Kitchen Before: Little Usable Space

Moving the basement door freed up a usable footprint for a new U-shape layout that included two peninsulas and delineated a back-entry-hall mudroom. A raised breakfast bar provides a perch for casual meals and screens the view of dirty dishes in the open plan. Crisp white cabinets and soapstone counters offer a clean canvas for fun color accents. The kitchen now flows into the bright, bay-windowed dining area. "We spend most of our time here now," says Michelle. "It's just a great setup."

Shown: The basement access was one of four passageways in a kitchen with little usable wall space.
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