Chalk one up

Large blackboards provide a twist to this minimalist kitchen renovation
Story by: Lori Nims
View of open-plan kitchen and dining area which ceiling, countertop, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, orange, black
View of open-plan kitchen and dining area which features a breakfast bar with bar stools, large blackboards, polished concrete floors, Corian benchtops, lacquered cabinetry, lighting, appliances and dark-stained wooden dining table with chairs.

With a few deft touches your kitchen project can take on the comfortable ambience of a smart streetside cafe.

This renovation by architect Craig Rossetti anchors an open-plan extension at the back of a Victorian-era house. With a simple palette and minimalist style, the new kitchen blends easily into the area, doubling the living space. The design was inspired by cafes where the daily special is posted on blackboards above the counter, says Rossetti.

Dominating the kitchen are large blackboards which cover the doors of the pantry and refrigerator. MDF boards with blackboard paint were applied to the doors, and handles were made by leaving a slight overhang to grasp. On the refrigerator the panel is in two pieces, so the freezer door can be opened separately.


View of kitchen which features large blackboards, polished cabinetry, countertop, floor, flooring, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, gray, brown
View of kitchen which features large blackboards, polished concrete floors, Corian benchtops, olive-green lacquered cabinetry, lighting, appliances.

"The blackboards are a bit of fun," Rossetti says. "They are an unusual feature in an otherwise minimalist kitchen."

The black panels contrast with olive-toned cabinets and the white Corian benchtop. A toughened glass splashback has a reflective quality that adds depth to the space.

"To enhance the sense of openness, the design includes details that give a lightness to the elements," says Rossetti. "For example, concealed illumination above and below the upper cabinets makes them appear to float on the white walls. Extending the cabinets slightly beyond the boundaries of the kitchen into the hall and dining areas adds to the illusion, as does negative detailing on the lower cabinetry."

View of a renovated kitchen which features a countertop, interior design, kitchen, sink, brown
View of a renovated kitchen which features a breakfast bar with bar stools, large blackboards, polished concrete floors, Corian benchtops, lacquered cabinetry, lighting, appliances.

The dropped ceiling also seems to float above the room, creating continuity with the rest of space. Skylights around the edge of the space maximise the natural light.

Glazed sliding doors open to the exterior courtyard. Polished concrete, used for the floor both inside and out, strengthens the connection between the spaces.

Aug 28, 2009

Credit list

Co-designers
Neil Mallet,
Kitchen manufacturer
Laser Cabinets
Flooring
Ground Polished Concrete from Mentone Pre Mix
Cabinetry
Lacquered in PPG Rain Barrel
Splashback
Toughened glass from Eastern Frameless
Refrigeration
Liebherr
Builder
Monument Constructions
Paint
Walls – Haymes Mojave;
Lighting
Richmond lighting
Benchtop
Corian from Cook & Nation
Oven, cooktop
Ilve
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