Designer: Page Gandy of 3 Fold Design Studio
Location: Austin, Texas
Size: 250 square feet (23.2 square meters)
Homeowners’ request: An overall soft, monochromatic feel with texture and interest to enliven the space.
Backsplash: Hand-painted terra-cotta tile (Fatima decorative field tile in Mezzanotte color, 4⅝ by 4⅝ inches, by Walker Zanger). “Because there were no upper cabinets in the kitchen, we knew the back wall had to really pop without being overwhelming,” designer Page Gandy says. “When I saw this tile, I knew it would be perfect for the space. The client took a bit of convincing, mocking up large poster boards with pictures of the tile, but she was thrilled when it was completed.”
Other special features: Black steel vent hood. White Caesarstone countertops. Cabinets hand-finished in a washed gray. “Because of the amazing backsplash tile, we toned down the other finishes in the space,” Gandy says. There’s also a study nook to the right.
Designer secret: “In every kitchen I design, I try to find a way to incorporate counter seating,” Gandy says. “From quick meals to homework, to large spaces in which to lay out the seemingly never-ending school projects, I find having one uninterrupted counter top invaluable.”
Sink: Vault undermount in stainless steel, Kohler; faucet: Tara ultra single-handle mixer, Dornbracht; range: Wolf; refrigerator: Sub-Zero; countertops: Caesarstone in Organic White; French cafe stools: Restoration Hardware; hardware: Apollo pulls, Ashley Norton
Designers: Howard Hawkes and Kevin Kemper of H3K Design
Location: Vistas las Palmas, Palm Springs, California
Size: 360 square feet (33.4 square meters); 20 by 18 feet (6 by 5.4 meters)
Homeowners’ request: Replace a closed-room kitchen with a more open concept that would maintain the original vintage charm.
Backsplash: Semicustom handmade tile by Ann Sacks. “It was the most important decision for the client,” designer Howard Hawkes says. “It had to be just right. It took him months to pick it out. He wanted it to be bright and cheery and vintage, but it also had to go with the new sleeker version of the house.”
Designer secret: Hawkes and designer Kevin Kemper stopped the backsplash a third of the way up the wall for more of a vintage feel. “If this was a contemporary space, we would have tiled it all the way up,” Hawkes says.
Countertops: Caesarstone in Blizzard; flooring: poured terrazzo tile, 30 by 30 inches; lights: West Elm; stools: Bertoia, via Design Within Reach; wall paint: Pearl Necklace, Dunn-Edwards; refrigerator: Sub-Zero; cooktop: Wolf
Designers: Donald Powers and Christina Carlson of Union Studio; Denise Enright (interior design); and AJ Johnson of CliqStudios.com (kitchen design)
Location: Devens, Massachusetts
Size: 208 square feet (19.3 square meters); 16 by 13 feet (4.8 by 3.9 meters)
Homeowners’ request: This design was in collaboration with This Old House magazine for its 2016 show house. The editors were looking for a modern farmhouse vibe and to showcase color throughout the home.
Backsplash: Hudson penny round tile in vermilion by Merola Tile. The team selected a neutral cabinet for long-lasting appeal, but gave the kitchen a bright accent with the counter-to-ceiling backsplash in a colorful tile.
Other special features: “We wanted to fill both exterior walls with windows to create a light-filled kitchen that links the open living and dining spaces,” architect Donald Powers says.
Designer secret: “We built a custom kitchen using cabinets in stock sizes,” Powers says. “The open shelves near the ceiling are typical base and wall cabinets turned on their side. The island is a modern version of the farmhouse table, the focal point and gathering space of the home. We kept the top clear of a sink or appliances, though a microwave drawer is tucked underneath to reduce visual clutter.”
Also on the team: Dan Gainsboro and Sean Ford of Now Communities (developer and builder); Claudia Jepsen of This Old House magazine; William Geddes (photographer)
Countertops and windowsills: Zodiaq quartz in London Sky, Dupont; hardware: Blackrock LGTH knob and CTC pull in satin nickel, Amerock; cabinets: Austin in Urban Stone, CliqStudios.com; island cabinets: Dayton in Birch Sable, CliqStudios.com; sink: Previor single-bowl undermount in stainless steel, 32¾ by 18¾ inches, American Standard; faucet: Beale Selectronic single-hole with pull-down spray in satin nickel, American Standard; island pendants: Menlo Park mini pendant, Troy Lighting; sink pendant: Menlo Park triple pendant, Troy Lighting; flooring: Color Strip 3¼-inch solid red oak in Smoke, Somerset Flooring; wall paint: Pacific Pearl in eggshell finish, Olympic Paint; trim paint: Pacific Pearl in semigloss finish, Olympic Paint; 30-inch electric downdraft range in stainless steel: Jenn-Air; Energy Star French-door refrigerator in stainless steel, 25.7 cubic feet, GE; Roman shades in Dandelion/Tangerine: Smith & Noble; Hutton backless counter stools in mustard yellow: Belham Living