The Organized Kitchen
"The clients love to entertain and are wine connoisseurs. The old kitchen was lined with two L-shaped counters with a cart in center, making the room less-than-functional and congested when guests were in the space. We literally sat down and figured out where every item was going to go in the space, making it as spacious and as accessible as possible for cooking.
"We included a Hafele gourmet pantry, a wine refrigerator, and dish drawers on either side of sink for ergonomic cleanup. Every cabinet has rollouts with full-extension drawer glides. There are vertical tray dividers over the oven, a bread drawer liner, and monorail lighting to ensure a well-lit workspace. We modified semi-custom cabinetry to create a customized china cabinet for china and silver storage. The kitchen is personalized down to the last fork!"
Designer: Susan Lund
San Anselmo, California
Accessible & Aesthetic
"This kitchen was designed for a noted Hollywood couple. The kitchen had to meet his high aesthetic standards while still relating stylistically to an older home full of antiques. She is visually challenged and needed a space with high-contrast elements and a desk area that would accommodate a large unattractive reading machine.
"The natural maple cabinets are in high contrast with the black uba tuba granite. Checkerboard cork flooring helps her to define the areas around her. All appliances selected have well-defined buttons or dials. The island, with stainless cooktop on the granite counter, further defines the step down to a semi-circular dining level with a maple top. A graceful curved backsplash divides the two levels. The desk area features a symmetrical tall unit with a large appliance garage in the center that houses her reading machine. Task and accent under-cabinet lighting (with dual controls), as well as strategically placed recessed ceiling lighting, is specifically designed to meet her comfort level of luminosity."
Designer: DeWitt Beall
DeWitt Designer Kitchens
Studio City, California
The Wine Captain
"This kitchen was designed for an empty nester couple that both wanted special areas in the space.
"She loves to cook and bake and wanted an extremely organized space. Every cabinet in the kitchen has been accessorized to hold all of her kitchen items-many of which had previously been stored in the laundry room and garage.
"He is the wine captain when they entertain. They frequent the wineries in the interior of British Columbia and wanted to have an area in the kitchen to display and dispense wine. It was also important that they could work in the kitchen together."
Designer: Jan Rutgers, CKD, CBD
Jan Rutgers Design, Inc.
Abbotsford, British Columbia
"Our client was from Italy and wanted to recreate the ambience of the traditional kitchen she grew up in while taking advantage of the latest conveniences. We used aged pine for the cabinetry and refrigerator panels, terra cotta-colored tiles on the countertops, backsplash, and floor, and brickwork.
"We searched for and found antique architectural elements such as the ironwork under the countertop and covered the modern refrigerator to recreate the casual feel of an Italian villa. For the same reasons, we didn't want the sink to be modern. The apron sink has the personality of an older style that works well with the overall design."
Designer: Sue Palmquist, CKD
Sawhill Custom Kitchens and Design
"This kitchen is definitely a soft contemporary versus a high-tech contemporary. What's really contributing to that are the cabinets themselves. It's a slab door in a bird's-eye maple veneer for a nice clean look. There's a lot of stainless steel, dark uba tuba granite, and contemporary pendant lights over the bar, in keeping with the modern style. Consumers want something that's inviting, welcoming, warm-we've been hearing those words a lot lately."
Photo: Mike Kaskel
"This kitchen blends the stainless contemporary feel with simple warmth. The tile on the floor adds some pizzazz and color so that the kitchen doesn't feel drained. But it's not cold and harsh-it's somewhere you'll get together with a couple of friends, break out wine and make pasta."
Designer: Shannon Weigand, CKD, CBD
Ellis Kitchen & Bath Studio
"The use of soft, sun-washed colors-wheat, straw, berry-blue and terra cotta-and harvest themes are echoed throughout the space. Farm-style oversized glass-fronted maple cabinets contribute to the non-formal comfort, while a warm autumn stain complements room's yellows and golds. We selected the antique look of Botticino tumbled stone for the backsplash, which also features a hand painted terra cotta grapevine listelle. Tumbled stone was used as a background for the fresco-like mural of fruit under the hearth. Inspired by hearths found in manor houses of 15th-century France, the hearth is constructed of painted plaster and is supported by painted corbels. Small touches, like the farmhouse red Bordeaux sign, dried flowers, and flower elements highlight the coziness of the French Farmhouse style."
Photo: Claudia Bonser
Designer: Karen Gregorio
The Kitchen & Bath Center
"In order to create a design with Spanish, Medieval and Moroccan elements, we wanted what you'd see in a castle. This kitchen is successful because we used real materials. The room's focal point, the hearth, is made out of real stone. It's a complete hearth that requires a foundation, as opposed to most hearths, which don't go down to the floor and look top-heavy. The cabinets have a deep yellow glaze on cherry, with sanded-off corners to simulate a worn, timeless look. The island's finish is warm and inviting even though it's dark, since it complements the lighter cabinets."
Photo: Peter Rymwid
"The refrigerator was designed to look like heavy oaken castle doors with clavos, which are Mexican forged iron nails, to play off of the extensive ironwork throughout the kitchen. With limestone and slate countertops and a beamed ceiling, everything has a substantial, timeless look. What's sophisticated about it is that all the mechanics are hidden. You wouldn't know there's a range hood, as it's concealed behind fretwork."
Designer: Robert Lidsky
The Hammer & Nail Inc.
Wyckoff, New Jersey
"With a coffered ceiling, this just had to be an English Country kitchen. The combination of stained and painted cabinets plays on the English Country style and adds to the overall interest. The perimeter cabinets are a classic inset door style done in an antique white painted enamel finish. The island is cherry with a Cherry Hill stain."
Photo: Ann Fuller
"The two main architectural details are the keystones and molding. There are arched windows on the home with keystones, so we matched the cabinets with the open keystone design for an authentic look. Another feature of English Country is layering for a more substantial feel. We used stacked molding with a painted layer that matched the burgundy Viking oven."
Designer: Matt Reeves
Cabin Fever Solutions
"This client had traveled extensively in the Southwest and brought back artifacts-chairs, throws, china-and wanted the kitchen to be in keeping with the Southwest theme. In order to be Southwest, the kitchen really needed to be in the mode of terra cotta earth tones, colors that come from the ground. It's a mellow look, with red, oranges and woods that lend themselves to the Southwest mode.
"The use of weathered and worn frosted knotty pine cabinets fits right in with this. Rough-hewn log beams in the ceiling also emphasize the earthy feel. The terra cotta floor tile was carried out on the countertop as well and lends authenticity to the project, as does the apron sink. The décor really ties the room together, with the chairs, cactus plant and open shelving to show off a Southwest pottery collection.
Designer: Stephanie Witt, CMKBD
Kitchens by Stephanie
Grand Rapids, Michigan
"This married couple retired from 30+ years of working and built their dream kitchen-with home around it! Cooking and entertaining is their passion, but they had struggled to pursue it in a townhouse kitchen for years. They cook together but have very different ways of cooking, so in essence we created two kitchens. The wife is all about baking-ovens, rolling dough-anything in the oven is her forte. She's short and never had a comfortable work surface, so we installed 31 ½ inch countertops suited to her height. Her area is complete with a mixer, access to all the ingredients she needs, a second sink, and disposal.
"The husband is primarily the cook. He loves a big griddle and is a whiz on his 48-inch Viking range top with copper hood. His area is closer to the refrigerator for easy access. Because the room is a very long rectangle, we had to come up with a creative solution for the island, as a traditional one would be too long and not something you could circulate around. We created a tapered island that was narrow on one end and had seating on the other. We cut the island and put 2 ½ feet between the sections. The smaller section is on rollers with a butcher block top; it can roll up to the baking island to become one work surface if they want that."
Designer: Duval Acker, CMKBD, ASID
Kitchens By Design
Mount Pleasant, South Carolina