Archive for December, 2007

The Now

December 21, 2007


In the past year, I’ve been non-commital about The Littlest Kitchen, knowing that it would be completely change in a matter of time. Improvisation includes not spending any money on temporary items. My former desk is the all-purpose peninsula. My old bookshelf holds dry goods, cookbooks, and assorted vintage appliances. The microwave and toaster oven are freebies from friends who have moved. Serviceable, but think of the potential! Think of how much better it will look when it’s done! For this, I need the help of a professional. I’ve enlisted the expertise of a childhood friend, who is also an architect. He’s designed The Littlest Apartment, including the kitchen, but now I want to make some alterations, as I have more questions than answers:

-do I keep the old cabinet? yes, but it needs to be stripped and the doors realigned.
-do I knock down the other wall? no, it will hold books in the hallway and dry goods in the kitchen. It’s also where the electricity and intercom are.
-undercounter or full-size fridge? two undercounter fridges in the peninsula, one freezer and one fridge.
-dishwasher? no, it takes up too much space and it’s not like I’m going to have massive dinner parties.
-move the peninsula down a bit? the original plan (in white tape) has the peninsula lined up with the column that separates the kitchen from the studio. I want more space in the kitchen, even if it means only a foot.
-will there be enough space for dishes, pots & pans, appliances, bakeware, flatware & utensils, food & dry goods & spices, cleaning supplies, and garbage & recycling? yes, yes, yes….
-one unit stove or separate stove and cooktop? separate for a clean line
-back wall of kitchen? another counter to make an L-shape, not as wide as the existing fridge, just wide enough for the microwave (in a cabinet) and toaster oven on top.

We’ll see what actually transpires in the next few weeks when I get the new reconsidered plan. In the meantime The Littlest Kitchen will be closed until the New Year. Happy Holidays!


December 20, 2007


Full disclosure: this work was done a year ago, before I moved into my apartment. The best piece of advice that anyone has given me about renovation is to move in after any demolition. Quel catastrophe! The walls were made of gypsum and plaster – sturdy stuff to have to take down. But the biggest mess came from patching up the remaining surfaces, a snowstorm of sanded sheetrock that blanketed the whole apartment. Thankfully, it was empty.

Knocking out the wall would allow for a peninsula to function as a workspace, dining area and storage. Freedom not confinement! I wanted to live with The Littlest Kitchen for a while to determine exactly what I need to maximize the space, which brings us to now, a year later.

The Before

December 19, 2007

…and to the leftView upon entering The Littlest KitchenEnclosed kitchen on the right

First, a brief description. The Littlest Kitchen started as an enclosed kitcheonette. Enter the door, there is a fridge on the left. It’s just tall enough to render the counterspace next to the sink useless. Above this “kitchen strip” is a tall wooden cabinet. To the right, is the stove. Wall. That’s it. I like the idea of an enclosed kitchen, something to separate the smells from the rest of the apartment, especially since the studio is so small. But in order to be happy and functional in The Littlest Kitchen, I need more counterspace and more storage. Goodbye wall, hello penninsula!

Welcome to The Littlest Kitchen

December 18, 2007

I don’t really have the littlest kitchen. That would be my first New York apartment, which only had a “kitchen strip” – no more than a sink and an oven whose door couldn’t open all the way because of an obstructing steam pipe. But in between then and now, I’ve had a real eat-in kitchen, which was the heart and hearth of my home. Having recently moved, my new kitchen is bite sized, almost a throwback to that first apartment. Given the downsize, I’m determined to be able to eat well and work efficiently. In a little over 5′ x 6′.

Hello world!

December 18, 2007

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