Sunday, August 5, 2012

BWC: Kitchen Planning

The kitchen at Beech Wood Cottage is large, and in its many years of non-use and with some problems with the second floor sleeping porch above, the ceiling needs to be replaced, the floor plan needs some re-configuring including the addition of an island.

Designer Credit: Samantha Lyman

I was shuffling through magazines the other day, and came across the June 2012 House Beautiful, where a kitchen designed by Samantha Lyman was featured as the Kitchen of the Month. I fell in love! Not only does the kitchen pair up my two favorite counter tops (butcher block and carrara marble); the kitchen includes a beautiful large island and antique pendants and painted cabinets - making what could have been cold and boring, fun and personal.

I'm so jealous of the storage in this kitchen, well to be honest, jealous of the kitchen period. Walnut Counters, the $23,000 stove, the subzero glass front fridge and freezer side by side, the old ship lights ... ah, perfection!

If I hadn't read the magazine article, I would have told you that these are old gymnasium lights from a school house. I love the double pendant. Definitely taking this and putting it to good use.

I also love that the new cabinetry was designed to fit the antique pie cupboard perfectly. I wouldn't think of putting three different cabinet colors in the BWC kitchen, until I saw this of course, with the white perimeter cabinets, antique blue, and gray island. 

I always find that an island sink, (really more than one sink) in a kitchen is so useful! But in the tiny kitchen of CDLV, there was no need for two sinks because you couldn't have more than one person in the kitchen. It's a matter of the plumbing as to whether or not I'll do a second sink at BWC, but still really love the look of it. And that stove! Oh, if only! 

We will likely keep our current stove, as I could think of other things I could spend $23,000 and get much more enjoyment from. But I will definitely figure out a way to build a vent hood cover like the one above. So beautiful. 

The current cabinets are along one wall only. In the re-configuring of the kitchen layout, more cabinets will have to be made. However, I can keep the costs down by refacing the current cabinets, and having the additional cabinets made with the same door face by one of the Amish cabinet makers in the Valley. Same for the island. 

The perimeter cabinets will be topped in butcher block. Lumber Liquidators offers a beautiful American Cherry Butcher Block at a very reasonable price, and the cabinets will be painted white. Hopefully it'll end up looking like this: 

via Pinterest

I'm thinking of doing a giant slab of carrara on the island, which I may paint black instead of gray ... like this:

via House & Home

Although, I do love the look of carrara paired up with gray ... I mean, with the veining - it's a natural:

by Anne Decker Architects, via 

Heck, I mean ... it's good enough for Martha: 

I've even thought of using full slab of carrara as a backsplash above the butcherblock along the perimeter and behind the stove, like this: 

Now, I am not sure that I would have ever had carrara on the list had it not fallen into my lap. Yes, I happen to have been gifted carrara. Enough to do backsplash and an uber large island. Who would give such a generous gift? More on that later. 

It's not as thick as the slab Joni Webb used in the photo above, it's more like this actually: 

Design by Samantha Lyman

I also plan on incorporating open shelving like this: 

via Rue Magazine

I love the look of this, metal L-brackets with limed wood risers. It would certainly look great piled high with our ironstone collections. It would also be a lot cheaper than having upper cabinets built for the whole kitchen.  However, I also like the cleanliness of this:

via Southern Accents

Which do you prefer? I'd also like to find a way to figure in this piece: 

via eBay

Or maybe ...

via eBay

Anyone getting any hints? These cabinets are of the Victorian Eastlake Style, and the house is a Victorian Farmhouse, with Eastlake-esque mouldings. I'm thinking of making this into a wine cabinet. Perhaps painting it the same color as the island, or maybe washing it down with blue or green paint?

Oh so many decisions ... but it sure is nice to get them out of my head and onto "paper" so I can gather feedback from friends, like you! So let me know ... on track to beauty?


  1. I love all the kitchens! I have a marble island and I LOVE it!!! So much so that I put in marble countertops but . . . being on a very tight budget, I used white marble 12 inch tiles. It isn't the same but it IS the look! And I could afford it!!! IKEA also has very cheap butcher block for countertops. And IKEA has a very reasonable farmhouse sink as I recall (it has two bowls and I was so tempted but I so wanted ONE large bowl!) You might check them out (and you have one near you don't you?)

    I also covet that stove . . . but alas between the size and the price I just can't do it!

    I can't wait to see what all you do to your new kitchen!

  2. Artie so many great ideas included in your plan. When I saw the picks, I decided I love the look of an island with high contrast paint finish...even a charcoal gray. Either furniture piece would be wonderful included in the plan and you could do another shade of gray or gray/blue. What a windfall to receive the carrara Marble slab!

    Art by Karena
    2012 Artist Series

  3. Your ideas are great!! I just painted my upper cabinets white and LOVE them. Now to get the other wall finished before school starts next Monday! Please show us pictures of the before ASAP, pretty please!! I love seeing your pictures.♥♫

  4. oh wow.. so many great ideas. I've got a kitchen remodel in our future.. I am going for the stove with the red knobs... I might have to save all year - sigh.. I just painted my kitchen all white.. not sure I like it yet.. already considering a very soft terra cotta. I have always wanted an island - black with a carrara top! I'm not an open shelves person. At way over 50, I've learned how dirty shelving can get in a kitchen. But love the glass doors! ooh I can't wait to see your kitchen.. I know I will want to steal some of your ideas!! xo marlis

  5. Your inspiration photos are awesome!! I like the brown hutch better b/c of the glass. What color would you paint the brown hutch?

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