Howard Miller's empty-nester clients wanted three things for their small kitchen: space for a table, room to entertain, and plenty of storage. The owner of Howard Miller Kitchens in Northbrook, Ill., came up with an idea that fulfilled his clients' requests in one unit.

"I thought the only way to fit it all in was to build the table into the cabinets," Miller says. To create space for this unit, he blocked off the adjacent pantry and created an opening in the hallway. This gave him a long wall in the kitchen to fit the cabinet/table combination. To provide space for entertaining, Miller designed a table for four that pulls out to accommodate a leaf, which stretches the table enough to add two more seats.

Miller asked the cabinetry supplier, Bertch Cabinet, to make the center base cabinet about 2 1/2 inches shorter than the other base cabinets. "I needed this space to fit the hardware for the pull-out table," he says. Miller purchased the sliding hardware and two table legs from a local supplier. The cabinet supplier provided the tabletop, which was assembled on site.