Taking a kitchen from daggy to designer
With a new layout and cabinetry, the owners can now retire in style, writes Jennifer Veerhuis
Downsizing from a large family home offered the owners of this villa many benefits, but the kitchen wasn’t one of them. After living in their new home in the Melbourne suburb of Brighton for a year, they decided this central part of their home was in real need of some help.
The kitchen sat alongside an informal meals area at the back of the villa. Visually it looked tired and the owners found it wasn’t functioning very well either.
Scaling up and down
The couple who have a keen interest in design decided on the K2 system from Cantilever Interiors. They wanted a minimalist look that wouldn’t need updating in a hurry. They also wanted the kitchen to meet their needs as they grew older while giving them the option to entertain at home with ease.
“The old kitchen was aesthetically very dated and structurally it was quite small in the space and awkwardly shoved into one corner of the room,” says designer Travis Dean from Cantilever Interiors. “So it didn’t really work in terms of a functioning kitchen in a space where there was a lot of opportunity.”
Travis decided the best option was to reorientate the kitchen, to best capture light and views of the garden.
So the informal meals area was removed altogether and the new cabinetry would run along two walls, almost to the back door.
“In the end, we weren’t able to run the kitchen into the (back) wall because the wall return is narrower in depth than our (standard) benchtop,” Travis says. “So we purposely held it back 500mm to give a bit of space to dress that corner, so there’s enough space to reinterpret it.
“You could have a plant or a lamp in there, you’ve got enough space for versatility.” A well-designed kitchen that maximised access and bench space while offering the fresh clean look the owners needed
A new island bench free of a hotplate or sink balances benchspace with easy circulation through the kitchen.
The new multipurpose space is the ideal spot for the couple to enjoy northern sun as they eat breakfast.
Form follows function
With two-pack cabinets in white and pale grey, the design includes a swing-out tandem pantry and a one-door appliance cupboard, an integrated fridge and a stacked double oven.
“The client says one of the advantages of having the double oven and the double dish drawer dishwasher was she can cater for larger groups of people in the house and also have the island free,” Travis says. “But she can also scale back when it’s just the two of them and use the one dish drawer.”
Travis says because the owners were older, they had an understanding of how they like to live, which influenced appliance selections.
“The unique thing with this project is they’ve got a gas wok burner and also an induction cooktop, usually it’s one or the other,” Travis says.
Open shelving and a box in oak veneer are special features in the kitchen, adding contrast against the white cabinetry.
All up, the project took five months, with the build phase taking 12 weeks.
The old kitchen was cramped and dated and didn’t offer much functionality.