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The owner of this 1940s Hollywood Regency-style place in the Hollywood Hills is an interior designer who decided to revitalize his own kitchen by applying lessons learned from previous remodels. Designing the kitchen for people who love to cook, with an adjacent space for friends and family to hang out, he shifted around the kitchen, dining room, and den to create a great-room concept. Another nod to modern living: a large, multifunctional island with seating and plenty of smart storage strategies.
The homeowner was determined to infuse the kitchen with rich elements to give it distinction. The Calacatta marble tile backsplash, for example, runs up the wall to meet horizontally oriented beaded-board paneling, which also appears in the adjacent family room. Turning beaded board sideways creates strong horizontal lines that make walls appear longer.
More open storage opposite the refrigerator wall is supported by shapely brackets. The dark metal complements similar tones in the floor, counters, doors, and window frames, and it adds pizzazz to simple open shelves that provide both display and storage space. The shelves keep items used every day in an easily accessible place, and a top shelf, which might be hard to reach, is used to showcase art and decorative objects rather than kitchen essentials.
A major renovation to this kitchen yielded a gain of 130 square feet, taken from a seldom-used exterior porch. Plenty of smart storage was carefully planned to make the most of every inch. The new design gave the homeowners more than enough space to hold all their wish-list items, including a large kitchen island and a peninsula separating the kitchen and the adjoining dining room.
There wasn't enough space for a walk-in pantry, so the custom-designed cabinetry extends to the ceiling to maximize storage. A library ladder that rolls along a rail provides access to the top row of cabinets. Cleverly concealed pullouts store spices, bottles, platters, and trays. The slim pullout shelf below the pantry cabinet serves as a temporary landing space for items without permanently intruding on the walkway.
A corner pullout unit stores large cookware and avoids wasting space in a corner cabinet. The pullout unit brings the cabinet contents into clear view, eliminating the likelihood of losing items in the recesses of a deep cabinet.
Appliances were also chosen with capacity in mind. Paired refrigerators with stacked freezer drawers blend in with the cabinetry and give the couple plenty of space to stock up on food for a house full of guests. A pullout cabinet beside the refrigerators makes use of an awkward space. The slender dimensions of the unit make it ideal for storing small containers and bottles.
Before a much-needed makeover, this kitchen hadn't been updated since the 1970s. All the appliances were outdated, and the pink kitchen's terra-cotta tile floors didn't fit with the home's midcentury architecture. An interior designer guided the homeowners through a project that would encompass both aesthetics and function. The first step to this simple, clean, modern look was to gut the room, even though that meant losing two large pantries on either side of the dining room door. In lieu of the spacious yet awkwardly positioned pantries, the homeowners gained plenty of in-kitchen storage.
The homeowners worked closely with a designer to create storage for everything from spices and packaged foods to baking sheets and oversize pots. A flip-up door keeps the microwave above the oven out of sight when not in use, and side-by-side pullout pantries near the oven more than make up for the lost storage space.
While they were going for a contemporary feel, the homeowners also wanted the kitchen to be a warm, comfortable place, so they opted for wood-look cabinetry. Zebrawood (named for its dark stripes on a light background) was their first choice, but it was also a budget buster, so they went with custom cabinetry finished with a faux-zebrawood laminate. To keep the look of the cabinetry simple, the couple used few door pulls, opting instead for push mechanisms, which make it easy to open the sleek cabinets and access their contents.
The homeowners matched the modern feel of their cabinetry with a sleek faucet and water-filtration system. An LED ring built into the faucet lights the sink at night, and slim rectangular metal bars embedded in the concrete countertop create an integrated drainboard, eliminating the need to have and store a bulky ancillary drainboard.
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