I’m so excited to share our kitchen with you! It’s hard to believe it’s already been a year and a half since we moved into our home here in Fairfield County, CT from NYC. We love living in this charming part of Connecticut – just an hour outside the city. When we walked into the house for the first time, I remember instantly saying to myself, “Ahhh, this is the one!” For those of you new around here – hi and welcome! I’ve always had a passion for interior design and went to school for it, but never ended up pursuing it as a career. I started my website; With Love From Kat as a creative outlet, and then moved to NYC to work in fashion PR. I feel fortunate that I get to incorporate my passion for both fashion and interiors in my work today.
After living in our home for a few months, I knew I wanted to make the kitchen (my favorite area in a home – I really do feel that the kitchen is the heart of every home!) more “me.” The previous farmhouse kitchen was absolutely fine before, but I wanted it to be even more functional and aesthetically pleasing. It had white cabinets and stainless steel appliances which was great, but the appliances were about 10 years old and started to look really dated. The microwave over the stove felt clunky, as did the fridge and cabinetry jutting out on the smallest wall in the kitchen. The original cabinetry didn’t go to the top of the ceiling which made the 9 foot ceilings feel shorter than they actually are. There was one wall in the kitchen that wasn’t being used at all – it was just blank and thus felt random. The original kitchen island looked cluttered with cutout cabinets and a small space for bar stools that we never used.
Kitchen Cabinet Color
I started designing our kitchen around my dream La Cornue stove (that was so worth the 8 month wait!) and a floating marble shelf I fell in love with on Pinterest. In addition to the La Cornue stove and floating marble shelf I had my heart set on, I really wanted a cabinet that was the perfect mix between a taupe, green, grey color. We ordered several paint swatches and hung them up on the wall for weeks before deciding. We went with Sherwin Williams Sandbar; a beautiful color that looks different depending on the lighting. In our space, it happens to give off a lovely, warm taupe/green color.
Our faucet is Rohl Perrin & Rowe in unlacquered brass, our marble counters, backsplash and floating shelf are honed Calacatta Gold with 2 1/2″ mitered edges, our sconces are from a small french vendor on 1stdibs, our unlacquered brass knobs and drawer pulls are Rejuvenation, and our cabinets are custom made by this talented local vendor. The hood frame was custom built by our contractor around this hood vent which was then covered by our painter in Venetian plaster.
Kitchen Layout + Appliances
I knew it would make the biggest impact to have the stove centered on the longest wall in our kitchen, which you see right upon entering our side door. In order to achieve a centered stove along this wall, the window needed to be closed up. Many people would never think to close up a window, but luckily we have so many windows and french doors to the right of the kitchen that provide ample light throughout the day, I knew it wouldn’t be an issue.
I didn’t want to have to knock down any walls, because it would mean we would have to redo the hardwood floors, so I got creative with the existing 186 square foot floor plan. I closed up a hallway closet, and opened it up on the kitchen side to fit a Fisher & Paykel integrated panel fridge. We put custom kitchen cabinet doors on the fridge so it looks completely seamless and blends right into the space.
We made the island bigger and placed the La Toscana farmhouse sink in the center of it. I love that I can stare into my garden while I’m doing the dishes. We added hidden shelves inside the island for storage. This really helped since we don’t have cabinets/storage where the floating marble shelf is. The dishwasher is also hidden in the island, as well as the microwave. We didn’t add space for bar stools under the island, because we noticed we didn’t love sitting on bar stools at our former Soho apartment. They aren’t comfortable for my husband who is 6’4” and to be honest, we’ve just never been huge bar stool fans. Nixing the bar stools allowed for the island to look really clean and sleek – and we still have seating in the kitchen since it opens up to our dining room.
The end result is a kitchen that feels so much bigger, more elevated, open, and inviting. It makes a huge statement when you walk in the door, and is easier to cook and entertain in. I am so happy with the way it turned out and love being in the space!
Tips for Designing a Kitchen
I highly recommend that you live in your home for several months before making any major design decisions. This allows you to really visualize your space and understand what you need or want.
My other recommendation is to pick out your paint color first. This will help set the mood for the project. Bring your paint swatches to the marble yards to make sure that the tone of the paint matches with the tone of the marble. We found that since our paint color was warmer, it clashed with marble slabs that were cooler/had more blue tones in them.
I also recommend deciding where you want sconces, lighting or outlets to go in the initial design plan so that you can work with the contractor, cabinet maker and electrician on installing them before the cabinets or marble go in. We didn’t do that, and it ended up being too late (and expensive) to open the wall behind the marble shelf up and run electricity. Instead, we hung the sconces up and used these faux lightbulbs. These lightbulbs are an easy and affordable way to enjoy a non electrical light fixture in a space!
My last piece of advice is to make decisions in your kitchen based on your needs, and not what is “customary” or standard. For example, we didn’t get a pot filler because we rarely used it in our former NYC apartment, and I also felt it would be too much gold with the gold knobs on our stove. We also didn’t install our gold sink sprayer faucet since that was something we didn’t feel we needed.
Charlene of Miranda & Co.
As I was sharing my initial kitchen design on Instagram stories, one of my lovely followers reached out to let me know she was an interior designer and would love to help me with our project. Charlene of Miranda & Co. became an amazing sounding board and advisor throughout our renovation. She worked with us remotely to answer any questions or concerns we had over everything from the counter thickness, to the backsplash height, cabinet style, and sconce selection. She also did all of the elevations for the cabinets and island. What I REALLY appreciated about Charlene, was that she was always available to help me problem solve when things went wrong – and things did go wrong as they do with all renovations! Knowing I could turn to her as an expert gave me major peace of mind!
Kitchen Renovation Timeline
The kitchen took about 9 months from start to finish, with the actual construction lasting a little over 2 months. It could have been faster if we didn’t choose a custom made stove or backordered appliances, but it was well worth the wait! Feel free to leave any questions below. For even more photos of the kitchen – check my Instagram for before+after photos as well as videos of the space, and this article detailing the renovation on Domino. PS all accessories can be found on my Kitchen – Favorites page or in the widget below. If for some reason they are not linked, it’s because they are sold out/no longer available online or vintage pieces.