Multi-Purpose Kitchen Blends Tradition,
By John Filippelli
SEATTLE, WACreating a unique kitchen which captures the
personalities of its owners can be a challenge for any designer,
especially when the clients want a multi-purpose room that is
functional enough for everyday use, but formal enough for
Specifically, the homeowners wanted a stylish kitchen that would
feature the very latest appliances yet they also wanted a layout
that would accommodate both family meals and larger gatherings
within the space.
Additionally, they wanted a flexible kitchen that would be well
suited to both children and grown ups, with facilities for
everything from cooking to snacking to homework to organizational
duties in short, a kitchen that would be suitable to all family
members and their various needs.
The clients also requested that a small desk be installed close
to the kitchen which would allow them to prepare shopping lists or
allow their children to do homework in plain sight yet without
getting in the way of food preparation.
These were just a few of the challenges facing the Bellevue,
WA-based Encore Design Build’s construction manager John Stackman
as he designed the details for this spacious, new-construction
Stackman notes, “This kitchen was designed with entertainment in
mind, since the majority of entertainment always happens in the
Taking into account the requests of the clients, as well as the
area in which the home was built, and working with the architect
and builder on site and in the design process, Stackman was able to
meet the needs of the family and bring their dream kitchen to
A sense of tradition
To effectively design
a stylish space which would blend comfortably with the rest of the
4,300 sq.-ft. home, Stackman selected a traditional design theme.
Rich, warm wood and natural hues give the kitchen a sense of
tradition, and create a feeling of warmth in the 20’x22′ room,
To create a homey atmosphere, Stackman selected American Cherry
cabinetry from Baywood Cabinets, with elegant cherry crown
mouldings and hand-carved corbels and appliques to provide visual
detail. Since storage was a concern, Stackman used “all of the
empty space possible that was left over” in the cabinet design to
meet storage demands. As Stackman notes, “It’s accessible from the
ends of the kitchen island and any inside corners, where two walls
American Cherry flooring from Midlakes Interiors adds to the sense
of warmth, as do the Verde Aquamarine slab granite countertops from
Cacallori Marble Co. According to Stackman, the color of the
countertops was chosen specifically to bring out the richness of
the cherry cabinets.
While he kept the design theme simple, Stackman notes that he
did add Deco tiles to certain areas of the kitchen in order to
reflect the “fall in the Northwest” theme, with the goal of
blending both the interior style and a touch of the outdoors. This
was particularly important since the home’s exterior is rather
spectacular, with its outdoor pavilion that is covered from the top
and open on the sides, and with the sides opening to a tennis court
and a stunning outdoor waterfall.
Style and function
For the clients, having all of the latest time-saving appliances
was a key component to building their dream kitchen. Stackman notes
that all appliances were supplied by Crossroads Appliance, and
include a Sub-Zero refrigerator,
a Thermador range hood, a Bosch Dishwasher and a Sharp
Additionally, a DACOR warming drawer and extra sink are housed
in the kitchen island for added convenience in entertaining.
The island itself is custom-made, with a 42″ raised snack bar
counter ideal for the children to use for after school snacks.
The island’s position and function enable the cook to remain
involved with guests while he or she prepares food, Stackman notes
ideal for someone who likes to entertain informally while
The island is located within the work triangle of the kitchen,
making it a key element to the functioning of the space, according
The clients also wanted the kitchen to reflect something of
their own personalities. To that end, the backsplash behind the
range features hand-made tiles, made by the homeowner, which truly
“personalize” the kitchen.
The 48″ custom made range hood, which was placed across from the
island, is situated adjacent to both the Kohler sink and the
pantry. Intricately crafted wood columns guard the hood, and
provide a strong presence in the kitchen, Stackman notes.
The desk was placed out of the traffic flow and close to the
back stairway which leads up to the children’s bedroom. This
provides a handy nook for organizing household duties, out of the
way of the work triangle, and doubles as a place for children to do
homework under the watchful eye of the person cooking.
The custom 12-tray ceiling, a highlight of the design, was built
by Handcraft finish carpenters, and draws the eye upward, providing
a unique visual focal point.
The use of lighting was substantial within this kitchen,
according to Stackman. Sixteen cans were used in the ceiling, put
on dimmers and separate switches to provide lighting flexibility.
Lighting was also placed inside the cabinets in order to highlight
the client’s china collection.
Additionally, undercounter lighting was installed to accentuate
the space and create a soft touch at night.
- This traditional kitchen is perfect for entertaining guests,
yet functions equally well for cooking small family
- The ornate American Cherry cabinetry features intricate cherry
crown mouldings and hand-carved corbels and appliques to provide
visual interest. Rich wood detailing on the columns and hardwood
flooring add to the sense of warmth.
- The custom-made island features a Thermador Range and Dacor
Warming Drawer. To create a truly “personalized” look, hand-made
tiles made by the client are used for a backsplash behind the
- State-of-the-art appliances fulfill the clients’ desire for a
kitchen with all the latest amenities, making it ideal for
- The custom 12-tray ceiling draws the eye upward, providing
another unique visual focal point.
- Lighting was placed inside the kitchen cabinets to highlight
the clients’ china collection, while under-counter lighting
provides a soft touch at night.
- Products include: American Cherry cabinetry from Baywood
Cabinets; Sub-Zero Refrigerator; Bosch Dishwasher; Sharp Microwave;
Thermador Hood; Dacor Warming Drawers; Kohler Kitchen Sink with
Grohe Faucet; a custom 12-tray ceiling by Handcraft Finish,;
American Cherry Hardwood Flooring by Midlakes interiors and Verde
Aquamarine from Cacallori Marble Co.