The Kitchen Designer

Thanks for stopping by! I'm Susan Serra, certified kitchen designer, and my mission is to take kitchen design style, function and analysis to a higher level. Here's why the kitchen has the most honored place in the home - all five senses reside in the kitchen.  Best...Susan  Contact: susan@susanserraassociates.com

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Randomly Gorgeous Kitchen Styles

Hi dedicated readers and new ones too. I'm feeling a little fluid in the aesthetic part of my mind today. We're in the city this weekend, which always makes me think more specifically about the coming kitchen renovation, and now, more and more, in terms of style, theme, the general look and feel of the room rather than the mechanics of the kitchen, for now. Once the wall came down, it opened up more than the physical space, it opened up questions about the entire space, as I said before.

Short note...my husband further cut the half wall down below the countertop. Looks even better. As we speak, he's removing some soffit pieces (as quietly as he can,) 

So, I move to questions of style, as I surprisingly came up with the plan for a 12' sofa the other day! I didn't expect THAT, but we're on board with it.

Having a home on Long Island, which is somewhat eclectic in style, more of a soft contemporary, very soft, with more of a touch of an artisan feel than a contemporary feel, I'm thinking, what look do we want in the city?

Our instinct is to go beyond our comfort zone.

We're liking very clean lines, at least one burst of color, perhaps bright white walls AND painted floors, and, as always, pieces of artwork that are stars, not supporting players.

Yet, when I go on Desire To Inspire, which always inspires me, I see these kitchens, some which are so country in their feel, that are stunning as well! Nonetheless, I think we're still leaning toward more modern, a bit eclectic, a bit artisan, that's where we seem to be headed.

Here, then, are some randomly gorgeous kitchens...enjoy them. :) 

OH...the last image is the sofa we're seriously considering, really, sold on. It's shown in a sectional, but we'd have it in two 70" sections, one a right arm and one a left arm. What you can't see is the fabric is quite textured. The image and the sofa is from Design Within Reach.  

But, honestly, what about you? Are you ever conflicted as to what style you REALLY love and can commit to? 

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Reader Comments (17)

I'm all about period decor when I'm working on an old home, but sometimes I wish I just had a blank canvas to work with, like a garage or loft space. Then I'd go nuts!
All of these rooms are lovely. My feeling about the dark kitchen cabinets is that they are already looking dated to me. Is that look something that is going to be around 20 years from now? 10?
How do we feel about the photo light in the last shot? I like it! I have one of those things sitting in my closet. I never use it because it takes too long to set up. Thanks for the great idea! You just freed up some closet space.

January 20, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterrh

I'm not a fan of loose cushions but this is a great-looking sofa. I love the chaise feeling and the textury fabric. Texture is everything right now. (If it didn't sound hokey I'd say it's the new Enkeboll if you know what I mean - a great way to add interest in our cleaner, simpler environments). That must be why my favorite kitchens above are the ones with the brick or stone walls. You're giving me ideas. Thanks. Khat

January 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKhat

Am drooling over the textured walls of the gorgeous kitchens you showed, and I'm increasingly grateful to have original exposed brick to work with in my own kitchen. My new mantra: "It's a feature, not a flaw." I am so attracted to the limited palette idea...two or three colors at most really look sharp. The photos are helping me as I pick kitchen finishes. Thank you, Susan.

January 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWendy

"But, honestly, what about you? Are you ever conflicted as to what style you REALLY love and can commit to?"

I like many styles (okay, not Louis XIV, LOL) but find it very important that everything matches *somehow*. There should be a certain consistancy throughout a condo or a house. A clean lined sofa like the one you chose and the sheer size of it will set a tone that says "modern". As does a small kitchen. I find too much detail in a small place overwhelming. Okay, but you know I am a biased, modern-to-the-bones person ...

I look at architecture and interior design magazines, I read blogs and marvel over Desire To Inspire photos (among others) and I ask myself everyday what to do with our house in Florida, where we’ll have the wonderful opportunity to start from scratch. But at the end of the day there is only ONE style I REALLY love. And therefore that house will look pretty much like our house here in Germany: modern and soothing, sparingly furnished, but with warm materials like wood floors throughout, a lot of natural light, and some oddities here and there to keep it from being boring. And of course it will be a bit beachy.

January 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterConnie

Hey rh, good question! I do think that flat, slab, doors, the one with the painting, is close to timeless. Those flat doors are almost a classic modern look, like many classics...still modern decades later. My take, anyway. LOVE the idea that you'll take out that photo light! Send me an image!

Khat, I won't be doing the chaise part, just two two-seaters, one right arm, one left arm, to make 12 feet! I can't believe it myself. And, you're definitely right about texture. So much more to see these days. It makes things interesting, that's for SURE.

Connie, you have a way with words. How about painting your wood floors sort of a soft white/gray? Pair that with deep, ocean blues, wheat colors, and you have a beach! Sparingly furnished, that takes discipline. :)

January 21, 2008 | Registered CommenterSusan Serra, CKD

Wendy, good point, a feature not a flaw. OK, tell me about your kitchen! Come on, let's have it! What finishes are you using? What colors, textures, materials? Thank you for stopping by, as always.

January 21, 2008 | Registered CommenterSusan Serra, CKD

Thank you for asking, Susan. Bus man's holiday for you???

Kitchen in a rough rectangle layout 25' x 14'. Entire space to have hand-scraped dark plank floors, and lime-washed plank-and-rafter ceiling (to match lots of barn wood in the house). One end of rectangle opens to newly added Breakfast room with french doors and built-in desk/cabs. Also, floor to ceiling pantry with deep drawers, some basket storage cubbies above, and broom closet stuff. Two large skylights there.

Cooking part of kitchen anchored by an island 8' x 4.5' with a 3" thick chunk of honed Kashmir White granite (I'm too sloppy of a cook to live with Carrara, sadly); prep sink on island. Perimeter counters to have honed 3cm Black Absolute. (Are you aware that 3cm is not common here on the West Coast? Standard slabs are 2cm...really annoying...) One wall has large bank of windows over a long bump-out with 36" Shaw sink and dishwasher and another cab. Upper cabs flank windows, drawers beneath the counters. Oppo wall has original exposed brick as backsplash and up to ceiling behind Wolf range (bumped-out like sink side) and new hood...SIMPLE design, trimmed out in plaster and barnwood with iron straps/rivets. No upper cabs so lots of brick showing. SubZero to the left (one issue today is making sure the fridge door opens completely if next to a bumped-out countertop!).

Long expanse of brick wall to right of range has one original window to central atrium so I'd like to do some open shelving, but can't figure out how without junking up that corner. Two doorways to this portion of kitchen, and between them is large one-piece unit for M/W and flat screen above, drawers below. Counter in the middle.

Cabs to be simple shaker style, inset, painted warm grey maybe or taupe or cream, if I have to. Thinking I will paint island same as other cabs, but differentiate it with stone. There's a lot going on in this room...I think the palette must stay limited and let the textures do the talking.

Phew!! Thanks for listening... My little design jobs feel simple compared to my own house! I would LOVE feedback if you have the energy. Please ask questions to be sure I' not blowing this...

January 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWendy

Oh - I wouldn't turn down almost all of those. Especially the first few... beautiful!

January 25, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKristen

I love the one with the beams. It is so open and airy, and brick walls are always so warm. Do you have any very small space kitchens?

January 26, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMichael

Wow! You are truly talented! I build custom bars and interiors for a living and I know quality, this is quality! Thank you for posting

January 29, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPop

Hey Pop! The same goes for you, now I know where to go for bars!

February 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSusan Serra, CKD

Kristen, thanks for hte comment! Yeah, they're not too shabby, I'd take them too!

Michael, I do wish I had more, and at one time it was a strong interest of mine. Still is, I just have to find the time. I won an award for designing a very tiny kitchen. LOVE small spaces. The challenges are fun.

February 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSusan Serra, CKD

I WANT to live in that Kitchen in the very first picture ! I at the very least, WANT that table and I'll take the bowls too.The sectional sofa, I could so use that for my Family Room.

February 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSheri Burhoe

Hi Sherie! Me TOO....love the juxtaposition of the rustic and modern. You're giving me some ideas for my apartment, glad you chose that one...good to see you!

February 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSusan Serra, CKD

These are gorgeous kitchens. I love the style.

December 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn

These are gorgeous kitchens. I love the style.

December 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn

some of the picture are really gargus but Im not sure which one I will take it.
modern interior design

July 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermarek

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