Biggest of Chills

This Victorian home’s kitchen remodel combines vintage character and modern technology while bringing retro back in a big way! Despite the challenges presented by the small footprint and awkward layout, this quaint Victorian kitchen was brought into the 21st century by using creative space planning melded with the clients’ fun and funky design aesthetic. The new kitchen stays true to the original architectural style of the home but gives the clients all the modern bells and whistles packaged in a colorful, yet classic room that fits seamlessly into the surrounding spaces.

The Vision

Our clients were ready for some modern conveniences to make their kitchen more functional, comfortable and to add more storage, but two door openings, two windows, a chimney and a door to the basement not only made the layout awkward and inefficient, but they also sucked up valuable wall space. To add to the challenge – the walls and ceiling of this 100+ year old home were out of plumb and in rough shape. Finally, the home had been designated “Historic” by the local Historic District Commission (HDC) thus making major changes to the home’s footprint and exterior very difficult. With all these factors weighing heavily on our clients – they could not visualize a path to an update that would give them what they desired within their budget.

The Team

Lead Designer:  Jimmy Bevilacqua

Project Manager;  Joe Scanlon

Design & Architecture

Schematic Design

The existing layout had too many obstacles in it to make any sort of major redesign possible. Something needed to “give” that would help to add more wall space without adding square footage or tearing down walls.  Challenges our designers had to overcome included:

  • A Very small footprint (125 FT2) to work within
  • Minimal wall space broken up by three doors/openings and two windows
  • Historic District Registration so moving windows had to be approved by HDC
  • Basement door opening into kitchen required valuable space
  • A chimney that vented the hot water heater taking up space and created awkward floor plan
  • 100 year old walls and ceiling were out of plumb making desired crown molding installation difficult

Design Development

The existing footprint was maintained; however moving an historic window and reconfiguring the space dramatically improved the functionality and storage capacity of the small kitchen. The clients brought their own personality into the design with a cherry-red Big Chill stove and hood as the focal point. Countertops, cabinets and flooring were also updated along with the necessary rebuilding of walls

  • Moving window 6 feet towards the front of the home gives additional wall space to accommodate refrigerator and also takes advantage of space needed for basement door clearance
  • Historic District required window to be reused, however; the old, inefficient glass panes were replaced with tempered glass
  • Semi-custom cabinets allow for every inch of this small kitchen to be taken advantage of – creating storage and function where there was none
  • A clever small peninsula and appropriately placed upper cabinets help to creatively hide the chimney and add storage
  • A mix of retro-style appliances helps to meld the historic aesthetic of the home with the homeowners’ fun personal style
  • Walls and the ceiling were rebuilt to create level surfaces for cabinets and crown molding
  • Flooring: Site finished natural red oak
  • Cabinetry:  Waypoint
  • Countertops:  Angola Black Granite

 

 

The Results

Despite the challenges presented by the small footprint, this quaint 100-year-old Victorian’s kitchen was brought into the 21st century by using creative space planning melded with the client’s fun and funky design aesthetic. With a pat on the back from the local historical district commission, this new kitchen stays true to the original architectural style of the home but gives the client all the modern bells and whistles packaged in a colorful, yet classic room that fits seamlessly into the surrounding spaces.