Impression of space

Light, colour, angles and irregular lines create an illusion of width in this remodelled galley kitchen

designer verno has remodelled this galley kitchen, featuring ceiling, interior design, living room, lobby, real estate, room, brown
designer verno has remodelled this galley kitchen, featuring timber flooring, venzian canal granite countertop, and a combination of brushed steel and figured vertical grain cainetry

Sometimes, when remodelling a kitchen, it's possible to push out part of a wall or even remove it altogether. At other times, however, all improvements have to be made within the existing space.

When designer Vernon Applegate was asked to remodel a narrow galley kitchen in an old Victorian row house, he knew the project would be challenging.

"The kitchen space was long and narrow and was open to a small family room at the other end, but none of the walls could be moved or altered in any way. The whole space had the feeling of a bowling alley," says Applegate.

To break up the galley feel and add some rhythm to the kitchen space, Applegate introduced a variety of angles and irregular lines.

One wall, completely made up of tall cabinets containing the refrigerator, pantries and oven, is angled so the kitchen appears to widen from the back to the front. This wall finishes on a low window seat, which looks out over the garden, adding to the feeling of width.

before shots of this narrow kitchen that is ceiling, countertop, daylighting, floor, home, house, interior design, kitchen, living room, real estate, room, window, gray
before shots of this narrow kitchen that is old an outdated, featuring pale yellow walls and white cabinetry

On the opposite wall, the counter narrows and steps in at the sink then widens again around the cooktop.

"This creates interest in the kitchen. It also provides a little extra preparation space at the point where the benchtop steps out, so more than one cook can work in the kitchen," he says.

The breakfast bar is higher than the rest of the benchtop and protrudes into the galley, creating a sense of division between the kitchen and family room.

Because the only natural light is from windows and a skylight in the family area, a light-stained, figured, vertical-grained sycamore was chosen for most of the cabinetry, with red lacquered maple used to add interest.

"The blonde finish compensates for the lack of natural light, while the red lacquered cabinets add a playful note and ensure the space does not have a one-tone feel," says the designer.

view of the kitchen featuring, polished timber flooring, cabinetry, ceiling, countertop, floor, flooring, hardwood, home, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, wood flooring, brown
view of the kitchen featuring, polished timber flooring, granite countertop, and figured vertical grain cabinetry

To establish a clean-lined look, cabinetry finishes flush with the ceiling. On the wall above the sink, a soffit was created and brought down to meet the cupboards, while on the opposite side, the bank of tall cabinetry runs right up to the ceiling.

"This makes the space feel grander and more elegant, in line with the decor of the rest of the house," says Applegate.

For continuity, open shelves and cupboards in the same finish as the kitchen carry through into the family room.

A 23cm-thick granite benchtop adds drama and provides a punctuation point at the end of the kitchen.

Credit list

Wattis Construction
Venezian Canal granite
Sink and taps
Figured vertical-grain sycamore, red lacquer, brushed steel
Cape Cod Grey granite
Oven, cooktop
Faux paint finish

Story by: Trendsideas

Photography by: JD Peterson Impression of space remodelled galley kitchen illusion

23 Feb, 2007