A Long Way From Home

Life is such an interesting journey. We’re all faced with ups and downs, and sometimes with life changing situations where some difficult decisions need to be made. Difficult decisions are not always the result of something negative, but they can divide our hearts and heads, and ultimately become eventful life experiences.

For this renovation/revitalization project, we were thrilled to meet homeowners who have made a major life change in moving to Ontario.  While leaving family, friends, and their dream home behind was not an easy decision, their adventure, was to find a new home they could love just as much.

“This was such a difficult decision” says the homeowner. “We loved our previous home and everything it had to offer our family and friends, and to see the vision we had for our home come to life.” This lovely couple had poured their blood, sweat, and tears into the home they had to leave, and so the challenge of recreating the same sense of beauty and comfort was at times over- whelming, but they bravely persevered, and the outcome is nothing short of pure beauty.

Now enter Lorie Martin-Pessot, owner of kitchENvision, who was enlisted to assist the homeowners on this new journey, and to help remodel not only one amazing room, but 4 beautiful spaces for this family to begin their new life, and to fall in love again.

Let’s begin with the kitchen, the room where Lorie’s work is so well known and regarded for her beautiful and functional designs. This part of the overall project was particularly interesting, as the homeowners were satisfied with the existing footprint and the fact that the ‘bones’ were already in place. “The house itself has incredible bones, and the previous owners took extremely good care of it,” says our homeowner.  What was not working for them were some of the wood elements and the terra cotta tile flooring.  With  their plan to replace this entire tile flooring with hardwood, now was the time to consider the feasibility of reworking the existing cabinets and reusing the soapstone countertops or to replace all with new.

After viewing Lorie’s design drawings and a sample of the new cabinet finish Lorie was suggesting, the homeowners were inspired to move forward with the former – rework & update the existing cabinets and keep the stunning soapstone countertops. “When we looked at the kitchen refurbishment we realized that we could definitely work with what was existing and refinish things to suit our particular decor and style preferences.”

Lorie and her clients worked together to create the desired ‘look’ and ‘feel’ for this space and as Lorie expressed, “the homeowners were so easy to work with, as the renovation experience in their last home provided them with a feel for what they did and didn’t want and the experience of what they could and couldn’t do.” It was a true collaborative relationship.

Updates were made to the kitchen cabinets by removing some, reworking others and adding new components to suit Lorie’s design. They changed the colour to a black painted finish distressed with a light rub-off to expose some of the original pine finish. This new finish added a dramatic connection to the existing wood elements that remained ‘as is’.  In addition, the added touch of upgraded door and drawer hardware provided a more modern look. This detail work all paid off, as Lorie and her clients were able to masterfully transform this very large element within the space.

The homeowner researched many possibilities for the backsplash, and eventually selected a rich 3 x 6 subway tile called Arabescato Carrara, the colours of which tied in the new ‘look’ with subtle shades of black, grey, and even a hint of soft brown.

The homeowner knew that she wanted a “feature wall” of natural stone and together with Lorie, they decided to install on one of the shorter walls in the space. For this, they chose a Ledgestone product in Alaskan Grey. This exquisite feature creates both drama and elegance to this kitchen. An interesting fact here is that it doesn’t intrude on the finished product. It actually enhances with a warm coziness that draws the eye up to where the peak of the vaulted ceiling showcases it with a breathtaking grandeur.  The result?  Spectacular!

A super clever design element that deals with the challenge of extensive wall space on one side of the room is the floating shelf which is an extension of the new crown moulding installed on top of the wall cabinets. This floating shelf cleverly creates a ‘break’ to this wall creating a natural statement to a previously large and plain wall.

This living space was in need of additional lighting so ceiling pot lights were installed over the kitchen area and the homeowners did a fabulous job of picking out an oversized crystal chandelier that filled the space above the dining table with an elegant ambiance that is simply magnificent.

Everything was decorated to tie-in with the countertops and existing wood elements. In Lorie’s words, “we removed, rearranged, added and refinished to create a whole new ‘look’.”

Through an enlarged doorway between the kitchen and what is now a casual lounge area, the design and style of the kitchen is carried through to the homeowner’s new bar cabinets. The previous owners had this part of the house configured as a nanny suite, a perfect space to transform into a new relaxation/entertainment area, office space, and a mud/laundry room.  “This particular portion of the house was an addition,” explains our homeowner, “and we wanted to change the footprint so that, not only could it have the rooms we needed as a family, but also ensure that this space didn’t feel like it was an addition. We wanted it to flow with the rest of the home.”

The cabinets for the bar were custom-made to match those re-used in the kitchen. Lorie explains; “in order to get the same look as the cabinets in the kitchen, we needed to put the custom-made bar cabinets through an additional finishing stage which was to finish them first in the same colour as the original cabinets before proceeding with the new painted black look.”

The titanium granite countertops are a beautiful compliment to the kitchen’s soapstone countertops, and as the homeowners wished, Lorie utilized the same granite in the adjoining mud/laundry room and the master’s ensuite bathroom. As you can see from the pictures, all 4 rooms have been connected by design, style, colour, materials and accessories, to the inherent style of the homeowners.

Written By: Kelli M. Maddocks with Lori Pessot | Resources: kitchENvision.ca

Author: Living Spaces

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