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So I've recently moved in to a new house and the kitchen has two "blind cabinets" but no real good place to put my cat's food and water where it will be out of the way. So I got this brilliant idea that I could partition one of these blind corner cabinets and use the half that I wouldn't be able to reach very well as a feeding station. That cabinet butts up against a sort of half-wall at the back of the line of cabinets with the sink and I thought it might be possible to cut a hole in that drywall, then through the back of the cabinet to make an opening. I can take some photos later, but here's the kind of wall I'm talking about:

Half wall

It's like this but not raised; it's flush with the countertop which just extends out a tad bit.

Long story short, I had a handyman over for something else so I asked if he could do this (I knew there were wires back there so I thought I would ask a professional) and he said sure no problem and knocked a hole in the drywall. Right into a stud. Which he didn't check for beforehand. So then he's like, I have to move this stud no problem. Blah, blah, boring events happen and I tell him not to come back because he seriously screwed up this other project I had hired him to do. So now I have a hole in the drywall and cuts in my cabinet back. There are also cuts into the stud but it's not completely severed.

And so that is the state my kitchen has been in for a few weeks as I try to figure out what to do next. My first thought is to just patch the drywall and move on with my life. On the other hand, I would really love to have that little nook so I don't have to step in my cat's food and water all the time.

I don't know a lot about studs and even less in this case...is that thing possibly holding important things up considering the countertop is mostly resting on the cabinets? The handyman apparently felt it would be trivial to move it but I don't really trust his judgement anymore.

What can I look for for clues to find out if this is a possibility? How much work does it sound like it might be? Should I patch it and move on? I think I'm a reasonable type of person.

Also, if you're having trouble picturing the feeding station, I was envisioning something like this (but not with bowls built in, just the nook part):

pet feeding

Thank you.

  • Oh I should also mention this "half wall" also doesn't extend up to the ceiling like the one in the example photo. It just goes to the wall. – wat-bot Apr 22 '16 at 20:36
  • That should work but watch out for power that will be run for the required outlets. the power may be run closer to the top of the 1/2 wall but not always. – Ed Beal Apr 22 '16 at 20:43
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    We really need pictures of your setup. In the top one, you can't put it where the dishwasher or the sink is, as I'd bet money that all the stubs come up or run through that wall. If the drain runs horizontally in your wall, like they prob do in this one if there's no basement, you're out of luck w/o entertaining some serious work. – Mazura Apr 22 '16 at 22:44
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    Post pictures and we can help. Seriously. If it is actually a half-height wall, the handyman was right about a stud being trivial. (And you shouldn't blame him for hitting it... in a 2' span there is almost always one to hit.) – Aloysius Defenestrate Apr 23 '16 at 2:55
  • The "blind cabinet" as you call it is often located in a manner that makes it seem like it would be a pain to swing back there every time you went to feed and water the cats. I would also mention that pets most often like to be feeling like they are part of the goings on of life in the kitchen and hiding the feeding area like you propose may make things feel exclusionary. – Michael Karas Apr 23 '16 at 9:10
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Aside from electrical and plumbing interference, you can do pretty much whatever you want with the framing. That wall is mostly decorative (it saved some money by not requiring the cabinet makers to finish the backs of the cabinets).

If you have smooth walls, open the drywall enough to work. Frame in your opening, replace the drywall, add corner bead or wood trim, and line the opening however you had planned.

If you want more specific help, strip out the kitchen's life story up there in your post, put up a photo of the actual project area, and we'll do our best.

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