To provide a more open and airy feeling, many homeowners are eliminating or reducing upper cabinetry in their kitchens. In this home, the owner wanted no upper cabinets but also an older, more historical feeling to the kitchen, to match the Tudor exterior and heavy wood trims inside the house. So, we started by creating a "hearth", which consisted of a reclaimed beam that spanned across the area with the range. We custom made cabinets that hide inside the support columns and clad them with the same reclaimed beam material. Base cabinets also had extra storage to make up for no uppers--using tiered pull outs. The homeowner chose a rich, historical color for the cabinets (vs the ubiquitous white) and a matte natural stone for the counters.
All of the hardware in the kitchen is also reclaimed—on the range side we used old screen door pulls, in the sink area the pulls are from a piece of 1900 furniture, the refrigerator handle is literally a handle from a Tudor front door. For the columns we used door knockers, and in the beverage area we found a few more furniture pulls.
When we started, the kitchen was a dark brown galley with one window, but after removing the wall between the kitchen and dining we created a multi-use open area that incorporated cooking, dining and entertaining. Cabinetry was extended into the former dining room for a beverage area with an under counter refrigerator and espresso maker. To showcase the homeowner's mug collection (he or his family and friends have traveled to all of these places and the cups have been collected over several decades) we custom built slim shelving that covers the entire south wall of the dining area and makes a functional art piece.
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