In many ways having a cook-top in your island can be really handy. You can face your family while you cook, they generate less clutter than a sink with dirty dishes, and with new hood designs coming in looking like decorative lighting, there is certainly no reason to think this kitchen design trend is going to pass any time soon.
However, depending on your family’s changing needs in some instances the cook-top in the island can also be very inconvenient. In kitchens with smaller islands that also have seating on one side, kids can be placed too close to the hot surface, or there is a lack of counter space to work with on either side of the cooktop area. Another thing to consider is that as stylish as these new venting options are, they can still be a tricky factor in many designs. For example, do you use a vent above that can be visually jarring or a downdraft that won't catch the steam or oils from taller pots up front? For some homeowners the island cook-top is more hassle than it's worth but the idea of removing it can cause many questions about how, and what can be done with the hole it will leave? Well not to worry, I'm here to tell you that for whatever reason you may have for wanting it gone, it can be removed and you don’t have to scrap the entire kitchen to do it.
We've recently helped several customers switch from island cook-tops to free standing ranges with a space-saving microwave vent hood located above the range. Take for example the kitchen below. These clients had installed a kitchen with us about 15 years ago. They were still happy with it overall, and the cabinets were still solid and in great shape. The idea of replacing it entirely seemed wasteful but they wanted to make a few changes to the layout and perform some design upgrades.
The first step in accomplishing this was taking one of the cabinet doors and colour matching the stain so that any new cabinets would match the originals. We then looked at the existing kitchen and repatriated some of the old cabinets to new locations. The original kitchen had a peninsula which cut off the kitchen from the dining area. The family wanted things to feel more open and modern, so the peninsula was removed and most of the cabinets were reused in the other areas, such as the new larger island. The cabinets which surrounded the wall oven were removed and new cabinets were built to match and fit in around the new free-standing oven range, and microwave vent hood. We also removed one of the lower cabinets by the sink to install a dishwasher. On the other side of the kitchen, old unused cabinets were used to replace a small desk area which wasn't being used by the homeowners.
To wrap it up, new hardware, granite countertops, and island seating was upgraded to bring the room a whole new look with the added functionality that the home owners desired. Kitchen Fashions also provided new flooring and completed all the related renovation work required. In the end our clients had a whole new space and a complete tear out wasn't needed after all.
Thanks for reading!
- Katie LeMoyne and Julie Maclean