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Coastal Homes San Diego

San Diego Union Tribune: Coastal San Diego Homes Feature

Focus on functionality Kitchen opened using classic, simple design The kitchen’s reworked layout combines the open-concept aesthetic and flow with the functionality of a galley kitchen. (Patricia Bean) By Allison Keltner Custom Kitchen by Inplace Studio After seven years of living with a kitchen that wasn’t functional or attractive, Jenny Douglas was more than ready for a change. She and her husband, John, had redesigned the rest of their five-bedroom, five-bathroom Carmel Valley home, which was built in 1994, in a Tuscan style. But they had left the kitchen alone, unsure how to fix it. Designers Alison Dorvillier and Lauren Brogger of Inplace Studio stepped in to transform the space. When you walk into the Douglas’ kitchen now — which is completely open to the living room and includes a large breakfast nook — it’s hard to imagine that it was once a typical tract-home kitchen. “It was all white, with a tiny island and a peninsula extending out, blocking it off from the living room,” Dorvillier said. The island held the stovetop, and the sink was on the end of the peninsula. Neither spot had adequate counter space for prep work, and the sink was out of reach of the dishwasher. Just outside the kitchen, a bar area with a long counter served mainly as a catch-all collection spot because it was on the way in from the garage. Dorvillier and Brogger first worked on rethinking the floor plan. The flow and circulation from the living room through the kitchen to the dining room just didn’t work. “You had to make a lot of awkward turns,” Dorvillier said. Custom Kitchen by Inplace Studio They removed the peninsula entirely, and the wall it extended from was cut back. They also moved the door between the kitchen and dining room from one end of a wall to the other to create a more natural flow. The house was also extended into the backyard about three feet to create more room. The addition houses the breakfast nook, which has a built-in bench with extra storage. A walk-in pantry with a sliding barn door replaced the bar, and Dorvillier created a “mini mud room” in the hall behind the pantry that leads to the garage. Now with more space, Dorvillier and Brogger replaced the small island with a much larger one. A sink was installed in the island and a six-burner, four-foot Wolf stovetop was installed on the counter behind it. There’s also plenty of workspace around the sink and on either side of the stovetop. “Functionally, it works like a galley kitchen — the oven, stove and fridge are in one line,” Dorvillier said. “The working triangle is just perfect,” Jenny Douglas added. All the cabinetry was custom-designed to the Douglas’ exact needs, including a precisely measured drawer for spices, another drawer with custom compartments for silverware and a built-in paper towel holder in the island. Next to the refrigerator is a “breakfast pantry,” with an additional counter that slides out with space for appliances such as the toaster and coffeemaker. Once the floor plan was addressed, the focus turned to the kitchen’s look. To keep with the home’s Tuscan style and the traditional feel Douglas wanted, the design was kept simple and classic, with clean lines and natural materials. Custom Kitchen by Inplace Studio Dorvillier and Brogger used reclaimed wood ceiling beams from Vintage Timberworks in Temecula to add architectural interest as well as to blend the kitchen and living room together. They also added beams to the dining room. A walnut plank was used to create a bar top on one edge of the island. Douglas found an antique fireback at C’est La Vie in Encinitas for the backsplash over stovetop. Originally used to protect the back wall of a fireplace, the fireback now serves as the kitchen’s focal point. It sits in a custom niche over the stovetop that holds bottles of olive oil, a salt grinder and other cooking essentials. A custom range hood, made with Jitterbug stainless steel, pulls the reclaimed wood beams and cast-iron fireback together. With those three striking design elements, the team didn’t need to do much else. Architectural details on the glass cabinet doors echo those used on either end of the island. While most of the cabinets were painted white, the island was painted gray-green to bring in some soft color. Inplace Studio first started on the Douglas kitchen in July 2014. They faced some obstacles in construction. “There was a lot of nutty stuff the way the house was constructed,” Dorvillier said. The project was completed in June 2015. “The difference was night and day,” Dorvillier said.   Check out the actual article HEREPin It

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