Ken and Mary started the rehabilitation by creating what has quickly become one of their favorite spaces—the sunny breakfast nook.
The previous owners had left behind an early 20th-century Sellers table, so Ken went about designing a pair of benches to match it.
“‘Depressing’ would be the best word to describe it.”The couple knew they wanted a retro-style kitchen that would both fit the time period of the house and appeal to their finely honed aesthetic sensibilities (Ken is a graphic designer by trade; Mary has a degree in interior design), but they were also aware of falling property values in the area, and didn’t want to sink too much money into a kitchen overhaul. Buy as much as possible off the shelf, and perform all of the work themselves.
The strategy paid off, netting them a refreshed retro kitchen for a price tag of under ,000.
"The idea is to use as many four-burner tops, ovens, and storage drawers as space and need demand, in whatever combination is most appropriate.
The homeowners agreed to let us renovate it, but we let you decide what elements would go into the remodel.
For example, the whole notion of “Sanitary Kitchens” was very important. Rats and mice could not eat through steel — so if you had a metal hoosier (or at minimum, a metal flour bin) they couldn’t get into your foodstuffs and contaminate them.
“I did a lot of research on what would have been there at the time,” he says.
“I wanted something with kind of an Art Deco/machine age feel.”To soften the Deco-inspired lines and blend the benches with the house’s pedigree, he selected beadboard backing.
) As you can see, these cabinets had a deco/streamline look.
I’ll call these “semi-fitted” kitchen because the stove and fridge were still separate pieces of furniture.