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Backsplash advice
Kayla Thomas
February 24, 2013 in Design Dilemma
Before I post a question- I just want to thank you all for taking the time to answer! This kitchen has been our first big renovation, and as new homeowners, your advice on the many questions I've had has really been invaluable.

Okay- so, the kitchen. I don't want to move the location of the stove (will have a new stove in same location once finished), but have always wondered if it was safe to have it in the location it's in with the open wall next to it. Now that we're renovating, I'm thinking about it again. Ideally there should be tile or something there...right? We're considering putting a marble subway tile backsplash in, so here are my questions.

1. Will marble give the heat protection needed for the purpose next to the stove?

2. The arch makes running any tile there look funny. :/ We were thinking that if we continued it onto the opposite side, it may give better balance and not look so awkward. Do you agree?

3. If we do (or don't) continue it around, what level should it be at? Issue with this as well is that above the stove there will be an over the range microwave- so going just to that level will make it lower than where the bottom of the cabinet is on the right, if that makes sense...

Thank you so much for your help with this, and I'm sorry for the messy picture. We're living in the middle of reno land!
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Lizabeth
I think folks are going to tell you it is not code to have it next to the wall. You may need to leave a space 9 inch from the wall at least. I know you are trying to keep existing cabinets. Can you put one of your 24 inch in that corner?
February 24, 2013 at 10:42PM   
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Kayla Thomas
Lizabeth- thanks again. I feel like I have too many questions right now. I'm not "overwhelmed" with this project- I love it- but feel silly that I have SO many questions.

I suppose we could switch the order of the upper cabinets to have the 9" on the right, and the OTR microwave with shorter cabinet on the left. That would end up leaving only 18 inches between the sink and stove though, and then another 10" space on the opposite side-- really cutting up the small amount of counter space we currently have. Husband doesn't like the idea. I need to look into what code says. This is the arrangement we bought the house in, and it passed a home inspection, so...?

I've been rethinking the dishwasher issue I asked about the other day, and am thinking now that I might use the smaller sink, and put a 24 for sink base. That'd put it as 36, dishwasher, 24/sink, space for trash bin, 18, stove. It's just a small kitchen, and not a lot of options for where things can go. If I left it with the larger sink, there would only be 24" between sink and stove, and to move that order would put the stove directly next to the sink. :/
February 24, 2013 at 11:00PM   
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PRO
Design Find
1. Yes. 2. Don't tile the wall w/arch doorway - leave backsplash on other walls only. 3. Bring backsplash right up to cabinetry on both sides, even if the cabinets are not the same height . Not sure if I answered what you wanted answered, but hope it helped in some way! :-). As far as the stove placement - where I've lived, so long as you are not moving it to another spot, it can stay where the existing one is. Once you start moving stuff, though, now you have to bring the room up to current code. I had this same issue in a galley kitchen once. I wanted to move things around but my budget would have more than doubled if I did that, so everything stayed where it was. It wasn't perfect but worlds better and budget friendly.
February 24, 2013 at 11:26PM     
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Kayla Thomas
Thank you. Straight across is what's was thinking for the tile. I just don't know about the level of it. The highest side is the right, so if I make it even on both sides when it comes across it will end halfway up the microwave.
February 25, 2013 at 7:16AM   
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Lizabeth
I can't say if you are required to move it at this time. Yes things can be grandfathered in as exisitng and yes if one does a complete remodel then sometimes one has to bring things up to code. It does not sound like you are moving walls or doing anything at this point that might require permits. But I really can't say.

I am more concerned about your and your familys comfort in that compact kitchen.

As for the big sink 36 versus 24 I have looked at those sinks in person and in photos. I am concerned that the big 36 is simply too much for the scale of you kitchen. I would want to gain 12 inches of counter space. A single bowl 24 is plenty big .

Can you use a filler piece of 6 to 9 inches to the right of the stove to give a little elbow room over there? You can store cookie sheets there. And you know you can put a 24 sink in a 30 inch cabinet. Not sure what this might do to your centering of the sink though.

I do not think you are asking too many questions. You have a small space and a limited budget. Nothing silly about your ideas or questions.
February 25, 2013 at 8:43AM   
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Lizabeth
Most of all I do think you should use the 24 inch sink.
February 25, 2013 at 8:46AM   
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Kayla Thomas
I agree. Husband is the one wanting the big sink, but I finally just told him that I thinking too big for our. space. The stove is tricky bc as it sits, the microwave with vent sits directly above it. Moving the stove without microwave would look funny, and switching the cabs up top would leave a side of the microwave exposed, and I don't believe there is room to build a cover on the end run of the cabinet to conceal it.
February 25, 2013 at 9:02AM     
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Lizabeth
You may have to tell husband that you spend your time there and really need the counterspace more than a whale of a sink.
I know you have tricky thing going on. I went back and reread previous discussion and saw your comment about mine and my stove. Thanks. I don't have the kitchen anymore as we sold in July 2011 and I miss it. That stove was a fridgerdaire with powers burners and a low and a convection oven. So sweet!!

Any how If you can somehow get 24 inchs on the left of the stove for countertop and space to the right of stove of 9 inch that would be ideal. I would want the microwave above stove if you can. I would not worry about side of microwave showing. That is not a concern, However all you need for cover panel is 1/2 inch mounted to side of upper cabinet.

I don't even care if sink is centered under window though of ocurse that would be nice.

Just throwing this out that you don't need a cabinet for the sink. Yes you need support but some folks install it and then put a little curtain underneath it. so you build a frame for it of 2 x 4 to support countertop on the dishwasher side and the sink apron shows but underneath it you can do a little curtain. Just an idea. That way you can build the exact size you want. Use the space for garbage can etc.

Of course you can use your 36 cabinet with the 24 sink and gain 6 inch of counter on each side and then use your 18 cabinet and now you have 24 to the left of the stove. If you can skew the sink further to left you have more possibilities.
February 25, 2013 at 9:13AM   
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Lizabeth
Kayla,
Starting on the lower left can you go 24 lower, dishwasher, 36 sink ( but placing a 24 sink in it( then 18 lower then 30 stove and then you 10 inch lower?
February 25, 2013 at 9:29AM   
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PRO
Design Find
Here's my weird galley kitchen - before and after. Keep in mind it is a 100+ old duplex that I bought to rent out, and as an investor, I'm not going to switch everything around and spend gads of money to get it "just right" - it didn't make sense at this price point. But this is a neighborhood of old homes with outdated kitchens and renters loved the kitchen despite its quirks, especially the finishes. But, yes, you live there, and you must love the end results. Just remember that changing things around can mean budget busting! Anyway, you can see the variation in height with the backsplash, and I think it worked out just fine if you carry it up to the bottom of the cabinetry, etc. I painted the far wall - no backsplash. Hope that helps.
February 25, 2013 at 9:51AM     
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aniluap2
I agree with bona properties, just carry the backsplash on the back walls up to the cabinets.do not wrap around the arch because the oven sticks out to the edge of the arch and the cabinet on the other side is set in from the edge and that will look strange. The only way that would look good is if you tiled the entire arch wall which is an added expense. The 36" sink would be more versatile but the 24" is a better scale for the kitchen. I have a marble subway tile backsplash behind my range and it works great for heat protection.
February 25, 2013 at 10:59AM   
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handymam
Bona Properties, am I seeing that the fridge is past the door though? Or is that one of the quirks you were talking about? :)
February 25, 2013 at 11:11AM   
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OasisDesign&Remodeling
I wouldn't start moving things around...you may need a permit from your town to do so, which opens a can of worms. I would just do the backsplash as has been recommended above. I would paint the arched wall a color very close to the color of the backsplash to bring it all together. I also would've continued the crown moulding across the top of that wall.
February 25, 2013 at 11:36AM   
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Design Find
That door! We were all scratching our heads for a long time, but were stuck with it. We ended up switching that one out for a cabinet depth fridge (not as deep) but is still in the same place as this one. Couldn't find a pic of that fridge - this remodel was about 5 yrs ago. Yes, the door was a quirk, the closets are quirky, too, and because the place is old, the bedrooms are small. The latter is the only thing that renters are bothered by. Well, I digress. I didn't want the fridge and stove next to each other like that, but had I changed it all around the price would have skyrocketed.
February 25, 2013 at 11:46AM   
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Kayla Thomas
I came home and measured, and I think we may have enough space to flip the upper cabinets around, and put a piece of trim on the end to finish the exposed side of the microwave. Hoods look awesome, but do people really not have microwaves? That probably sounds pretty whiskey tango of me, but we fish a lot of kid/toddler friendly quick things for lunch and dinner when my husband is on call, and I couldn't imagine not having a microwave (though I do a LOT of cooking and baking with my stove too...kitchen sees a lot of use). Anyhow, that should put us ok to go 36, dishwasher, 24/sink, 18, stove, 9 base cabs, with a 3" space somewhere. We'll lose our "built in" trash can that way (AKA- gap in cabinetry with a false front), but we talked about it and since we're adding a wall of pantry cabinets around the refrigerator, we'll be able to remove a lower shelf out of the existing pantry to house a trash can, and our dogs items (food container, bowls, little basket of other odds that had previously been where new pantry cabinets will go) and use that entire pantry to store kitchen electronics, cleaning supplies, etc. That way we'll not have to worry about extending a backsplash all over the kitchen, and it should have good clearance to the wall. It also will be close enough that we shouldn't have to change any gas lines, etc. out.

Oasis Design- the moulding (spell check always gives me an error when I spell it that way?) you are seeing is along the top of the cabinets. There is crown along the entire ceiling. You'll see it better in the picture below that's part of our progress pics. Cabinets are getting stripped and sanded in prep for new paint. They had previously been refaced with a plywood veneer, and when we removed the valence and heavy moulding, it left gaps out of it, so I've been working to remove all the veneer and get it back to bare bones before painting.
February 25, 2013 at 11:55AM   
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Lizabeth
Microwave/ hood are still fine in small kitchens. So much better than on countertops. Hoods are hip/cool trendy and sometimes important in bigger spaces. Hoods look sexy but in kitchen of your size you will miss the storage space above.
February 25, 2013 at 12:39PM     
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Design Find
We had hood and micro in the quirky kitchen. Micro stored below, just can't see it. I store them below when counter space and cabinets are more sparse than I'd prefer. Here's a pic where I did the same thing w/microwave. It was a modern, sleek space, and I just didn't want a microwave hanging from a cabinet. Kitchen is also a bit on the small side. I dunno, I'm just throwing things out there. I'm budget girl, which I'm finding to be not so popular on Houzz! No one wants to be reminded of the budget. Im like the Debbie Downer of this website...Best of luck with your remodel, I'm sure it will be gorgeous, especially with the marble - my fave for kitchens :-)
February 25, 2013 at 12:56PM     
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aniluap2
I actually have a drawer microwave under my counter, but they are pretty pricey if you're thinking it may not be long term. I'm with Bona, why spend$$ if it's unnecessary .
February 25, 2013 at 1:04PM   
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handymam
Bona, I love budget redos! I really like the kitchen you did! Would the door be any better if it was just changed to swing the other way?
February 25, 2013 at 2:38PM   
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Design Find
Thanks, Handyman! I love budget redos, too. So fun and challenging! That darn door, it was the bane of my existence for some time. If it swung the other way, it would open into the kitchen :-( it was fine with the counter depth fridge, just would have been nice to have a couple more feet of wall between the door and the rest of the kitchen! We went through 3 refrigerators - the first one was a side by side (thought it work better due to narrow galley kitchen) but the darn thing wouldn't make it past the 90 degree turn on the staircase! LOL. Old houses. I learn from each property I buy. Lesson on this one: layout is really important! :-)
February 25, 2013 at 3:28PM   
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*handymam! Sorry, autocorrect likes to mess things up for me ;-)
February 25, 2013 at 3:34PM     
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tt67
Where is the fridge? It may sound odd but mine isn't in kitchen. I have doorway like their arched one ( but not arched) and it is right there with more kitchen cabs on other side for pantry. It sounds odd looking but isn't at all. And it is convenient. It freed up room in kitchen by taking up wasted space.
February 27, 2013 at 7:55PM   
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