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Do I really need an open kitchen?

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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby kathyd on Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:20 am

While convenient, I don't think a giant garage as the main front feature of a house is attractive. Ours is on a narrow lot, so we've lived without a garage for years. If I had lots of dollars, we could build one in back, but that's not in the plans now.
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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby Don M on Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:29 pm

California is a great place for the garage facing the street with the house tucked in behind or to the side. They don't have front porches any more so they put screens over the garage door & spend their summer sitting in the garage watching the traffic go by. I don't have a garage; I have a drive thru corncrib/wagon shed. I can park 3 vehicles in a line so the one in the middle requires moving the one in front or the one in back! I have a tractor with bucket & backhoe parked in there as well as a workbench & the power mower with much room for other junk! :wink:
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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby triguy128 on Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:53 pm

It is refreshing dring down the avenue where I live and seeing only a handful of garages facing hte street. Btu all of thsoe are little carriage houses or added on later. The west side of the street has a alleyway and the east side that I'm on mostly have hidden garages. I love that mine just disapears below grade. I feel like I have my own little private parking garage. I'm spoiled I know. I was thinking the other day that I could even build a inlaw cottage with a single car garage below it and share the same driveway and apron. I could even have a tunnel to connect to my house. :mrgreen:

I think that if you can't have the garage aroudn the side or back, you shouldn't have one.

I would so love to be a developer and prove that you can build new homes with classic style and symetry and meet the needs and desires of modern families without adding much to the cost.
1925 Neo-Classical

Previous home - 1968 single story Ranch/Colonial, 1200sqft - 11 windows
Current home - 1925 2 story Beaux Arts Neo-classical overlooking the Mississippi River, 3200sqft - 48 Windows
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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby eclecticcottage on Tue Jul 24, 2012 2:10 pm

I have no idea what you'd call the Cottage. Eclectic really does define it best.

When you walk in the front door, you're in the dining room which is open to the kitchen. You can walk straight ahead down a VERY narrow hallway, off of which you will find the bedroom on one side and the bath on the other. At the end, it opens into the living room. You can see straight through the front door to the living room where you see the woodstove and out the sliding door to the lake.

It's kind of open, but kind of closed off. I do appreciate the idea of an open concept so you can cook and talk to someone that isn't in the kitchen at the same time...but I would love to leave a dish in the sink occasionally without thinking someone is going to stop by and see it, lol.

Our Old House was also a semi-open, although I don't know if it was the original floor plan from the 20's. You walked in the front door into a hallway with the stairs leading to the second floor directly in front of you or you could turn down the hall to the right and wind up in the living room which was open to the dining room, rather like a long room. If you walked through the living room into the dining room and turned to your left, you were in the kitchen. You could go to your right and walk outside or to your left and find the only bathroom. Apparently that is also weird to a lot of people, to have the bathroom off of the kitchen. I think it was so all the plumbing was in one little spot.

I also hate most of those HGTV, DIY shows, but sometimes there's a little bit here or there that's a good learning experiance. Or at least some of them are worth a laugh, like renovation rookies.
The Cottage Blog: http://eclecticcottage.blogspot.com/

Current home: 1950's Summer Cottage turned year round home (the Cottage)
-@ 700 sq ft, heated with a wood stove, on the shore of Lake Ontario
Previous home: 1920's Vernacular (the Old House)
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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby Don M on Tue Jul 24, 2012 3:05 pm

Everyone comes in our kitchen door so they get what they get. That door is just off the driveway & no one parks on the road out front. If they did, they would walk up to the front door & enter into the front stair hall. Parlor on the left & library on the right. Dining room behind the library & kitchen behind that. Family room behind the parlor & off the kitchen.
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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby kathyd on Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:29 am

I watched an episode of "Income Property" last night and was pleasantly surprised. The house had originally been owned by the grandparents of the present owner. When he had moved in, it was a duplex and he was changing it back to single family. The host rolled his eyes when the owner chose the option to keep it as a single family home and remodel the whole house, planning on renting out two bedrooms for extra income.

The owner insisted on keeping the original clawfoot tub. I spotted a wonderful farmhouse sink with metal base cabinet in the kitchen and was sure they would be throwing it away. Again the owner insisted that he wanted it restored in his kitchen, against the recommendation of the host. They stripped off six coats of paint and used it in the new kitchen. The host admitted that it looked great.
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Re: Do I really need an open kitchen?

Postby PowerMuffin on Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:34 pm

When we started looking for what we hoped would be our last house, our criterion included no garage seen from the front of the house. I hate garages attached to the front of houses! Well our garage is in the middle of the back yard, moved from the front side of the house in the 1980s. You could not get to it with a vehicle, even from the alley.
Our current (2 summers so far) project is to establish access from the alley to the garage. We had hoped to move it up to the alley, but it is too fragile. My husband cut a door in the garage at the alley side, poured footers for the garage, put in a new old door where a patched job was, and is now working on getting it ready to pour a floor.

It would have been much easier to tear down the garage, and it would have looked a lot nicer to have the garage at the back of our lot, easily accessible from the alley. But I just couldn't justify tearing down something that was still useful. So by next year, we hope to have a useable garage that looks presentable. Or maybe my husband will take a sludge hammer to it and start over. :wink:
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