Back to the 21st Century
In an upscale northwest Washington neighborhood, this kitchen started as the classic builder-grade design. “The cabinetry had developed a decidedly pinkish cast over the decades,” said designer Paul Bentham of Chevy Chase, Md.-based Jennifer Gilmer Kitchen & Bath, who took on the redesign.
The 16-ft. by 23-ft. space opened up to a large family room, but a pair of columns separated the two spaces needlessly.
The client had two requirements for the new space: black countertops and cherry cabinetry. After an extensive search, Bentham discovered a quarter-cut cherry veneer with a unique grain figuring for the doors.
Carefully laying out the veneer, the team created a herringbone-like pattern that was enhanced with an antique stain and a 50 percent poly sheen. This emphasized the veneer’s natural movement and produced a 3D effect.
“High ceilings gave us the opportunity to have tall wall cabinets, but we wanted to avoid them from dominating the space, so we split the cabinetry using a ¾-in. gloss black-painted negative detail,” said Bentham. “We replicated that detail at the ceiling height, breaking up the monotony of tall wall storage without losing capacity.”
Recessing the paneled refrigerator and facing the pantry with matching panels brought symmetrical balance to the room, and the extra cabinetry above these spaces completed the clean appearance.
“Putting the cooktop on the wall where the stacked ovens used to be allowed us to install a proper range hood and vent it to the outside,” the designer said.