May 31, 2019
When it comes to a client’s dream home, trends can only go so far to fulfill a personal aesthetic. One couple waited years to build this home and did not want the contemporary, overly polished style they saw in their neighborhood. Rather they asked designer Lori Carroll for something different, more traditional and family oriented.
“Even though this home was decidedly modern, the family wanted some interesting elements and embellishments added into the kitchen design,” said Carroll, who is the founder and lead designer of Tucson, Ariz.-based Lori Carroll & Assoc. “They wanted a comfortable kitchen with just a touch of sophistication.”
A Space for Every Cook
The contemporary architecture of the new-build home had an open-plan layout that embraced the surrounding desert views and opened up to the adjacent living area. Since the entire family loves to cook and gather in the kitchen, it was important to the clients to take advantage of this open area and create optimum gathering space for multiple cooks and guests. Using AutoDesk and Adobe Suite, the team designed a high-functioning kitchen that did not compromise on design details.
“We proposed multiple work stations and cooking zones, adding more storage and designing a kitchen island that would accommodate prep and serving space,” said Carroll.
The resulting layout has large windows on both ends of the kitchen, with a mix of open shelves and cabinetry on the available walls. The large island in the center of the room is two tiered, with a lower stone top for prepping and a bar-height wooden table for seating. The ample counterspace provides for a number of cooks in the kitchen.
Along with a layout made for a busy lifestyle, it was also important to the clients to have durable and high-quality appliances that could enhance the cooking experience. Some of these included a 48-in. integrated refrigerator, a steam oven and refrigerator drawers.
Particular Design Style
“Planning how to create spaces designed specifically for their collective cooking style was the first challenge, but selecting materials and finishes that appealed to everyone’s aesthetic style was important to the client as well,” said Carroll.
Since the home’s architecture has a modernist slant, the clients wanted the interior to have a neutral color scheme with deeper accents for a more classic charm. Budget-friendly, semi-custom cabinetry was selected with two finishes: an antique white around the perimeter and a chocolate brown for the island.
“Touches like crown molding create a more traditional feel,” said the designer. “Adding contemporary elements like an ultra-modern circular chandelier above the island keeps the design fresh and relevant.”
Dark brown granite countertops were chosen for the perimeter of the kitchen to complement the cabinetry and the stone mosaic backsplash. For a contrasting look, the granite on the island is a different type of slab that boasts dramatic movement and a more colorful palette.
While the kitchen is all about gathering together, the couple wanted their master bath to be a secluded space in which they could unwind away from the kids. The couple hoped for a large bath with timeless appeal and a relaxing ambiance, and the original square footage in the plans was increased to make room for all the features they wanted.
“Inspired by the thought of personal autonomy and peacefulness, this spacious floor plan became a designer’s dream and allowed flexibility when planning a non-traditional layout,” said Carroll.
This non-traditional floor plan was inspired by the desire to highlight the mountain views outside, which created the ideal backdrop for a freestanding tub in the center of the room. However, the design team then was challenged to find the optimum layout for the rest of the elements – particularly the vanities.
“We decided to fabricate waterfall granite vanities to flank both ends of the bathtub, which gave the couple plenty of individual space and helped establish a perfect flow,” said the designer, describing the unusual layout where the vanities and the tub are part of the same stone slab and visually separated by hanging mirrors.
Unlike the centerpiece tub, the large, walk-in shower offers a more private space. With neutral tile, a bench and steam components, this shower completes the retreat for which the couple was hoping.
Designer: Lori Carroll
Photographer: Jon Mancuso Photography
Cabinetry: American Laminates
Coffee Maker: Miele
Lighting: WAC Lighting
Prep Sink & Main Sink: Kohler
Range & Steam Oven: Wolf
Sink Faucet: Delta
Body Spray & Rainhead: Delta
Faucet, Handheld Shower & Tub Filler: Brizo
Lighting: Hinkley Lighting
Sinks & Toilet: Kohler