Out of The Galley Into The Open

December 5, 2022
December 5, 2022 Shem Sotelo

Out of The Galley Into The Open

Project: Kitchen Remodel

The kitchen is arguably the most crucial room in a house. The heart of a home, it’s where family and friends often gravitate.

This realization hit me at a recent family get-together. I stood around a large kitchen island with 12 of my closest relatives, grazing off an array of never-ending appetizers for the greater part of our visit.

Looking across the way into an empty living room, it hit me, gone are the days when the kitchen was just a practical room, hidden from guests’ view. With so many choices in material, appliances, and fixtures, we are well equipped to make our kitchens functional to our specific lifestyles and give us freedom of personal expression.

More and more homeowners are opting to open up their kitchens to the view of adjacent rooms. While this has been the leading trend in the past decade, not every home can accommodate the open-concept kitchen appropriately.

"“This came out so much better than we expected!”"

Van Nuys, CA

The Challenge.

kitchen remodelA small galley kitchen tucked away behind a large dining room. The kitchen was narrow, with an unused bar behind a small breakfast table capping off the space. Not only did the kitchen lack a pantry and adequate storage, but it also felt isolated from the rest of the home. The homeowners wanted a kitchen with the space and function to entertain large groups of family and friends.

Homeowners’ request. An open kitchen flowing into the large dining room with an updated transitional feel. The homeowners presented a wish list with an eat-in island, pantry with pull-outs, trash pull-out, and more counter and prep space.

Unique features and material.

kitchen remodeling services in PasadenaLike any project restricted by a budget, there will be items that clients will choose to splurge on, like appliances, lighting, or fixtures, while choosing to go budget-friendly for such things as tile, cabinets, and countertops.

The homeowners decided to go with RTA (Ready-to-assemble) cabinets as opposed to custom built but chose to custom lacquer color finish the cabinets in teal for a designer look. Budget-friendly honeycomb ceramic white tile was chosen for a fresh, updated backsplash.

The homeowners originally wanted to go with a prefabricated quartz countertop but ended up splurging a little because the pattern they favored was only available in a slab form that had to be custom cut, edged, and polished.

Along with the requested pull-outs and eat-in island, the homeowners asked for a drawer with an outlet to keep their phones and tablets out of sight while charging.

Engineered hardwood flooring was chosen to be installed throughout the home for its stability, durability, and continuity.

Kitchen Remodeling Contractor Near Pasadena CA

One of the most rewarding aspects of this line of work is problem-solving with our clients. Going into a project requiring major changes to the configuration of an existing space most often presents challenges. Not only do we want to carry through on our client’s wish lists, but we also aim to preserve the home’s integrity as a whole. In other words, we strive to make the changes look like they were there all along. There will always be surprises and/or compromises along the way.

This particular kitchen had very little storage or counter space. So while I would typically not recommend eliminating existing windows, in this case, we had to find ways to maximize the space we had to work with. The homeowners originally wanted to keep all the kitchen windows for fear of losing natural light. However, because the kitchen was already well equipped with other windows, a sliding glass door, which provided ample light, as well as an interior wall that was slated to come down for the open-concept kitchen, the homeowners agreed to close up one of the windows, thereby freeing up space for a much-needed pantry. With the window removed and the wall patched up, we also needed to consider the home’s exterior look carefully. By seamlessly matching the patched area where the window once stood to the existing exterior siding, we could accomplish an aesthetically pleasing front view of the home that looks as though it were always there. Another way we could find useable space was by removing a soffit jetting out into the middle of the kitchen that required discovery to decipher whether or not it was load-bearing and could be removed.

To open up the kitchen to the dining room, the separating load-bearing wall was taken down, and a beam was installed at the point of transition to bear the weight once held by the wall. To make the kitchen, dining room, and living areas flow, the homeowners changed the home’s flooring to match their engineered hardwood flooring choice. I usually advise against wood flooring in kitchens and bathrooms due to the high water and moisture content incidence, but some clients will choose aesthetics over practicality. A streamlined eat-in island replaced the need for a small but bulky breakfast table and provided more prep and counter space.

The finished product is a fresh, inviting kitchen looking out onto the dining room and living area. The home feels much larger, open, and free-flowing.
The perfect setup for bringing the family closer together and providing ample room for larger gatherings. In the words of the homeowners, “This came out so much better than we expected!

Designer tips.

Before going into a remodel, it’s always a good idea to think about how the current function of your kitchen space limits you. Paying close attention to how you and your family occupy and move about the space will give you a clearer picture of how to build a dream kitchen that will better serve your needs.

If you need help remodeling a kitchen, Goldenstar Development can help! We offer kitchen remodeling services of any size and can help you create a kitchen design that meets your tastes and budget.

Contact us today to learn more about our renovation services or to get a free quote for your kitchen ideas.