Of all the improvements we have completed, our kitchen-addition has been the largest project accomplished to date, the most complex, the most rewarding, and has the largest return on investment from a resale perspective. This project was two years in the making and has improved our lifestyle dramatically. Our kitchen-addition has made our kitchen the heart of our home.
Envision-IT: The first year of this project was spent determining what type of kitchen we wanted, determining the budget, a preliminary selection of materials, and deciding on an architect.
At first, we didn’t know a lot about what we wanted, but we sure did know what we did NOT want.
We had seen so many other kitchen additions in our neighborhood that were basically rectangular boxes with sloped roofs built onto the rear of the existing structure—-not for us.
Our kitchen-addition needed to look like it had always been there, and not an afterthought. It needed to incorporate several interesting architectural features.
We scoured tons of architectural magazines, award-winning home designs, clipped and pasted all of our ideas into a scrap book of what we call our kitchen-addition ideas book. Then, before we even began to interview any architects, we developed a list of our “must have's”.
Kitchen-Addition "Must Have's"
Lots and lots of counter space and work space
Lots and lots of cabinet and storage space
Two separate sinks with two separate work areas for those Holiday Feasts so more than one can be prepping at a time
Six burner gas cooktop
High efficiency dishwasher
Matching designer faucets at both sinks, preferable with detachable spray nozzles
Built in Microwave and convection oven
Dedicated space for dog bowls
Sliding patio door that provides and entrance to a future deck expansion
2 x 6 construction vs 2 x 4 so more insulation could be added for better energy efficiency
Stainless Steel Appliances
High Efficiency Range Hood Exhaust Fan
At this point we felt like we had most of our ideas together, and along with our scrap book, it was time to start the next phase, Design-IT with an architect.
Design-IT: After interviewing several architects, reviewing their completed projects and fee structures, we decided that Randy Creaser of Creaser O’Brien Architects would be our architect.
Randy came to the house to scope out the project, conduct his “as built” survey detailing dimensions and discuss the overall project. It was during these opening discussions that we decided it would have a cathedral ceiling for more volume. We would plan to repeat some of the great architectural design elements from our garden shed built two years prior.
The two main design elements from the shed were the overhangs and the cladding of cedar shakes. These two architectural details would make the addition look like it has always been there.
We spent hours reviewing the scrapbook together and by the time he left, he had a good feel for what we wanted for our new kitchen-addition.
Based on this information, he would prepare three concept sketches that show how he would design our new space. He would show us how to integrate his design into the existing space, how portions of the existing space would be repurposed, and the basic floor plan layout.
At our next meeting a couple of weeks later, Randy presented his three concept sketches. The first one was a very large addition and although it would have given us a lot of square footage, we felt it was just too large for the home.
This concept had some nice details to it and we noted that. The second sketch was a two story kitchen addition with a cathedral ceiling that would place a home office on the second floor of our existing home that overlooked the new kitchen pace.
The third and final sketch was the closest to what we finally built, a nice sizable new space with adequate countertops and storage space and would allow us to integrate all of our must haves.
The second year consisted of our Plant-IT phase—the identification and sourcing of our materials and, identifying the required permits, and identifying the necessary subcontractors. after we received our construction plans and the actual Build-IT activity.