Skip to main content
FREE STANDARD SHIPPING on orders of $49 or more.
  • Kitchens That Work
The kitchen is the social center of the home -- a place for eating, a place for working, and a place to organize everything from spices to your household finances. Because kitchens serve so many different needs, creating a new kitchen that not only works well but also lives well is a major challenge.

Featuring over 200 full-color photos, illustrations, and charts, Kitchens That Work is a guide that walks you through the process of building a new kitchen, from the initial planning through the many material and design choices made along the way to the actual construction process. Authors Martin and Richard Edic provide a series of models and exercises to help you understand how you use your kitchen, how to think in three dimensions, how to make important design and style decisions, and how to manage every step of the process to save money and time.

'Whether youre building new or remodeling, this book presents some good practical ideas. The authors include tips for moving from your 'perfect-world' vision of a kitchen to the 'real-world' plan that reflects the money, time, and space you actually have. . . . Hey, if youre going to buy antiques, youve got to have a place to put them. You might as well put them in a room that 'works'.'

-- Maine Antiques Digest, Dec. 1997
Additional Information
About No
Issue Number No
Cover 138
Publication Year 1999
Photos color photos
Drawings and drawings
Other Formats 77938
Isbn 978-1-56158-319-5
Author Martin Edic
Dimensions 9 x 11
Pages 216
Format Paperback
Toc Introduction


CHAPTER 1 A Kitchen That Works for You

The Evolution of the Modern Kitchen
Lifestyle Design
The Perfect-World Kitchen
From Perfect World to Real World

CHAPTER 2 Money and Budgets
Remodeling and Return on Investment
The Basic Kitchen
The Middle-Level Kitchen
The High-End Kitchen
Budgets and Perfection
Financing Your Kitchen

CHAPTER 3 The Kitchen in Motion
Three-Dimensional Thinking
Traffic Flow
Light and Airflow
Islands in the Stream
Fixed Elements
Three-Dimensional Traffic Patterns
'Dead Spaces'
Floor-Plan Development

CHAPTER 4 The Hidden Kitchen
Codes and Regulations
Structural Integrity
Hidden Systems


CHAPTER 5 Designing with the Physical Space

Putting Your Kitchen on Paper
From Sketch to Scale Drawing
Developing Your Design Resources

CHAPTER 6 Systems as Design Elements
Heat Sources for Cooking
Air: Heating, Cooling, and Ventilation

CHAPTER 7 Appliances and Kitchen
Choosing Appliances
Ranges, Ovens, and Cooktops
Waste Management
Communications Technology
Countertop Appliances

CHAPTER 8 Cabinetry and Work Surfaces
The Evolution of the Box
Cabinet Design Elements
Inventory Your Storage Needs
Work Surfaces

CHAPTER 9 Architecture and Style
The Roots of Style
Region and History
Integrating Existing Elements

CHAPTER 10 Designing with Color and Texture
Reference Models
Historical Models
Design Challenges

CHAPTER 11 The Material World
Materials Palette
Ceramic Tile
Synthetic Materials
Wall Coverings
Moldings and Trim

CHAPTER 12 Furniture and Accessories
Decorative Objects
Window Treatments


CHAPTER 13 Construction Scheduling and Contractors

The Master Schedule
Hiring a General Contractor
Acting As Your Own General Contractor
The Construction Process Step-by-Step
Coping with Stress

CHAPTER 14 Buying and Handling Construction Materials
Waste Removal
Budgeting Materials and Cost Overruns
Damage Control

CHAPTER 15 Problem Resolution
Decisions, Decisions
When Problems Arise
Common Problem Areas
Punch Lists

CHAPTER 16 Working in Your New Kitchen
Organizing Your New Kitchen
Upgrading Your Batterie de Cuisine
Maintaining Your Kitchen
Enjoying Your Kitchen
Kitchen-Design Options

Contractor Proposal Form

Change Order Form


Intro Of all the rooms in our homes, the kitchen is the most complex. Designing one that works well and lives well is a challenge. This book was written to help you create a kitchen that works with you in the context of your life and the lifestyle of your household. Too many of the kitchens we use daily work against us, making regular tasks tedious and extraordinary tasks like entertaining a chore rather than a pleasure. We all spend a lot of time in the kitchen even if we never cook a gourmet meal. We eat there, we socialize, we work, we organize, and we recharge our engines for another challenging day.

Kitchens That Work is a book about the design process. Every time we design and build a kitchen for someone we go through an educational process with our clients, as they learn about everything from hidden heating ducts in the ceilings to making sure that their counter edges are safe for small children. Kitchens are not only the social heart of the house, but they are also often the utilitarian heart of the house, the place where all the life-support systems we depend on converge. Consider that they should be aesthetically pleasing and functional, too, and you have a design challenge that can stump even the most experienced designer.

We'll be looking at everything from style to plumbing to dealing with contractors. You can use the book to help you communicate your wishes to a professional designer or contractor, or you can use it to guide you through your own design process. We won't tell you how to hook up a dishwasher or build a cabinet because there are plenty of excellent sources for that information. We will help you decide where that dishwasher goes and what the difference is between face-frame and Euro-style cabinetry so that you can make informed choices. Making those choices is what this book is about.

Part 1 of Kitchens That Work focuses on the knowledge you already possess. We'll examine how you use your kitchen, what works and what doesn't, and why. We'll look at money and budgets and ways you can get the most from your dollars. Then we'll examine the existing systems and architecture and help you learn how they can be adapted or changed to improve the basic space. Photos, illustrations, and checklists will get you started learning more about the design process as it affects your needs and interests.

Part 2 is about design and style. The design of your kitchen starts with the three-dimensional space and how it flows as a work and social environment. We'll tell you how to plan on paper and build a design file. We'll look again at systems, this time from a design point of view. And we'll look in detail at appliances, cabinetry, and materials, along with how they all work together to create a functional and attractive kitchen.We'll also examine the influence of architecture and explore ways to create a coordinated color and texture palette you can use to choose everything from a counter surface to a cabinet finish.

Part 3 looks at the construction process you'll go through while building a new kitchen. This is often the most stressful aspect of the kitchen-design process, in large part because of poor planning, confusion as to what's going on, and the large sums of money involved. We'll walk you through scheduling, dealing with contractors, buying materials, resolving problems, and putting your new kitchen together again after the dust settles.

We suggest you first use Kitchens That Work as a source of inspiration. Look through it and start to consider what you have to work with and what you want from your new kitchen. Then read more thoroughly and start measuring, sketching, and planning. Get out and start looking at the many choices you have in materials, cabinetry, and appliances. Start a design file filled with clippings, samples, and ideas. Consider using a reference model like the ones in Chapter 10 to help you make decisions. Once you have a design and know what you want, use Part 3 to help you get started with the construction of your new kitchen.

If you don't feel up to designing your own kitchen, this book will help you choose and work with a professional kitchen designer or architect. The more informed you are, the better communication you'll have with design professionals, and the more likely you'll be to get what you want. And if you are a designer, we hope you'll share this book with your clients as a tool and inspiration.

We wrote this book because we are fascinated and challenged by kitchen design. Both of us are avid cooks who enjoy entertaining. We've never been able to keep our guests out of the kitchen, nor would we want to. After all, it's where the action is, where the food and drink flow, and where the conversation is the best. We hope this book will help you create a kitchen that works for you.

Kitchens That Work

  • by Martin Edic
  • Paperback
  • Product Code: TP-FWW71070447
Availability: In Stock
Today's Price: $19.51
List Price: $22.95
Save 15%