Design Sketches

Updating a Kitchen

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In the midst of getting ready for a major presentation to client tomorrow, I wanted to squeeze in the follow up to my previous post. This is the kitchen that did not make it in to the Boston Common story.

In spite of all the lighting, the dark trim and black countertops make the room feel very dark. I would rework the lighting layout, bringing more light the bear on the work surfaces and counter tops. Personally, I’ve never liked exhaust hoods over the kitchen island. They’re obtrusive and generally pretty ugly. Having said that, if you have to have one, make it a piece of sculpture. Use it to enhance your kitchen experience.

 

Taking my own advice, I designed a sculptural exhaust hood, which incorporates it’s own task lighting. The trim has been lightened and a light granite or marble back splash and counter top helps brighten the space. (I might do the entire kitchen in a light or fumed French oak.) The floor has been replaced with a more durable and lighter colored staggered stone pattern. To give the cabinets and island a furniture-like appearance, I eliminated the toe kick space, except where the fridge and micro wave are located. You can see the hutch leg peaking out from behind the island… By adding panels to the fridge doors and putting the micro wave behind a set of doors, I have been able to design a built in that has the appearance of a tall hutch. I do like the notion of the open shelves above the sinks, but they need to be framed better, so I added closed cabinets at each end. The glass doors have been redone to make them feel more window-like.

Viola!!!

Now it’s back to meeting preparations!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Cheers,

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I wanted to follow up on our previous post about being published in the Summer issue of Boston Common magazine. Due to editorial limitations, our comments on another house were not used on the story. Sally and I felt they were worthwhile sharing, as they illustrate how we can help a real estate broker better represent a home’s potential, or if we’re working with a client, how we can help them better visualize a room.

We commented on two rooms in the house – a large living room and the kitchen. In this post, I will focus on the living room, which you see below.

In it’s current state, the room struggles with it’s identity. The architecture reminds me of Arts and Crafts detailing. The furniture – I not quit sure what’s going on… The wood trim is too dark while the mantel, which should be the focal point and anchor of the room is too weak. The chandeliers and sconces need help.

We proposed lightening the trim color and reworking the mantel/hearth area creating a cozy inviting place where you would want to settle in a linger – have a good conversation with  friends or become absorbed in a good book and add a friendlier chandelier. We proposed adding boxed beams, making the room feel smaller and intimate.

After preparing the sketch, I felt the mantel was too heavy – needing to be softened and lightened in scale and feel. The elevation sketch below is much more to my liking.

Pulling this together was intense and a just little crazy. On the other hand, (occasionally) it’s fun to test yourself and find out what you can create in a limited amount of time.

Cheers,

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Sally and I are designing a project in Wellesley managed and built by Landmark Services, who are terrific by the way. The project involves the renovation of the kitchen, powder room and mud room ares on the first floor, the family bath and master bath on the second floor and creating a home office over the garage. We’re in the thick of design development right now, with final decisions being made on all materials, finishes, plumbing fixtures, kitchen appliances, etc. I spoke briefly about the kitchen in this post.

The Master Bath is progressing nicely and I thought I’d share a sketch of the vanity. It’s an “L” shape, with full height storage on the left – both open shelves and closed storage. Once again, the cabinets are flush inset, similar to the kitchen. Note the stone base – still thinking that thru…

We’re looking at various Jerusalem Gold Limestone options for the floor, shower, wainscot and decorative tile. (This is the third master bath using this material in less than a year. Is this a trend?)

 

My vote is for the tile in image #2, with it’s variation in visual texture and tonality. I love what you could do for a backsplash in the kitchen with the tile in image #3 – a little rough and relaxed, while exuding loads of charm and sophistication.

It will be interesting to see where we all end up!

Cheers,

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