I am so excited about the kitchen I’m doing in Westchester County, NY. This is in the classic post-renaissance home in Bronxville, NY. Of course, it helps that we are blessed with drop-dead gorgeous architecture. One day, I’ll have the before photos. (they are in my client’s camera and they haven’t figured out how to download them yet.) A quick description would be French Country cabinets, huge, heavy dark beams, a monstrosity of a stucco hood over an Aga range (that she never used), and an oversized Palladian Window which was stuck disturbingly off-center in the dining area. On top of it, was a cramped, dark butler’s pantry that could only have cabinetry on one side. It just didn’t work and cut off too much of the space. On top of it all, they discovered that the insulation was nil and things were mighty uneven. (floors and ceilings) We enlisted the help of JEM Wordworking who is adept at doing Christopher Peacock-style kitchens without the CP price tag. My client also hired contractor Stuart Newsome and crew and let me tell you, they are doing such a bang-up job; truly amazing! They’ve leveled ceilings and floors, moved plumbing pipes, rewired the entire friggin mess. We designed a gorgeous coffered ceiling to coordinate with the coffered ceiling in the dining room. One surprise yielded a wonderful solution. There was one very large beam that we discovered was structural and could not be changed and so we added pilasters on the walls to deal with the gap between the cabinets and it’s really going to add a lot to the overall design scheme.
We had lots of other challenges to meet, such as FIVE, count ’em five doorways and configuring the space so that there’d be wonderful flow and adequate storage. I am extremely pleased with the plan we came up with.
Here is the floor plan for the new kitchen:
The only major change to this plan is that there is a piece on the south-facing wall, (bottom of the drawing) so the table will be a few feet closer to the island. On the bottom wall is where, formerly there was a HUGE Palladian window. I mean, ridiculously over-scale. Now, there will two new Palladian windows to match the existing Palladian windows on the sink wall. I know, I know… The very word “palladian window” (I’ve also seen it as “palladium” — haha!) conjures up those ubiquitous hideous things over every front door in homes built circa 1988. Ya know, the ones with the interior balcony over the front door with no way to get onto it. So smart, huh? (unless one uses a ladder) Actually, several years ago, we put a friggin’ door from the MBR to the balcony and turned it into a little charming sitting area. (the chandelier came with the home)
Here it is:
Here are some cool Palladian windows with one solution to how to hang the drapes. I think its kinda cool, but maybe the poles are a tad heavy?
This kitchen needs to be everything this home inherently is; classic, elegant, and crisp– a classic white kitchen. Here are our two inspiration kitchens. The first one is very French and the second one is more English. From the first one, we stole the door/pilaster style which we are incorporating in the cabinet on the lower right-hand side of the drawing.
In this kitchen, we pretty much copied the island and we’re having a hood, made almost identical to this one, but a bit smaller. We’re working with a wonderful company in Texas called Texas Light Smith. There have been a lot of details to work out, but we’re almost there. Oh and yeah… we’re doing the Calacatta Gold backsplash and island counter. For the perimeter counters, we’re doing a creamy while quartz composite.
While there’s going to be a lot of white, we’re also incorporating some accents of color. Here are some of the other elements we will be using.
First is our gorgeous Chinoiserie print from Brunschwig et Fils– the classic Le Lac.
Next is our classic wallpaper from Cole and Sons. There is actually very little wall space, but with all of the white, it’ll add a welcome and warm element. Since the paper is very paper-y, I’m going to have it laminated. Oh, and yeah, now don’t cringe, but the fabric too! I do it all the time and it looks great. It will have a slight sheen, like a chintz and it gives the homeowners peace of mind!
Below is a crystal and iron sconce from Chehoma, a French vendor that shows at the NY Now Show. Instead of the usual two fixtures over the island, we are going to do one big chandelier over the island and one big one over the kitchen table. The actual table will be much larger, but will be in this custom directoire-style table which is being manufactured by Englishman’s.
custom Directoire style table
From left to right is a blue and white Chinoiserie lamp in slightly updated stylized version.
WAIT. Lamps? You’re putting lamps in the kitchen???
Sure, why not? They will be on the gorgeous sideboard (below) which is not exactly, but similar to the one we will be doing from Somerset Bay Home.
The Sconce is a custom design I did based on another sconce from Canopy Designs. You can see the original sconce here.
I decided to change the design because the original, while pretty, felt too girly and I love the way it turned out. I did the design in my paint program.
And finally, after the original chairs were on an extremely lengthy backorder, I found a chair that is almost exactly like the one in our inspiration kitchen with the really tall cabinets. (above) These are from Halo Styles, another great company I love to work with! We will be reupholstering them and the stools in the Le Lac fabric.
Well, that’s pretty much it for now.