Mood Board Week(s): Unit 2 Kitchen

There are only 2 mood boards left the Two Flat’s wet rooms! We’ve covered 3 bathrooms for both units, and now it’s on to the kitchens. These plans will act as a resource as we move through each of these rooms over the course of the summer. Ready? Ready.

Room Hop

Unit 2 Bathroom | Unit 1 Pink Bathroom | Unit 1 Den Bathroom | Unit 2 Kitchen | Unit 1 Kitchen

It’s kitchen time! The kitchen in Unit 2 – okay, the whole of Unit 2 – was a colorful gem, coated from head to toe in shades of aqua and peach. The pitch of the roof can be seen from inside (this was our first challenge), and we knew that the kitchen layout we started would need a lot of revising to bring it up to more modern standards. Despite all of this, I still think she was pretty cute, don’t you?

Unit 2 Kitchen | Before

Unit 2 Kitchen | Today

This entire kitchen is about 10′ along the back wall, and the U-shape barely adds an additional 7′ on each side. We were faced with many challenges, but after months of planning, we’ve landed on an efficiently packed kitchen, complete with a dishwasher, slide-in range – and there’s an even an exhaust built into the ceiling!

view from the living room

Unit 2 Kitchens | The Plans

We’ll be using IKEA cabinet boxes paired with Semihandmade doors for IKEA cabinets. (What you’re seeing here are the plans from the online IKEA Kitchen Planner, which does have some limitations.) The colors in these plans are not representative of the final design plans; rather, those are laid out in the mood board below! But there are a few things to touch on in this kitchen, so let’s break it down:

  • This already small kitchen got even smaller during the renovation phase. (I know, I know.) We pulled additional room from a shared bathroom wall, in order to fit a larger vanity in the bath.
  • The pitched ceiling won’t allow for upper cabinets, so we’ll be using open shelving along the long wall instead. Although polarizing, we think that if it’s done well, it can look really great.
  • There was a lot of trial and error (like, so much!) to get our sink centered under the window, and in order to do so, we were left with a 8-9″ gap to the right of the sink. After agonizing over this for weeks, we decided to embrace it! We’ll be adding a cute little cookbook nook to the right of the sink, which will fill the dead space and give the backsplash tile a place to stop.
  • Do you see where the open shelving has a break above the stove? That’s where we’ll bring the backsplash tile all the way up to the pitch of the ceiling. (I promise this will make more sense once the room takes shape!)
  • Above, you can see that we even squeaked in a few upper cabinets. We’ll also bring the open shelving around to meet up with the cabinets, which will help to fill that negative space.
  • Because the kitchen is ittby bitty, we’re using a counter-depth refrigerator and an 18″ dishwasher. To keep things cohesive, the dishwasher will get a cabinet panel! You can see it there, above, to the right of the stove.

Let’s get to the mood board! We’ll have matte black lowers and green-grey uppers. The refrigerator side panels will also be grey, which is the same color all the trim will be throughout Unit 2. Patterned tile and brass hardware keep the space feeling fun and playful, while black accents keep things grounded.

1. Semihandmade DIY shaker doors for IKEA cabinets, painted Magnetic Gray SW 7058 | 2. Semihandmade Supermatte Black shaker doors for IKEA cabinets | 3. ORB semi-flush ceiling light | 4. Formica® Solid Surfacing countertops in Bleached Concrete | 5. open shelving brackets | 6. Stitch Indigo 5×5 tile | 7. slide-in gas range | 8. Elkay stainless undermount sink | 9. Elkay bridge faucet in polished chrome | 10. gooseneck wall sconce | 11. French door counter-depth refrigerator | 12. 6″ Patton drawer pull (for dishwasher) | 13. ball knobs

Want more Two Flat? Here’s an overview of the project, and here’s a post-by-post breakdown of our renovation progress from day one! This Q + A covers a lot of ground (like how we knew she was The One and how we’re financing the project), and you can even watch our video series ‘Dear Two Flat’ on YouTube. Thank you for following along!

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  • mockginger6.26.20 - 7:24 AM

    So excited to see this come together! I have a question though, is there something happening between the fridge and the corner to the left? It looks like there is a lot of wall space there that could be used to push the fridge over and gain more counter space, but since that seems obvious I assume you must have a plan to put something there. :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim6.26.20 - 8:50 AM

      There won’t be much space at all! The IKEA planner shows extra wall where there isn’t. There will be a small return and then the side panel for the fridge which will go floor to ceiling.ReplyCancel

      • mockginger6.29.20 - 9:37 AM

        Gotcha! That Ikea software certainly can be a bit of a bear at times. Can’t wait to see it all come together! ReplyCancel

  • Brenda6.26.20 - 7:39 AM

    Truly a lot of thought went into designing this space! For each of the spaces, you have elements that make them shine on their own, but there are also enough repeating elements that make the entire house cohesive. Your mood boards make it look easy, but I know it is a true art! Well done! ReplyCancel

    • Kim6.26.20 - 8:49 AM

      Thank you! I agonize over the details. There will be even more fine tuning as we put the plans into place!ReplyCancel

  • Molly6.26.20 - 8:29 AM

    This is going to be so good Kim + Scott! Cannot wait to see it take shape!ReplyCancel

  • Diane6.26.20 - 10:05 AM

    It’s really cute, but it’s a very small space! Since there’s so little room for food storage, I’d consider a small pull-out pantry, maybe for cans, to the right of the sink. Cookbooks can go on a bookshelf elsewhere in the apartment, but food storage is crucial.ReplyCancel

    • Kim6.26.20 - 10:36 AM

      We only have 8″-ish of space to the right of the sink, which is too narrow for even the smallest of pullout pantries. (Believe me, we tried!) However – and I should have mentioned this in the post! – the adjoining laundry room is large enough to install shelving for pantry items!ReplyCancel

      • Casey6.26.20 - 1:26 PM

        I have a teeny little pull out spice rack in my kitchen that we used to fill what I think was a 6 inch gap? I honestly am not positive of the size but I think it’s under 8 inches and it’s very useful. Just another option.ReplyCancel

      • Tiffany6.26.20 - 3:24 PM

        how about a wine rack? it would be about the same build out as cookbook storage area, but with more shelvesReplyCancel

        • Kim6.26.20 - 3:54 PM

          A great idea! Perhaps we can do a mix of both.ReplyCancel

          • Kerstin6.27.20 - 6:34 AM

            It is a perfect idea as a cookbook shelf! And leaving it open people can still use it for spices or canned goods if they would rather – I love the idea of keeping it flexible. A wine rack has only one use – from someone who lives with an even smaller kitchen, nothing gets to go in the kitchen if it serves only one purpose :)

  • Kirsten F6.26.20 - 10:47 AM

    Lovely!  Classic, modern, clean!  Can’t wait to see the final results!!ReplyCancel

  • Yael @ Nosherium6.26.20 - 12:43 PM

    This is absolutely stunning!!! I love seeing how you make use of space and design beautiful, interesting spaces.ReplyCancel

  • meredith6.26.20 - 1:00 PM

    I love the combination of cabinetry and can’t wait to see it come together!ReplyCancel

  • kristen6.26.20 - 1:26 PM

    what did you end up doing with that beautiful sink?ReplyCancel

    • Kim6.26.20 - 2:28 PM

      I’m not sure what you mean? The black farmhouse? That’s going in unit 1!ReplyCancel

  • Ann6.26.20 - 2:22 PM

    I think a faucet in the kitchen where you don’t have to turn two different handles every time you want to adjust the water temperature would be better.  Sure, the old style faucets look nice, but the one-handle faucets are far easier to use – once you’ve lived with a good, modern one of that type, you never want to go back to using two handles to adjust the hot and cold water.  The type of faucet shown in your mockups is what I’m taking about. 
     If you nixed that type because there isn’t enough room to install one and not have the water handle hit the back backsplash when turned, at least some of them can be installed such that the round handle with the lever faces front, rather than being on the side – I once had one of those installed that way, I believe because the lever would have hit the backsplash which was very close if installed on the side – it worked great front-facing as installed, and was sooo much better than having a two-handled faucet.  (It wasn’t planned that way – the prior tenant of that condo who ordered the new faucet when the old one broke told me that the plumber accidentally installed it wrong – but once I moved in and started using it, I realized the plumber did it out of necessity so that the handle could be turned fully in either direction – perhaps they can all be installed that way – I imagine it is a fairly common issue with kitchen faucet installations.)
    8″ depth doesn’t make for a very useful bookshelf – it only holds paperbacks, and in a kitchen you’d likely  want cookbooks, which are often deeper books.  Or, it could be used for a bookshelf display like you often see for children’s books when the shelf depth is not great – for displaying books with the front facing out- perhaps that’s what you have in mind.  But I wouldn’t store books that way right next to my sink and also next to the back door – they’d get wet eventually!  I think that 8″ of space might be better used in a small kitchen for an open cupboard with a slot (or slots) in the front where one could stash vertically things like a cutting boards, cooke sheets, shallow baking dishes, trays, etc.  It could be 2 shelves high.  
    Oh, and there are lots of pullouts designed just for narrow kitchen spaces like that, often used next to stoves – they can very narrow, and are often shown holding a row of spice jars (though next to a stove is terrible space to store spices, or any food really). I had one that was added to a run of older kitchen cabinets in a remodel once, but I didn’t find it all that useful, and would have much preferred to have open slot storage for larger flat items there, as it can be hard to find a good place to store them in many kitchens given their awkward size.ReplyCancel

    • Kim6.26.20 - 2:27 PM

      Thank you for all the feedback! We know that our bridge faucet is certainly a design choice, but hope it’s one that a future tenant finds charm in. It’s definitely something to consider though, and I’m glad you brought it up in case anyone reading is weighing the pros and cons themselves!

      To clarify the 8” nook – it will be about 8”, not deep. We will likely put a false back on it so that it’s 12-16” deep, which is more suited for cookbooks!ReplyCancel

      • Rosie7.6.20 - 10:51 AM

        Rather than having the shelving facing out into the room and putting a false back on it, what about having an 8 inch deep shelf that is approached from the door side?  That would allow all of the space to be used – for cookbooks, pantry items, or even dishes or baskets for outdoor stuff.   The deep narrow shelf for sheet pans and cutting boards mentioned below is also a good option – I have one of those that we built in to an 8 inch filler space, and it is super functional! ReplyCancel

        • Kim7.6.20 - 4:21 PM

          I’d love to see a photo of yours if you’d be willing to email us!ReplyCancel

          • Rosie7.7.20 - 8:45 AM

            Sure – just sent!

    • Mariele7.26.20 - 4:27 AM

      I respectfully disagree. I have two-lever sinks in my kitchen and my bathroom, my parents have one-lever. I despise using theirs and always prefer a two-lever. I almost always end up burning myself with a one-lever.ReplyCancel

  • Sheila6.26.20 - 6:42 PM

    I love seeing how you are meeting the challenge of squeezing everything into a small space!  I would much prefer a deep slot for baking sheets, cutting boards, platters or the like over a false-backed shelf for 8 inches of cookbooks.  Then again, I cook a ton so I’m probably not your target audience!ReplyCancel

    • Kim6.26.20 - 6:44 PM

      That’s another valid option!ReplyCancel

    • Jess6.29.20 - 10:48 AM

      I second a tall, narrow baking sheet cabinet. I love it so much at my house. Although the cookbook nook would look so cute. ReplyCancel

  • at home with ashley6.30.20 - 1:32 PM

    I love the open shelving that you added. I can’t wait to see what it looks like!ReplyCancel


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