NARI 2014 CotY Award

First Place, Residential Kitchen

This small house was built in 1930, with a kitchen that was in desperate need of remodeling. Our client is an avid cook and baker and the kitchen lacked counter space for serious baking, as well as making daily meal preparation cumbersome. The range stood in an open space with no adjacent counter space or appropriate ventilation, and the refrigerator was located in a small hallway off the main kitchen area. The kitchen was last remodeled in the mid-1960s by the homeowner’s father. The only usable counter space was that adjacent to the kitchen sink, an area no more than 4 square feet; cabinet space was under and over the kitchen sink, with non-functioning drawers. Fluorescent ceiling lighting gave the space a very stark and unappealing look.

The client wanted to stay within the existing 10 foot by 11 foot area, as opposed to removing a wall to create an open kitchen plan. She desired a design appropriate to the era of the house, while at the same time providing more cabinet and counter space along with modern functionality. Space also needed to be created for her extensive cookbook collection.

To meet the clients needs several things were done. To make room for the refrigerator in the main kitchen, we took out an old chimney and laundry chute. We relocated the range to open up space for additional counters and cabinets adjacent to the sink. Also by relocating the range a powerful exhaust hood could be installed. We used custom made cabinets to maximize floor and wall space. The cabinets were built in long-runs. Open shelving was incorporated into the cabinets running entirely over the sink and between the stove and microwave. This provides a place for cookbooks and other kitchen items. Beadboard was used on exposed walls between countertops and cabinet bottoms, a material used frequently throughout homes of this period. The fluorescent lighting was replaced with multiple pendant lights. The original solid oak floor which lay underneath the old gray tile was refinished and adds to the overall warmth of the kitchen.

The kitchen is no longer a space of limited form and function, but is now a haven for creating fine meals and baked goods.

More About The Project

After

New sink run. The range has been moved across the room. Much more counter space and base cabinets where the range used to be.

Before

The original sink run. There are no drawers for storage. Range location under the window.

After

New sink run. The pink tile has been replaced with soapstone and beadboard. Features a large farmhouse sink and Amish made cabinets with inset doors.

Before

The sink run taken from the top of the kitchen steps.

After

Relocated refrigerator where the chimney and clothes chute used to be. Range relocated and old window replaced.

Before

Range, stairs and chimney location. Notice how close the bottom step is to the range.

After

The east wall of the kitchen with the relocated range and new exhaust hood installed. By moving the range we were able to add counter space and storage cabinets on both sides of the range.

Before

The east wall of the kitchen where the microwave and toaster oven sat. No counter space or built in cabinetry here.

After

The same corner of the kitchen with the open shelving for cookbooks. The microwave now sits in its own cabinet. The wall cabinets are 14 inches deep.

Before

A freestanding pantry cabinet stood next to the laundry chute and chimney.

After

Refrigerator moved into the kitchen. Old hall cabinets torn out and in their place are new floor-to-ceiling pantry cabinets.

Before

The old refrigerator location in the back hallway of the kitchen. See how the refrigerator sticks out into the door opening.

After

Same view of this hallway with re-cased window. New pantry cabinets with a soapstone countertop and beadboard paneling.

Before

Additional shelving in the hallway leading into the kitchen. Space was tight and shelving was installed wherever it could be placed.

After

View of same hallway leading to the kitchen. Much more open feel to the same available space.

Before

Straight-on view of hallway leading into the kitchen. Very cramped area with refrigerator in this location.

After

Old stairs were removed and new code-conforming steps were made. These steps feature white oak step treads. You can see the beadboard on the wall. The steps were difficult to build due to the fact that the landing and floor were not level. The steps also had to be built after the cabinets were installed.

Before

Old stairs. The bottom treat had been extended in the 1960s remodel.

During

The cabinets were custom built to maximize the wall space. They feature inset doors. Cabinets were built in long runs so they could have narrow styles. They look as though they were constructed on-site. Cabinets look authentic to the period. It was difficult to carry these large pieces into the home, but the finish look is worth the effort.

During

The existing ceiling was not level. We went to great effort to level the ceiling because the cabinets went floor to ceiling. We leveled the ceiling by running new wood attached to the existing ceiling joists. A level ceiling allowed us to run crown molding around the cabinets with equal margins.

During

The range wall during construction. Added blocking in the wall to screw cabinets to and made sure to have solid blocking to nail beadboard into. All old knob and tube wiring replaced.

During

We tried to be as neat as possible during demolition. All plaster was removed from the wood lath before the lath was removed from the walls. This helped us better to control dust and made it easier to load the dumpster.

During

New Pella window installed. All window and door casings were replaced. We have knives made so we could duplicate the existing trim.

During

Exposed chimney and laundry chute before removal.

During

The laundry chute has been removed and the chimney has been removed from the roof to the middle of the kitchen. Chimney was removed all the way to the basement floor.

During

The chimney, laundry chute and stairs completely removed.

After

Original plans were to install a new white oak floor. The client wanted to try and salvage the original floor. Here the floor has been sanded and the first coat of urethane installed. We were all very surprised at the results.

Before

A test sand of the floor after removing the old gray tile.

After

Close-up of the high-output Best range hood. The hood required an 8 inch round duct. With a little bit of engineering we were able to duct to the exterior of the house.

After

The White-House 30 inch farmhouse sink with a stainless steel grid. The sink is deep so large pans can be washed easily. The sink was pulled forward to allow for more counter space behind it. Chicago faucet with a 12 inch spout was installed so that water would run towards the center of the sink.

After

Maximizing storage was key to this kitchen. We were able to add counters and cabinets with pull out spice racks on both sides of the range.

After

Pull-out cabinet for cleaning supplies added next to the sink.

After

New closet we build on the second floor where new space was made after removing the chimney and laundry chute. The client was thrilled to have more closet space.

After

Beadboard bench was built for putting on shoes and hanging coats at the end of the kitchen hallway. Prior to the project there was nothing in this space.