Kitchen Design Partners recently helped create a fabulous new kitchen for a busy family of five in Chicago. The original kitchen of cherry cabinets and dark countertops with cherry wood plank flooring felt dark and dated to this young, energetic family. The kitchen layout was awkward as well. The original refrigerator, sink, dishwasher and range were crowded together with the sink on a diagonal in the corner, all creating a bottleneck. When multiple people were in the kitchen including three children, they were right in the center of the work triangle, adding to the bottleneck problem. Much of the cabinet storage was too high to reach thus creating clutter on the countertops.

We set out to eliminate the bottleneck, create an island design that would increase countertop space for prepping meals and serving casual buffets, provide separate access for the children to make snacks and school lunches, incorporate island seating and more functional storage, and provide the homeowners with a modern style kitchen that evoked their casual yet trendy lifestyle. To aide in decisions about the new layout, the homeowners attended a SubZero Wolf cooking demonstration in Chicago that became a turning point in the project. Speaking with the professional chef helped them feel confident with their new appliance selections, giving the project new clarity and momentum.

What a dramatic transformation! We created a modern kitchen that is both stunning and casual; one that balances both the entertaining and daily activities of the clients. The clients selected SubZero Wolf appliances throughout. The flush installation of the tall appliances with frameless Dura Supreme cabinets allowed for the design to have all tall items on one elevation with additional cabinetry. The column design of the refrigerator, freezer and wine cooler perfectly represented the homeowners’ desire for a modern design. New double ovens and a rangetop replaced their previous bulky range. We were able to spread out the functions of the kitchen and eliminate the bottleneck problem. The pantry and island back side provide the children an area to be self sufficient in preparing lunches and snacks while not interfering with cooking. Tall cabinets, island cabinetry and an expanded pantry behind a sleek sliding door increased their storage and made it more convenient to reach small appliances and dry food.

The pantry was enlarged and now houses a small sink for washing hands and getting drinks. The microwave which is rarely used sits on a shelf. Other small appliances are stored here as well as dry food storage. Between this pantry and the back side of the island, the children can now make their lunches for school without entering the main kitchen space. A barn door matching the cabinetry looks great and easily closes up when the family entertains.

Many accessories in the cabinets provide convenient storage such as pullouts by the rangetop for spices and oils, vertical tray dividers for cookie sheets and cutting boards, appliance garages for convenient access to kitchen aid mixer, double waste unit, drawer dividers for silverware and cooking utensils, rollout drawers behind doors increased the storage capacity and ease of use. The desk allows the parents to monitor the children’s computer use. The banquette has storage for the kids are supplies while also displaying decorative items.

The dark cabinet finishes represent the masculine style of the husband while the contemporary white painted cabinets evoke a more feminine for the wife’s style. The Quartz countertops add a light finish with soft pattern that softens the contrast between the cabinet finishes. Other finishes such as backsplash tile and light fixtures continue the light modern feel of the space. This kitchen uses design principles of repetition, contrast and balance. The frameless cabinets, flush installation of the tall appliances, the contrast between light and dark materials, the use of texture and smooth materials, the 2-1/2″ thick island Quartz countertop, and the enhanced pantry were all critical in making this kitchen unique and perfect for this family. More images of this project are available on our Sleek and Modern in Chicago project page.

We enjoyed planning this kitchen and every detail for this Chicago family. Collaborating with Ann Randall Designs and Mahogany Builders was a great experience for the homeowners and the entire team. For more information on working with Kitchen Design Partners, we invite you to check out our website, profile, facebook and Instagram pages.