October 10, 2022
Can color be a catalyst to a kitchen update? As this project demonstrates, it can play a major role.
As a social hub and a culinary center, a kitchen needs to be efficiently organized and aesthetically appealing. The existing space Melanie Hay of Toronto-based Melanie Hay Design encountered at the outset of this whole-house remodeling project was neither. White appliances and wooden cabinets stained a muddy brown were cramped together in a truncated U-shape plan that was anything but conducive to cooking and gatherings.
To achieve the clients’ goal of increasing the size of the kitchen and opening it up to the rest of the home while maintaining sightlines to a new family room and dining area, the designer removed a convenient but ill-placed laundry room that had been located between the kitchen and the family room. She also borrowed some floor space from the overly large formal dining room, strategically reallocating it to suit a modern family lifestyle.
The now-cleared spatial slate allowed appliances (in a contemporary brushed stainless steel finish) to be more graciously arrayed across two parallel walls. There’s now plenty of room for people to congregate, as well as for the chef to work.
Color as a Catalyst
“My clients knew the kitchen was going to be the hub of their new home and were willing to invest in quality and timeless finishes, create more functional storage space (both open and closed) and a dedicated pantry area for all their food staples,” said Hay. “They were receptive to the idea of using dark-colored cabinets and wanted the space to feel layered, rich, elevated and stately but not fussy.”
Opting for a saturated gray paint for the kitchen cabinets, the color tone changes throughout the day depending on the sun exposure, ranging from gray to blue to green.
The centrality of color in the design goes beyond the cabinets and extends to the surface treatments.
“My favorite part of the kitchen design has to be the countertops combined with the gorgeous hex-tiled backsplash,” said the designer. “The veining in the two elements ties them together so nicely while the hex tiles create a wonderful pattern for the backsplash area without being overwhelming.”
Design: Melanie Hay Design
Photography: Lauren Miller
Backsplash: Tile Master
Cabinets: Atlas Kitchens & Baths
Cabinet Hardware: Emtek
Countertops: SiO4 Stone
Dishwasher, Range, Refrigerator: KitchenAid
Faucet, Sink: Blanco
Lighting: Generation Lighting
Paint: Sherwin Williams