Model Home Offers Casually Elegant Design

Model Home Offers Casually Elegant Design

By John Filippelli

While this may sound like a riddle, it was actually the design challenge facing Wes Norton of Mary Esther, FL-based Cabinet Solutions, Inc. as he began work on a new model home here for custom home builders C-D Jones & Co., Inc. Working within what he termed a "confining layout," Norton needed to create a cohesive look throughout the home, including the kitchen and master bathroom, using distinctive cabinetry and accessories. By creating a design theme that he describes as traditional, or "casual elegance," Norton was able to create a consistent, yet unique, flow throughout the home. 

Balanced blend
Concerned about the darkness of the cherry wood cabinets in a kitchen with no natural light, Norton set out to find a solution.

LesCare Patriot door style cabinetry with a honey stain and white glaze filled the bill, while maple fluted fillers and crown moulding in white ivory finish were used between the cabinets and as accents surrounding them to create a lighter look. "Even the light rail below and the crown moulding above was done in the light ivory maple. We also went with the cherry wood rope moulding, which showed it off well," Norton notes.

While the builders requested that all appliances within the 15'x19' kitchen be stainless steel, they also wanted to incorporate a traditional door into the design. Norton used a Sub-Zero built-in refrigerator, complete with laser-cut stainless steel inserts on the decorator panel to help blend the stainless steel with the cabinet doors. The inserts were also used above the GE Professional 48" stainless steel range with Pro Hood. Norton also hitched the laser cut inserts up to the door and put cherry wood panels behind it, which broke up the cherry wood the clients would see on the door panels.

With regard to the traditional door, Norton notes, "We needed a way to blend the contemporary look of stainless steel with the traditional door style that had been chosen." To achieve this, he included stainless steel "scroll work" in the door panels of the refrigerator, which were provided by Heritage Finishes, Inc.

A GE stainless steel dishwasher and wine chiller add functionality to the space. In addition, the Pro Hood was blended with antique pewter hardware to enhance its effect on the design theme.

According to Norton, these design tactics created a balance of wood and stainless steel around the room.

The countertops feature Champagne DuPont Corian solid surfacing, specifically chosen to blend with the cherry wood and stainless steel. Blue Maranachi granite is featured on the island, which Norton notes, "has a lot of gray and silver, which allowed it to transition with the stainless steel."

To accommodate the island, "We followed the layout of the kitchen and gave ourselves an equal perimeter all the way around it," Norton states. "On the angle part, the most obvious choice was to either do a cabinet with doors or create an open area where a chair can be added." Norton notes that this situation offers flexibility for a large family, as members can watch television or talk to the person cooking.

A small cabinet for spices on the back side of the island provides added convenience for the cook.

To address lighting concerns, the basic outline of the island was traced, and a box in the exact shape was placed on the ceiling above it. Using the crown moulding from the cabinet, Norton then built a lightbox and added fluorescent fixtures.

Storage was also key to this design. Norton used large drawer cabinets with several 24" drawer basins with full-extension guides. This created plenty of room for pots, pans and large cooking items, while accommodating the clients' request for large drawer cabinets.

On the opposite side of the room, two large pantries offer storage for canned goods. There is also a large cabinet for pots and pans.Master bath

The 14'x13' master bathroom, which also features a traditional design theme, offers both luxury and convenience. The vanity needed to house two sinks, one on each side, as well as accommodate the clients' request for as many drawers as possible. According to Norton, "By using drawers, you use the most amount of space you have there."

He goes on to explain, "Behind the top drawer, we had a wall plug, where you could keep a blow dryer or electric shaver. It is plugged in continuously, which makes using electrical appliances easier."

Norton chose LesCare Cabinetry with an Arteeca door style on maple wood with white ivory satin. "From there," he explains, "I took it upon myself to put fluted fillers and basically flank all three mirror areas, topping it off with the crown moulding."

To complement the cabinetry, he used Kohler plumbing fixtures and Champagne DuPont Corian surfacing. He adds, "In the bathroom, the color [of the Corian] came through similar to a burgundy, which is actually an inset piece, an inlay of a DuPont Corian color."The cabinetry was chosen in part because it was a close color match to the Corian, and blended well with the color in the master bedroom.

Norton notes, "The DuPont Corian color stayed true because most of the trim in the house was done in off-white and the walls were done in a shade of mauve that the champagne Corian had a tendency to carry."

  • The major design concern for this model home project was creating a design theme that would flow effortlessly from room to room, providing continuity as well as visual appeal. An additional challenge was the need to work around a confining kitchen layout, while finding convenient locations for a host of time-saving appliances.
  • The kitchen's layout is designed to offer flexibility for a large family or for entertaining, allowing space for guests to watch television or talk with the cook during meal preparation. 
  • The overall color scheme of the kitchen is a mixture of the champagne countertops, cherry wood cabinetry and stainless steel appliances. A blue Maranachi granite countertop on the island with splashes of gray and silver transitions with the stainless steel appliances within the space, while a light ivory finish on the maple fluted fillers and crown moulding lightens up the dark cherry.
  • By incorporating laser cut stainless steel inserts above the range and on the decorator panel, the designer was able to blend the stainless steel appliances with the cabinet doors within the kitchen.
  • The master bathroom, which measures 14'x13', features DuPont Corian countertops with integrated sink bowls in a champagne hue, meant as a tie-in color for the off-white trim and mauve walls of the master bedroom.
  • Products include: LesCare Cabinetry (in both the kitchen and bath); DuPont Corian countertops; Maranachi granite island countertop; GE Professional 48" range with Pro Hood; GE icemaker and wine chiller; GE stainless steel dishwasher; Sub-Zero refrigerator; Heritage Finishes, Inc. door scroll work; Dal-tile flooring; Hubbel Halogen undercabinet lighting; Kohler plumbing fixtures and DuPont Corian countertops with integrated sink bowls (in the bathroom).

project highlights