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Our ktichen is too narrow (only 11' wide) for an island. There are 7 doorways impossible to move w/o gutting the entire downstairs. So we worked with the space we had. We saved money by keeping all the working appliances: refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave. Only range and toaster oven were replaced.
Unfortunately the soffits contained major plumbing and electric so only a portion could be removed. The rest were reduced in width and height. A smaller table was substituted and the peninsula widened for stools. The extra width made that counter a really improved workspace. A small tray cabinet (below) and pullout spice cabinet (above) were squeezed between the range and refrigerator. The kitchen might be small but fortunately has a large pantry all along a hall just behind it.
So what do you think? Should we paint the walls/soffit a color? Or keep it white?