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Islands Can Add Some Spice to Your Life (published in Willamette Living Magazine, Feb. 2014)

February 18th, 2014 Posted in Kitchen Design
This is a great example of a well-planned kitchen island.

Does it feel like something might be missing in your kitchen? Does your kitchen feel too small or even too large to be functional? If you’re nodding your head in agreement, consider adding an island or an eating bar to your existing kitchen. An island not only adds function, but it can also make a statement or add some pizzazz, to an otherwise simple kitchen.

When adding an island or bar, you need to think about how you will use your island so it can be designed around your needs. Do you plan to use the island to cook, wash dishes, or serve a quick meal? Maybe you would like extra surface area for spreading out those occasional craft projects or for entertaining guests. When designing an island, the surface can be extended to include an eating bar, which will provide extra surface area to prep food and serve meals. However, a raised bar might be more suitable for your lifestyle. Show off your flair by adding a raised, glass bar illuminated with LED lights – this can create an impressively chic look, and you can expect your guests will mingle for quite a while at your new bar. You may even want to add a beverage cooler and a wine rack in this type of island. Alternatively, a drop table can be incorporated into the design of your island. Instead of dining at a separate table in your kitchen, sitting at a table attached to the island can keep mealtime connected. As an added bonus, your dining chairs will slide right under the table.

Once you have identified your primary use for the space, you need to consider your movement in and around an island or a bar. Make sure there is enough room to open all cabinet and appliance doors. The width of a work aisle should be at least 42 inches, and the width of a walkway should be at least 36 inches. There are many factors to consider, but a designer can help with all the details of placement and functionality for your island.

If you like the idea of using something old to make something new, an antique cabinet or table can be refinished and either painted or stained to create a wonderful centerpiece statement in your kitchen. This refurbished piece of furniture can also include many of the same options as one built from scratch with a few customizations. Once a surface is added to this new island, you’ll be amazed at the transformation.

If you don’t think an island will fit into your existing kitchen, by all means, consider the option of having a wall removed. This can really open your space and allow for more flexibility regarding size and placement. Removing a wall will also provide the open-concept living that is very desirable with today’s lifestyles.

In essence, think of your island as a piece of art – the surface, the space, and the colors should all come together to create a beautiful, eye-catching addition to your home. Have a look at your kitchen and just imagine, for a moment, what it might be like to have your own island!

When you are ready to take the next step from idea to reality, give Powell Construction a call at 541-752-0805. We can create a kitchen with an island or bar that will add some spice to your life!

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