• Lauren Vallario Designs

Focal Point

Welcome back! I recently finished a really fun kitchen, bar, and mudroom project. The client had an addition built off of the back of her house in order to add a proper mudroom and make her kitchen larger. The new layout allowed for a larger eat-in kitchen, small bar area and it opened up to the family room. My client starting the planning process with thoughts of an all white kitchen, but she was open to ideas of how to incorporate color or have a major focal point. As we played around with a few different ideas for how to add character without being too trendy, we explored ideas such as painting the base cabinets a darker color than the wall cabinets, or possibly painting the island a navy blue and the perimeter white. After much consideration, my client decided that she still loved the idea of an all white kitchen and that pops of color could come from the bar and the range hood.

From the beginning, we knew that the bar was going to be its own entity. While it was in the kitchen space, we were going to use color and finishes to define it differently. The range hood was a bit more involved. We toyed with a few different concepts until we landed on the idea of a custom made metal hood. My thought was that if we used metal, it wouldn’t compete with the other colors that we were adding to the space but it would contrast against the white cabinets and really pop. One major challenge in designing it was that the ceilings were only 8’ tall so we didn’t have a lot of height to work with. The range was a 4’ wide so selecting a shape that looked good with those proportions was really important. The overall height of the hood could be no more than 2’ which is short proportionate to a 4’ wide opening. As we played with different shapes, we knew we wanted a soft curve so it wouldn’t look too contemporary in the space. The question then was: convex or concave?

Courtesy of Grammerly

Now keep in mind, as you design one of these hoods, you have to have the space to accommodate the actual hood insert and the duct work. At 2’ high by 4’ wide, the concave shape wasn’t going to work and would probably start to look like a squashed pancake. We decided to go with a convex shape. The curve was soft and the shorter height wasn’t an issue, the hood actually looked perfectly proportionate. Check out the shop drawing from my custom metal shop.

For the materials, we decided to use brushed stainless steel as the base with polished stainless steel straps and rivets. We did this for a pop to tie in with polished nickel faucets and cabinet hardware. The brushed stainless steel matched the gorgeous Thermador Pro Grande range my client selected, and brought some nice color and texture between the white cabinets. Below is the finished product! Take a look!

To see more pictures of this project check them out under Projects/Hickory Lane!

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