Comfortable Spaces for Indoor & Outdoor Living


By Heidi Powell

We are frequently asked to create spaces that connect the indoor living area to the outdoors. This not only increases the area of living space, but also draws homeowners and guests alike outside, where they can enjoy our beautiful Oregon summers.
This remodel was designed for an active family that longed for an open and bright great room where they all could gather. They also wanted a large outdoor living space to enjoy together – a place for meals, barbecues, or an evening fire.


Our first task was to design the indoor space and give the kitchen and dining area a total makeover. Next came creating an equally inviting outdoor living area!
The existing kitchen was relatively dark and visually isolated from the adjacent family room. We remodeled the spaces so the kitchen is now completely open to the family room. New white cabinets update and lighten the kitchen space, their full height to the ceiling providing additional storage. New quartz counters with an undermount sink, new faucet, and appliances all work to make for an elegant, fresh look.


While the sink remained in the same place – saving on plumbing costs – some appliances were relocated. For example, the refrigerator is now at a more convenient location, with easy access from both the kitchen and family room.
A new split-level island serves multiple functions. The lower level provides space for food preparation, while the upper level is ideal for casual dining. Decorative glass fixtures add a splash of color while illuminating the island surfaces.


The adjacent dining area is also open to the kitchen. However, its angled orientation defines it as a separate space and adds visual interest. A pantry and built-in dining buffet provide additional storage. A custom desk with hutch makes organization and planning a breeze.
While working on the kitchen remodeling project, we simultaneously renovated the outdoor living space, tying both spaces together in an intimate way. The spacious new patio offers plenty of shade during hot summer days, as well as protection from rain during the wetter months.


The beautifully stained cedar ceiling adds drama to the space, while the skylights and exposed beams give an airy feel. A large ceiling fan helps the patio stay cool even on the warmest days, and a propane-fueled fire pit brings warmth on a cool evening or autumn afternoon. Sheltered from the rain and sun, the outdoor living room is furnished much like an interior room, complete with indoor-outdoor rugs.
Together, the interior renovations and new outdoor living space have dramatically improved the livability of this home, while increasing the home’s value!

Heidi is co-owner of Powell Construction in Corvallis, OR
Connect with Heidi @ 541-752-0805

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