In the eleven years that my heartmate and I have been together we have moved a lot – not least emigrating to a new country and our new home! I’ve written before about how special and comforting it feels to finally be settled: we both truly feel like New York City, and America, is our home. Moving our lives to a new country and starting from scratch meant selling and donating all of our furniture and most of our belongings; we survived on one income for 16+ months as my husband was only legally allowed to study here while we went through the green card process; and we both lost all of our credit history and couldn’t even open a credit card or get a phone contract when we first arrived. Was it stressful? Yes. Were there moments where we were both scared at the uncertainty? Absolutely. Was it all worth it and do feel beyond grateful? One million percent.
The first time my heartmate and I walked into our kitchen at the beach house we looked at each other – me misty eyed because I’m almost always the emotional one (if you’re surprised, you’ve clearly never seen our wedding pics!) – and both said at exactly the same time in harmony “wow, this is our home”. We were beaming, and still are. The relief and security of standing in our kitchen that we chose and designed from the ground up, within four walls that we own, after years of bouncing around from rental to rental and moving to a new country, was palpable between us. We were home and it felt euphoric. After the jump I’m sharing the full reveal of the beach house kitchen. Come take the tour with me!
*Use the slider to see the kitchen before and after*
Let’s take a moment to remember what the kitchen looked like when we moved in. Last month, in my first post in collaboration with my friends at Nespresso I wrote about our plans for the design direction of the beach house kitchen, and I included a before photo along with some snaps from during the construction. Seeing this slider with the true before and after still blows my mind. It’s such a transformation, don’t you think?! The whole space is the same footprint yet feels twice the size.In that first post I also shared the floor plans and elevations to give a sense of how the kitchen would look and function. This wide view of the beach house kitchen shows how those elevations came to life. We both treasure our morning coffee time together, so we kept that top of mind while we designed the space, ensuring the work flow and positioning made sense for how we hoped to live in the kitchen. Having space for our Nespresso VertuoPlus machine next to the farmhouse apron sink makes filling the water tank super easy and it tucks in neatly next to the refrigerator cabinet.A generous island peninsula means we can now utilize this space to make bread, relax reading the paper over coffee and pastries, while it simultaneously makes the kitchen a more substantial room in the house overall. You walk into the house and see the kitchen immediately so it’s great that it has so much visual impact. I’m so pleased I decided to have our kitchen island painted in a different color to the main cabinetry. I bought the custom cabinetry from Waterworks and I love how the cool grey pairs with the rich and intense navy. The cool grey color looks gorgeous against the texture of Colin Loom bar stools from One Kings Lane, and the navy contrasts beautifully with the European oak Stockholm Sand hardwood floor from Madera Surfaces. Oh my, the floors…I am in LOVE!As I started to style the kitchen and bring in our personal items that truly made it feel like our home – our chopping boards, favorite oils and sauces, plants and, of course, our much-loved (and used!) Nespresso VertuoPlus machine for morning espressos – my mind wondered to all the memories we’ll make in here. From winter mornings padding around in our PJs making our weekend guests breakfast, to summer days with the stable door wide open and the sea breeze blowing through the house while we make sandwiches to take to the beach. These kitchen elements, some practical and some personal, are the fabric of our life we’ll spend in the kitchen and it was as much as moment of coming home for them as it was for both of us.The kitchen before was lacking surface space, light and practicality. It was also very appliance heavy so in designing the space we knew that we wanted to opt for panel-ready appliances (refrigerator, dishwasher etc.) so that the gorgeous custom cabinetry could take centre stage without heavy visual distractions. We also moved the stove from being tucked into the corner by the side entry door, and swapped it with the placement of the refrigerator. This helped open up the space and both visual and practical flow of the space to no end.Remember how I spoke about storing my Nespresso capsules in glass canisters back in 2011 (here) and then again in 2017 (here)? Well, I needed a new way to store the capsules stylishly in the beach house kitchen. My solution was this gorgeous vintage tray that holds the capsules perfectly. They add a splash of color to the Cambria Quartz countertop, while also allowing people to easily pick their desired coffee blend.One of my favorite design elements I chose for the space is the Easton brass faucet. I love how it looks against the Cape Cod subway tile; it’s only going to get better with time as the unlacquered brass patinas and ages with use. Plus, it harmonizes effortlessly with the natural brass card file pulls and hexagon hardware knobs from Schoolhouse Electric that I paired with the cabinetry.The wonderfully tactile Titik print fabric by Caroline Cecil Textiles that I used for the window treatments adds warmth to the white shiplap walls, while the duo of bronze and brass Hicks pendants draw the eye down the island peninsula. They also pair effortlessly with the Thomas O’Brien Clark flash mount pendant over the sink. Even as I type this and look at these images I’m pinching myself that this is really our beach house kitchen – it’s still not quite sunk in, I don’t think! Thanks for following along and do let me know what you think of the space, I’d love to hear.// Interior design, styling & photography by Will Taylor | Posted as part of my on-going partnership with our blog sponsor Nespresso.
Will is a self-confessed gentleman hooked-on-hue and his motto is: beige is boring! He works as a freelance author, creative consultant and lifestyle blogger. Will has been blogging about his love of colourful design, fashion and travel since 2009, engaging an army of colour lovers across the world with his quintessential make-you-smile style.