The good news is my husband and I are still married after we removed half of a wall between our kitchen and dining room. One of the best DIY decisions we made was when we decided to open up half the wall between our dining room and kitchen.
You know the dining room? The room either is dressed for a party or looks like the lost and found in a high school locker room.
But over the course of a weekend, we made the decision to remove half a wall to open up the space between the dining room and kitchen. Heads up! We love it!
BEFORE WE REMOVED A HALF WALL
Our dining room shared a wall with our kitchen. After a consult with an architect brought we decided to open the wall between the two rooms
Opening up the wall would provide light from the windows in the dining room.
Sidenote: We hired the architect for a different project (that led to this project). And with a few minutes remaining on our one hour consult, we asked about our kitchen and dining room idea.
HOW TO REMOVE HALF A WALL IN THE KITCHEN
This project to take out half a wall was much easier than we anticipated. It was the biggest project my husband and I tackled.
OPENING 1/2 A WALL SOLVED A FEW PROBLEMS
- it created a social hub between the dining room and kitchen
- it added more light from the dining room windows
- it opened up a narrow entry between the dining room and kitchen
Removing half the wall with the upper cabinets and microwave did two things.
- Added much-needed light from the north-facing windows in the dining room.
2. Created a little breakfast nook or workstation that was out of the way of the kitchen.
WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU OPEN UP HALF A WALL
This project required trust, grit, patience and an electrician to run interference and move an outlet.
To appreciate the after here is a quick view of the dining room a few years ago.
And, yes I picked that color.
The dining room was the gateway to the kitchen by way of a narrow entry arch into the kitchen. Here is the wall from the dining room. To the left is the door-size entry into the kitchen.
Here’s the view from the dining room. By removing this wall we could take advantage of the light from the large dining room windows.
Here’s the view from the kitchen.
Tip: Before we removed the upper cabinets (and the half wall) we relocated the contents of the cabinets. Before we removed the wall we wanted to make sure we would not miss those cabinets.
At the same time, we relocated the microwave to an adjoining counter.
ELECTRICAL + PLUMBING DETAILS
We hired a plumber and electrician to move the mechanics to the left inside the frame. We had to add an additional outlet on the dining room wall side per the electrical code. Total costs for the mechanicals were just under $300.00. I suspect this number is double the current supply chain and service costs.
PAIN IN THE ARCH
The arch was the trickiest part of this wall removal. We had the small arch where the original entry into the kitchen existed. The main level of our house has arches in and out of every room so we wanted to keep the design.
Which means it was not in the budget to reframe the arches in our 2001 home.
But, we had to remove the original arch before we recreated a wider arch to accommodate the extended length of the newly opened half wall.
We found Archways & Ceilings, a US-based company, that specializes in creating arches. With simple instructions on their website, my husband measured the expanded wall opening. Within a week we had an MDF template ready to install.
We framed the top of the wall with 2×4’s and attached the MDF arch to the frame. It required a drill and screws. It was a great, affordable solution. The total cost of the MDF arch was around $100.00.
The time saved: priceless.
We love the space between the kitchen and dining room and it looks the way we envisioned it.
And, the best part of this half-wall removal project was how quickly we finished it.
From start to finish it was a total commitment of two-ish weekends.
It took almost a week to receive the solution for the extended arch.
The contractor quotes we received for the half-wall tear-down project was north of $6,000.00. We completed this project for less than $1500. This included the cost for the plumbing and electrical.
It also included the temporary countertop we made until we were ready to remodel the kitchen.
Here is the half-wall area today a few years later. We love the openness into the dining room.
We use the counter as a breakfast bar or additional seating for entertaining.
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