June 8, 2018
With a love of hosting and three teenagers under the same roof, one couple in Carmel Valley, Calif., felt their cramped kitchen needed more than a quick update. Along with being detached from the adjacent living room, the kitchen lacked warmth, enough seating and adequate storage.
“The clients wanted their home to communicate their sense of style and to accommodate cooking and entertaining,” said designer Tatiana Machado-Rosas of San Diego-based Jackson Design and Remodeling. “They wanted their space to reflect an appreciation of traditional luxury.”
The former kitchen was unusually small given the scale of the home, and it seemed distant from both the family room and what was a mostly unused breakfast area. In the family room, the original fireplace and TV also felt like afterthoughts.
To correct these issues, the design team pushed a wall back in the living area to create depth in the great room. They also repurposed the breakfast area – which was too small for the five-person household – into a wet bar. Coffered ceilings define each area and help bring a human scale into the larger space.
“The kitchen, family room and bar are now visually and spatially integrated,” said Machado-Rosas, whose team used 2020 and AutoCAD for their drawings. “From there, a sense of gracious openness and welcome needed to also be emphasized.”
To take advantage of the large space, the design team expanded the kitchen into the great room and brought in additional cabinetry. The challenge was how to install more storage options while also keeping the kitchen bright and open.
“Our solution was to choose light-color cabinetry on the perimeter reaching up to the ceiling and darker wood cabinetry closer to the ground,” said the designer, explaining that this dark color was applied on the island and as an accent on the custom wood hood. “The resulting overall look is traditional but fresh.”
The white cabinetry is a hard rock maple in cream with an antique glaze, while the dark cabinets are alder wood. Drawer pulls were selected in oil-rubbed bronze for a textural detail. This touch of dark color contrasts the white cabinets and backsplash, which features interspersed tiles imprinted with a fleur-de-lis pattern for visual interest. A new larger refrigerator is integrated behind the cabinetry and is now surrounded by ample storage, including a pantry and an appliance garage.
“The functionality and storage of the kitchen were significantly increased while establishing a streamlined, clutter-free environment,” said Machado-Rosas.
Thoughtful details like an out-of-the-way pull-out microwave drawer and a small desk area will keep traffic out of the busy kitchen. A classic copper, double-bowl sink was installed in the island as a nod to the clients’ preference for a traditional style, and all the prominent fixtures have bronze finishes to highlight the sink’s design.
Along with increasing their storage, the clients wanted more gathering spaces for guests. The design team did both by installing a grand island with two sections: a lower section with storage and a sink for prepping and a bar-height countertop – overlaid directly on top of a section of the lower piece – for seating.
“The generous island seating area, which easily seats six on its 7-ft. by 7-ft. granite slab surface, was deliberately designed differently from the cooking section to keep eating and cooking areas clearly defined,” said the designer.
Both countertops are made of granite slabs with varying shades of blue, mint, cream, gray and white. The overlaid countertop has distinct square edges to add refinement to the piece. The base of the entire island is alder wood burnished with a rich stain, and it includes details such as traditional turned legs and beadboard.
“The island is an impressive focal point in the open space and serves multiple purposes, including seating, cooking prep with a sink and abundant storage,” said Machado-Rosas .
Through an archway that reflects the home’s curved Spanish-style front door, the nearby bar needed to also make guests feel welcome while alluding to the kitchen. To do this, the design team installed the same alder wood cabinetry used in the kitchen and then gave the space character with materials like African black-and-gold-stained granite and a copper tin ceiling.
“The bar design was inspired by a traditional Irish pub with an extra shot of elegance,” said the designer. “Rich materials and colors align with the kitchen while retaining their own distinct character.”
Designer: Tatiana Machado-Rosas, Jackson Design and Remodeling
Countertops: Tutto Marmo
Hood: Stanisci Design
Island Cabinets: DeWils
Perimeter Cabinets: Dura Supreme Cabinetry
Tile: San Diego Marble & Tile
Wine Fridge: U-Line