As quickly as we dubbed the kitchen the most important room of the house, interior design trends began seesawing at an increasing rate. Thankfully, we can rely on some steadfast kitchen elements to be relatively trend-resistant: white shaker style cabinetry, tiled backsplash, cabinet handles and pulls and farmhouse sinks to name a few. So far, 2017 has been witness to a modified version of the au courant modern minimalist kitchen where hits of colour (namely blue), natural woods and mixed metals are being introduced to add interest to the monochromatic palette. Even interior design guru, Emily Henderson embraced colour by painting her island ‘Green Smoke’ by Farrow and Ball (the lowers in her previous kitchen were ‘Hague Blue’ by Farrow and Ball, but who’s keeping track?).
So when faced with a kitchen renovation in their 1940’s bungalow, this professional couple looked online to find inspiration for an open concept kitchen that would be durable enough to survive the hard wearing years of young children, yet sophisticated and primed for entertaining. As first time home buyers tackling their first renovation, they turned to the experienced designers and builders at MAC Renovations to oversee the transformation. The 1940’s home was in rough shape and with two young kids, the busy professionals wanted to complete the reno before they moved in.
Interior designer at MAC Reno, Azu Saavedra states that “the house had been through a series of DIY renovations by the previous homeowners. The kitchen layout had an inconvenient flow for cooking and entertaining, the kitchen cabinets were in terrible condition and the floor tiles were stained with oil. The homeowners came to us to design an open concept space for entertaining while expanding the square footage for a large island, more counter space and storage.” Every room in the original layout was disconnected so the couple’s goal was to connect the rooms and create a flow where the kitchen could function as the hub of the house.
As the DIY layers were peeled back, the to-do list mounted to include the following: removing multiple layers of flooring, levelling the floor, removing layers of drywall and the chimney, installing a hanger beam, new footings, updating the DIY electrical, updating ventilation and insulation, a seismic upgrade and creating an airy open plan to include an office. Saavedra adds that to come up with an overall look they borrowed elements from both traditional and contemporary styles; they decided on a transitional aesthetic that would balance the midcentury home’s original character with the couple’s modern leanings.
A bold side-step from the trending monochromatic kitchen, the stile-and-rail lower cabinets in navy blue constrast the white uppers while the brushed brass hardware pulls the two-tone look together to impart a classic feel with a dash of bling. Snow white Quartz countertops will stand the test of time and look fresh with the navy blue lowers. Hard-wearing vinyl plank flooring was installed for durability in the high traffic area.
With entertaining a top priority, the couple wanted the open plan kitchen to include a sizeable island to accommodate guests, a bar fridge, wine storage and a feature bar area. “The kitchen now enjoys an open concept that allows the chef ample space to cook while still interacting with guests. We designed a functional work triangle for prepping and cooking and more storage to meet the growing family’s needs.”