Sunday, February 8, 2015

Randy and Brenda's Farmhouse Kitchen

Happy Weekend everyone!
It's a very snowy past couple of days here in the GTA and it definitely feels like winter. The roads are greasy, slick with mixed snow and freezing drizzle today and I am anxiously awaiting the return of my honey who drove north to Owen Sound yesterday to visit his dad.

I have never ever posted about any of my customer's kitchens I've designed but will do more of that from now on as I plan to make a point of going out and getting pictures once their renovation is complete. 

Randy and Brenda are wonderful people who have been putting their heart and soul into renovating their gorgeous farmhouse in the country that was built in the late 1800's.  
As you know, century homes are nearest and dearest to my heart and I wanted to make sure their kitchen was perfectly designed for their home.
Randy runs his own renovation company and is also a creative genius with welding and if that isn't enough, an auto body mechanic. Brenda is a warm and extremely funny lady who works for the Board of Education.
Brenda and Randy wanted the kitchen to feel inviting and cozy for their family and for entertaining but also wanted to make sure it was in keeping with the style of their home.
They chose painted warm cream cabinetry with a raised bead panel detail on the door  and drawers to keep it feeling light and airy but also have character as well.

Their entire kitchen was taken back to the studs, all the historical trims removed and painstakingly stripped and restained. All new insulation and drywall was installed as well as new hand scraped floors laid. Randy also added this gorgeous beam he stained to play off the stained trims in the rest of the room.

Randy is going to build Brenda her dream harvest table and then she will get a new set of chairs for it that will finish off the space to completion.. 
After much searching online without any luck for lights for the space, I found these gorgeous historical reproduction fixtures on Restoration Hardware's site that were on sale and when I showed them to Brenda she ordered them up right away.

These beautiful chairs are so comfortable and Brenda told me that she loves to sit here with her tea and laptop on weekends and that the counter space is incredible for cooking up a storm. Randy incorporated lighting in all the glass cabinets and when they have company over at night, they turn just those lights on and the room glows.
Since the room is quite large, I created many layouts but this one made the most sense for a reasonable work triangle and gave the most working counter space where it is needed most, near the sink.

Brenda loves her white cast iron drop in sink, another choice that is befitting of an old farmhouse and is extremely durable as well. She chose the Victorian faucet from Delta in brushed nickel. I love a mix of metals and this one works beautifully.
Like most projects, some of the final details just take time to get right and Brenda is still on the hunt for another light for the sink area. The stove is tucked into it's own little niche and we decided to keep it free of cabinetry since there is plenty of storage in the rest of the room.
Gorgeous new stainless steel appliances bring the kitchen into this century.

Our granite company arrived at 4pm and worked well into the night to install the granite in the kitchen with it's challenging wrap around design and slide-in stove at one end. They did a fantastic job!

Randy chose to install wood stained baseboard behind what he calls the"yickety yacks" (arched valance kicks) so that their profile stood out and I thought that was a super idea. I didn't get a good shot of the door to the right side but I'd suggested they paint the door a nice pop of a muted colour like a blue grey and Brenda plans to paint the glass with blackboard paint. I think it will add a fun and charming detail to their large kitchen. 
I asked them why the handles and knobs were positioned differently on the upper pantry doors on either side of the fridge than what you would normally do and Randy told me that because the knobs are a larger size, when they opened the fridge door all the way, it would hit the knob and cause a dent in the door. Fortunately they had to get the fridge replaced under warranty due to issues and immediately remedied the situation with the new one by changing the doors on either side so that wouldn't happen again. 

This symmetrical design of custom looking cabinetry on either side of the door to the living room creates visual harmony in the room and oodles of storage.
Rich brown granite counters add warmth but also contrast nicely with the cooler carrera marble subway tile backsplash. Brenda found stunning glass knobs at Anthropologie for the upper cabinets and oil rubbed bronze pulls the lower cabinets and work beautifully together.
The lights move up and down on their pulley system, beauty and function, how could you ask for more!

Where most folks would just rip out old wood that needed some work and toss it in the garbage, they  removed, stripped, repainted and reinstalled the tongue and groove wainscotting. 
Ah, people after my own heart.

Just off the kitchen through the door you see to the left of the penninsula is an enclosed sunroom porch that runs the entire length of the front of the house. Talk about lucky! Brenda says they live in that porch when except in winter as it is not heated. They replaced the solid door with a glass one to allow all the light to pour in and connect the spaces in the winter when the door has to be shut.
I love her large wall clock!

 Here is the man who did an incredible job with the help of his lovely wife!
They even created an open transom above this doorway that leads to the main entrance mudroom to let some more light into the kitchen and they might add a stained glass window to it. For now it is a great place for some charming chickens to roost.

With my visit fast approaching, Brenda lit a fire under Randy's butt to get this gorgeous hard to find (we sell it at my store as a special order) real travertine silver stone tile I helped them choose for the mudroom and he rose to the task and finished it the day before I arrived.
Way to go Randy it looks incredible!

I love how the silver travertine floor plays off the backsplash as well tying the two spaces together.

Randy also made the floating shelves and below them created a holder for his antique drill bit collection. Another creative idea, the electrical panel is behind this bumped out area to the left of the stove and he showed me how he opens the door by removing one of the slats first which allowed him to put his hand in the opening to open a hinged door that opens just above the counter. If you look closely you can see the seam where the door is. 

Randy and Brenda told me that they had realized their new kitchen has fulfilled their wishes completely, when their kids, for the first time in years chose to stay home on New Years Eve and celebrate in their new kitchen!