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Help with Kitchen Layout- Small Original(?) Kitchen in 1930's Cottage

3 years ago
last modified: 3 years ago

I’m new to this forum but I read through the introductory post and various links. Hopefully I have my due diligence. I’m happy to answer any questions and I appreciate welcome all advice and constructive feedback! (I also tried to post this a few days ago but it seems like it never showed up in the forums so I'm trying again.)

I live with my dog in a 1930’s, 1,000 square ft., brick cottage in a historic neighborhood. I cook a fair amount and also like to bake. I occasionally entertain when there is not a pandemic going on. My goal for the kitchen remodel is to update the current space, make it as functional as possible, maximize the footprint, and add more storage and counter space. I have a separate dining room off the kitchen where I eat most of my meals. The kitchen and dining room are connected by a doorway- I think there was an actual door there once upon a time- which I would like to widen.

The kitchen is a small, narrow, rectangle- ~ 7’ wide x 11’ 10” long. I think it has the original cabinets, tile countertops, and Hotpoint stove! The current layout is L-shaped with a side door on the south wall.

I hope to move the door and make the kitchen into a galley kitchen by moving the side door to the west (edited to correct) wall. It will then exit into the backyard. Because the kitchen is so narrow, there is not room for standard-depth base cabinets on both sides. I’m planning to make the cabinets on the south wall 15-18” deep. The north wall will be standard depth and therefore have to house the sink, stove, dishwasher, and fridge. It’s going to be a tight squeeze.


Planning for all new appliances, preferable white or paneled. The Hotpoint stove is super charming and in great shape but its 40” and oversized for the small space.

Range- electric, slide-in. If I can afford it, I’m eyeing the 30” Café 5.7-cu ft. in matte white. I’ve also thought about getting a 24” stove to save space but I’d really prefer a standard 30”.

Dishwasher- I don’t think I have space for a standard 24” model so I’m planning on 18”- specifically the Bosch 800 52 decibel, panel-ready model. There is no dishwasher currently.

Refrigerator- I’m planning on an “apartment sized,” counter-depth refrigerator- around 24”. Non-stainless options are pretty limited. I’m struggling a bit figuring out what would be best. My current top choices in no particular order: 1) Bosch 800 series custom panel, 22” wide. I love the look of it but at 9-cu ft. it is pretty small and the few reviews I found are not glowing. 2) Blomberg 24” freestanding bottom mount refrigerator. 11.43-cu ft. Love the price and that it comes in white but I don’t know anything about this brand. I found both "it's great" and "stay away" posts on the web. 3) Smeg 24” bottom mount refrigerator 11.69-cu ft.. Love the look and think it would work well with my house but it is at the very top of my price point and might be too much of statement piece. I would definitely consider a fun color. 4) Whirlpool 24” 12.7 cu. Ft bottom-freezer in white. I love the price, size, and it looks sleek but I wish it had handles. I’m also concerned that it looks cheap in person.

Hood vent: I don’t currently have a hood but definitely want to add one with true ventilation. I’m thinking 36” for the 30” stove. I would be interested in people’s thoughts on that. I like the Café option that matches the stove but it is very expensive and I’m not sure exactly how it vents. The photos don’t show it going through the ceiling so I assume a duct gets added? I’d also be happy to get an insert and have my contract build a cover. I need to do more research here because there is a lot I don’t understand.

Microwave: I want to put the microwave in a base cabinet with doors.

Pantry: I would like to add a floor to ceiling pantry cabinet. It will probably be on the narrow cabinet wall. 18”-24” wide?

Countertops: I’m thinking some sort of stone. Marble and soapstone (I have read several threads here about the pros and cons) are my top choices but I’m keeping all the options on the table. It will come down to price and whether I fall in love with something in particular. Would love an ogee edge. (I also read the “Stone Information and Advice (& Checklists)” thread.)

Sink: A good-sized sink is a priority for me. I want at least a 30” base cabinet but I worry that might be too small. I’m thinking white cast iron. A soapstone sink would be a dream if I went that direction with countertops but I have no idea what it would cost and I suspect it would be well out of my budget.

Cannot live without: Sufficient storage. Pull out trash/recycling. Nice sized sink.

Definitely do not want: 1) An apron front sink. 2) To expand the kitchen footprint.

Additional notes:

1) I want to move the door in the kitchen because I think a galley kitchen would be a more functional use of space. I also like the idea having a door open directing into the backyard. It would certainly be more convenient with my dog.

2) I’m struggling a lot with refrigerator placement. Aesthetically, I prefer the refrigerator on the east/back wall by the door but I don’t feel like I have 12” of space to spare ensure the door opens fully- even if that 12” is devoted to a functional cabinet. So I’m thinking the fridge will need to go in the font of the kitchen.

3) I have a lot of questions about widening the doorway to the dining room. Should I open it completely? That would mean the base cabinets on either side are exposed, and if the fridge is in the front of the kitchen, you would be staring at the fridge box on one side. I’ve had a hard time finding photos of openings too kitchen.

4) I plan for the upper and tall cabinets (pantry and refrigerator) to go to the ceiling to maximize space.

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