So many of you have been eagerly waiting to see what our remodeled kitchen looks like and today I’m so excited to share some photos of the space with you!
This kitchen is my favorite thing I’ve ever designed and also the most successful design in my opinion. I’ll share a bit about why that is below. It has been a long and slow process to get here—balancing our budget, logistics, and what was realistic for this space along the way—and I’m so happy to be back in our kitchen again.
For reference, here’s a look at a couple of the before photos…
We worked on adding details that help connect the design of the kitchen with the traditional design of the rest of the house and that help balance some of the modern elements with more ornate touches (i.e., the modern nature of the wood paneling alongside the ornateness of the marble flooring). The entire design was an exercise in balancing those two elements.
We also considered durability in every element we added to this space. This kitchen was designed, first and foremost, to make things in and to use. While many of the finishings and products are high-end, nothing is too precious, and many of the materials (e.g., marble flooring, marble countertops, and lacquered brass shelves) are intended to weather beautifully over time.
We added varying textures (e.g., marble flooring and lacquered brass shelves) and colors to create an ambiance that has the warmth you’d find at a restaurant or a hotel but with the intimacy of a home kitchen. Throughout the design process, I reflected on different places I’ve been that used unique textures and colors to create a sense of warmth in their interiors—a hotel we stayed at while visiting Jackson Hole and a boutique hotel I loved in Paris, to name a few. I infused bits and pieces of design inspiration I’ve picked up along the way in this kitchen.
The feeling of warmth also comes from what was already here—the oak paneling. I remember looking at the paneling at first and only thinking about how yellow it was, but now that I see it in the finished space, it’s clear that the tone of the paneling really makes the more traditional design elements pop. Through this process, I’ve realized you can change the way you think about design elements over time, and sometimes designing within existing constraints can actually be really beneficial.
The importance of taking design risks is one of the biggest lessons I learned through this process.
I think sometimes people (myself included!) need encouragement when it comes to making choices for decor that might not be so easy to visualize at the onset. Ultimately, if you’re interested in a design idea, it’s worth exploring it further. If you’re called to something, that’s enough of a reason to try, whether in a big or small way.
Here’s an example on a small scale: I’ve always been drawn to yellow decor elements but I didn’t know if they would work within the design of this kitchen. I tried out a couple of lemon-colored decor pieces and, much to my delight, they look so good. I’m eager to include a bit more yellow decor sprinkled throughout this space.
It’s ultimately about trial and error, but sometimes folks are so hesitant to try they never know what could have been.
We aren’t done revealing the process of this kitchen remodel and that’s for good reason! You may have seen bits and pieces of filming going on in our home over the past couple of months, and I’m so excited to finally share that we participated in a series called Design Minded with Vox and KitchenAid! The show will dive into the science behind why certain design elements work so well and will feature an in-depth look at our design process for the kitchen. The content launches today—watch it here!
Flooring: Queen Beige Marble from The Tile Shop
Countertops: Calacatta Viola Marble from Artistic Tile
Cabinets: Paintable Cabinet Fronts from BOXI by Semihandmade (The paintable version is in development and has not yet launched. We were one of the first testers for the product.)
Cabinet Paint Colors: Sulking Room Pink from Farrow & Ball and Hague Blue from Farrow & Ball
Cabinet Hardware: D. Lawless Hardware
Faucet: Deck-Mount Bridge Kitchen Faucet, Lever Handles from One™ by Kallista
Sink: Whitehaven® Undermount Single-Bowl Farmhouse Kitchen Sink from Kohler
Range: 36” Smart Commercial-Style Gas Range with 6 Burners from KitchenAid
Wine Fridge: Panel-Ready Undercounter Wine Cellar from KitchenAid
Brass Shelving: DIY project using BOXI by Semihandmade Shelves and IKEA Brass Panels
Sconces Next to the Range: Regina Andrew Fishbone Sconce from Lulu and Georgia
Sconce Above Bar: Pogo Brass and Cane Sconce from CB2
Paneling: White oak from the original kitchen
Heated Floors: SunTouch
Layout Design: Skipp
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BY Kate Arends - September 30, 2021
Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.