My first visit with this client was at their boring “before” kitchen. They told me they had unique ideas and wanted a room that would inspire their family; one they would love to live in.
They explained to me that, for the most part, they liked the existing floor plan,with only a few minor changes. They showed me the concept photo and indicated that they wanted to keep the soffits in order to keep the price down.
I strongly suggested they remove the soffits in order to raise the cabinetry height, to accentuate the height of kitchen’s ceiling, and to increase the openness of the room. I quoted them an estimated price range at which point they said they would get back to me.
After a period of about 6 months, the client contacted me again. They seemed frustrated that every other “kitchen specialist” they spoke with wanted to make the project their vision, not the client’s.
As a result, the client and I partnered to design their Moroccan Dream Kitchen, using their previous sketches and concept photos as a starting point.
They agreed to eliminate soffits. Minor changes included convex curved bench seating at the end of the island to accommodate a 5’ radius steel table, exposed paper towel holders, and a dry bar with wine storage.
I utilized memories of my travels to Morocco. While I was in that fascinating country, I photographed artifacts of arches and carvings. Using these photos, CAD drawings and samples were produced, adjusted, refined, then finally approved by the client.
Both antique and synthetic carvings were used. This turned out to be cost efficient and very effective. Some custom hand turning was done for feet in the furniture kick and split turnings for enhancement under crown projections.
I considered using computerized machinery but at the end of the day it was not cost effective due to the fact that so many pieces needed to be different. All curved work was done by hand occasionally assisted by machine.
The client selected the color palate, choosing a paint with a glaze and mild crackle as well as “distressing” effects on the perimeter cabinetry. The dry bar and island were contrasted with heavy distressing, crackle and peel finish to reveal a darker undercoat. Also chosen by the client were the stone counter tops, flooring, back-splash, seeded glass and lighting.
As the client walked into the room to see the remodeled kitchen for the first time, she cried out with joy as slight tears streamed down her face. “Oh my god, Dreams Can Come True! This is so much more than we expected!” she said.
I realized then how much my work drives my passion. In addition to the joy I get through my craft of creative expression, there is the inexplicable joy of helping people realize their vision and create environments that not only inspire, but are loved and lived in.