With the help of a patient architect, a skilled contractor, a resourceful husband, and an extremely opinionated mother, I managed to work everything in by taking dead space out. That meant eliminating two doors (for counter space all the way around), raising a window (to let the farmhouse sink slip underneath), and transforming the pantry into a vestibule (which rerouted traffic and snowy boot buildup). We put down new oak floorboards, and ran cabinets floor to ceiling to use room overhead. To keep the upper-level storage within everyday reach, we added a library ladder. This is a city kitchen, so windows have to endure grates. To avoid the incarcerated look, I took two sketches to a local ironsmith, who did a perfect job of translating them to large format. Now a steaming cup of coffee peeks in one window, and buttered toast peers into the other.