Dark, Disconnected Kitchen Transformed into Spacious, Light and Open Room

Home 9: 425 E. 6th St., Minneapolis, MN 55414
ASID Designer Kitchen Tour April 22 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and April 23 – noon to 5 p.m.
Designed by Kate Roos, Allied ASID •Kate Roos Design, LLC

Interior designer Kate Roos knew this kitchen would be a big transformation from the dark, disconnected space it was to begin with, but admits she’s “continuously struck by how light and open the room is … and how much more space they have to work.” Before the remodel, the sink, fridge and range were all on the same wall with limited counter space. Now there is more than enough room for several people to be working at one time. One of the most eye-catching design elements in the space—the tile—was originally discovered by the clients while browsing online at the Winchester Tile Co. “They loved the way it reflected light,” Kate explains. “You don’t get this same effect with a flat glazed tile.” The couple also loved the unique square shape of the tile and chose to install it like classic subway tile. There were many discussions between the designer and the clients before settling on the gray and marble look. The honed marble countertop contrasts nicely with the shine and sparkle of the glossy backsplash. Once marble was chosen for the countertops, “We wanted a cabinetry color that contrasted more than white.” They considered many different shades of gray before finding the right one. “The color feels warm and bright, not cold and off-putting as some gray tones can be,” she explains. The living finish of the cast bronze hardware was “an easy choice,” she says, tying in well with the home’s existing hardware. The oak hutch came into the design later in the process—as a remarkable standalone piece. The quartersawn white oak fit the character of the original turn-of-the-century Victorian-era home and the gray stain kept it from being too heavy in the light and bright space.

 Q&A with designer Kate Roos:

Where do you typically find design inspiration?
I find inspiration directly from my clients’ own wishes for their space. Each client wants something unique and the space they have to work with varies greatly. The space-planning step of each project is a great opportunity to incorporate these ideas while staying true to the home and making design decisions that are timeless and thoughtful. Existing design elements in a home offer further inspiration: a series of colorful cookware, the pond outside the kitchen window, a cookbook collection, etc.

How do you guide homeowners to help find their own design style when they aren’t really sure what their style is?
I usually start with the style of the client’s home. We will talk about design elements that define that style and see what kind of reaction I get. Often clients want to stay true to their home’s architecture while adding other elements. We can then discuss ways to blend the two in a way that won’t seem out of place.

What’s just one thing you would recommend a homeowner do to completely change the look of their kitchen without a complete revamp?
If a kitchen doesn’t already have under-cabinet lighting, adding it can transform the way the kitchen looks and how you use it. Lighting makes all the difference.

What’s one of your favorite trends right now?
I don’t know if it’s a trend, but in many of my designs, if possible, I like to add cabinetry that looks like a freestanding piece of furniture. I think it adds so much character to a space and it’s a place to do something different, add some color, add some interesting detail and create a beautiful focal point.

What would you tell someone who dislikes their kitchen but is too intimidated to hire a professional to help?
A good design professional can help in many ways. Based on years of experience and knowledge, the designer can help make decisions that are thoughtful and allow each space to flow and make sense with the home's architecture. A kitchen is a big investment and it should stand the test of time. By helping the client through the design process and connecting them with skilled craftsmen and women, the designer can help the client avoid costly mistakes and pitfalls that can easily occur when going it alone and the pain of the construction can be kept to a minimum. With all of the decisions made ahead of time, there is nothing left undecided which means few if any surprises. The ultimate goal for any design professional is to help translate your vision and desires into a space that you will love for years to come.

For more information about this project on the ASID Designer Kitchen Tour,visit http://midwesthomemag.com/events/2017-asid-designer-kitchen-tour/tour-kitchens/kate-roos-design-llc/. For more information on Kate Roos Design, visit www.kateroosdesign.com. Tickets to the ASID Designer Kitchen Tour April 22 and 23 can be purchased for $15 in advance or $20 at the door ($10 for single home visits). Purchase tickets online here: midwesthomemag.com/events/2017-asid-designer-kitchen-tour/kitchen-tour-tickets/.

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