In the mood

Colour is used strategically throughout this kitchen, to whet the appetite and energise the senses
A view of this kitchen featuring kauri flooring, cabinetry, countertop, cuisine classique, home appliance, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, white
A view of this kitchen featuring kauri flooring, black lacquered cabinetry, stainless steel kitchen appliances, anitque brown granite benchtop, graphic cglass splashback

Colour is an easy way of creating an instant personality for your kitchen, whether you want a calm, subdued look or something more dramatic and impactful. And with careful design, colour choices can be altered as fashions and personal tastes change.

The owners of this renovated kitchen, Bruce and Liane Whittaker, were happy to explore vibrant options, says kitchen designer Natalie Du Bois.

"The homeowners wanted to modernise their traditional villa, and were willing to take the boundaries a little further to create a kitchen that was dramatic without being over the top," she says.

In the early planning stages, both green and orange were considered. An orange-red was eventually chosen, for its ability to stimulate the appetite and provide a dramatic contrast to the dark brown cabinetry and granite benchtops.


A view of this kitchen featuring kauri flooring, cabinetry, countertop, cuisine classique, home appliance, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, white
A view of this kitchen featuring kauri flooring, black lacquered cabinetry, stainless steel kitchen appliances, anitque brown granite benchtop, graphic cglass splashback

"If the kitchen had been near the outdoors or close to a doorway, I might have recommended green," says Du Bois. "But as the kitchen is in the middle of the house, I felt we could use orange as an accent colour, with a dark brown to ground the space, and large expanses of white to keep the space bright. This was important, as although a skylight had been added during renovations, there are no windows in the kitchen."

Du Bois says that the unusual shade of tangerine orange was selected to introduce an element of uncertainty. It also heightens the impact created by the juxtaposition of light, dark and vibrant colours.

"I wanted people to wonder whether the colour was red or orange, or somewhere in between," she says. "I also wanted people to be drawn to the back wall of the kitchen, and a strong colour does this very effectively. Using the splashback for the accent colour also means the owners can change the orange later if they want to, without going to great expense."

Interest was added in other ways, such as the asymmetrical placing of the kitchen island, the use of textured materials, and the contrast of matt and gloss surfaces.

A view of this kitchen featuring kauri flooring, cabinetry, countertop, cuisine classique, home appliance, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, white
A view of this kitchen featuring kauri flooring, black lacquered cabinetry, stainless steel kitchen appliances, anitque brown granite benchtop, graphic cglass splashback

"Even though kitchens are often open plan, people can get closed in by perceived boundaries, so I made sure the island encroached onto the casual living space to blur the boundaries," says Du Bois.

White tiles and brown granite with copper flecks were selected to bring texture to the space. They provide a contrast to the smooth gloss surfaces of the lacquered cabinetry, stainless steel surfaces and glass splashback.

"I wanted to bring an eclectic, natural feel to a space that could otherwise have felt too modern and industrial," says Du Bois.

Aug 24, 2007

Credit list

Kitchen manufacturer
Kitchens by Design
Benchtops
Antique Brown granite from Trethewey Granite & Marble
Refrigeration
GE
Waste disposal
ISE
Kitchen sink
Franke from Burns & Ferral
Lighting
Aesthetics
Wall tiles
Metal Inox polished tiles from
Paints
Cabinetry
Lacquered
Oven
Ilve
Dishwasher
Asko
Ventilation
Design Air Italia
Taps
Atriflow Mimus
Flooring
Kauri
Wall coverings
Graphic Glass
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