern kitchens have the sink in an island bench but I don't have the height to get the PVC plumbing there.
 

melbournemartin

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Fair comment. It's a rough sketch, but if you open the oven and dishwasher at the same time they would clash. Alternative would've been to put the dishwasher under the sink (changes sink arrangement) or next to the oven. Or move the oven next to the fridge. In all the 'kitchen triangle' arrangements they always seem to focus on fridge, stove/oven and sink and not the dishwasher.

Current layout I have (different house) is a 2-3m along one wall with a window and then an island opposite. As it it has stove, dishwasher and sink on one side, fridge alcove and island with oven on the other. Probably going to combine the oven/stove so will end up with a lot on one side. Many modern kitchens have the sink in an island bench but I don't have the height to get the PVC plumbing there.
I know... and I think it's a rubbish idea. A kitchen island is great when it's a large, completely free space. It means you can do cooking/preparing/serving up of food on one side whilst your guests sit at the other side of the island. Or, if you are say baking and need loads of space, then you have it.

If you have a sink there, what, your guests get to watch you wash the dishes? I just think it's a silly thing.

I'd say it'd be nice to be able to stand at the sink and still open up the dishwasher, and that might be a bit tricky in your above sketch. Very often you'll need to give stuff a rinse before you put it in.
 

Shell

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Jul 2, 2005
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Ill never understand Butlers pantries- just another fu**en thing to clean from my POV.

Like, for large families, i get them- but for small families or couples, i do not.
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
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I know... and I think it's a rubbish idea. A kitchen island is great when it's a large, completely free space. It means you can do cooking/preparing/serving up of food on one side whilst your guests sit at the other side of the island. Or, if you are say baking and need loads of space, then you have it.

If you have a sink there, what, your guests get to watch you wash the dishes? I just think it's a silly thing.

I'd say it'd be nice to be able to stand at the sink and still open up the dishwasher, and that might be a bit tricky in your above sketch. Very often you'll need to give stuff a rinse before you put it in.
I'm not a big fan either. Some have the stove in the island bench instead. So I guess your guests watch you cook or admire the grease stains on your stove. Plus you need some kind of rangehood/fan in the middle of the room.



With my last one you could stand at the sink and load the dishwasher, but you were hemmed in and could potentially step backwards over an open dishwasher door. Probably why I'm not an interior designer.

This time around the dishwasher will be next to the sink. Planning to have an island with nothing but open bench on top and cupboards underneath. Like this but squarer.

 

melbournemartin

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Yeah I don't understand a stove either. "Okay guests, time to fry up your dinner... sorry for the oil spraying everywhere"

That island in the second picture looks beautiful. Is it possible to sit at it on the other side? I.e. is there room to slide the bar stool under?

I think that looks prettier than your standard island where the stone countertop sticks out over the side to act as a bar.
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
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Yeah I don't understand a stove either. "Okay guests, time to fry up your dinner... sorry for the oil spraying everywhere"

That island in the second picture looks beautiful. Is it possible to sit at it on the other side? I.e. is there room to slide the bar stool under?

I think that looks prettier than your standard island where the stone countertop sticks out over the side to act as a bar.
Not sure, just a stock Google image. Waterfall benches do look good. Off the top of my head mine will be 1800W x 1200D with a 200mm overhang on the bench top to sit at. Possibly even like the black one with overhang on two edges.

Looks like they have a glass door wine fridge built in. That looks cool, but I don't have room and am happy keeping wine in the pantry.
 

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melbournemartin

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Not sure, just a stock Google image. Waterfall benches do look good. Off the top of my head mine will be 1800W x 1200D with a 200mm overhang on the bench top to sit at. Possibly even like the black one with overhang on two edges.

Looks like they have a glass door wine fridge built in. That looks cool, but I don't have room and am happy keeping wine in the pantry.
Yeah i always see wine fridges and think "gee that looks awesome" before realising that I try to not keep the house stocked with alcohol all the time since I would, well you know, drink it.

Actually in one hour visiting a place with a nice kitchen but no island... but unlike most places there is a spot to add one. You've given me nice inspiration for a waterfall island! (And thanks for telling me the name of it, I had no idea)
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
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There's bit of a trend of two level benches with one running over the top. Like this:



Doesn't have to be L-shaped. Seen it with two toned stone and also stone/timber.

If I had a long kitchen like new houses I might leave room for a wine/beer fridge, but space is at a premium so I can't give up 600mm for something that is a luxury I don't need. I don't have a lot of bottles of wine anyway but I wouldn't store them above the fridge like the photo above living in Perth. Come home some days and it's mid to high 20s inside. Have considered a cupboard under the house with a trap door, but not sure if that is feasible.
 

melbournemartin

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Interesting style. Definitely need a big kitchen for that though.

Also in the second one there is an element of a "children's table"
 

Shell

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Jul 2, 2005
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Love the wine rack on top of the fridge in the 2nd pic. Looks cool.

I looked at an apartment and bid on it, with a big wine rack installed in the kitchen. Not over the fridge tho.
 

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