By Aidan Payne. Kitchen Design. Published at Saturday, December 16th, 2017 - 21:53:35 PM.
It can be difficult to envision the look you want. You have spent years in this kitchen and have grown accustomed to the usual look. A good place to start planning your DIY kitchen design and remodeling project is at the library. Page through the home decorating magazines. Look for issues that focus on kitchen designs. There are also magazines dedicated to the kitchen. Notice different arrangements, color schemes and features, such as pantrys, islands, breakfast bars and lighting which you find attractive. Of course, you may not be able to fit everything you want or like into your kitchen design, but these magazines will provide all the food for thought you will need. Photocopy pages of kitchens with particular features you did like to integrate into your DIY kitchen design and remodel. Pencil in notes of color schemes and note the manufacturers of particular products (usually in the index) that you like. Pay a visit to your local DIY center. These stores always have brochures for any number of projects, such as creating special effects with paint or building a kitchen island, which are free. Check especially in the kitchen display section for even more ideas. Carry a notebook in which you can jot down the name or product number of items such as tiles, cabinet facings, appliance covers, flooring, light fixtures, sinks or faucets that strike your fancy. Go online as well. With this preparatory work out of the way, you should have a large portfolio of inspiring ideas. Take a look at wallpaper collections.
HOW & WHERE YOU WILL EAT. You may prefer to be able to eat in the kitchen by having an island with seating. The size of the island that the room will accommodate will determine how many persons you can seat. Seating at an island reduces the storage space available in the island, so the balance of the kitchen storage will need to absorb this loss. You can basically sit at three counter heights: chair height (29-30"), counter height (36") and bar height (42"). If you have an adjacent breakfast room, you may want to eat there in the interest of having more storage space in the island. If the room will accommodate it, you may like the idea of a built-in booth in the breakfast room or kitchen, in lieu of a typical table and chairs. Many clients like to have the option of eating in both the breakfast room and at the island in the kitchen. In some cases there is no breakfast room and the dining room serves as both breakfast room and dining room. In any case, you should give these and other possibilities careful consideration.
When you plan to remove or relocate a wall(s), the key factor to determine is, by so doing, will you encounter a load-bearing situation? This occurs when the wall(s) is part of the support system for the structure of the house. Usually a contractor can determine this. If the contractor is uncertain, you will need to have a structural engineer examine the structure to make that determination. If it is non load-bearing, when you are ready to start construction, the contractor can proceed to build out the space per the new plan. If it is a load-bearing issue, your local building authority will require that you retain a structural engineer or an architect to design a structural solution for removing or relocating the wall(s). He or she will submit design drawings and calculations of the solution, to the building authority for approval and permit. Upon receiving the permit, when you are ready to begin construction, the contractor can then proceed to build-out the structure per the engineer's or architect's specifications. This is the process in California, based upon the state building standards, Title 24. The process in the other states is very similar.
VERTICAL SPACE. You should also consider what size and shape the room will be from a vertical standpoint as well. If it is possible to increase the height of the room by raising, eliminating or altering an existing low ceiling or soffit, you should seriously consider taking advantage of this option. The additional height will provide more cabinet storage from the increased height of wall cabinets and the room will become more voluminous which is always more visually impressive and comfortable. From a construction standpoint, the load-bearing issues will apply to increasing the room height just as it applies to moving or eliminating walls. Of course, in dealing with all of these design and construction issues and decisions that need to be made, you will not be alone. Your designer will be the pivotal person who will help you evaluate the choices you have available. He or she will produce drawings in order to visually demonstrate these options and will offer advice on which options are best and why.
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