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Kitchen Envy

1. The electric stove. God, I miss gas. Although at least it's the flat-top kind, not the coil-burner style. I hate that if I need to lower my sauce from a boil to a simmer, I have to pull it off the burner and wait five minutes for the burner to cool down.

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Over at one of my favorite food sites, the Kitchn, folks are sharing their ten favorite things about their kitchens. And while I’m loving the posts, I have to admit they’re making me a teensy bit jealous.

I adore the 200-plus-year-old house my husband and I moved into this winter, but my relationship with my kitchen is best described as love-hate. The house is full of charms, but most of them do not reside in the kitchen, which was probably last updated circa 1970. So I thought I’d play my own version of the game, and list a few things I just can’t stand about my kitchen. Click on the photos for details.


I could go on about the bad lighting, the lousy laminate countertop, the low ceiling…but I don’t mean to be totally hate on the poor kitchen. It’s got a lot of space, and one day, when we get to the end of our renovation projects, it’s going to be amazing. But enough about my kitchen. Got something that bugs you about your kitchen? Tell us about it!


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  • 2newfcook | 03/06/2009

    One of the most important aspects of the kitchen, in my mind, was separating guests from the work area which is the reason for the placement of everything, especially the island. I've been to so many dinner parties where it's your typical kitchen layout and guests keep getting in the way. Not on purpose perhaps but when you're dealing with something off the stove top or right out of the oven, having guests in the way is a recipe for disaster. With my arrangement (which may not work for others), it discourages people from wandering into my work/cooking area, yet still allows someone to get something out of the fridge or get a glass of water without interfering with the cooking or preparation.

  • marthanotstewart | 03/05/2009

    I hate my kitchen. The previous owners remodled about 15 years ago and did everything cheaply. When we bought the house eleven years ago it was still pretty nice looking. My children are now teenage boys and the kitchen is too small. It seems like everytime I go to cook my boys and husband appear plus at least two of my three cats. The back door, our main point of entry to the house, is in the kitchen and when you get at least three pairs of men's shoes ranging in size from 10's to 14's lying around you trip. The cabinets are falling apart and inefficient, (Never buy KDA cabinets), the vinyl flooring is discolored and scratched and there is a banquet for eating that has become to small for four adults. The counter top is cheap and ugly. The tile behind the stove and sink are pink and grey, ugh! The only good thing in my kitchen is my stove, a Thermador Gas stove. LOVE MY STOVE. Sadly, due to my husband's job loss a redo isn't in my near future.

  • cinmyrs | 03/05/2009

    I was fortunate to be able to redesign my kitchen from scratch a couple of years ago. The biggest lesson I learned was to take your time and plan, plan, plan. My engineer husband kept asking, “what are you going to put here?” My first reaction was, “why do you care, you’re not going to use the kitchen!” But he was right. I know a lot of people who have remodeled kitchens and then complained that they didn’t get the space they were hoping for. We knew exactly where every pan, utensil and food item would be stored before we even started construction.

    We nearly doubled the counter and cabinet space simply by rearranging the layout within the existing walls. The biggest change was to take the nook area from the window wall and relocate it to the middle of the space facing the family room. Moved the sink to the window and added an 8 x 3 foot island in the middle (with table extending from the island).

    My favorite features: Second sink in the island; microwave drawer in island; upper cupboard with swing-out spice rack that allows double row of spices and another row behind; tall cabinet above double oven with vertical spacers that accommodates large platters and trays; cabinets on either side of island with vertical spacers that hold cookies sheets, racks and serving trays; use of mostly all drawers in lower cabinets (deep drawers under stove for pots and pans, deep drawers in island for prep items, bowls, baking pans, etc.); full extension drawers that allow access to back; cabinets all the way up to 9-foot ceiling (I have a fold-up ladder–lots of space up top for seldom-used items); pull-out drawer-shelves in pantry; self-closing glides on drawers; soft-close hinges on cupboards (no slamming doors here).

    I love my appliances: Dacor 6 burner gas stovetop and double convection wall oven; built-in 29.8cf KitchenAid fridge; Sharp microwave drawer; Themador dishwasher (which is so quiet it has a light that shines on the floor to let you know it’s running). The left side of my double sink is large enough to hold my 17x13" roasting pan, sitting flat.

    Unusual arrangement: I organized things a little differently. I use the pantry on one side of kitchen near stove for canned goods, pastas, etc., and located the bread, snacks, cereal, etc., on the other side of the kitchen near the main sink. So if I’m working and someone wants something, they are not in my way! I have separate upper cabinets that hold all baking goods. Entertaining items like wine glasses are located in cabinet closest to entry.

    Design features: Dark wood glazed cabinets, cream granite and tile backsplash, cream-colored wood cabinetry on island with dark walnut countertop. 3 pendant lights over island. The only structural change was to add bay window behind sink.

    We almost lost our home to a wildfire last fall, and the one thing I kept thinking was “my kitchen, my kitchen!” We still have our home and I still have my kitchen. Many of our neighbors did not fare as well. I am a lucky girl.

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