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Advice needed on knocking through kitchen and adjoining room to make kitchen diner/family room

(19 Posts)
LoveVintage Sun 18-Jan-15 19:05:08

We are moving to a house with a kitchen which is big enough, we can get a table and chairs in it, but it is not overly large. Behind it is a living room and we are seriously thinking of knocking between them to create a kitchen diner/family room. We are lucky as we will also have a separate dining room and snug.

Our initial thinking is to have an island with stools in or near the middle of the room to define the kitchen area and beyond that seating and if we can afford it, a wood burner.

We have never done anything like this before - any advice and ideas gratefully accepted!

hangoninaminute Sun 18-Jan-15 19:46:24

We're doing this - knocking through kitchen to a living room. This will make a large kitchen diner. We plan to have an island to utilise the space and a slight overhang curve to have a couple of chairs for the time when you want to perch while somone is cooking.

We had w builder out to check the wall could come out and they told us what they would do and what would need doing. They estimated £2k plus vat.

As we are moving the kitchen in to the now living room we need to plan how to get water to where we want it and sort new drains. We also have one floor that is concrete and another that is suspended. We're still at the planning stage - there is a lot to think about!

Tizwozliz Sun 18-Jan-15 21:43:08

We knocked through our v. small kitchen into the lounge. So now have a kitchen/diner/living room. We have a separate lounge but no other dining area. Our sink and dishwasher stayed in what was the old kitchen, but we had to move gas as that sits in what was the lounge.

I haven't got a good photo of the whole area, but behind where this photo is taken there are french doors to the garden and a corner sofa with coffee table.

During and nearly complete

mandy214 Sun 18-Jan-15 22:47:39

We have done this - kitchen was about 13ft x 9ft and dining room was 14ft x 12ft - so its a good space now. We have a small island unit - about 130cm across (it is 2 x 60cm drawer units plus 5cm end panels) x 90cm deep (so worktop covers 60cm depth of cupboards then has 30cm overhang with 3 bar stools underneath). It has really improved family life.

If you have washing machine / dryer, without a utility room, think about creating some sort of built in cupboard for washing machine. I think a log burner is lovely, but I'd hate to be relaxing by the wood burner listening to the washing machine. Get the quietest dishwasher you can. Think about storage - if you're losing a wall in both the kitchen and the 2nd room, where will everything go (we created floor to ceiling cupboards to maximise storage). Think about radiators, plug sockets by deciding where your furniture will go in the new room - we have radiator moved from wall that was being knocked down and just said put it in the middle of one of the other walls - now we've got the furniture in, we should have put it on the other wall.

sherbetpips Mon 19-Jan-15 20:23:19

we were going to do this and I was really happy with the plans until our very nice builder made me look at what I would actually be getting. Because you have to have pillars to support and sometimes extra support joists jutting down from the ceiling, it can often not be the lovely wide open space you imagine. Worthwhile having someone walk you through how it would look, what I imagined would be large walk through areas were sometimes only as wide as a normal doorway because of the size of pillars required to support the ceiling once the wall had gone. We moved house in the end and he did all the building work here instead.

mandy214 Mon 19-Jan-15 21:46:05

If its just a wall in between two rooms you dont necessarily need pillars (we dont) but if its a supporting wall you need a structural engineer (or someone suitably qualified) to tell you whether you need a steel joist to support the weight above.

TalkinPeace Mon 19-Jan-15 22:20:04

if at all possible, use steels so that you do not have to leave residual bits of wall ... the bigger the open space the more you'll love it

LoveVintage Mon 19-Jan-15 23:16:40

Thanks everyone. We are not sure if it's a supporting wall though we know he house was extended at some point so obviously that is the first thing we need to get checked out. Cost will needless to say be the deciding factor

Good point mandy about washing machine as it will have to stay in the kitchen as will dishwasher. I work from home a lot at the moment so could get washing etc out if the way first thing (who am I kidding)

Phoning builders tomorrow as starting point.

minceypie Tue 20-Jan-15 08:19:53

We did this and we don't have any supporting columns breaking up the space. It vastly improved our life and we have a lovely big open space now. My kids are small so want to be in my face near me all the time so I like that I can get on with stuff in the kitchen while they eat / play / race around. That would have been impossible in our old kitchen.

For us, it involved taking down two walls, putting in a new kitchen, new wooden floors and decorating and cost about £20k when all was said and done. I think taking down the walls was probably only about £4k of that but there's a lot more to it than first meets the eye. My DH doesn't think it adds £20k of value to our house but I think it probably adds more than that but that's not the point. The point is that the space works really well for us and has improved family life.

Theveryhungrycaterpillar123 Tue 20-Jan-15 09:48:33

Steels don't have to hang down. They can be flush, it's extra work and a bit more money but it can be done.

RosinaCopper Tue 20-Jan-15 09:58:17

We did this, but kept changing our minds on what we wanted to do as we went along! We've ended up really happy with what we've got, although we HAVE got a pillar where one of the walls was knocked out.

We found this free design website

really useful, as it gave us a good idea of where to put things and how they'd look. Not perfect, but gave us a good starting point.

We love our new kitchen

Sunnyshores Tue 20-Jan-15 10:28:39

we've done this a few times and costs just for removing the wall, electrics etc and making good are from £3k for non supporting wall to £5k with flush steels.

One thought - are you sure you want a fixed island? If the space isnt large they can dominate the open look. You can get smaller islands on casters that can move around say back against a wall or to the end of a worktop etc. Looks really nice in a cottage/shaker style kitchen.

Marmitelover55 Tue 20-Jan-15 11:15:59

We have also done this. We haven't got any visible pillars but our steels do hang down a bit. I think we could have had them recessed into the ceiling (assuming upstairs joists ran the right way). However, we had the original Victorian cornice in what was the old dining room, and I wanted to keep this, so it made sense to have the steels a bit lower. I have found that the different ceilings help to define/zone the space.

TalkinPeace Tue 20-Jan-15 12:53:40

Steels sticking into the ceiling
- I could not get all of mine hidden and was initially gutted when I saw the ceilings chopped up by them.
But now
I love having them there as they stop echoes and make a very big room not unbearably noisy when there is a party or gathering on.

My cousin is looking into acoustic panels for her ceiling because the noise level gets so insane once more than 5 people are chatting in the room.

LoveVintage Tue 20-Jan-15 18:26:01

Argh so much to think of! Thing we would need to have some gas pipes moved and some electrics too.

Have avoided contacting builders so can continue to fantasise about my lovely new room even though it may never happen!

Tizwozliz Tue 20-Jan-15 21:50:23

My decision on whether to have the steel flush was easily made when we discovered that the ceiling heights in the two rooms differed by a couple of inches (different sized joists)

Moving the gas pipes for us was very simple, cost £100 to cap off the old supply and reroute, then connect up the gas hob.

LoveVintage Tue 20-Jan-15 22:48:51

That's what we need done with our gas pipes, sounds straightforward though.

Having seen the state of our current kitchen this evening between a hurried tea, and teenage dad's constant snacking remains, I am seriously wondering whether we could keep a more open plan kitchen living space sufficiently tidy! How do you all manage it?

LoveVintage Tue 20-Jan-15 22:49:25

Argh not teenage dad, teenage ds's! As you were....

rumbelina Wed 21-Jan-15 18:48:49


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