Mick De Giulio has been designing kitchens for over 40 years and his wealth of experience shows in his Kitchen of the Year. As De Giulio says, “I may call myself a kitchen designer, but what I really do is orchestrate and conduct the dreaming process.” And there are so many dream-worthy ideas to be gleaned from this space.
Upon entering, the immediate impression was of a bright and cheerful room, enhanced by a fabulous conservatory style skylight. And while essentially a white kitchen, there was a multitude of subtle color and material combinations at play.
Even within the white palette were many variations, from the Glidden White on White walls to the KraftMaid Sedona Maple Dove White cabinetry to the Caesarstone Fair Lady Supremo countertop, all in tonal shades that De Giulio explained add layers and textures to the space. Frances Palmer‘s beautiful warm white ceramics offered textural artistry to the niches in the Caesarstone wall above the Whirlpool induction cooktop, evidently now the choice of most chefs.
Bringing warmth to the large white island, De Giulio added an asymmetrical inset countertop of Cameroon Wenge Wood by Grothouse. The details in the kitchen are amazing and here you can see a perfect example where De Giulo added a thin rim of stainless, meticulously outlining the meeting of materials. See how exactingly the mitered corners are aligned. This trim, as seen in the hood below, and a zen-like balanced asymmetry are both themes repeated throughout the space.
Within the wood counter was a clever custom feature I liked – a carved integrated fruit bowl, adding a pleasant break in the long island surface.
One of my very favorite features in the kitchen was the new 45″ Multiere sink, which understandably won the 2011 Interior Design Best of Year award for best kitchen fitting or fixture. Designed by De Giulio for Kallista, it has so many useful bells and whistles hidden in its chic design. I think more sinks should have corner drains like this one. Not only does it allow for more available “floor” space but also for more efficient under-cabinet storage (where Kraftmaid introduced its CoreGuard sink base, providing a new engineered surface for easy cleaning and protection against water damage).
The sink includes a sliding colander holder, a flatware tray for rinsing cutlery and a handy reversible cutting board, also repositionable on a glide across the entire width. One side includes a knife holder with built in sharpening rod and the other a drain board which, as you can see fits perfectly with the colander.
As with all successful kitchen designs, De Giulio’s design combined form and function. One innovation was his “La Mattina,” the morning, a versatile wall space intended as a breakfast area.
Repetition of the stainless piping now translated into seemingly floating glass shelving, (filled with contributions from The Container Store and Michael Aram) against the beautiful Ann Sacks Davlin tiles. Handmade with white goldleaf pressed between two pieces of glass, they have an amazing luminosity. And the partial wall slides to conceal appliances. Notice how he differentiated the cabinetry from the rest of the kitchen by using more decorative and glamorous hardware.
In the center, like a jewel in the space, was the Jonathan Adler for Kohler sink in a stunning Annapolis navy, the perfect counterpoint to the silver and white tonalities.
The opposite wall housed the appliances, the new white Ice series from Whirpool. A polished stainless rim encased each bank, echoing the thin piping elsewhere. I preferred the thinner piping but De Giulio felt that the wider trim amplified the sense of floating seen throughout.
There is still so much more inspiration from this kitchen to share. I hope you’ll join me again next time to take a look at more design details, all the unique storage as well as the adjoining butler’s pantry.