Shortly after I finished writing yesterday’s post about a chance encounter with the project manager who oversaw the garage-to-studio renovation in the Home Depot parking lot, I got a call from one of the three contractors I called earlier in the week about adding. I am going to meet him this morning. So naturally, while I was working in the studio yesterday (I had some very encouraging progress that I plan to share on Monday), my mind was spinning with various ideas I had for additions and information I definitely wanted to pass on to him.
I almost forgot about the kitchen. Over the years, I’ve weighed several different options for the kitchen I’ve been considering and planning for this addition. Everything from leaving the kitchen as it is to creating a cased opening in the wall between the kitchen and what would be the future family/media room is included.
The wall in question is the wall of this cabinet. The new family/media room is just behind this wall. (Sorry, this is an old photo.)
I think the last time I shared my thoughts on this wall and how it would be affected by the addition, I was envisioning something like this very bad mockup I made last December. 😀
But since I shared this, so many have warned me about opening the kitchen too wide. so many different rooms of the house. While it reduces valuable storage space, it also removes privacy in the family room/media room as the line of sight is straight from the street through the front living room, kitchen and into the family room. No problem during the day. But at night, when I’m watching TV, I want some privacy. (I don’t close the window blinds in my house and never will.)
So I’ve been paying attention. First, we’ve been trying to pay attention to how we actually use our home and how a new family/media room could change things. And secondly, I’ve been trying to pay attention and keep an eye out for ideas that meet all those (new) needs.
We host a church group every Wednesday night and the group was about 17 people maximum. Once you have this new room, you will definitely meet there instead of in the front living room, as the new room will be bigger and (hopefully) more comfortable. And every time we get together, we eat together, so the kitchen is part of that gathering. So we want the kitchen and the new family room to be open to each other in some way.
So I was looking for ideas that would (1) open the kitchen and family room to each other, (2) allow as much storage as possible in the kitchen, and (3) provide some privacy at night.
Well, a few months ago I came across what I believe to be the perfect solution. I came across this beautiful design, Willcon Co., Ltd.
Of course, this is a pass-through from the kitchen to the dining room, and in my case a pass-through from the kitchen to the family/media room. But what surprised me (and never thought about it before) was the installation of storage. both sides! Since many family rooms have built-in storage, we were able to utilize the full width of the kitchen-side lower cabinet space, and not only could we have two floor-to-ceiling cabinets on either end of the kitchen-side wall, but we could also add storage in the back (i.e., family room side).
So what about the privacy I wanted? Well, I was wondering if I could add some pocket doors (half doors, actually) behind the kitchen side cabinets to replicate the look of the music room right next to the kitchen.
Except that instead of a full-length door and walkthrough like the music room, the kitchen has a half-length pocket door (pocket window?) and a pass-through with full-width lower cabinets underneath.
For now, that’s the plan. And it’s been planned for months. I didn’t want to share it earlier because (1) this addition wasn’t quite on our radar at the time, and (2) I wanted time to reflect on this plan without getting bogged down by a lot of outside input. But the more I think about it, the more I like it!
Here’s a really crappy mockup of what this kind of passthrough might look like on the wall behind the kitchen…
Of course, my kitchen cabinets are never white. And I have absolutely no idea how to mock up a pocket door for night time privacy. So you have to use your imagination there. 😀
Update: A reader who is far more talented than me at creating mockups sent me this. That’s exactly what I was thinking! (Thanks Chris!!) Left shows a glass front cabinet, right shows a solid front cabinet. It’s going to be a tough decision because I like both sides.
In Addicted 2 Decorating, I share my DIY and decorating journey of modifying and decorating a 1948 Fixer upper my husband Matt and I purchased in 2013. Matt has her MS and I do most of the work in her house alone because she cannot do manual labor. You can learn more about me here.