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The Forties were farewelled with a flourish in this major kitchen renovation

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It is only to be expected that a house that dates back to the late '40s is going to undergo a few changes over the years. This makes it all the more surprising that right up until recently, this house still had its original plywood kitchen from 1949.

The owner says the old kitchen had been well crafted – hence its longevity – but it did have a few not-so-attractive features. These included an old fluorescent light fixture and yellow patterned linoleum that turned up the base of the walls.

Designer Elina Katsioula-Beall CKD of DeWitt Designer Kitchens says a few structural changes were also needed. The room was opened up to the dining room and a picture window introduced.

"Right from the outset, the client, who is himself an innovative architect, said he wanted a surprising replacement for his old kitchen – something different and fun," Katsioula-Beall says. "He wanted a kitchen that would most likely be found in a metropolitan apartment rather than a Southern Californian house. He also expressed a preference for a bold blue kitchen with sharp contrasts."

Katsioula-Beall says the cobalt blue thermofoil cabinetry provided the starting point.

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"But with such vibrant blue cabinetry, we had to provide a strong antagonist, hence the stainless steel. However, we had to give it more territory than simply providing stainless steel appliances, so stainless steel also features on the cooking center countertop, oven side cabinets and toekicks."

The designers introduced another contrasting color with an apple-green glass backsplash, which provides a crisp, fresh look. Walls and the sink countertops are white.

"The oak floor balances the coolness of these elements," says Katsioula-Beall. "It also provides a little texture that teases the seriousness of the squeaky-clean material palette. Further visual interest is provided by the reflective surfaces."

First published date: 03 March 2009

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Credit List

Kitchen designer Elina Katsioula-Beall CKD, with the late DeWitt Talmadge Beall, DeWitt Designer Kitchens (Studio City, CA)
Drafting consultant Hye Won Lee
Flooring Oak hardwood
Lighting Recessed halogen
Skylight Velux
Cabinets Ultra Craft Blue Thermofoil
Countertops CaesarStone in Blizzard; stainless steel
Tiling Apple-green color-backed glass backsplash
Cooktop GE Monogram
Ventilation Miele
Microwave Thermador
Refrigerator Amana
Dishwasher Asko