long, open, galley kitchen with island in this Busted Open, Brightened Up kitchen remodel from this old house
Photo: Alex Hayden

Three Rooms Become One: After

Open up three spaces arranged like a barbell and suddenly you've got breathing room. For 10 years, Michael and Susan Assadi, serious cooks, parents of two young children, and owners of a 1924 house in Seattle, fought a skinny little kitchen that had a breakfast room stuck at one end and a dismal den at the other. The kitchen had an electric cooktop with a downdraft vent embedded in a traffic-slowing peninsula, and not enough storage or prep space.

Finally, Michael, an engineer, tapped his computer-assisted design skills to help solve the problem, deleting walls at either end and a door to the basement in the middle. Working with cabinet designer Lisa Wilson and her design-build firm Builder Showroom, the couple gutted all three rooms, added insulation, pipes, wiring, and ductwork, and reorganized the layout so that two could cook at once. The den became a dining and homework spot, and the breakfast room an airy walk-in pantry. “The island gives us extra prep space,” says Michael, “and when guests arrive we simply wheel it to one side.” Boom—room for everyone.

Shown: Opened up at each end, the kitchen has a cleanup zone on one side, prep and cooking space on the other, and an island floating at the middle.

Island: Crate & Barrel
Pendant lights: Restoration Hardware
Paint: 2028-30 Tequila Lime (walls); benjaminmoore.com
Sink: julien.ca
Refrigerator and dishwasher: kitchenaid.com
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