How to Build a Kitchen Island
How to assemble semicustom cabinets and off-the-shelf parts for a hardworking island.
Synopsis: Given that the kitchen nowadays is viewed as the center of the house, remodels are an opportunity to enhance that space with an island, a great place for working and eating. In this article, kitchen-design master Rick Gedney describes his process for building a kitchen island. Gedney says to start with a focal point and to follow the designer’s plans. For the project featured in the article, the island’s construction started by siting it properly under an overhead light fixture. With that point established, measure out the location of the island, based on the designer’s plans. Gedney says it’s best to place cabinet boxes based on middle ground, then to shim or plane other cabinets accordingly. The island in this project features an eating area defined with a plywood panel that matches the cabinets. Finishing touches include drawer and cabinet pulls, appliances, fixtures, and the countertop.
The function of a modern kitchen island can be traced to the familiar kitchen worktable that’s been helping families to run the household and prepare meals for generations. An island’s job is even tougher, though: A table from the 18th or 19th century didn’t need to be a space for making pizza, checking email, or stir-frying. It also didn’t have to integrate pipes, ducts, and wires.
I was recently called to a client’s house for a full kitchen remodel. The young family wanted to renovate their existing, space-challenged galley kitchen, turning it into a wide-open room with an eat-at island. We looked at the available space and decided a single-level island with a farm sink made the most sense.
One often-overlooked item with island installations is how different floor coverings transition around the cabinets. On this project, we had to make an attractive transition…