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February 18, 2014

Our New Addition : Kitchen Plans... Need your help!

The time has finally come to bring you back into the New Addition loop.  Well, almost.   We are very, very close to having everything settled and official.  I'll post the entire plan when we get the sign-off from the city in the next couple of weeks (fingers crossed...).  Until then, I'm going to share our plans for the main part of the new addition, which is pretty solidified.

We've been planning this add-on since we bought the house a year and a half ago - as you know if you've been following along.  We bought the house because we love the charming neighborhood, and because I have a thing for New England style architecture.  Since we were moving back home from Mass, I loved the idea that I would could still have a New Englandy style Cape Cod house. 

Like most cape-style houses, it is small - right around 1,100 sqft.  Most of the houses in our little neighborhood were build in the 40's and are very cottagy and charming.  A majority of the homes have been added onto and remodeled to accommodate modern living... but not ours, which is exactly why we bought it.  

Here is our plan for the new addition.  As I mentioned, there are other details I'll share in the future as well, including garage, mudroom, second floor with master suite which plans are being tinkered with at the moment.

We're merging the existing kitchen and dining space with a new 15-ish foot bump out that will include a new hearth area and larger kitchen.  The room will be filled with windows, french doors, painted (Navajo White) paneling and moldings. 

I love small cozy rooms, but love an open floorplan for living and entertaining. While designing this space I've made a conscious effort to keep this wide open plan feeling cozy.  I'd love your input and ideas. 

Here are some photos that I've shared before and some new that will give you a better idea for my vision.  Resources can be found on my Pinterest board :

I really like this - I've gone back and forth many times... should I change my Baking Counter into a cozy breakfast nook?!  

Besides that debate, I love the beams in this photo, the white on white, wooden stools and the classic rugs.

I've officially decided to have wooden countertops.  It will be my third kitchen with wood and I just can't get away from it - I love the rustic, cozy factor it adds.  I'm sure I will add some marble details, too... because that is my other tempter.  What do you think about wood topped island and marble surround?  Or, marble subway tile backsplash with all wood tops?

We will also have brass pulls and lanterns mixed with polished nickel faucets.

This is how I envision the hutch that merges with the baking counter - glass front, but I'll probably keep cake stands and baking pantry essentials in it.

As you can see from the plans, we've also included a large bank of windows over the baking counter vs. upper cabinets to bring in light.  I'm planning to keep a stool under the cabinets also so I can sit there during the day and work while I have a great view of the backyard.

I'd love to have the windows be something really beautiful... diamond pattern leaded glass?  Old windows?  New with cottage shutters?

 Love this mantle and paneling detail.

Also, love this mantle - you can see on the right side of the photo.  I love how it is boxed in with paneling... and love the beams.

As we're gathering resources and beginning to think about placing orders, I'd love your input.   You all always have the best and most creative solutions - I can't wait to hear your ideas and thoughts on our projects.  Here are specific areas that we need some help and resources :

Doors & Windows
Sink - Apron Front, Farm-style
Cottage Shutters?
Upholstery - New Sofa and Chairs
Stone/Brick for Fireplace
Beams - Boxed in or Reclaimed/Exposed?


  1. First of all I'd widen the door to the library , put the farm table in there; allowing for a bigger family room space. I'd then make the island a little longer to accommodate another stool and maybe making it a bit narrower. The space vacated by the farm table could be more seating space for reading/lounging. Or make a window seat there for a reading nook. The possibilities are endless!

  2. Jenny, I think your plans look and sound amazing! It is going to be so beautiful!! I have a feeling the baking corner/nook will be my favorite detail!.) I was able to find better pricing on our faucet and sink through online retailers. I was warned by every kitchen reno. store not to order online but I felt very happy with our service. I have links to all the retailers on my blog, click the "Our Home" tab and go to the link under the kitchen pictures for the sources, I can't remember off the top of my head. I'm not talking huge savings, but a few hundred dollars here and there start to add up! I would keep ur plan as is and not add an eat in area. You won't need it with the farm table space and the stools at the island. I like using our dining room room everyday. I thought I'd miss a formal dining room when we first bought this home, but now I wouldn't add one if we could. As for upholstery...I've been dragging my heels for an entire year on purchasing a new sofa...the comfiest by far, have been those from Quatrine, but I can't justify their prices with young children in the home, though they seem to have BIG sales all the time. Good luck. Enjoy the process!! Tessa

  3. Jenny, it sounds lovely. Every last detail. What would you think of having wood countertops everywhere except for marble on the baking counter? I'm in Kansas City (Overland Park actually) and I think I know just the area you live in. Hope that doesn't sound too stalkerish!

  4. I would keep the baking counter and use marble countertops there. I would use wood counters with marble backsplash elsewhere. Love the paneling ideas for the fireplace. If your ceilings are high I would go with the exposed wood beams. I know it will turn out pretty whatever you decide.

  5. Jenny,
    I love the plans, and like a few of your readers, I think a marble top on the baking counter would be ideal. We remodeled 10 years ago and one of my favorite things is the air switch on my garbage sits flush on the counter by the sink, no reaching for the switch on the wall. It's the little things! Can't wait to see the progress as you begin.

  6. Oh, Jenny! What a lovely addition! Wooden counters really do add a beautiful, rustic look. The only thing that I could see changing, and it's a drastic change, would be to flip the addition. This would give you the same view from the living room as you have now, albeit with the sitting area beyond the dining area. Your living room is beautifully formal, I just think seeing the dining room table instead of the kitchen appliances to be a better view. Of course, this may not be an issue at all, it's really just an idea to think about.

  7. Jenny -- As always your taste is impeccable! I'm so grateful for your help when I purchased my home in Concord -- please let me know when you're here again. I'd love to see Miss Emma as well. All my best -- Nancy

  8. I love the layout and would leave the baking corner. It will be a nice work area for you also. I like the idea of the subway tile as a backsplash and the exposed beams. It will be so exciting!

  9. In terms of stone/tile/etc., I recently worked with Shawna at Tile Stone Warehouse and thought she was great - super helpful, got what I was going for, had some creative ideas, etc. Rugs and Upholstery - I always have the best luck at Nell Hills and work with Rich quite a bit. I only buy during their 20% off sale, which they do 2x a year. I've had everything done at Accent in Waldo and although I do know people who don't like their work, I have never had an issue. He's done 9 chairs for me with no concerns.

  10. I *love* your house, Jenny. I don't think I'd change a thing with your new additions. I especially love all the natural light that will be added.....My two cents - for rugs I like natural fiber rugs like a seagrass, I can't really recommend a brand for sofa and chairs but I think spindle chairs would look lovely by that fireplace! I recently got a book off Amazon, "Creating a New Old House: Yesterday's Character for Today's Home" by Russell Versaci. I think you could gather a lot of inspiration from it as well. Thanks for sharing your home. I love that kind of thing :)

  11. Lovely plans! We had great customer service with Faucet Direct (and thoroughly researched the brand) for our apron-front sink. We ordered the sink from Kohler - my love was a Rohl but Kohler was a good price point for the same look - and it is enameled cast iron which relieved my angst about chipping. I think Calico Corners for upholstery is our best investment in furniture! Their fabric sales are great, even if you use another place for the job. Last suggestion - to cozy it up, I suggest curtains and shades instead of shutters. But most of all, I'd suggest living with the open windows long enough to see where the sun hits when you're baking at the counter or lounging in the new seating area. Then you can make an educated decision on how to keep your light, your view, and not be blinded:) Oh! And do you follow I think you'd love her New England house, kitchens, and cozy rooms. Less of a streamlined style as yours, but just lovely and a good resource for materials/paint colors/etc.

  12. I like the wood beams from your first picture! I would suggest a website to check out- Make sure you look through their photo galleries. The beams can be painted or stained and are very lightweight. They look so real and so pretty! Stained beams would really bring in the warmth that I think you are looking for.

    My vote is for wood counters. I really liked the counters that Catherine ( used in her kitchen. They are from Ikea and stained with a stain from Safecoat. They used their stain product for their kitchen counters. They chose the color 'cedar' and used their satin finish as a top coat. The best part is that these counters are very inexpensive. Marble counters on just your baking counter would also be great.

    Are you planning on getting rid of your current side porch? I don't see any entrance to it any longer. It looks like your new fridge would be in place of the french doors that currently lead out to it.

    I love all of your ideas so far! Your design style is very beautiful. I look forward to seeing more.

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  14. I am sure it will be stunning. My only recommendation would be for extra wide counters, if you are able. Mine are standard depth and in my baking area, with my extra large jars of flour, sugar and oats, there is not enough room to roll out pastry comfortably. I use my island for all prep and use the perimeter counters for storage of Kitchenaid, food processor, Vitamix , scale, crocks and for plating. I teach cooking classes in my kitchen so I do have more than the average person. Wood counters are beautiful (and wouldn't be freezing cold in the winter) but are not practical for me. I have large butcher blocks throughout my kitchen that I can move when needed. Glad to see you put the range on the outside wall and not on the island. Pay attention to venting. Can't wait to see all your choices!

  15. i am thinking of doing a kitchen remodel and was thinking of doing the same thing that you are with the baking area. I love baking, and am considering moving my sink (which will be a farmhouse apron front) to a nice new island.I was also thinking of marble in the baking area. Can't wait to see your plans start to take shape :)

  16. I LOVE this new plan:) So functional and everything flows so nicely...we just got done remodeling our kitchen and we did carrera countertops everywhere. If we wouldn't have been able to foot the bill I would have done wood as well as I love the look of it. I'd definitely think about doing marble on your baking countertop like others have suggested. Also my favorite feature about our kitchen is our sink...we went with a VIGO one bowl stainless undermount sink and the thing is a workhorse. It has grates at the bottom so it doesn't get scratched...our porcelain cast iron sink was a mess after years of having it. Also the one bowl hides a lot of kitchen mess...our sink and window above are what you see when you come up our entryway stairs so being able to hide a LOT in the one bowl is amazing for when guests are over:) Can't wait to see the end product!

  17. Hi Jenny! I've enjoyed your blog and love getting fresh inspiration to make everyday an occasion - even when life is crazy with three little kiddos at home! We redid our 1920s cottage over 8 years ago - we put in mahogany countertops (similar color to your recent pin with brass) coated with a million (!) coats of tung oil sealer which is kitchen safe, with a shaw farmhouse since and a rohl faucet. I love the look of wood because it also works with the original wood ceilings, love how it feels to work on, but the sink area shows a lot of wear because the faucet is mounted on the wood and hard as we try, water ends up there and sits. I've thought about replacing with marble but don't want to give up the look and warmth of wood. I have seen a picture from an English home that had wood but a stone/marble section just around the sink and where the faucet is mounted. It actually looked nice and would be much easier to care for. I agree with Tessa that I wouldn't do a separate breakfast nook - for now. I think the temptation of a redo is adding too many duplicate spaces and it loses the coziness and charm. Live with it first. Only other thought is think through if you want the powder room door so close to the table. We had a similar situation growing up and it can create some interesting situations entertaining and people need to use the powder room in the middle of dinner - especially little kiddos! It will be beautiful! Elizabeth

  18. to piggy back on what Tessa said, I am an interior designer and I myself order from websites like "plumber surplus" and "vintage tub" and "efaucets" all the time. ;) local stores probably don't want to hear that but the prices are WAY better and they always have items local companies somehow can't carry or find anymore. I also agree that the baking counter will be ideal, especially since you already have other seating options in the space for eating. as for upholstery, I have great luck with Lee Industries. Try covering it in either a contract fabric or indoor/outdoor...easiest to clean {and between the two I would probably pick contract fabric because indoor/outdoor can be really expensive/stiff!}. My kitchen sink is single bowl white fireclay farmhouse from vintage tub. It is Duet series by Whitehaus and I love it. The price isn't too bad either, compared to the beautiful but MUCH more expensive Shaw sinks. When it comes to beautiful traditional/vintage rugs ebay is actually a decent option, and "esalerugs." I have had good luck buying on ebay for clients but yes it is nerve-racking! for neutral natural fiber or wool rugs I use fibreworks, who I order from wholesale but several of the local flooring stores carry them as well. We just completed our kitchen renovation, with similar materials {wood, marble, subway, brass, polished nickel} and I listed all of my sources here, if you're interested:

    good luck! I love watching projects like this unfold :)

  19. I love your choices of inspirations, Jenny! It’s a great idea to install lots of windows to illuminate your kitchen. I believe a patterned glass would be the best choice, and get those tempered ones for your family’s safety. There are lots of glasses to choose from these days, and I suggest you ask your contractor about high quality materials. Keep us updated about your kitchen renovation! :)

    Lynne Hollaran

  20. Those look great. At least you've jotted it all down first, and have been bringing it up for as much feedback as you can get. Always a good start. Designing a kitchen isn't a walk in the park, so might as well calibrate it. You can make it compact. Not necessarily smaller, but with all the elements and areas tightly wounded and integrated. Take note of the geography more than the aesthetics, because that's what's going to be relevant for the always mobile nature of kitchen activity.

    Granite Busters

  21. Anonymous1:16 AM

    This is really pretty cool place I like it because it has everything I want more on this blog soon.


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