Transitional kitchen with two islands and reflective surfaces

Double islands, exotic finishes and close space-planning mean this kitchen delivers in terms of function and aesthetics

This kitchen by designer Shirley McFarlane has a ceiling, countertop, home, interior design, kitchen, living room, real estate, room, gray
This kitchen by designer Shirley McFarlane has a transitional feel but is also in keeping with the traditional-style home, For example, the classic crown mouldings complement the ornate coffered ceiling. Frosted glass on internally lit upper cabinets emit a soft glow but avoid the busy look of displayed items.

When you build a substantial house intended to look its best for decades to come, how do you address the kitchen? The answer is to give it a matching timeless appeal and rich surfaces and transitional cabinetry never fall from favour.

Such was the approach taken by designer Shirley McFarlane for this kitchen within a new, traditional-look limestone-clad home.

"The kitchen had to work with the overall classic interiors but offer modern functionality."

In terms of function, the kitchen is laid out with parallel his and her islands and the cooking zone running along one side wall. The baking station is directly behind the islands, set on the front of an architectural box insert that conceals a walk-in pantry. Towards the windows, a side buffet holds serving items for the dining table, and there's also a small outdoor kitchen beyond.

"This is not a show kitchen for caterers," says one of the owners. "What my partner loves about the layout is that, while it's a large kitchen, everything she needs is within a few steps. The sink, cooktop, and fridge are in a tight triangle while the dishwasher, microwave, toaster and garbage are all in that same space."

Space planning at its best. This thoughtful layout angle, architecture, area, black and white, design, diagram, drawing, floor plan, home, line, plan, product, product design, structure, technical drawing, white
Space planning at its best. This thoughtful layout ensures efficient work triangles and minimum clutter, with a walk-in pantry to the rear shielding mess from the living spaces.

Even the freezer and pantry, which are used less frequently, are only a few steps away.

"The other work area outside that triangle is her baking station. This too is efficiently laid out, so everything is in arm's reach. And she loves the extra customisation of the lowered counter height for baking tasks," says the owner.

The large islands are also ideal for the couple's children to sprawl out on with homework.

"However, it's the fine detailing and refined surfaces that give the kitchen its personality," says McFarlane. "The islands are in stainless steel and constructed using a classic inset style with the doors set into the frame."

"The islands also feature intricate brass bead detailing, another traditional element, but perhaps more unusual here, seen with the stainless steel," says McFarlane

Shirley McFarlane designed this outdoor barbeque area as chair, door, furniture, interior design, outdoor structure, patio, porch, real estate, table, window
Shirley McFarlane designed this outdoor barbeque area as part of a comprehensive kitchen project. It includes a stainless steel cooker and rangehood. The cabinetry is in highly durable warm-look teak, contrasting the homes cool limestone cladding.

And the brass and stainless steel finish isn't the only exotic surface to catch the eye.

"The wall cabinets are built in the modern, frameless style with shallow panels for a more transitional appeal. These are finished in a stria milk paint which has a translucent quality that is intended to show off the fine brush marks."

Marble splashbacks match the countertops which are in the same rich stone and add to the kitchen's luminous, reflective quality. However, for interest, the splashback directly behind the baking zone is in a mosaic tile, albeit in the same stone. The buffet, on the outer perimeter of the kitchen, continues the reflective theme this is finished in a shiny, pearlescent paint.

"Naturally it was important for the kitchen to work in well with the wider interior, too. To achieve this, the perimeter cabinetry is topped with detailed crown mouldings that are more in keeping with the ornate coffered ceiling as well as the architectural detailing seen in other areas of the home," the designer says.

Credit list

Kitchen design
Shirley McFarlane CKD,
Interior designer
Christine Estep, Jackson Thomas Interiors
Cabinet company
Premier Custom Built
Calacatta Manhattan marble by Custom Stone from Arc Granite & Marble
Doors and windows
Marvin Windows
LEDs and interior cabinet lights by Hafele; hand-blown pendants by Michael Sparks; Light Drizzle by Ochre
Jackson Thomas Interiors
Kitchen sinks
Kubus and Orca by Franke in stainless steel from Ferguson
Hot water systems
Marathon by Ferguson
Gaggenau Induction
Echelon Diamond by Fire Magic
Refrigeration and beverage centre
House designer
Carroll Johnson
Palmer & Company
Perimeter, Pearly White Pearlescent Milk paint; islands, stainless steel inset with brass bead; buffet, Paldao wood poly gloss
Sapele from Floor Magicians
Dining area furniture
Century barstools, Hickory Chair stools, Romeo Rega glass table, Usona Diaz chairs
Lutron Shadeworks
New Ravena by Studium NY from Brunk Tile & Interiors
Modern Architectural, in chrome, by Rohl from Ferguson
Rangecraft, custom stainless steel
Waste disposal

Story by: Charles Moxham

Photography by: Tony Giammarino

04 May, 2016

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