Opinions on knocking through to create kitchen diner please(23 Posts)
We moved into our current house almost two years ago now and just looking for opinions on the layout because I feel really unhappy with how it is at the moment.
We have a lounge/diner which was knocked through by the previous owners, and a separate kitchen. All the rooms are quite small. I particularly dislike the kitchen.
We're thinking of putting folding doors in between the lounge/diner to create two separate rooms and knocking through the kitchen/dining room instead to create a kitchen diner. Does anyone have any thoughts? We have two DDs (aged 4 and 13 months) and the open plan lounge does work quite well at the moment but I'm thinking as they get older it could be good to have two separate living spaces.
I've attached a pic of the floor plan the estate agents used when we bought the house - ignore the door leading from the hallway into the living room as it's in the wrong place!
We have a lounge and a kitchen-diner and I think it is the best layout with small children. Inlaws have separate rooms and I found it a nightmare at Christmas - I was constantly popping back to the kitchen to get something for DCs and couldn't get on with preparing the adults meal while the kids were eating as then they'd have been on their own in the dining room. I much prefer our layout as I can get on with things while they eat their meals and then have time to play with them afterwards.
I think your plan is good. I find a small separate kitchen annoying. If you have double doors you can have one free-flowing room, or separate off as you need. Perfect.
I would definitely knock through to make a kitchen diner and definitely see whether you could perhaps have pocket doors put in between the diner and living room so that it can be one big party space or separate off the living room when needed for peace and quiet/cost moments/separate tv viewings!
You also have a massive hall for a small house, could you do anything there?
In our old house, we had a similar set up to you when we moved in. We then knocked through between the kitchen and dining room and created one large open plan area. We had an island unit where the wall was between the kitchen and dining room and one of those babydan room dividers (like an extended baby gate - we had toddler twins) to make sure they didn't come into the kitchen area whilst I was cooking. Worked really well.
Moved into our current house (children are infant age and pre-tween) and all 3 rooms were divided (separate lounge / dining room / kitchen). We have knocked through again between kitchen and dining room, but left the lounge separate. My children are older so we do sometimes want 2 separate rooms.
I would definitely knock through - the folding doors sounds like a good compromise.
Sounds like a great idea.
It will be great when you're entertaining too, because you can open the doors to the lounge and have a massive space where everyone feels like they're in the same room.
Where would your kitchen units go though, as they currently seem to run mostly along the wall you're going to knock down?
Your children are very young, so yes, I would say go for it. When they get to teenage years however, separate spaces are better - fewer arguments!
We have a similar home, except we have double doors between the dining and living room. We also have young children. We previously had an openplan kitchen/diner/living room which had its drawbacks.
What we decided to do is create an opening between the dining and kitchen which will eventually receive double doors when the kids are older. This creates the open plan feel and I have visibility of the kids when cooking etc. The opening is only 1400 or 1500 but it has achieved what we needed and we still have wall space for cupboards and shelves each side.
I think you have two back doors, as we do? You could look to close up the kitchen back door if you have access from the dining room. This would give you wall space for the kitchen cupboards/extraction and perhaps alternative kitchen layout options.
Pocket doors are preferable to folding doors in my opinion. Your furniture placement is also less limited. We have normal double doors from our living room though. Mostly these stay open, except of an evening.
Thanks everyone for the input, I'm convinced on the kitchen diner now, just need to save up some money before we could go ahead.
NickNacks yes we do have a big hallway but I'm not sure what we could do other than move the stairs which is more work than we'd like to take on. It is very convenient having a big hallway at the min too as we leave the pram there unfolded.
MrsRobot we would keep the kitchen units where they are but have island units iygwim. We don't have any wall units on that wall anyway.
I like your plane. We have a similar L shape and have double french doors between kitchen anddining room and also between lounger and dinning room. It's great and all can be sectioned off if needed.
Lelivre yes we do have two back doors, we only use the kitchen one though but yes could block that one up as would certainly give us more options for layout.
We were thinking of replacing the dining room window with those big glass door things eventually to open out onto a patio, silly question but could we use those as the main way of getting out back if we did block up the kitchen door?
* Goes off to Google pocket doors *
I'd wait a bit and extend the kitchen and dining room at the same time so that you have a more substantial big room at the back and look at blocking up the central wall through to the living room.
The stairs seem to be on the "wrong" wall - does it make the entrances into the kitchen and dining room awkward?
Just realised I've made a mistake in my OP, it should say to ignore the door leading from the hallway into the kitchen, not the living room. The door is actually on the left hand wall section opposite the front door so no, not awkward.
But yes, the stairs do seem like they should be on the other wall, although the upstairs layout works well with them as they are.
We kept our external kitchen door and dining room door in the end but...we were going to lose the kitchen door, create a window instead and run units along that wall (next door has) and we would have been happy to exit the back garden via a patio door. It can sometimes be mildly annoying tbh to have the kids and dh traipsing in and out of the kitchen to the garden when I'm cooking.
As the hallway is quite generous could the kitchen wall that side be moved down halfway into this space to give you more kitchen space? You could have a ceiling to floor cupboard storage larder this end of the L shape kitchen or instead have the kitchen extend down that wall and a doorway put in. I have this set up myself. I can't quite tell but it looks as if you have to go from the living room to the dining room to access the kitchen? This wouldn't work I guess if that tiny room in the middle is a loo. I'm on my phone so I can't quite tell if it's a storage cupboard or a toilet.
We have a similar layout downstairs and I really wish that we had two separate receptions now dc are 9 and 4 as ds1 needs space to do homework while supervised at the same time as ds2 wants to be watching CBebbies. I'm eyeing up pocket doors as an elegant and space saving solution to making the one space into two.
I've been toying with a kitchen/diner but probably wouldn't open up our (tiny) kitchen to the dining room as I like to be able to close the door on the mess or the smell from time to time.
Lelivre, thanks for your reply again. Will definitely consider blocking up the back door then, hmm. The floor plan isn't really clear but there isn't a little room in the middle, that's just a corridor leading from the hallway to the living room but there is also a door from the hallway into the kitchen. We wouldn't be able to extend the kitchen into the hallway as it's quite an awkward shape :-/
Thanks for all replies everyone, will show OH this thread when he's home. I did mention the possibility of extending out back a little (which one of our neighbours have done apparently) but he's not keen on losing space in the garden.
Gosh my long message just disappeared. I have a very similar layout and we have kitchen diner and a small separate living room divided with double doors, and it is great.
We knocked through and while I like it I do think we could have extended our kitchen instead to the back and side making a kitchen diner that way - could you do that at all? I just think then we would have had 2 separate reception rooms, one of which could have been a play room/ spare room.
Could you get a utility area our of some of your hallway so the washing machine is not in the kitchen diner?
2016Hopeful we can't extend to the side as we're a terraced house. We do have a shed directly opposite the kitchen which we could potentially join into the house, which would create a dining area for our current kitchen. I know of someone with a similar setup who has done this. The only thing with this is that you would then have to enter the house directly through the passageway we share with our neighbours and would only be able to access the garden through the house.
Also the shed is packed full of rubbish which we have no other room for
I think knocking through he kitchen and dining room could work quite well for us. With folding doors separating the living room off we can still have a bigger open space if needed, and our third bedroom upstairs is currently set up as a playroom which we could use as a sort of rec room for when DDs are older.
We've sort of done it - the lounge and dining room were knocked through when we bought the house (most of the houses here have had that done), and then we've knocked through the side wall into the kitchen - so we've got a kind of L shape with the hall and stairs in the missing bit of the square.
Didn't want the full thing knocking through because we've got lovely bookshelves on the remaining wall and I think our house needs the wall space or we'd have bog all kitchen cupboards left! It's worked quite well in terms of increasing the light in the house and making the kitchen feel bigger.
The only thing that mildly annoys me is that the kids now just chase each other around the entire length of the bloody house - but that's just my kids being irritating as shit like they can tend to be.
It's brutally messy though - I'm still finding brick dust now and they took the wall out in October, and ours still isn't fully finished and all boxed in because we're waiting till the new kitchen units are in to get the whole lot of plaster work done in one go... and it's really dragging me down now!
I kind of like how we've done it though - we've got partial open-plan as the walls have been knocked through into archways - so we've got the free flowing, but still have quite clear zones to the house.
Check you're still going to have enough walls to put radiators on though! We had to relocate two from the wall we had taken out and that was a bloody pain!
We bought our house with a separate kitchen and lounge. However once we lived in the house a while it soon became apparent that kitchen was too small and the dining room not big enough for a family of 5. So we took down the partition wall between the two. Best thing we ever did. I love my new kitchen/diner now with two long runs of units and work surfaces with enough space to fit 5 dinner plates when serving food up rather than have to balance plates on the microwave etc. As the kids got to school age it meant they could sit at the table doing their homework while I was on hand to help them and oversee them while I was cooking dinner. Helps the other half is a kitchen fitters so I didn't have that expense but it's one of the reasons I won't move because zI love my kitchen so much.
In our last house we knocked through the dining/kitchen to create a larger kitchen with breakfast bar whilst retaining an area for a dining table. The existing kitchen door we blocked up and created a downstairs WC - accessible from the hall. We also blocked up the existing kitchen door to give more wall space for units and put in nice french doors where the dining room window was.
I have also done alteration works for others (I am an Architect/Building Surveyor) on these kinds of houses where they block off the kitchen door and create a walk in storage space / office space / downstairs shower rooms complete with toilet.
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