Photos by Heidi Solander
Kitchen at a Glance
Who lives here: A professional couple of empty nesters
Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts
Size: About 400 square feet (37.2 square meters)
Architect: Carl Solander of Reverse Architecture
Though the homeowners loved their first-floor condo in a 100-year-old building, the kitchen, which hadn’t been touched in 30 years, felt dark, cramped and in need of a makeover. “They wanted a more dramatic, open kitchen,” architect Carl Solander says. His first move was to eliminate a wall between the dining room and the kitchen to create a larger space. A band of color runs across the top of the cabinets, breaking up the maple and birch, he says.
They installed cabinetry lacquered in Benjamin Moore’s Rocky Mountain Sky above a stainless steel counter with an integrated sink and backsplash. “The owners specified the blue,” Solander says. “They loved the shade and how cheery it is.”
Above the counter is textured glazed ceramic tile from Ann Sacks. The Oxygen Flex faucet is from Franke. The maple cabinets below have touch-latch doors and drawers.
In two corners of the kitchen are acid-etched glass shelves in a green-blue sea glass. The porcelain tile floor continues up the inside of the island. The top of the island is reclaimed white oak milled into a slab of wood, “which adds warmth,” Solander says. “The blue is cool, so they wanted a warm accent in the middle of the kitchen.”
A custom wine rack is integrated into the cabinetry above the refrigerator. The rack has Gutex wood-fiber insulation to keep the wine at an ideal temperature.
The island is as stylish as it is functional, it includes custom shelving, a charging station and USB outlets.
With the wall removed, the dining area and the kitchen are fully connected. The space includes a built-in desk made of Baltic birch and surrounded by maple cabinets. On the right, Solander covered up a heating pipe with built-in shelves painted white. The Cirrus Hugger fans are from The Modern Fan Co. The suspended light fixtures over the dining table are from Pablo Design. The materials and furnishings, Solander says, “are woven together to produce a striking contemporary space that is functional and durable.”