Kitchen with garden access

How to improve flow with function-specific zones and a visually unified palette

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  • Glass doors a deck and a built-in bench that extends from the house create indoor-outdoor flow.

    Glass doors to deck

    Thomas J. Story

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Located at the rear of the house next to a steep slope, the kitchen didn't have enough room for a comfortable breakfast area and felt isolated from the garden. "I asked Neal to think of the outside as an extension of this room," Trigg says. Schwartz redesigned the space as a series of three distinct yet interconnected areas leading from the inside out. Innermost is the kitchen, organized around a multipurpose island with a raised bar counter. Between the kitchen and the yard is a breakfast nook with a TV and a toy storage area, which Schwartz created by pushing part of the rear wall out 3 feet and the side wall out 5 feet. Sliding glass doors open to the third and outermost space ― a long, narrow deck defined by a built-in bench.

Now the traffic pattern and sight lines flow seamlessly from the kitchen through the breakfast area to the garden. Borrowed space makes each area feel larger than it is ― and there's no more running in circles.

 

 

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