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Adding more cabinets and countertops isn’t much of a challenge when you’re free to knock down walls and move appliances around. But designer Barbara Purdy didn’t have such luxuries when it came to this 82-square-foot kitchen. She had to maximize surface and storage space while working with a layout that was tight, awkward and angular. Her solution was to swap large, standard appliances for smaller, slimmer units and replace a light-blocking, useless pass-through wall with a more efficient peninsula.
An angled wall had an unattractive pass-through that didn’t work well in the context of how the other spaces were laid out. “Basically, it just looked like a hole in the wall,” Purdy says. Plus, the wall blocked natural light flooding in from a large window opposite it.
Purdy removed the pass-through and added a peninsula that gave the kitchen more countertop space and storage while allowing in more natural light.
To gain even more space, Purdy then got rid of the large, standard appliances and introduced smaller, slimmer units, such as a 24-inch-wide stove, a 24-inch-wide refrigerator and an 18-inch-wide dishwasher. These units freed up much-needed space and in turn lent a lighter and cleaner look. “When you have a larger ratio of cabinetry and countertops to appliances, it makes the scale seem like a large space, visually,” she says.
Stained maple millwork on the back of the peninsula helps connect the kitchen to the adjacent living spaces and adds warmth.
Condo restrictions prevented things like moving the sink, but Purdy also decided to work with much of what was there, including all the awkward angles, to keep costs down.
The quartz countertop wraps around to provide a generous amount of surface space. A lazy Susan gives access to the tight lower-corner cabinetry.
Purdy hid the range ventilation in an upper cabinet. “We didn’t want a big vent hood taking up space and overwhelming with more stainless steel going on,” she says.
For a bit of architectural interest, she bumped out the vent cabinet and glass-front cabinet above the sink. “It’s just a little detail that adds dimension and is reminiscent of more traditional kitchens,” she says.
An integrated panel hides the slim dishwasher to the left of the stove. The cabinet above features a pullout spice rack. The backsplash is tumbled marble. The floor is cork.
This floor plan shows how Purdy worked with the angles to maximize storage and the work surfaces.