While I may still be waiting for my lotto win to progress the 2021 houseolution of an concrete, above ground lap pool, I have been progressing my renovation plans. The kitchen and laundry are going to be renovated to give me storage and maximise storage space.
It has been hard to winnow down to a kitchen design that works with the house, and also works for me.
Elements within my house shift from late Art Deco/Streamline Moderne vernacular: with the striking paned Crittall Steel windows, the bevelled plaster rails in the kitchen and bathroom, ornate cornices in the public areas and limestone foundations; towards the more classic Mid-Century Modern elements that were becoming popular in the era my house was built: with an almost ranch style design, open-plan living-kitchen-dining, the internal french doors with rippled glass, the striking feature brick fireplace and simple mantle above it.
It’s an odd house to define a style for, because it does have all those transitional elements in it based on when it was built. And I don’t want to recreate exactly what was likely to have been in the house when originally built:
- A decorative / bulkhead storage unit above the counter separating the kitchen and dining area in the original kitchen
- A door between the kitchen and laundry (the small wall next to the stove emphasises that passage-way). That former door is where my fridge sits, and I can’t lose that space because there’s nowhere else to place the fridge
- Darker wood veneer colours, or acid 50s colour laminate cabinets and “marble” laminate counters
I don’t want my kitchen to be a “period” kitchen and it’s hard to think of an era-appropriate style given its transitional nature but I do want the new kitchen to respect the era of the house: 1952. And to reference the elements I like about modern renditions of mid-century styles.
While I’ve been unwell during 2021 (waiting for not one but two operations :|), I have had quite a bit of time to lie on my couch and pinterest the hell out of what I want my kitchen to look like:
Pinterest really helped me refine in my head, the design features I wanted to be in the kitchen. As well as functional internal features (pull out pantries, drawers for crockery etc).
I’ve gone with Smartstyle Bathrooms for this renovation: because there’s some demolition (the bulkhead above my upper cabinets, that former passageway wall between the fridge and the stove), and because the size of the kitchen means I can’t use pre-built carcasses so cabinetry needed to be bespoke.
There’ve been a couple of iterations of design so far:
Iteration 1: this initial version was after the first meeting, and included all the upper cabinetry I’d specified with standard finishes:
I definitely don’t want shaker-style cabinetry (no farmhouse style kitchens here, thank you very much), or chrome cabinet handles and tapware. And the stove is too close to the pantry (no elbow room on the right hand side). But it started me thinking about cabinetry and finishes.
Iteration 2: after the second meeting where I specified stone counter tops (not laminate), v-groove panelled cabinet doors and drawer fronts, a gold sink and tapware.
This iteration is much more to my style, although work is still needed on the stove-pantry-counter ratio. At this point, I walked back my idea about having cabinetry around the window: it looks too heavy, and I’d potentially lose my beautiful cornice.
At this point I could really start to think about finishes. It also meant I could book in a session with their designer to properly spec out finishes, functionality and layout. Their designer, Designed by Deb, sat with me for about 3.5 hours to properly spec out what I want.
I’m now waiting for the final renders and quote (Iteration 3), this will also give me the full project timeline (at the moment I only have a starting date!). And I’ll be able to make final tweaks to the design. I am very much looking forward to seeing all the storage Deb is working into the design for me.
In the meantime, I’ve created my own look book of choices(still deciding on countertops) so that I have that for now:
Brass Bistro Shelves: Iron Abode’s Monty 1/2 brackets one set for by the window, and one custom set to replace the tall cupboard in the kitchen entry. I’ve ordered these from the USA, so far the standard brackets have arrived.
Appliances: Integrated Fridge (Currently choosing between Liebherr and Miele’s 283L versions), Westinghouse 60cm Dark Stainless Steel oven, Miele’s 62cm Airflex Induction Cooktop (I can combine zones for larger pans, such as a paella pan).
Cabinets: V-groove panel doors, in Dulux Catmint on both upper and lowers.
Cabinet handles, sink and tapware: brushed brass/gold finish. The tap will be a pull out mixer to make it easy to fill pots and pans, I’ve selected an Abey Piazza Sink, and discrete gold/brass cabinet handles where needed (or push to open where I can).