Tearing the Walls Down

The New Open Floor Plan: Everything Centers Around The Kitchen

by Laurie Camp

There is a new remodeling trend among those who own ranch and split level homes – tearing the walls down and making the kitchen the focal point of the main floor. “There are several reasons why this is so appealing,” explains Carrie Gallo, Bradford & Kent kitchen designer. “First, creating an open floor plan makes any space seem bigger. Second, the kitchen is the heart of most homes. It is where people congregate during parties, families gather for meals and where work gets done with the aid of a little comfort food, so most homeowners want more room in this area. To gain this extra space, they tear down the walls between the kitchen and the dining, living and family rooms. Most homeowners don’t even miss having a formal dining or living room because they are hardly ever used.”

Tearing down the walls to make more room for a growing extended family and large parties is exactly what the Kent family did to their Downers Grove split level home. “While preparing meals guests can see what we are doing while seated at our large kitchen island, tell us how they like their food in our charming eating area or even give us the play by play of the big game from our family room. It is perfect. We don’t feel like we are missing the party, and guests can migrate to different areas,” says Mr. Kent. “My favorite part of our open first floor area is that it gives us a little bit of the big city loft experience.”

Photo: Before & After, Tearing the Walls Down

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