Bridget’s Kitchen Remodel Part 2 – The Design

Working alongside so many awesome designers I knew I was going to get great design advice on how to work with my existing space to accommodate for our family. When I first started (2 years ago!) my mentor Janet Hesselschwerdt knew right away what needed to change with the room’s current layout in order to maximize the space.

I got input from a few different Metropolitan designers (because I love so many of them!), but ultimately Jen Gardner was the lead designer on the project and she did such an awesome job! Here are the major items that impacted and determined the design and layout of the kitchen…

Choosing Appliances

  • Any seasoned kitchen designer, and especially those at Metropolitan, will tell you that it’s super important to choose your appliances at the beginning of the design process. The appliance specs will not only determine the size of the cabinetry that goes around them, but will also help you understand your budget and what you have left for other items that are part of a renovation – including flooring, lighting and cabinets.
  • As I mentioned in the previous post, I chose this Samsung Flex Duo Oven which was a must so I can cook multiple dishes at once. The other major appliance I chose was the refrigerator, and I decided on the Samsung French Door. Choosing this fridge in the beginning was so important, because it was not staying in the same spot in the new design…


  • Moving your appliances to a different spot can be so hard to picture, but experienced kitchen designers know when a room’s current layout doesn’t make sense, and Janet immediately said I had to move the fridge out of the walking space and tuck it way on the other side of the kitchen. This move creates an open entrance into the rest of the house and really influenced the whole design.
The fridge obstruction in the kitchen

Island with seating

  • Our eat-in kitchen had to fit either a table or an island. We really wanted an island to have the extra storage and were always on the wish list, but I wasn’t sure that it was going to fit. After getting several internal opinions, one of our awesome designers, Jennifer Billotte, felt she could make an island work. She drew out the space a few different ways until we were comfortable and we made the decision to move forward with an island with seating.

Drawer Storage

  • As our girls grow and become more independent, we want them to feel like they have something in the kitchen to call their own, so we included some creative storage ideas in the new design.
    • Snack drawer – having a designated area for snacks was my #1 wish for this new kitchen. I wanted this drawer to be easily accessible for my kid, but would also keep everything well organized.
    • Bottom deep drawer for the lunch boxes – I love the idea of getting our kids into a routine and have a spot for them to store their lunch boxes. This new drawer, that will be “theirs” will create a sense of responsibility (and hopefully make my life easier!
A snack drawer with dividers like this one is on the must have list

Trash Pull Out

  • I was so excited to know that I would no longer have two big, separate trash and recycle bins taking up precious real-estate in an already cluttered space. The trash and recycle pull outs are also very easy for the kids to use, too.
A trash and recycling pullout

Drawers vs Doors

  • Since all the upper cabinets are doors with shelves, we wanted to have most of the lower cabinets to have drawers, which allows for an easier access of items. I won’t have to move things and take them out of the cabinet to access items in the middle or the back of the shelf!
  • Always baking with the kids, we decided to go with a tray divider cabinet to organize the cookie sheets and cupcake tins
Lower cabinets are outfitted with drawers for easy storage
A cabinet to store cookie sheets and trays