Before & After: Reconfiguring & Refining a Kitchen for a Total Transformation

You know that old saying, “You can’t get there from here”? It was a fairly apt description of how this kitchen felt within the overall layout of an expansive Hingham home. Surrounded by other spaces, including a mudroom, pantry and secondary staircase, the kitchen was lacking in logical entry points. And although it was nestled within the home’s floorplan, the kitchen felt isolated because of an absence of flow with the adjacent rooms. Its location also meant it was starved for natural light, which was further exacerbated by stained cabinetry and dark countertops.

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Julie Lyons, one of our senior designers at our South Shore kitchen and bath showroom, addressed our clients’ desire for a larger, brighter space by absorbing the existing mudroom into the kitchen, and relocating the pantry to a former office. The reconfiguration added square footage to the kitchen, and created a sense of connectedness between it and the adjoining rooms. It also allowed much-needed natural light to fill the space. The secondary staircase was repositioned so that it now opens directly into the kitchen. The homeowner’s favorite time of the day is when she descends the stairs into her new light, bright, functional kitchen.

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While an elongated layout, and ill-placed center island, made cooking and moving about in the original kitchen difficult, Julie’s designed greatly improved flow, and added defined work zones which are further delineated by cabinetry and varied finishes.

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The center island in the new kitchen includes cabinetry and an eating area, which is defined with a richly stained wood countertop. Opposite the eating area is the sink, and built into one end is a steam convection oven. A feather-light shade of gray/blue on the island’s base subtly contrasts with the white of the bulk of the perimeter cabinets.

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To one side of the island is a chef’s range topped with a sculptural white hood. It is flanked by two refrigeration columns. On the other side of the room is a wet/coffee bar, creating another zone. A built-in hutch with glass doors anchors the far end of the space.

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An existing servery between the kitchen and dining room was transformed with elegant cabinetry. The new servery, which was recently recognized with a 2019 Best of Houzz Award in the design category, now provides a seamless transition between the casual kitchen and more formal dining room. Pocket doors with multiple glass panes can be closed when needed.

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With the home’s office now a pantry, and the mudroom repurposed to accommodate the expanded kitchen, Julie looked for alternatives. A new built-in breakfront in the kitchen includes a fold-down desk and hides office technology when closed. An extraneous hallway was transformed into a mudroom which is wrapped in shiplap finished with a high-gloss white paint. Cubbies and cabinetry keep cold weather apparel, and sporting and school gear, contained.

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Not only did the finished project meet all of the client’s needs, it has also won several awards. In addition to the Best of Houzz award, Julie’s design was also recognized with a PRISM Gold Award, and a National Kitchen & Bath Association First Place Award in Design Excellence.

Feeling inspired?  We’d love to be part of your very own before-and-after remodel. Please contact us to arrange a complimentary consultation!

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All photos by Dan Cutrona.