Stuck On These Cabinets

cabs5Welcome to my Writer’s Block. Or let’s call it my own personal War of Art. Or perhaps I will just start by simply saying, I’m stuck…I don’t know how to begin this post, and I don’t know exactly how to say what I want to say.

This post is about our new kitchen cabinets – the focal point and foundation of our kitchen remodel. And the truth is, I’ve been thinking about this particular post since I started blogging. And I haven’t posted anything in two weeks because I’ve been just thinking about this one post.

Without sounding too precious, I love these cabinets so much, and I feel immense pressure to honor them and the artisans who built them, by capturing all of their beautiful details in just the right way.  Ok…I know…that is slightly over the top. But, I don’t care. I love them. And my stuck-ness is because I love them. I am stuck on them. I am stuck on my kitchen cabinets.

So, here I am, sitting at my computer. Still stuck. And I need to just power through and write…just get on with it.  This is just a post about kitchen cabinets after all!  So here goes:

Our kitchen remod began, as all good remods do, with hours and hours on Pinterest. I was drawn to the rustic-nordic-modern designs, and found a number of beautiful bespoke cabinet designs that I loved…that were unfortunately built in England…like this beauty from Plain English Design:20_pe_osea_2-1-1145x763

Or this lovely from DeVol Kitchensdevol-shaker-1

We actually looked into working with these companies, but in the end, between labor + materials + shipping, it was above our price point. I’ve since heard that both of these companies are beginning to deal directly to the US, and I would highly recommend them!

After months of dreaming and pinning, we sat down with our contractor, Craig, to chat about this particular design direction. We had met with different local millworkers to discuss our project – but I kept getting cold feet. I really liked the rustic nature of bespoke shaker cabinets, but I was afraid that something would be lost in translation and that we would end up with cabinets that were more standard contemporary and not rustic. The lines were just too close for me. In the end, Bobby and Craig encouraged me to really go after what I wanted…not to settle. And that is what I did. I went back to the Pinterest/World Wide Web drawing board, and I found my ultimate design inspiration from an article about Rene Redzepi’s home kitchen. Rene is the chef of a restaurant in Denmark called Noma that we hope to visit someday. He enlisted Garde Hvalsoe to build his cabinets…and I just fell in love with their unique millwork and design. I hadn’t really seen anything like it before – and I could visualize the way it would come together in our home.  But once again, this company is based in Europe.  *hmph*

So, with Bobby and Craig’s encouragement sitting fresh in my mind, I drew up my own plans for white-oak cabinets with dovetail details, lot’s of drawers for my daily-use items, open shelves, and huge storage spaces inside the island and pantry.  Craig brought in a killer artisan millworker, Carlos Lopez, who completely understood what we were going for.  This guy is designing and building for some of the best new restaurant start-ups in L.A. And somehow, we were able to get his team in on our project and they were able to bring my dream kitchen into reality.

Finally, I’m so excited to share some pics of the cabinets and our almost complete kitchen!   I’ll start with the island – it’s the perfect place to congregate while we’re cooking…and I can’t even explain the vast amounts of storage space that it provides: cabs4

The other side of the island is my working triangle between the sink, refrigerator, and stovetop. It also has a new warming drawer, dishwasher and open shelves for cutting boards and cookbooks:
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The bank of cabinets along the wall is made up of all drawers on each side of the stove/oven combo. We found that the drawers actually make storage of daily items more accessible and organized. At the end of the wall is a beautiful pantry with pull-out drawers and shelves for things we want to keep out of the way, like the microwave:
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We added in this great little seating area next to the island, in front of the tri-fold doors, which now open to the patio – it’s the perfect spot for our morning coffee! You can also see a preview of our temporary redwood steps (new patio will be in remodel phase 2 – coming in 2017), and our new exterior paint color: cabs8cabs9cabs14Oh my gosh. It feels so good to finally share these cabinet details with y’all. If you want to read more about our kitchen remod, check out some of my other posts!  And some serious thanks to Craig and Carlos for their beautiful workmanship!!!



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