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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

This Dreadful Kitchen Gets a Makeover

This Dreadful Kitchen Gets a Makeover

A kitchen goes from brown and blah to bright and whoa...all while maintaining its original 1950's-style charm.

Back in 2010, Cindy Black, the Austin-based architect behind Hello Kitchen, got to work on an 1959 kitchen rehab. While leaky pipes and outdated cabinets made a top-to-bottom overhaul a no-brainer, her clients wanted to preserve the original 50's vibe. So just how did Black rise to the challenge? She took it from kitsch to chic with a whole lot of color.

color-kitchen-makeoverPre-colorful kitchen makeover. Photo: Valarie L. Campbell via Hello Kitchen
A very Brady kitchen -- everything from the charred-coffee color to the structure of the old cabinetry weighed the space down. The room was too heavy and uninviting, especially for eating or entertaining. Countertop clutter also left much to be desired. And those bright aqua countertops...not the best way to bring brights into your space.

Enter Hello Kitchen to make it all better. All-white appliances reflect light brilliantly -- and when combined with the brushed aluminum backsplash and stainless-steel sink, still give the space that retro feel the clients wanted. The stunning custom European-style cabinetry (by RubyAnne Designs) and open shelving brighten up the space. Look below: Is this the same room?

Staying true to her clients' obvious affinity for ultramarine, Cindy even manages to pay homage to turquoise in the remodel. Here it is making a strong comeback in those kitchen drawers (below).

Since one of the homeowner uses a wheelchair, accessibility was first and foremost in the new design. We love how the shelving is thoughtfully anchored on the wall, not the floor, as not to get in the way. And notice how the 10-inch toe kick beneath the base cabinetry really looks like a cosmetic choice, even though it's there so that the chair can pull flush against counters. Ultimately, the makeover preserved the integrity of the kitchen's footprint -- everything is basically laid out the same way, yet it's all so, so magnificently different.

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