Date: November 20, 2020 | Story: Stephanie Maxwell Newton | Photography: Rett Peek | Styling: Stephanie Maxwell Newton |
Before & After: A more functional flow and stylish simplicity were the goals for this Little Rock kitchen remodel
When Kathryn LeMaster started working with Marnie and Dennis Wightman on their home remodel, her challenge was in helping them achieve the ease of use they desired while still giving the home elements of interest and a “modern edge.” “They had a good idea of what they wanted for the layout, and they had already worked with the architects on opening it up,” Kathryn says. “When I came on board, it was all about choosing finishes and making it feel like all three rooms—the kitchen and nearby dining and living rooms—could flow from one to the next.”
First, all the appliances needed to be resituated for accessibility and flow. “The two points with the highest traffic, the stove and sink, were back to back; from a functional standpoint, it made sense to separate those,” Kathryn says. Additionally, relocating the refrigerator to a section of the wall separating the now-open kitchen from the living space created clean sight lines into the adjoining breakfast nook.
In keeping with the desire for simple, transitional style, Kathryn worked with the Wightmans to select finishes for the kitchen that would be seamless with the rest of the design, from the blue on the kitchen island to the mixed metals in the fixtures and hardware. “Brass is one of the common denominators found in the light fixtures throughout,” Kathryn says. “And, the cabinet hardware is nickel to reference the appliances. The way we mixed metals was intentional so it would look tasteful and sleek.”
A utilitarian vent hood allows the colorful center of the room—the island, plaid valance, and stylish pendant lights—to serve as the focal point. The island is painted in “Inky Blue” and the cabinetry is “Snowbound,” both by Sherwin-Williams.
“The goal was simplicity, but they were OK with mixed metals and wanted it to have a modern edge. I loved that they were willing to go outside the box a little bit.”
—Kathryn LeMaster, designer
The pale blue found in a piece of art hanging in the breakfast nook inspired the use of the color in the kitchen. Kathryn used the same plaid fabric seen on the valance in drapery form here. A tulip table and vintage chairs play up the transitional feel that was important to the Wightmans.
A single-level pull-down Delta faucet with touch technology allows Marnie to clean and cook with ease even when her hands are full. Its nickel finish coordinates with the appliances and hardware throughout the room.
Pretty in Plaid
For the window coverings, Kathryn chose a blue plaid fabric that brings a more traditional air to the space while still working within the room’s theme of clean lines. “It feels casual but still really sophisticated,” she says.
Three globe pendants over the island reference the white cabinets and backsplash tile, industrial-inspired black barstools, and brass found in the custom bar cabinet, as well as finishes throughout the home.
At Your Service
For the backsplash, the designer and homeowners landed on an elongated subway tile with a hand-finished look and laid it in a herringbone pattern. “All of these details keep it simple while adding some fun surprises,” Kathryn says. The custom bar cabinet makes functional use of the space to the right of the refrigerator while adding warmth and interest.
Architect Yeary Lindsey Architects Interior design Kathryn LeMaster, Kathryn J. LeMaster Art & Design Appliances Metro Appliances & More Cabinetry Little Rock Cabinets Countertops The Countertop Store Fabrics Designer Effects and Kathryn J. LeMaster Art & Design Fixtures Ray Lusk Plumbing Flooring Arkansas Wood Flooring Furniture, lighting, and tile Kathryn J. LeMaster Art & Design Hardware (drapery rods) Designer Supply Paint Sherwin-Williams Shelving Jose Jaquez Tile (installation) Gates Tile & Marble Window coverings Designer Effects, Designer Supply, Kathryn J. LeMaster Art & Design, and Sew Much by Monica Smith