Designing a kitchen is probably the most exciting, stressful (even with a good budget) and expensive endeavour you will undertake in the world of home renovation so there is a lot of pressure to get it right. Above all, it has to be functional but also needs to stay true to your personality. So after months of looking at Pinterest and tearing pictures from magazines, where do you begin?
When we designed our Brooklyn kitchen we had a blank slate. A 56 square metre, open loft-like room with 12-foot ceilings and a glass wall. Open spaces can be difficult to define especially when they are multi-functional. The kitchen had to be strong enough to ground the room but at the same time, it was important that it ‘faded away’ when entertaining.
The space lent itself to a modern design. Always take time to make a rough plan and bring it with you when you meet the kitchen designer. This will ensure that you get what you want, or as close to it as is practical. We used henrybuilt a Seattle company for the cabinets and painted them in Farrow and Ball 'Off Black' to add presence. All the appliances were integrated and hidden in a wall of floor to ceiling cabinets which held a pantry, double oven, refrigerator, and storage drawers to hold mixers, food processors and other small appliances.
That left us with a floating ‘console’ housing fisher paykal dishwasher drawers, storage and electric cooktop. Even the extractor was hidden in the counter and vents outside through the wall. Floating cabinets are very cool and make a room appear larger but be warned the supporting wall must be reinforced, which adds greatly to the expense.
We respected the work triangle. I cook a lot so can attest to the kitchens work flow, yet it was still glamorous and impressive which I wanted. We also added an island on wheels. When cooking I use it for prep and when dining it is an ideal serving station. In the summer months, I have an outdoor kitchen and move it outside. Overall it is the perfect multi-functional piece of furniture.
In our Victorian terrace house in Limerick, the layout is the exact opposite of the one described above; more closed in. In this case, I am determined not to have the kitchen in the basement as many people have opted to do. I do not want to primarily live on the darkest floor in the house. I also do not want to extend, there is something so complete about this house that I don't want to distract from. I wish to show the house can be livable as it is. As I write this it is still a work in progress, so stay tuned……